Are you considering buying a VVS diamond?
You’ve come to the correct spot. In this informative Twirl Weddings handbook, we will discuss all the essential information about VVS diamonds and address the following queries:
- Are VVS diamonds the top choice for clarity grade?
- Is it advisable to purchase diamonds with VVS clarity?
- Is VVS clarity necessary for an engagement ring?
What is VVS Diamond Clarity?
A VVS diamond is one that has received the clarity grade of Very Very Slightly Included according to the diamond clarity scale developed by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). The GIA is responsible for assessing various aspects of diamonds, such as cut quality, clarity grades, color grades, and carat weight.
The clarity grade of your diamond is determined by a gemological grading lab. However, it’s important to note that not all diamond grading labs are the same. Labs like GIA, AGS, EGL, and IGI have their own standards. It is advisable to choose certified VVS diamonds from reputable and trusted labs like GIA or the American Gem Society (AGS). This recommendation extends to VVS lab-grown diamonds as well.
When a diamond grader evaluates the clarity of a diamond, they examine the presence of inclusions and blemishes. Inclusions and blemishes are natural characteristics that are found in all gemstones.
Inclusions can be found in both mined diamonds and lab-created diamonds. However, lab-grown diamonds tend to have less noticeable inclusions due to the controlled environment in which they are formed. Mined diamonds can come into contact with various minerals and elements in the earth, leading to the formation of inclusions and blemishes.
Some diamonds with prominent inclusions may have compromised durability. Inclusions near the surface can particularly affect durability. Certain blemishes, which are inclusions confined to the surface, can also pose a threat to durability if the diamond is accidentally struck.
Inclusions are evaluated based on their size, color/relief, position, and prominence within the diamond. Each grading lab follows a specific process to assess these factors. With VVS diamonds, the grading process becomes more challenging.
The VVS diamond clarity grade encompasses two sub-grades: VVS1 and VVS2. According to the GIA, only about 5% of all diamonds they grade fall into the VVS category. Mined VVS diamonds can be exceptionally rare, especially when combined with high-quality factors in other areas.
VVS diamonds are considered to have an “eye clean” clarity. This means that the inclusions and blemishes in these diamonds are not visible to the naked eye. However, under 10x magnification, some inclusions may be detected in VVS diamonds. Even under magnification, these inclusions are difficult to spot and are typically tiny specks known as pinpoints. Such inclusions do not impact durability or increase vulnerability in the diamond.
What are VVS1 Diamonds?
VVS1 diamonds belong to the top clarity grade within the VVS category. These diamonds possess extremely minute inclusions that are not visible under 10x magnification. However, if you examine them under even higher magnification, such as beyond 10x, you may be able to spot tiny inclusions.
To give you an idea of how VVS1 diamonds appear under 40x magnification, here are a couple of examples:
What are VVS2 Diamonds?
VVS2 diamonds are classified as the lower clarity grade within the VVS category. Despite being a slightly lower grade, VVS2 diamonds still possess high clarity and are considered eye-clean. However, when examining a VVS2 diamond under 10x magnification, you may be able to observe very tiny inclusions.
Here are a couple of examples of VVS2 diamonds viewed under 40x magnification:
The Difference Between VVS1 and VVS2 Diamonds
When comparing VVS1 diamonds to VVS2 diamonds, the key distinction lies in the presence of visible inclusions under 10x magnification. VVS2 diamonds have inclusions that can be seen at this level of magnification, while VVS1 diamonds do not exhibit visible inclusions.
In terms of pricing, there can be a variation of a few hundred to several thousand dollars between VVS1 and VVS2 diamonds. However, most individuals would not be able to discern the disparity between the two grades without the aid of magnification; it is not noticeable to the naked eye.
Both VVS1 and VVS2 diamonds are considered eye-clean, meaning they do not have visible inclusions to the naked eye. However, if all other factors of the diamonds are equal, VVS1 diamonds tend to be rarer and more valuable compared to VVS2 diamonds.
VVS Diamonds vs VS Diamonds
Both VVS diamonds and VS diamonds are classified as eye-clean clarity grades. VVS diamonds hold a slightly higher position in the clarity scale compared to the VS clarity grade. VS diamonds, known as Very Slightly Included, consist of two grades: VS1 and VS2.
The primary distinction between VVS diamonds and VS diamonds lies in the visibility of inclusions under 10x magnification or higher. A VS2 diamond may exhibit small inclusions that are visible under magnification. However, some of these inclusions can be more noticeable compared to the pinpoint-sized inclusions found in a VVS2 diamond.
