What are VVS1 Diamonds?

What are VVS1 diamonds

A good quality diamond looks breathtakingly beautiful and no flaws will be visible with a naked eye. A VVS1 diamond is an almost perfect and flawless diamond so it is listed as third in the modern grading system after the grades ‘flawless’ and internally flawless’.

What does VVS1 stand for?

The letters ‘VVS’ stand for ‘very very slightly’ included. The internal characteristic flaws of a diamond are called ‘inclusions’. In reality, a VVS1 is one of the top grades of diamonds on the clarity scale (clarity relates to the visual appearance of a diamond). Truly flawless diamonds are actually so rare that most jewelers have never seen one and certainly do not keep them in stock!

With a VVS1 diamond, the flaws are located in the bottom half of the stone and the gemologist will only be able to see them from the pavilion view. The flaws in a VVS2 diamond are located towards the top of the stone and can be seen from the top surface. In both cases though, these flaws are tiny and they cannot possibly be seen by the naked eye.

A professional gemologist is a specialist who can identify even the slightest imperfections in precious stones, can appraise the quality and clarity of the stone and grade it. Using 10 X magnification, an experienced gemologist will be able to pick up any minute incisions in a diamond. Having said that, finding these minute flaws can be a real challenge, even for the most experienced expert using good magnification in laboratory conditions.

Interestingly, the inclusions found in every diamond are totally unique and are like the diamond’s fingerprint. Not only can this help to identify a particular diamond, but it can also confirm that it is a natural diamond as no synthetic diamonds have inclusions.

A Little Bit of Diamond History

In 1952 a new diamond grading system was introduced that gave nine different grades for the quality of diamonds, ranging for the top grade ‘flawless’ with grades I1 and I2 at the other end of the scale denoting imperfect diamonds. This grading system was later revised in the 1970s and extended into12 grades. These grades are used worldwide by the top diamond graders such as the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), the American Gemological Society (AGS), the International Gemological Institute (IGI) and the European Gemological Laboratory (EGL) as well as many smaller grading laboratories.

Why choose a VVS1 diamond?

Many people want to buy a diamond that is almost perfect, especially if it is for a very special occasion such as an engagement. Unfortunately, the cost of a VVS1 diamond can be prohibitive and you can get a diamond that looks equally amazing but has a VS rating, which costs much less money.

What steps to follow to buy a VVS1 diamond…

If after careful consideration you have decided that you would really like to buy a VVS1 diamond there are some important steps to follow.

  1. The first step is to choose your jeweler carefully. It is best to go to a jeweler who specializes in diamonds. There are a number of top brands of diamonds in the world such as Cartier, Tiffany, Chopard, and De Beers.
  2. Make sure that the diamond you are going to buy is a certified stone. The diamond should be certified by one of the top laboratories such as the GIA, AGS, IGI and EGL as these are the most reputable laboratories with the best grading system. If you are going to pay a great deal of hard-earned cash, you need to know exactly what you are buying. A diamond that is given a VVS grading by smaller laboratories and has a cheaper price tag, might in reality, only be given a VS grade by one of these top laboratories. If your chosen diamond has not been certified, it is essential that this is done and the process with any of the top laboratories will take 3-4 weeks.
  3. It is important to remember that there are four C’s to be considered when buying a diamond – Carat (size), Clarity, Cut and Color.
  4. How a diamond has been cut is very important. Clarity and brilliance are two separate qualities in a diamond. If you have a VVS1 diamond that has really good clarity but has been poorly cut, the diamond will look dull and lifeless. Cut makes a huge impact on the beauty of the stone and the better the cut, the higher the price tag.
  5. Colour is another consideration. The most beautiful diamonds are those that are totally colorless. It is worth remembering that a more flawless stone with greater color will not look as good as a more colorless stone of a lower grade.

At the end of the day, there will be no visible difference if you buy a lower grade diamond, but if you want as close to perfection as possible and you have the money to afford one, a VVS1 diamond is definitely the answer.

Read Also: What are VVS Diamonds? Is there a Difference Between VVS1 and VVS2?

Carl A. Jones, GIA GG

Carl A. Jones is a GIA Graduate Gemologist with over 20 years of experience in the diamond industry. He is an independent jewelry appraiser. He specializes in determining the value of diamonds and advising consumers on how to buy quality diamond jewelry.

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