While shopping at an online store (because rarely found in walk-in jewelry shops), you may come across some insanely priced diamonds that have superior clarity level, called Flawless (or, Internally Flawless).
These diamonds might be 2x the price of a similar diamond, but just have lower (and completely great) clarity grade! Insane isn’t it?
Here is an image of a 1.1 carat diamond (excellent cut, G color), that has a clarity grade of Flawless:
This is a 20x magnified image, and even if you check it under 40x zoom that is offered by James Allen, you still will NOT see inclusions of any type, that’s simply what “flawless” means.
In this article, we will go over the definition of Flawless clarity grade, how it’s compared to similar grades, price ranges and our recommendation.
What are Flawless Diamonds?
For people, it’s common to use the word “flawless” in diamonds to mean a perfect diamond (as the word “flawless” implies). In the world of diamonds, this term is used officially to recognize a diamond purity grade.
Due to the fact that diamonds are created at great depths within the Earth’s surface, through intense heat and pressure, they frequently possess distinctive marks, which can either be internal (inclusions) or external (blemishes), which is measured by Diamond Clarity.
Flawless is the highest grade of diamond clarity, a term that refers to how clean the diamond is, and the term “clean” here means the absence of any blemishes/imperfections on the diamond surface or deep inside it.
Diamond clarity is segment into many groups, each has 1 or more clarity grade, all these grades are assigned based on type, size, and location of imperfections/birthmarks.
Flawless simply means ZERO, no blemishes -whatsoever- is found under 10x magnification by a gemologist.
This clarity grade sits on the top of the diamond clarity chart, as defined by GIA, the leading global diamond grading & standard authority:
Flawless diamonds are rare, extremely rare, we’re talking about less than 0.5% of diamonds fall into this grade! In other words, out of 1000 diamonds (distributed equally), you probably will find 5 of them flawless.
On James Allen for instance, as the largest diamond store with 300k+ of diamonds, we found just 217 flawless diamonds (out of 208k round shaped diamonds), pretty rare.
Flawless vs Internally Flawless Clarity Grades
The chart above groups Flawless with Internally Flawless in one group (you might find this common on some stores and online resources), the main difference between the two grades is that flawless has “No inclusions and no blemishes visible to a skilled grader using 10x magnification” as defined by GIA.
While IF – Internally Flawless has no inclusions, but only blemishes are apparent, when viewed under 10x magnification by an experienced grader.
To us, you, your friends, your jewelry store salesperson, they are exactly the same, the difference between IF & FL grades needs advanced magnification, and professional gemologist with years of experience.
In a bit of visual comparison, here are two diamonds on James Allen as seen under the super 40x magnification feature of James Allen:
The diamond on the left is 1.1 carat, G color, excellent cut, and Flawless.
The one on the right is almost identical, but has internally flawless clarity grade.
Inspect both diamonds under magnified 360 degrees available on James Allen to see different angles and verify that there is no visual difference at all between both grades.
Flawless Clarity Diamonds Prices
Looking for flawless diamond prices is similar to asking about D color prices as well.
These grades are extremely high compared to recommended clarity & color grades, overpriced, and the difference they offer goes unnoticed to most (if not all) people.
When trying to find a price, especially for these “insane” grades, we can’t rely on local stores since they much more expensive than diamond online stores, and probably don’t have any of these grades.
So, we will use James Allen & Blue Nile as our reference here since they have the largest diamond inventory (500k+ diamonds combined), and we will fix our search to common characteristics.
Carat: 0.9 – 1.1 (as mentioned above, this grade is extremely rare and we couldn’t find exact 1 carat)
Polish & Symmetry: Excellent
Then run a search on both sites for Flawless FL clarity grade.
On James Allen, there are 2 diamonds (0.94 and the 1.1 we saw above), priced at $8880 and $10950 respectively.
On Blue Nile, we found a single lonely diamond, with 0.9 carat priced $7555.
As you see, we can’t find an exact range due to the lack of options, but we can easily tell that these prices are extremely expensive compared to the average 1 carat diamond prices.
Are Flawless Diamonds Worth it?
The short answer? Definitely no!
Flawless and internally flawless are extremely overpriced. To be precise, they are very expensive compared to the value they bring to the diamond.
In other words, will you be able (under any circumstances) distinguish and appreciate the clarity difference between flawless and VVS2 diamond? Unless you’re a gemologist and using 10x magnification loupe, both diamonds will look exactly the same.
