Wondering if a VVS2 diamond is the correct clarity rating for your engagement ring? In this informative Twirl Weddings guide, I will provide you with essential information about VVS2 diamonds and address common queries such as:
- What sets VVS2 diamonds apart from flawless diamonds?
- Are VVS2 diamonds consistently less expensive compared to VVS1 diamonds?
- Is it necessary to opt for VVS2 clarity, or can you consider a lower clarity grade?
What Exactly is a VVS2 Diamond?
A diamond that receives a VVS2 clarity grade is classified as Very Very Slightly Included. It falls within the VVS tier of diamond clarity, which consists of two grades: VVS1 and VVS2. In terms of clarity, VVS2 is considered a slightly lower grade compared to VVS1.
Understanding VVS Clarity
VVS diamonds are known for their exceptional clarity, often referred to as “eye-clean.” Both VVS1 and VVS2 diamonds belong to the category of Very Very Slightly Included (VVS) diamonds. When viewed under 10x magnification, it is challenging to spot any inclusions or blemishes in a VVS1 diamond. On the other hand, a VVS2 diamond is free from visible inclusions to the naked eye, but some pinpoint-sized imperfections may become noticeable under magnification.
Inclusions and Blemishes
Inclusions are internal features found within a diamond, whereas blemishes are surface imperfections. Although there is a distinction between these two, both are generally referred to as inclusions. Various types of inclusions can exist, some of which may affect the diamond’s durability, while others are purely cosmetic.
Inclusions come in diverse shapes and sizes, including tiny crystals that become trapped within the diamond’s crystal structure during its formation.
Even experts encounter difficulties when assessing higher clarity grades like VVS diamonds, internally flawless diamonds, and flawless diamonds. To determine clarity grades for submitted diamonds, institutions like the Gemological Institute of America rely on a master set of diamonds with varying clarity grades.
GIA Diamond Clarity Grading Scale
The GIA, a prominent authority on gemstones and jewelry, pioneered the creation of diamond grading charts and scales during the 1940s. Their grading system is widely adopted by jewelry and diamond sellers globally, being recognized as the premier laboratory for grading in the industry. Another notable organization in this field is the American Gem Society, which holds a similar standing.
Let’s now explore the GIA’s diamond clarity grading scale:
Diamonds that receive clarity grades such as VS, VVS, IF, and F are categorized as “eye clean” diamonds. This means that no visible inclusions can be observed with the naked eye in these diamonds.
VVS2 vs VS2
A diamond with a clarity grade of VS2 belongs to the second tier of clarity grades known as VS. In terms of clarity, VS2 diamonds are two grades lower than VVS2 diamonds on the clarity scale. It is unlikely that you will notice any visible inclusions with the naked eye.
The term VS stands for “very slightly included.” A VS2 diamond is the first grade within the VS tier that is considered to be eye clean, meaning no noticeable inclusions can be seen without magnification. However, under 10x magnification, there may be some subtle differences.
Typically, VS2 diamonds should not have any significant visible inclusions under magnification, unless you are dealing with a larger diamond. However, you might be able to spot a few small inclusions in a 360 video. The magnification used in this video is 40x, which makes the inclusions appear larger compared to 10x magnification.
Loose diamonds with VVS2 clarity will have minimal visible inclusions under magnification. You may notice an occasional pinpoint, which is usually a small white inclusion.
The price difference between a VVS2 clarity diamond and a VS2 clarity diamond can vary significantly, ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on other factors and grades involved.
VVS1 vs VVS2
VVS1 diamonds are considered to have a slightly higher clarity grade than VVS2 diamonds, although the actual difference between them is minimal, especially for consumers. Only a skilled diamond grader with magnification would be able to detect and distinguish the variance between a VVS1 and VVS2 diamond.
Interestingly, the price of a VVS2 diamond may sometimes surpass that of a VVS1 diamond. It’s not always the case that one is more expensive than the other, even if all other characteristics are identical.
In some cases, a VVS2 diamond might exhibit superior polish and symmetry compared to a VVS1 diamond. If all other factors remain the same, this would make the VVS2 diamond a better choice.
The Cost of VVS2 Diamond
So, what is the actual cost of a VVS2 diamond? Determining the precise price of a diamond can be complicated, as clarity is just one factor in grading diamonds. Therefore, it’s challenging to provide an exact price.
However, I can give you a general price range. On average, a 1-carat VVS2 clarity diamond can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000, or even more.
