A Guide to VS2 Clarity Diamonds

When it comes to diamond analysis, clarity is one of the more complex areas of the diamond grading process. Fortunately for our customers, a combination of top tier grading certificates and cutting-edge diamond imaging means that the complexities of clarity need not inhibit buyers. We make the process of understanding diamond clarity and choosing a beautifully clear diamond, easier than ever.
Diamonds with a VS2 clarity grading are by far the most popular choice for engagement rings. Offering a wonderful balance between a sparkling eye-clean diamond and a reasonable spend, these diamonds check off a lot of boxes for diamonds buyers. There are, however, a few things you should know about this grade in order to get it right.

What is a VS2 Clarity Diamond?

VS is taken from the clarity scale created by the GIA and stands for ‘Very Slightly Included’; it is split into two grades, VS1 and VS2. Below you can see how the GIA and AGS grading systems correlate. In each case, these are leading gem laboratories with exemplary reputations for reliable and consistent grading.
Clarity Grade Scale
Diamonds are graded for clarity by assessing the type, size, number, relief and positioning of inclusions and blemishes. As this process is to some extent open to subjectivity, multiple expert graders must reach the same conclusion regarding the grade of a diamond before the grade is finalized. You can read an in-depth explanation of the grading process in our diamond clarity grading article.
The GIA defines the VS category as follows: ‘Inclusions are minor and range from difficult to somewhat easy for a skilled grader to see under 10x magnification’. But what does this mean for the buyer?
A VS2 diamond is the lower tier of the VS grade, and this is significant. A VS2 might barely make the grade, thus resting on the cusp between an SI1 and a VS2. The spectrum for clarity possibilities is somewhat broad within the VS grade; while a VS1 is almost always going to be eye-clean with excellent transparency, with a VS2 this is not guaranteed. This is why an expert inspection under magnification, in addition to evaluating high-res diamond imaging or HD Video, is essential when choosing a VS2 diamond.

Inclusion Plot Graphs

The diamond inclusion plot is a diagram on the diamond certificate (with the exception of the GIA Dossier report) that plots the position and type of inclusion. A “key to symbols” below the plot helps identify the clarity characteristics, and their ranking provides insight into their relative impact on the clarity grade. Not every inclusion or blemish is necessarily noted on the report; only those inclusions necessary to identify the diamond and support the clarity grade are plotted. There is also an additional comments section which can give further details about clarity.
Clarity Plot
For a VS2 grade diamond and below, the comments section of the plot report is of particular importance. Sometimes an inclusion plot can look very clean, but the comments may say something like “clarity grade based on clouds not shown”. Clouds, when prevalent enough and with enough density, can give diamonds a hazy, dull appearance. This particular note in the comments section can indicate a transparency issue and should be viewed as a red flag. (if you’d like to know more, our in-depth guide to cloudy diamonds will tell you everything you need to know). A thorough inspection by an expert is recommended.
How helpful an inclusion plot is really depends on the buyer. In the past, we have worked with customers who take a thorough and technical approach and like to fully get to grips with the complexities of clarity grading and inclusion reports. If this sounds like you, we recommend familiarizing yourself with inclusion plots and observing them alongside magnified images, all of which can be found on our website. Other buyers may prefer the ease of using our ‘eye-clean’ note in the diamond specifications, or choosing an A CUT ABOVE® diamond to guarantee a bright and brilliant diamond that is free of any transparency issues.

Buying a VS2 Clarity Diamond

The thought of being responsible for ensuring a diamond is eye-clean, well cut and offers fantastic light return might sound overwhelming, particularly as you now know that inclusions and blemishes are a fairly complex area of diamond quality. Fortunately, we have done all of the hard work for you, so finding a stunning VS2 diamond requires only a few simple steps.
Eye-Clean is Key: You can view real images and videos of our diamonds on our website and train your eye to better assess inclusions. These high-res photos and videos are a straightforward way of spotting any inclusions that may be problematic. To make things even easier, our team of experts assess all of our in-house diamonds and it will be noted on the diamond specifications whether or not the diamond is eye-clean. Choosing an eye-clean diamond vetted for transparency issues will ensure that you get a stone with the same visual quality as a much higher graded diamond (FL-VVS), but at a fraction of the price.
Cut is King: Even when your mind is focused on the clarity of your diamond, the cut quality should never be too far from your thoughts. Cut is the single most important factor in determining diamond beauty. Choosing the best cut possible will ensure your diamond handles light optimally and delivers peak performance and sensational sparkle. Our A CUT ABOVE® super-ideal cut diamonds have been rigorously tested, and specifically scrutinized for problematic inclusions and transparency issues. Choosing an A CUT ABOVE® guarantees a beautiful diamond in all areas; you can read the full A CUT ABOVE® specifications for a closer look.
VS2 Diamond Shapes: Some diamond shapes are less forgiving when it comes to concealing inclusions. For step cuts such as Emerald or Baguette, finding an eye-clean VS2 diamond will be more challenging and it may be necessary to step up to higher clarity grades for these shapes.
VS2 Carat Weight: The bigger the carat weight, the more likely it is that inclusions will be visible to the naked eye. It is still possible to find beautiful eye-clean, VS2 diamonds up to 2 carats, providing you have high-res images and inclusion plot graphs.

Should I Buy a VS2 Diamond?

A VS2 clarity grade can offer the perfect balance of an visually flawless diamond without the considerable price tag that IF and FL diamonds command. Nevertheless, eye-clean cannot be assumed at a VS2 grade. It is therefore important that you avail yourself to expert analysis to be certain that no compromise is made in light performance.
Browse our extensive inventory of VS2 loose diamonds take advantage of our advanced diamond imaging and light performance reports – the easiest and most reliable way to find a magnificent diamond that is ideal for your budget.

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