In this series on inclusions, I have been examining the different elements of the natural diamond that are known as inclusions or natural imperfections. So far, I have examined clouds, feathers, cleavage, crystals and cavities.
Today, I will take a look at pinpoints, internal graining and needles. While many of these inclusions will have similar characteristics, there are also some differences we will explore here together so you better understand how these inclusions impact the beauty and value of the diamond.
Pinpoints are the tiny light or dark crystals you may see in the diamond that can appear on their own or together with other crystals in clusters. When the pinpoints are gathered together in a cluster, they are known as a cloud because they can create a hazy area in the diamond. This cloud will affect the clarity of the diamond by disrupting the path of light through the diamond which in turn will also play a role in the quality grading for determining the value of the diamond.
As diamonds are formed through a unique process, the crystals forming with the diamond take on their own characteristics. Internal graining occurs when irregular crystal growth takes place within the stone, creating internal distortions, waviness and/or a haze to the appearance of the diamond. This internal graining can easily be accompanied by an internal strain.
Internal graining is also known as grain lines or growth lines. If the grain line is colorless, it often will not affect the clarity of the diamond. If the lines are present in large masses, however, they can impact the diamond’s clarity again by disrupting the path of light through the diamond. At the same time, white or colored grain lines are known to lower the clarity grade of the diamond.
Needles are another example of internal flaws that can exist in a natural diamond. When the internal crystals are present in the form of long and thin needles, they earn the needle reference. Many needle inclusions are not visible to the naked eye, although needles that take on a particular color can be easily seen. As you can see in the photo provided, some needles can be clustered together, very apparent to the viewer in a way that vastly impacts the beauty and value of the diamond.
While it is easy to assume that all inclusions will affect the quality of the diamond in a negative way, this is not always true. Instead, talk to a professional jeweller to determine whether or not the diamond of interest has any natural inclusions and how they may impact the quality of the stone. