How Imperfections Affect the Value of Diamonds

The color of the diamond and the intensity that it shines are in essence what make fancy colored diamonds so valuable and unique. Still, it is necessary to acknowledge the importance of the 4Cs (carat, color, cut, and clarity) to each and every stone. Each is recorded in the diamond certificate as all the criteria are still absolutely relevant. It is just that in comparison to one another, depending on the type of stone being assessed, certain principles take precedence.

0.42ct, Fancy Purplish Red, Rectangular Radiant, 0.35ct, Fancy Purplish Red, Heart-shaped, 0.22ct, Fancy Purplish Red, Radiant

The diamonds in the image above all have a relatively low clarity grade, but are all extremely valuable as a result of their rarity. From left to right: a 0.42ct, Fancy Purplish Red, Radiant with an SI2 clarity, a 0.35ct, Fancy Purplish Red, Heart-shape with an SI1 clarity, 0.22ct, Fancy Purplish Red, Radiant with an SI1 clarity


In colorless stones, the four attributes are all of equal value and all contribute to the overall quality of the stones. However, with Fancy Colored Diamonds the attribute of color plays a more important and significant role than the others.

Learn more about the attribute of Color.

As a result of the rarity and color of the stone, many Fancy Colored Diamonds still have the potential of being extremely valuable even with a low clarity grade. Below are a few examples of some beautiful diamonds that contain noticeable inclusions. However, because of how rare these colors are, even still, the prices of these stones is quite steep.

31.0ct Fancy Vivid Green

0.61, Fancy Vivid Purplish-Pink, Princess, I1 - White feather and White Crystals Inclusions

0.51, Fancy Intense Blue with white feather on the table (

 A 31.0ct, Fancy Vivid Green with 'black spots,' a 0.61ct, Fancy Vivid Purplish-Pink with 'icy inclusions,' and a 0.51ct, Fancy Intense Blue with a 'white feather'

Small imperfections in fancy colored diamonds won't be overlooked. Rather, they just won't be considered as detrimental to the overall value as they would be in colorless stones. This plays back to how rare fancy colored diamonds are.

Argyle Pink diamonds, like those shown below, are assessed far more on the color, intensity, and distribution of color throughout the stone.

 Argyle Pink Diamond Collection

Argyle Pink Diamond Collection

Diamonds produced in the Argyle mine often contain a low clarity grade, yet they are still considered collector’s items and sought out as profitable color diamond investments. Not that high clarity grades don’t exist, it is just that out of the Pink diamonds found, which happen to be only one tenth of one percent of all the diamonds produced from that mine, it is extremely rare to find an Argyle diamond with a VS+ clarity grade, not to mention any higher than that.

Learn more about how diamond clarity in fancy color diamonds.

Contributor: Benji Margolese

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