Wedding Rings
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  Protecting Your Wedding Ring
    Wedding Ring Mistakes That Can Cost You Thousands Of Dollars
    Tips On Caring For Your Wedding Ring
    Protect Your Wedding Ring
    Dont Make a Thousand Dollar Mistake

  Jewelry Insurance
    How To Pick Good Wedding Ring Coverage
    How To Buy Wedding Ring Insurance
    Frequently Made Mistakes That Cost Couples Thousands Of Dollars
    Frequently Asked Questions About Ring Insurance

  Engagement Rings
    What Couples Need To Know About Engagement Rings
    Selecting A Diamond Or Gemstone
    How to Find a Good Deal on an Engagement Ring
    Engagement Ring Advice For Clueless Men
    Cleaning Your Engagement Ring
    Choosing an Engagment Ring

  Diamond Colors, Cuts, and Grades
    The Difference Between a Diamond
    Shining Facts About Jewelry Appraisals
    Getting To Know Your Gemstones
    Getting Started In Diamond Shapes
    Evaluating Diamonds Up Close
    Diamonds In The Rough
    Choosing A Ring Setting

  Diamond Alternatives
    Shes Just Not Into Diamonds
    I Want My Diamond Bigger

  Bridal and Wedding Rings
    What Future Brides And Grooms Need To Know About Wedding Rings
    Warning Don't Get Ripped Off On Your Wedding Day
    Tips On Buying Wedding Or Engagement Rings From Online Auctions
    How To Find A Good Deal On A Wedding Ring
    Five Tips For Choosing Your Wife
    Engraving A Wedding Or Engagement Ring
    Do I Need A Custom Made Ring
    Choosing Ring Band Width For Your Engagement And Wedding
    Choosing Metals For Your Ring
    Choosing A Wedding Ring
    Choosing A Wedding Band Design

  Wedding and Engagement Ring Tips

  Bridal Jewelry and Accessories at Auction Prices
    Gold Swarovski Crystal Bridal Tiaras at Discounts
    Auction Pricing on Pink Wedding Jewelry and Pearls
    Discounts on Red Wedding Hairpieces and Tiaras

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GIA grades of diamonds are based on inclusions or flaws inherent in the diamond.

A "loupe" is not a derogatory remark for a gentleman from France, it's actually a tool used to scrutinize small items very closely. A loupe is a small type of magnifying glass, a far more common term used to describe evaluation tools. It's important to use these tools and to take a close and critical look at a diamond if you're serious about purchasing an engagement ring.

Learning About Diamond Clarity

Clarity is a term meaning the absence of flaws inside or on the surface of the diamond or gemstone. Is there such a thing as a perfect, flawless diamond? They are rare, and the more of a bargain you're offered on a flawless diamond be suspicious that it's a fake. Most diamonds will have some flaws and for the most part, these will be difficult to see unless you use a loupe. "Diamond inclusions" is a term meaning the internal flaws of a diamond. These might include tiny white or black spots inside the diamond or cracks. "Diamond blemishes" are referring to exterior or surface flaws and may include similarly, spots or tiny cracks that resulted from cutting and or polishing the stone.

Common Grades Of Diamonds

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) grades the clarity of diamonds as follows: (Note they use 10X magnification when grading)

FI: A flawless (and real) diamond, and one without any internal or external flaws and a very rare specimen.

IF: Internally flawless, this diamond has only slight external flaws but is perfect inside.

VVS1/VVS2: Two grades, meaning there are some "very, very" small, hard to detect blemishes.

VS1/VS2: Small blemishes, but only constituting one "very" meaning slightly more noticeable than the previous grade.

SI1/SI2: There are some inclusions that are noticeable, not necessarily to a buyer but to an experienced grader.

I1/I2/I3: These inclusions or blemishes are rather obvious, to experienced graders and maybe even casual buyers. These flaws could affect brilliance dramatically.

Choosing A Balance

Of course, everybody wants a flawless diamond. But just like finding a true soul mate, a flawless diamond is rare and an expensive luxury at that. When making your purchase remember that most high quality diamonds are flawed; it's just they are a grade IF or VVS2, meaning that only an experienced jeweler could probably detect any tiny blemishes. Unless you want to impress a roomful of jewelers with your engagement ring, then don't worry about not finding the perfect FI. Remember than a diamond doesn't have to be perfect to be brilliant and beautiful.

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