Curious if a VVS2 diamond is the right clarity grade for your engagement ring?
In this Learning Guide, I'll go over all you need to know about VVS2 diamonds and answer questions like:
- How are VVS2 diamonds different from flawless diamonds?
- Are VVS2 diamonds always cheaper than VVS1 diamonds?
- Do I need VVS2 clarity or can I choose a lower clarity grade?
What is a VVS2 Diamond?
A VVS2 clarity grade is given to a diamond that is considered to be Very Very Slightly Included. A VVS2 clarity diamond is one of two clarity grades on the VVS diamond clarity tier. VVS2 diamond clarity is a lower clarity grade than a VVS1 diamond.
What Does VVS Clarity Mean?
VVS diamonds have clarity that is described as eye-clean. Both VVS1 and VVS2 diamonds are very very slightly included diamonds or VVS. A VVS1 diamond will be difficult to see any inclusions or blemishes under 10x magnification. A VVS2 diamond will have no visible inclusions to the naked eye, but may have tiny pinpoints under magnification.
Inclusions are characteristics that are enclosed in your diamond, or they may start enclosed, but reach up to the surface. Blemishes are characteristics confined the surface of the diamond.
Though there's a distinct difference between internal inclusions and surface blemishes, both are blanketed to being called inclusions. There are many different types of inclusions. Some can negatively impact the durability of your diamond, while others may only be a visual aspect.
Inclusions come in all different shapes and sizes. Tiny crystals from other minerals can get trapped inside the diamond crystal structure as it forms.
Even experts have a hard time when assessing higher clarity diamond grades like VVS diamonds, internally flawless diamonds, and flawless diamonds. The Gemological institute of America has a master set of diamonds with various clarity grades they use when determining clarity grades for submitted diamond grading.
GIA Diamond Clarity Grading Scale
The GIA is the world's leading resource for gemstones and jewelry. The invented the charts and scales for diamond grades back in the 1940s. The GIA grading system is followed by jewelry and diamond retailers worldwide and is considered to be the best grading laboratory in the industry. The American Gem Society is a close second.
The GIA's diamond clarity grading scale is as follows:
Diamonds with clarity grades of VS, VVS, IF, and F are all considered to be eye clean diamonds. These are diamonds with no visible inclusions to the naked eye.
VVS2 vs VS2
A VS2 diamond is the second clarity grade in the VS clarity grade tier. VS2 diamonds are two grades below VVS2 diamonds on the clarity scale. It's not likely you'll see any noticeable inclusions with the naked eye.
VS stands for very slightly included. A VS2 diamond's clarity is the first grade to be considered an eye clean diamond. However under 10x magnification, you should be able to see a difference.
VS2 diamonds shouldn't have any major noticeable inclusions under magnification unless you're getting a bigger diamond. But it's likely you'll be able to see a couple small inclusions in a 360 video. This VS2 diamond is magnified at 40x, so the inclusions will appear bigger than if they were under 10x magnification.
VVS2 clarity loose diamonds will have barely any inclusions visible under magnification. A pinpoint here or there, which is usually a small white inclusion.
The price difference between a VVS2 clarity diamond and a VS2 clarity diamond can range from hundreds to thousands of dollars cost difference, depending on the other grades and factors.
VVS1 vs VVS2
VVS1 diamonds are one higher clarity grade than VVS2 diamonds, but there's not much actual difference between them-especially to a consumer. Only a skilled diamond grader would be able to tell the difference between a VVS1 vs VVS2 diamonds. And they'd only be able to do so under magnification.
And as for price differences, some VVS2 diamonds may cost more than a VVS1 diamonds. One is not always more expensive than the other, even if all the other C's are the same.
One VVS1 diamond may have worse polish and symmetry than a VVS2 diamond. If everything else is the same, that would make the VVS2 diamond a better diamond.
VVS2 Diamond Prices
So, how much does a VVS2 diamond actually cost? Like with all things diamond and gemstone, it's a complicated question. Since diamonds aren't graded on clarity alone, there's not an exact price to give you.
But I can give you a ballpark range. The average cost of a 1 carat VVS2 clarity diamond can range from $5,000 to $15,000. It can even surpass that.
