Know What You’re Buying Before You Pay Clarity Enhanced Diamonds What Are They?

Customer came into the store looking for a 1.50 carat diamond he asked for a price on a round diamond SI clarity E color. He gave no sign that he was looking at diamonds online or that he had been given a price online for a Diamond with these specifications.  We gave him a price on several variations of what he was looking for 1.47 carats E color SI1 and SI2. A price for 1.50 carat with same clarity and color and so on.  After showing him several different diamond engagement ring settings he decided he would like to have a custom-made wedding ring. We started working with him on that all told we spent close to an hour with the customer answered all questions prices given he thank us and left the store.

A week later he comes back to the store with a diamond  he bought online asking us if he got ‘ripped-off?’  Our GIA certified diamond grader with 20 years experience looked at the diamond certificate and the diamond.  The first thing he told the customer was the diamond is clarity enhanced. 

Diamond enhancements are specific treatments, performed on natural diamonds (usually those already cut and polished into gems), which are designed to improve the visual gemological characteristics of the diamond in one or more ways. These include clarity treatments such as laser drilling to remove black carbon inclusions, fracture filling to make small internal cracks less visible, color irradiation and annealing treatments to make yellow and brown diamonds a vibrant fancy color such as vivid yellow, blue, or pink.

The CIBJO and government agencies such as the United StatesFederal Trade Commission explicitly require the disclosure of all diamond treatments at the time of sale. Some treatments, particularly those applied to clarity, remain highly controversial within the industry — this arises from the traditional notion that diamonds hold a unique or “sacred” place among the gemstones, and should not be treated too radically, if for no other reason than a fear of damagingconsumer confidence. Source: Wikipedia

The customer did see that when he bought the diamond but had no idea what ‘Clarity Enhanced’ meant.  We explained that a  laser was used to  drill out any inclusion the diamond had then the lab certified the stone as an SI clarity with the note that the diamond is enhanced to get the clarity.  This man bought a 1.50 carat SI Clarity E color stone for thousands less than the price we gave him. He thought he was getting the deal of a lifetime.  His Diamond is an I clarity before the clarity enhancements.

  • Clarity enhancements are not permanent and can wear off.
  • You should all so note that you can not have your diamond around heat this could cause the glass filling used to fill your diamond to melt.
  • Your diamond can never be cleaned by anything other than soap and water.
  • You must tell you jeweler that your diamond is clarity enhanced before they do any work on it. If your ring was to be sized by a jeweler using a jewelers torch this would melt the glass filling in the diamond.
  • When the glass filling  melts your diamond is left with empty holes.
  • A reputable diamond grading lab like the GIA will not grade your clarity enhanced diamond.
  • When your diamond is Clarity enhanced this makes your diamond weaker.
enhanced diamond
ABC News did a story about enhanced diamonds

Yes…clarity enhanced diamonds are diamonds that are mined just like any other diamond however, the diamond is altered to make them something that they were not in the first place.

If you are willing to take the risk owning one of these diamonds you might like to ask the seller,

  • What was the clarity of the diamond before it had its enhancements done to it?
  • Is the seller  telling you all the risk to owning a clarity enhanced diamond?
  • Ask the seller how long the glass filling will last.
  • Ask the seller if they are going to send the diamond to have it re-enhanced when the filling comes out?
  • How much does it cost to have the diamond re-enhanced?

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