What You Need to Know About Internally Flawless or IF Diamonds

IF or Internally Flawless diamonds represent less than 0.5% of all diamonds in the worlds used in jewelry and engagement rings. A diamond clarity grade of internally flawless means the diamond has no inclusions present with or without 10x magnification, but might have small blemishes on the diamond's surface. The rarity of these stones is reflected in the IF diamond price, and for that reason, these loose diamonds are not for the budget conscious. Are IF diamonds worth it, you might be wondering. Well, that depends on who you ask. IF diamonds are for the purist or perfectionist, who values the rarity of this type of stone. Though it is worth noting that other clarity grades will appear "eye clean," though you can see the diamond inclusions with the help of magnification.

IF diamonds symbolize pure and unconditional love because no inclusions are present. But while the inside of these diamonds is pure, you might see comments about the diamond on the GIA grading certificate such as “minor details of polish,” or “manufacturing remnants,” or “surface graining.” These are extremely tiny details found on the surface or outside the diamond on the skin. It has no effect on the diamond’s sparkle, visibility and light performance. Even under magnification, these are rarely identifiable.

10x zoom magnified diamond example, typical for diamond clarity grading
10x zoom
10x zoom with I1 clarity inclusions
I1
10x zoom with SI2 clarity inclusions
SI2
10x zoom with SI1 clarity inclusions
SI1
10x zoom with VS2 clarity inclusions
VS2
10x zoom with VS1 clarity inclusions
VS1
10x zoom with VVS2 clarity inclusions
VVS2
10x zoom with VVS1 clarity inclusions
VVS1
10x zoom with IF clarity inclusions
IF
10x zoom with FL clarity inclusions
FL

Buying IF diamonds

Prices increase exponentially in IF clarity diamonds as the other diamond attributes such as cut, color and carat increase. Therefore, be sure to strike a happy medium unless you truly have no budget and can pay for the highest grade in every category. For example, a 1 carat Internally Flawless diamond price with a color grade of D hovers somewhere around $17,000, though prices are constantly fluctuating. Compromise on your color grade and opt for a G color diamond, and your bill will look a bit closer to $9,000 for the same size IF diamond.

As you can see, 1.00ct diamonds, holding all else equal, have huge differences in price, upwards of 20%. The different though, is nominal in terms of sparkle and appearance. Feel free to purchase IF diamonds online because you do not need to see the diamond prior to buying. No inclusions means there’s really nothing to see or evaluate. Start by viewing With Clarity’s diamond search and pair the clarity with the other diamond 4 C’s to identify if IF is the right clarity range for you given your price range and budget. Like everything else, clarity is something you should balance and determine how important it is for you.

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Are IF diamonds worth it?

Considering how much dough you're going to drop on this one stone, you'd be forgiven for wondering if it's worth it. While there's no denying the beauty of an Internally Flawless diamond, we suggest that most couples simply choose a stone that's eye clean. And that opens up many more of the other clarity grades. The reasoning? We want you to love your stone day after day, and that means it has to look good to you (and others when you show it off, of course). But you're never going to be looking at your own stone under magnification. (And you'd never show your ring to your friends that way.) So that means, to us, that there's really no need for an Internally Flawless diamond ring, unless there's a personal or cultural reason that gives this stone significance.

But if neither situation applies to you, consider other diamodn clarities. A diamond with a slightly lower clarity grade will sparkle just about as well an IF diamond, which is what most people really care about. Inclusions below the VS range can only be seen under magnification so no one can tell if you diamond is IF or VS2 anyway. Most of this comes down to personal preference and priorities. (And, yes, it's very possible to buy an engagement ring on a budget.) But if you're stuck on which diamond clarity is best for you and your lifestyle, tap our experts for help. We have gemologists standing by to help your search or answer questions, and they help couples find the diamond they'll love daily.

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