But, if you go for a lab created VVS2 clarity diamond, you're likely to pay between 20-40% less than you would for a natural mined VVS2 diamond (assuming the other grades are comparable). You don't get the rarity of a mined VVS diamond, but that doesn't matter to everyone.
After all, the price differences below are highly different though the grades and quality are similar.
Personally, I recommend buying VS clarity grades. These are the first eye clean diamond clarity grades and you can't tell them apart from VVS diamonds with the naked eye.
So my logic is, if I can't see it, then why pay for it?
Should You Buy a VVS2 Clarity Diamond?
You might be wondering a VVS2 diamond clarity grade is absolutely necessary in order to have a beautiful diamond engagement ring.
The truth is, it's not.
If you've read the sections above, you'll have already figured out that a VVS2 clarity diamond isn't visibly different from a VS2 diamond or VVS1 diamond clarity grade. There are slight differences under 10x magnification. The prices however, well, they're a lot different.
If you have a modest budget or are trying to choose lower diamond grades in other factors in order to prioritize a higher clarity diamond, I don't recommend buying a VVS2 diamond.
I know, I'm supposed to get you to buy an expensive diamond, right?
The truth is, I wouldn't buy a VVS2 diamond unless I had the budget to get a diamond with high grades in all categories. But if I were buying a stunning 4 carat diamond in a fancy shape (other than round diamonds), I might consider buying VVS2 diamond clarity grades.
That's because when you increase your diamond carat weight to larger diamonds, the other grades like cut quality, clarity, and color grade should complement its size. The same minor inclusions in a higher carat weight appear more visible as you increase in size.
Granted, the visible size of your diamond carat weight depends on the diamond shape. Round diamonds appear visibly smaller than emerald cut diamonds or other fancy shapes.
Best Shapes for a VVS Diamond Clarity Grade
It's totally possible to get VVS2 diamonds in any diamond shape. However, there are certain shapes that display inclusions more prominently than other shapes. Most diamonds that are sold commercially are limited to about 10 diamond shapes.
The step cutting style reveal inclusions more so than a round brilliant diamond. The stairlike effect of an emerald cut leaves a wide surface area. There's not as much depth in these diamonds, so inclusions inside are seen easier. On the flipside, emerald cuts appear bigger than a round diamond of the same carat weight.
The length and surface area size of an oval diamond can make it reveal more prominent inclusions than in a round diamond. So if you increase the carat weight of a diamond shape with a larger surface area, you may consider choosing a VVS2 diamond.
But strictly speaking, there's no perfect diamond shape for your engagement ring. Most people have a preference before they go shop for a loose diamond. But if you're flexible and wanting to maximize the most out of your budget, a VVS2 diamond isn't needed.
Choosing a VVS2 Diamond
Here's a few recommendations when picking out a VVS2 diamond, no matter where you're shopping at.
- Most engagement rings found in chain jewelry retailers are already pre-set in engagement ring settings. First things first, I recommend going online where retailers have a large pool of VVS2 diamonds to choose from.
- Make sure your VVS2 diamond's other grades aren't too low in order to have VVS clarity. You should make sure that your budget is balanced over the 4cs of diamond quality: cut quality, color grade, clarity grades, and carat weight. Definitely don't compromise cut.
- Choose VVS2 diamond clarity grades for fancy shaped diamonds bigger than 2 carat. Always see your diamond under magnification before purchasing.
- Never purchase VVS2 diamonds without proper diamond certification. Not every grading lab is considered trusted and reliable, so make sure the report is from a recommended grading laboratory.
- Before making your VVS diamond purchase from any retailer, make sure to analyze warranties, return policies, and reliability. There are many online retailers, but not all of them are good.
Where Can I Buy VVS2 Diamonds?
As I mentioned above, chain retailers don't often carry thousands of VVS diamonds in their inventory. Places like Kay's and Zales are unlikely to have one VVS diamond engagement ring in their case. VVS diamonds aren't in high demand commercially.
But since more online diamond retailers have become popular, more people are learning about higher clarity grades like a VVS, internally flawless, or flawless diamond.
Though I don't think a VVS2 diamonds are absolutely necessary, that doesn't mean that you might not want them. Fortunately, we've created a guide just for you for Best Places to Buy VVS Diamonds.