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The Blog

"Eye Clean"- What Does It Really Mean?

What is An "Eye Clean" Diamond?

Buying a diamond is not the easiest task. At the end of the day the goal is a to have a diamond that sparkles beautifully and looks good to your eyes. Eye clean is a term you will hear often and a lot of people ask us what is the true meaning. The most basic definition that we can give is that to the naked and unaided human eye the diamond appears to be clear of imperfections. So when does "eye clean" become relevant? 

Eye clean usually is a term that comes into play when you are working with the SI range also known as the "Slightly included" range diamonds. Diamonds graded at VS2 can have eye visible imperfections but this is more rare so checking for eye cleanliness here is important too . At VS1 and above you can be sure your diamond will not show visible spots. Therefore above VS1 the term eye clean becomes irrelevant since the human eye really should not be able to detect any imperfection whatsoever. 

When it comes to the SI clarity range diamonds you have plenty of diamonds that are clean to the eye and plenty of diamonds that do have visible imperfections you can detect with the naked unaided eye. The goal is for your diamond to look great once set in the ring and not show any strong imperfections that detract from the beauty. When you start venturing into the SI clarity range you are opening up more options for diamonds in terms of size and color. For example if you limited yourself to VS2 and above only, you will place yourself in a certain size and color category, By opening up to the SI range you can potentially increase size and increase in color as well. Take for example this diamond which is a 1.5 carat D color SI2 clarity. If it were D color and VS2 imagine the diamond to be thousands of dollars more expensive. However an eye clean SI2 gets you a really amazing option!

Note: Keep in mind if your diamond ring is dirty it will look imperfect more easily so always keep your ring clean and sparkling! 

Now when it comes to "eye clean" the real catch is it depends who is looking at the diamond, how closely, what their tolerance is for imperfections, and under what circumstances/setting. 

An eye clean diamond to us is essentially a clean looking diamond when you look straight at it from the top position (NOT upside down) with 20/20 vision about 6-12 inches from your face. 

A diamond that is eye clean DOES have imperfections as do most diamonds other than flawless. It doesn't mean there are no spots at all it simply means that the spots are undetectable when held a few inches away. 

Testing if a diamond is eye clean does not mean holding it right up to your eye or closely examining it - it truly means giving yourself a few inches of space and making sure you don't see anything that detracts from the beauty of your diamond without magnification. 

Take this video for example showing a 1.2 carat oval F color SI2 clarity. We shot it outside in natural daylight a few inches from the camera and as you can see it is 100% Clean to the eye. You will only see the imperfections once you put it under magnification. 

Eye clean vs mind clean: there is a huge difference between diamonds that are clean to the naked eye vs diamonds that are mind clean and it is important to be able to express that. Majority of people want a diamond that appears clear to the unaided eye. There are however those who want a diamond that is of VVS quality and that even the VVS diamond should not have any imperfections on the center. Keep in mind that at VVS you would never be able to see the imperfections as it is. This is when it turns into a case of a diamond being clean to your mind and this is entirely dependent on your personal level of tolerance. No matter what category you call into there is no right or wrong. 

With all this said the most important factor is that you need to love what you pick! Whether it be internally flawless or SI2 we guarantee we can match you with a beautiful option within your budget that you will absolutely love. Don't hesitate to ask our opinion as well!