So why would you want to consider spending a grand and more, for something you can’t see?
Generally, we recommend starting with SI1 clarity, mentioning this grade while discussing flawless sounds crazy we know, but that’s true, in most cases with diamonds < 1 carat, SI1 grade will give you an eye clean diamond.
Going one grade above (VS2) will be definitely a great choice as well, exceeding this might not be needed unless you’re getting a very large diamond, like 2 carat & higher!
Where to Buy Flawless Clarity Diamonds?
Okay, just to confirm for those who skipped the last section here, we don’t recommend getting these insanely high grades, whether it was an FL or IF for the sole reason that you will not be able to tell any difference between them and lower grades.
That’s being said, if you want to explore, browse, and probably buy a flawless diamond, it would be very rare case to find a flawless diamond in your local jewelry store, once we know that most jewelers spend their life without seeing a FL diamond, so your chances finding it online are much higher.
Generally, we recommend these stores:
1. James Allen
Being on top of the online diamond industry, with unmatched imaging technology, and hundreds of thousands of diamonds, James Allen will be your first choice when you’re looking for a flawless diamond.
As of writing this, out of 207k round diamonds on JA, 312 have flawless clarity as we see in this search.
For the record, here is that diamond:
2. Blue Nile
The largest (or 2nd) online retailer, hundreds of thousands of diamonds as well, with a great reputation online.
They have (as of writing) 206k round diamonds, and just 228 of them are Flawless!
The most expensive one is pretty large, around 6 carat! And similar to the one we found on JA, it has D color grade, making its price tag insanely high, just a bit above $470k! See it in 360 degree here.
3. Brilliant Earth
While it might not be as popular as the other two, Brilliant Earth isn’t far from the competition, they have hundreds of thousands of diamonds in their store.
They are known to be specialized in lab grown diamonds, but they also have great inventory of a natural diamonds, as of now, their site has 117k+ natural diamonds (and for the record, 202k+ lab created diamond).
Out of these 117k, just 111 of them are flawless as we see here.
Clarity Grades Review
Diamond clarity is a term used to describe the degree to which a diamond is free of internal imperfections and external blemishes.
The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) developed a grading scale to assess diamond clarity, which ranges from Flawless to Included, and includes six categories.
Here are the six categories of diamond clarity in order of increasing inclusions:
- Flawless (FL): These diamonds have no visible inclusions or blemishes even under 10x magnification.
- Internally Flawless (IF): These diamonds have no visible inclusions but may have minor blemishes.
- Very, Very Slightly Included (VVS1 and VVS2): These diamonds have inclusions that are extremely difficult to see under 10x magnification.
- Very Slightly Included (VS1 and VS2): These diamonds have inclusions that are visible under 10x magnification but are minor and do not affect the diamond’s overall appearance.
- Slightly Included (SI1 and SI2): These diamonds have inclusions that are noticeable under 10x magnification and may affect the diamond’s brilliance or transparency.
- Included (I1, I2, and I3): These diamonds have inclusions that are obvious under 10x magnification and may affect the diamond’s durability, transparency, and brilliance.
Flawless Clarity Final Word
To buy or not to buy a flawless diamond depends on your personal preferences and budget.
To recap, flawless diamonds are the rarest and most valuable in terms of diamond clarity, as they have no visible inclusions or blemishes even under 10x magnification.
But this comes with a price tag of course, these diamonds can be very expensive, we’re talking about $2k more expensive than the average 1 carat diamond price.
If you’re looking for a diamond with excellent clarity that still offers good value, you may want to consider diamonds in the VS1 to SI1 range, which can still appear very clean to the naked eye and offer a good balance of quality and affordability.
Still not sure where to buy your diamond?
We always recommend shopping diamonds online and created a Full guide to shop diamonds like a Pro.
Among online retailers, here are our favorite stores
click their logo to visit store
Our favorite online store, best diamond imaging technology available today, comes with the largest collection with more than half a million loose diamonds.
Widest collection of loose diamonds of all sizes, great imaging technology for most of their inventory (hundreds of thousands of diamonds), great customer support.
Home Of A CUT ABOVE® Super Ideal Diamonds, they stand out from the crowd by offering premium diamonds cuts, tailored to those who love the details, at great prices too.