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Ask A Diamond Pro: Checking Diamond’s Clarity After Purchase

By Mike Fried,

When it comes to purchasing a diamond, especially for a significant investment like an engagement ring, ensuring you’re making an informed decision is paramount.

Recently, one of our readers reached out with a query about a diamond they were considering from James Allen. They were concerned about its eye-cleanliness. This brings up some critical points about diamond clarity, the nuances of an SI2 clarity grade, and the importance of seeking expert advice before finalizing your purchase.

In this blog post, we’ll delve into these aspects to help you make a more informed decision when buying a diamond. Let’s get to it.

Here’s the reader’s original email:

I like your website- I just wanted to get your opinion on this diamond.


My only worry was the crystals on the table. I contacted James Allen, and they contacted the jeweler, who they say verified that the diamond is in fact “eye clean.” Given your experiences with James Allen, what do you think? Thank you

(!! Note: The original diamond that the reader purchased is no longer listed on James Allen, so this blog contains a link to similar substitutions.)

Later on, he added that he already purchased the diamond because it looked like a great deal. He simply didn’t want to miss out on the opportunity.

eye-clean diamond

I’d like to point out one thing at the very beginning: if you’re unsure about your diamond purchase and you want to ask for an expert opinion, put the diamond on hold — don’t buy it! Most companies let you reserve the diamond for a few days which gives you enough time to reach out to us and get help.

Is the diamond eye-clean?

Our reader, who was considering purchasing a diamond from James Allen, was particularly concerned about the crystals visible on the diamond’s table. When we examined the diamond through the provided link, we noticed that the crystal was way too big and could potentially be visible to the naked eye. Not the best news for our reader since he already bought the diamond.

An eye-clean diamond is one where inclusions are not visible to the naked eye when the diamond is viewed from the top without magnification. Despite the jeweler’s assurance via James Allen that this diamond is eye-clean, we weren’t that sure. From our experience, the black crystal in the middle of the table would likely be noticeable without magnification, especially in certain lighting conditions. This inclusion could detract from the diamond’s overall appearance and brilliance. That’s why it is crucial to carefully evaluate every diamond, especially those in the SI2 clarity grade.

We promptly sent him an alternative option, one that has the same specs (G color, SI2 clarity) but is eye-clean. A diamond like this 0.70 carat G color SI2 clarity round cut costs slightly more, but doesn’t have any visible imperfections, making it an instant better choice.

An eye-clean SI2 clairty diamond
An example of an eye-clean SI2 clarity diamond

SI2 Clarity Grade

The main advantage of an SI2 clarity diamond (Slightly Included 2) is the price point. These diamonds are often significantly less expensive than their higher-clarity counterparts, making them an attractive option for budget-conscious buyers. However, the downside is the potential for visible inclusions that can impact the diamond’s appearance and brilliance.

SI2 diamonds contain inclusions that are noticeable under 10x magnification and may sometimes be visible to the naked eye. These inclusions can include crystals, feathers, clouds, or other internal characteristics.

When considering an SI2 diamond, it’s essential to examine the diamond closely, ideally with the help of high-quality images or videos, like those on James Allen. Not all SI2 diamonds are created equal. Some may have inclusions that are strategically located and less visible, while others, like the one in question, may have more prominent inclusions. In such cases, it is always beneficial to consult with an expert to ensure you’re getting the best possible value for your money.

Here is an example of an SI2 diamond that has visible imperfections:

SI2 included round cut diamond
An example of an SI2 clarity diamond with visible inclusions

Asking for Help After the Purchase

While it’s great to seek expert opinions, it’s always better to do so before making a purchase. Consulting with experts beforehand can help you avoid potential pitfalls and ensure that you make a well-informed decision. In this case, the reader mentioned that they had already purchased the diamond before seeking our feedback. This approach can lead to unnecessary stress and complications if the purchased item doesn’t meet expectations.

Luckily for our reader, he had no problem changing the order. James Allen ended up switching his diamond for the one we recommended to him and shipped it immediately.

By reaching out for expert advice before finalizing a purchase, you can gain insights into the quality and value of the diamond, understand the implications of its clarity grade, and ensure that you’re making a sound investment. Moreover, experts can help you navigate through various options and find the best diamond that fits your criteria and budget.

Final Thought

In conclusion, our assessment of the diamond in question revealed that it is likely not eye-clean due to the presence of a black crystal in the center of the table. While SI2 clarity diamonds can offer good value, they require careful evaluation to avoid visible inclusions that might detract from the diamond’s beauty.

It’s essential to seek expert opinions before making a purchase to ensure you’re fully informed about the diamond’s quality and value. At our educational site, we are always here to help. If you have any questions or need assistance with a diamond purchase, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are committed to helping you make the best choice for your needs and budget.

James Allen James Allen is the leader in online diamond sales. Their imaging technology is the same as inspecting a diamond with a jeweler's loupe. They have the largest exclusive loose diamond inventory online and fantastic prices. They also have the nicest collection of lab-created diamonds online.
What we love about them:
  • No questions asked returns within 30 days of shipment. James Allen will send you a paid shipping label to return the ring.
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Free International Shipping
  • Free prong tightening, repolishing, rhodium plating and cleaning every 6 months
  • Provide insurance appraisals
  • One free resizing within 60 days of purchase
  • Free ring inscriptions
  • Best-in-class high quality imagery of all diamonds in stock
  • 24/7 Customer Service
  • Best-in-class packaging
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Blue Nile Blue Nile is the largest and most well-known internet jewelry seller. They have a very large exclusive online inventory. Their high-quality images are catching up to James Allens' and their prices are amazing. 
What we love about them:
  • No questions asked returns within 30 days of shipment. Blue Nile will send you a paid shipping label to return the ring.
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Free Shipping
  • Free prong tightening, repolishing, rhodium plating and cleaning every 6 months
  • Provide insurance appraisal
  • One free resizing within the first year of purchase
  • High quality images of about half of their diamonds
  • 24/7 Customer Service
  • 100% credit towards future upgrades (must be at least double in value)
  • Best in class fulfillment
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