Although the following examples are magnified at 40x instead of 10x, they provide an idea of the disparity between VS clarity and VVS clarity diamonds.
VVS and VS diamonds are closely positioned on the clarity scale, making them appear identical to the naked eye. However, when it comes to pricing, the difference can amount to thousands of dollars.
While a VS diamond may feature a single, darker, or larger inclusion compared to a VVS diamond, it does not necessarily affect the durability. A VS diamond still qualifies as a high-quality diamond in terms of clarity grade.
Here is a general comparison of prices for comparable VVS and VS diamonds from James Allen.
Both diamonds exhibit superb polish, symmetry, and proportions. However, there are slight variations in the table size, fluorescence, and length to width ratio between the two.
VVS Diamonds vs Internally Flawless (IF) and Flawless Diamonds (F)
When it comes to diamond rarity, VVS diamonds, especially VVS1 diamonds, are considered quite uncommon. However, compared to internally flawless and flawless diamonds, the quality of VVS diamonds is not as rare.
Comparing VVS Diamonds to Internally Flawless and Flawless Diamonds
According to the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), internally flawless diamonds make up less than 1% of all diamonds graded by their laboratories. As for flawless diamonds, they account for less than 0.1% of the GIA-graded diamonds.
Price Differences between VVS Diamonds and Higher Clarity Grades
If you’re comparing the cost of a VVS diamond to an internally flawless diamond, you can expect an increase in price ranging from around 5% to 20%, sometimes even more. This price variation depends on how other quality factors are evaluated and compared.
When comparing VVS diamonds to flawless diamonds, the price difference becomes significantly higher. A high-quality 1-carat VVS diamond can have a price difference of tens of thousands of dollars compared to a similarly graded flawless diamond.
Determining the Cost of VVS Diamonds
The price of a VVS diamond is not solely determined by its clarity grade. Other factors such as table proportions, symmetry, shape, color grade, and carat weight also play a significant role in pricing.
A VVS1 diamond generally costs more than a VVS2 diamond, assuming all other factors are comparable. However, due to the various aspects involved in the jewelry purchase process, it’s challenging to provide an exact price range.
As a rough estimate, VVS diamonds can range anywhere from $5,000 to over $20,000, typically covering the cost of a 1-carat diamond. Higher carat weights of VVS diamonds can easily surpass this range.
Considering Lab-Grown VVS Diamonds
Purchasing lab-grown diamonds instead of mined ones can offer a 20-40% discount. Lab-grown VVS diamonds possess the same chemical, optical, and physical properties as naturally occurring diamonds, making them 100% real diamonds.
Finding the Price per Carat of VVS Diamonds
To determine if you’re paying a reasonable price for VVS diamond quality, it’s important to know the price per carat. Diamond consultants often provide the diamond’s price according to this metric.
Calculating the price per carat involves dividing the total price by the diamond’s carat weight. Keep in mind that this calculation is applicable for loose diamonds, not pre-assembled diamond engagement rings.
Additionally, it’s crucial to consider specific details beyond the 4Cs of diamond quality, such as symmetry, polish, table size, diamond certification, and length to width ratio. Examining these factors will provide a comprehensive understanding of a VVS diamond’s value.
Is a VVS Diamond a Good Clarity Grade?
VVS diamonds are among the highest grades when it comes to clarity on the grading scale. They are considered to have excellent clarity, making them a top-tier choice.
But do you really need it?
If you can comfortably afford a VVS diamond without compromising other important diamond factors, then go for it and buy a VVS diamond.
However, if you’re trying to stretch your budget to fit a VVS clarity grade, I suggest you pause and reconsider.
There’s no denying that VVS diamonds offer exceptional clarity and are considered eye-clean for an engagement ring. On the other hand, both VVS and VS diamonds do not have visible inclusions to the naked eye.
VS diamonds might have slightly larger inclusions that can be seen under 10x magnification, but let’s be honest, most people won’t be inspecting your diamond like that, right? In fact, many individuals wouldn’t even notice more noticeable inclusions in SI diamonds as long as the cut quality is great.
In my opinion, why spend money on something that you and others can’t see in the first place? When comparing VS diamonds and VVS diamonds side by side, they appear identical. However, the price difference can range from $500 to $1500 or more.
Where to Buy VVS Diamonds
Now that you’ve become well-informed about VVS diamond clarity, you may be curious about the best places to purchase VVS diamonds. Fortunately, we have already compiled an article that provides insights into the top destinations for buying VVS diamonds.
If you wish to expand your understanding of VVS diamonds, we recommend exploring our related articles covering the following topics: