My girlfriend wants a flawless diamond. What do I do?

Written by The Diamond Advisor. Posted in Questions and Answers (Q&A) No Comments

Reader Diamond QuestionWhat if my girlfriend is dead set on a flawless (or internally flawless) diamond.  What should I do?


This is always a tough one and something many readers and friends bring up – balancing the flawless diamond ‘want’ of your fiancé-to-be with the realities of your budget. As is often the case, a woman’s request for a flawless diamond is driven by the need to have something that is poorly understood. Women on the receiving end of a diamond want perfection and assume that it can only be had with an IF (Internally Flawless) or FL (Flawless) clarity grade. On the contrary, a flawless diamond can still have flaws – common ones being ‘surface graining’ or remnants of the polishing process the diamond underwent.

GIA Report - Clarity Characteristics of Internally Flawless Diamond

GIA Report - Clarity Characteristics of Internally Flawless Diamond

Two GIA reports from James Allen diamonds showing IF Clarity diamond ‘clarity characteristics’. Click to see the associated stone

So, in situations like this, there are typically two schools of thought. The approach you ultimately choose depends on your abilities of persuasion (or lack there of):

(1) Educate your Significant Other on the Misconceptions on a Flawless Diamond

If a diamond has a flaw which is invisible to the bearer, is it still considered a flawless diamond? That’s a seemingly philosophical question but one which helps drive the message home. All diamonds have flaws. That’s simply how nature works but is also a reflection of the many processes rough diamonds undergo to be transformed into finished diamonds.  Sharing education on this fact is a great starting dialog.  Next, and more importantly, is budget – and how budget drastically changes when flawless is mentioned. Would you pay an extra $2,000 to remove something that didn’t negatively impact the stone and something you couldn’t see in the first place? From this perspective, most sensible people would answer “No”.  If you suspect you might get a “Yes”, then our recommendation is to try the next approach instead.

Internally Flawless Diamond Clarity
SI2 Diamond Clarity
The IF vs. Non-IF Test
One of these magnified stones is internally flawless (IF). The other is not. Can you tell the difference?
(2) Call It a Flawless Diamond and Wait It Out

Flawless doesn’t have to mean what clarity grade flawless means on paper. We’ll be the first to admit this is a bit of a risk but one based from experience and one which pays off big with money saved.

Shoppers who did their homework and bought a diamond will end up with a stunning diamond which will naturally be showcased. When a woman receives the diamond engagement ring, the diamond parade begins. The diamond parade, for those without married friends, is the period in which the diamond and ring are shown off to family and friends, jealous stares are given and questions about the diamond and proposal are asked. This period lasts anywhere between 2 weeks to a few months. During this time, the vast majority of questions about the diamond ring will be along the lines of “Wow, it’s beautiful, how big is it?”. Your glowing fiancé will in turn share the Carat Weight of the diamond and then the conversation moves on to the proposal story. Often, the Cut of the diamond is discussed (see our diamond buying guide on why the answer should always be “Ideal”). In rare cases do questions actually arise around the Color of the diamond. In even rarer situations is the topic of Clarity ever broached. Because Clarity is the 4C farthest from everyone’s mind, it’s possible to wait out the diamond parade period without ever having discussed flawlessness.


Helpful Communication Tips:
  • Flawless to a person, doesn’t have to mean Clarity Grade = Flawless. Flawless to a person means no visible imperfections in the diamond. Because your aim is to buy eye clean (read our eye clean buying guide), go ahead and tell her it’s “flawless”
  • Talk about some of the other interesting facets of diamonds (yes, pun intended). Characteristics like fire, hearts and arrows, scintillation, fluorescence… these are all unique things about diamonds your loved one will enjoy hearing about.
  • If you do share the clarity grade, let her know that it’s a reflection of the supply and demand of nature. Flawless diamonds are exceedingly rare in nature so they are harder to come by. More commonly available diamonds are equally beautiful and by no means inferior to a FL or IF stone.
    As with all things in relationships, keep an open communication and share the things you learned about diamonds. She’ll appreciate the time you invested to find the perfect diamond.
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