DIAMOND CERTIFICATION

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GIA Diamond Grading

When researching your diamond, you’ll find one of two reports from the GIA: a Diamond Grading Report (DGR), generally for diamonds weighing 1 carat and above, and a Diamond Dossier for diamonds less than 1 carat. The reports contain the same information—length and detail are the main differences between the two.

TIP: You’ll notice that a DGR includes a diagram of the diamond, called the clarity plot, which maps out the grade-setting clarity characteristics (inclusions or blemishes that affect how the diamond is graded). Rather than a map, the Diamond Dossier lists those characteristics.

Understanding Your Report

Everything you wanted to know about your diamond, and more.

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1. GIA Diamond Grading Report

This is where you can find the GIA laser inscribed identification number, as well as the diamond’s shape and cutting style (round brilliant or emerald step cut, for example) and its dimensions in millimeters.

2. Grading Results

A breakdown of the diamonds 4Cs: Cut, Color, Clarity and Carat.
**TIP: Currently, GIA only provides a cut grade for round brilliant diamonds. Learn more »

3. Additional Grading Information

Information on polish, symmetry, fluorescence, and any inscriptions or additional comments.

4. Proportion Diagram

A map of the diamond's actual proportions that includes depth, table, girdle, and culet.

5. Clarity Characteristics

This is where you’ll find the diamond’s clarity plot, an approximate map of the number, size, type, and position of its grade-setting inclusions as viewed under a microscope.

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Deciphering Clarity Characteristics

This is where you’ll find the diamond’s clarity plot, an approximate map of the number, size, type, and position of its grade-setting inclusions as viewed under a microscope.

Bruise

A tiny mark on the surface of the diamond with minute root-like feathers that can affect clarity grade.

Cavity

An angular opening in the surface of the diamond that might be impossible to see with the naked eye in higher clarity grades.

Nick or Chip

Generally minor damage to the stone’s surface that might have resulted from the cutting process and may be impossible to see with the naked eye in higher clarity grades.

Cloud

A cluster of tiny pinpoints—also referred to as a micro-cloud—difficult to detect under 10x magnification and rarely, slightly eye-visible. May slightly impact transparency in lower clarity grades when the cloud is located throughout stone..

Crystal

A tiny bit of small crystals, minerals, or other diamonds found within a diamond that varies in size, shape and color.

Extra Facet

One or more additional facets often located near that girdle that don’t fit with the diamond’s facet pattern or symmetry. Often added to remove a blemish or near-surface inclusion.

Feather

A common term for fractures, cleavage or fissures that extend to the diamond’s surface and are often difficult to see in higher clarity grades.

Indented Natural

An unpolished indented edge or area from the original uncut diamond that is not removed (for weight retention) and dips below the surface of the finished, polished diamond.

Knot

A transparent crystal that extends to the surface of a finished, polished diamond.

Laser Drill Hole

A pinpoint hole on the surface of a diamond that leads to a microscopic tunnel drilled and injected with a chemical to lighten an inclusion. Blue Nile does not carry diamonds with laser drill holes.

Natural

Part of the original uncut diamond’s surface left unpolished on the finished diamond for weight retention, typically found near the girdle and nearly always undetectable to the naked eye.

Needle

A fine, elongated inclusion that looks like a tiny rod under 10x magnification and are generally more subtle than crystals or feathers.

Pinpoint

Miniscule crystals in the diamond that are difficult to find and look like tiny specks under 10x magnification.

Twinning Wisp

Pinpoints, clouds, or crystals formed during a diamond’s growth that appear as subtle ripples or wispy lines.

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In Summary

GIA diamond grading includes two certificates: a DGR for diamonds 1 carat and over, and a Diamond Dossier for diamonds under a carat. The difference between the two reports is length and detail.

In addition to listing shape, clarity, carat and other characteristics, a DGR includes a map that plots out microscopic inclusions and blemishes. Nearly all diamonds have inclusions and blemishes.