If you opt for a lab-created VVS2 clarity diamond, you can expect to pay around 20-40% less compared to a naturally mined VVS2 diamond (assuming the other grades are similar). While lab-created diamonds lack the rarity of natural diamonds, this might not be a significant concern for everyone.
It’s important to note that price differences can vary significantly even when the grades and quality are similar.
Personally, I suggest considering diamonds with VS clarity grades. These are the first clarity grades where diamonds are considered eye clean, meaning you won’t be able to distinguish them from VVS diamonds with the naked eye.
So, my reasoning is, if I can’t see a difference, why should I pay extra for it?
Why You Should Buy a VVS2 Clarity Diamond?
You might be wondering if having a VVS2 diamond clarity grade is absolutely necessary to have a stunning diamond engagement ring.
The truth is, it’s not necessary at all.
As you have already learned from the previous sections, a VVS2 clarity diamond is not visibly different from a VS2 or VVS1 clarity diamond grade. The differences are minimal and can only be observed under 10x magnification. However, when it comes to prices, there can be significant variations.
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If you have a limited budget or prefer to allocate more resources to other aspects of the diamond rather than focusing solely on clarity, I don’t recommend buying a VVS2 diamond.
I know, you might expect me to encourage you to buy an expensive diamond, right?
Well, that’s not the case.
To be honest, I wouldn’t choose a VVS2 diamond unless I had a generous budget to afford high grades in all diamond categories. However, if I were considering a dazzling 4-carat diamond in a unique shape (other than round diamonds), I might consider the VVS2 diamond clarity grades.
This is because as the carat weight of a diamond increases, other factors such as cut quality, clarity, and color grade should complement its size. The same minor inclusions that are less visible in smaller diamonds become more noticeable as the size increases.
Of course, the perceived size of a diamond also depends on its shape. Round diamonds may appear smaller compared to emerald cut diamonds or other fancy shapes.
Best Shapes for a VVS Diamond Clarity Grade
It is indeed possible to find VVS2 diamonds in various shapes. However, certain shapes make inclusions more noticeable compared to others. Typically, there are only around 10 diamond shapes commonly available for purchase.
When it comes to revealing inclusions, step-cut diamonds are more prone to doing so compared to round cut brilliant diamonds. The emerald cut, with its staircase-like appearance, has a wide surface area. Due to their shallower depth, inclusions inside these diamonds are more easily visible. On the other hand, emerald cuts tend to appear larger than round diamonds of the same carat weight.
Oval diamonds, with their length and larger surface area, can also reveal more prominent inclusions compared to round diamonds. Therefore, if you opt for a diamond shape with a larger surface area and increase the carat weight, you might want to consider choosing a VVS2 diamond.
However, it’s important to note that there is no perfect diamond shape for an engagement ring. Most people have a preference in mind when they start looking for loose diamonds. If you’re open to different options and want to make the most of your budget, a VVS2 diamond is not necessary.
Choosing a VVS2 Diamond
Here are some suggestions to keep in mind when selecting a VVS2 diamond, regardless of where you’re shopping.
Most chain jewelry stores offer pre-set engagement rings, so it’s a good idea to start your search online. Online retailers have a wide selection of VVS2 diamonds to choose from.
Ensure that the other grades of your VVS2 diamond are not too low, as this can impact the clarity. It’s important to balance your budget across the 4Cs of diamond quality: cut quality, color grade, clarity grades, and carat weight. Never compromise on the cut.
For fancy shaped diamonds larger than 2 carats, opt for VVS2 diamond clarity grades. Before making a purchase, always examine the diamond under magnification.
Never buy VVS2 diamonds without proper diamond certification. Not all grading labs are trustworthy, so ensure that the diamond comes with a report from a reputable grading laboratory.
Before finalizing your VVS diamond purchase from any retailer, carefully review their warranties, return policies, and reliability. There are numerous online retailers available, but not all of them are reputable.
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Best Places to Buy VVS2 Diamonds
As stated earlier, chain retailers typically do not have a large selection of VVS diamonds available. Stores like Kay’s and Zales are unlikely to have even a single VVS diamond engagement ring on display. VVS diamonds are not in high demand in the commercial market.
However, with the rise in popularity of online diamond retailers, more people are becoming aware of higher clarity grades such as VVS, internally flawless, or flawless diamonds.
While I don’t believe that VVS2 diamonds are absolutely essential, it doesn’t mean that you might not desire them. Luckily, we have prepared a guide specifically for you on What Are VVS Diamonds and How Much Do They Cost?