What Are Flawless (FL) And Internally Flawless (IF) Diamonds?

Flawless and internally flawless diamonds stand on the top of all diamond clarity charts. They are rarer than most people think, and because of this many jewelers don’t even carry them.

As you can imagine, flawless and internally flawless diamonds have and will always be in high demand. Their unblemished character makes them desirable among couples, and well, just about everyone.

What Are FL And IF Diamonds?

flawless diamond next to IF diamond
A flawless diamond (left) vs. an internally flawless diamond (right)

Flawless diamonds are rarer than internally flawless diamonds. To the naked eye, these two clarity grades are indistinguishable – they both have zero inclusions.

Internally flawless diamonds have some barely noticeable differences under 10x magnification, but they are not inclusion-based differences. What it usually comes down to is polish. A diamond with polish lines visible under magnification will receive an internally flawless clarity grade.

How Is Diamond Clarity Measured?

There are several methods of measuring diamond clarity:

  • Inclusion Size- when an inclusion is spotted, its size is one of the first characteristics noted. Inclusion size is also one of the primary determining factors behind whether or not a diamond is eye-clean.
  • Inclusion Nature- inclusion nature touches on the inclusion type being dealt with. Inclusions affect diamonds differently. For example, a cavity inclusion may diminish a diamond’s strength.
  • Inclusion Number- the number of inclusions also plays a big part in determining which clarity grade a diamond receives.
  • Inclusion Location- location is important. Lots of inclusions on the diamond’s table will result in a lower clarity grade.
  • Relief- lastly, relief refers to the contrast between inclusion and diamond. For example, a dark inclusion will create higher contrast with the diamond and be more noticeable than a clear or white inclusion. 

Should I Buy A FL Or IF Diamond?

FL and IF diamonds are the most expensive clarity grade. Tens of thousands of dollars can easily be spent on these high-grade cuts.

Keep in mind that whether you choose a flawless or internally flawless diamond, either one will be free from inclusions. This is what truly separates both of these from other clarity grades. Remember that you don’t need to spend thousands of extra dollars on a flawless or internally flawless diamond; a VVS1, VVS2, VS1, and sometimes even a VS2 diamond will be eye clean.

All of the four C’s should be closely examined before making a decision on a diamond because ultimately, clarity is just one aspect of diamond grading to consider.

Where Can I Find Flawless & Internally Flawless Diamonds?

Because flawless and internally flawless diamonds are rare, you may have better luck finding one online. When shopping for a diamond online, always look at real HD images and/or videos of it; never rely on 3D renders.

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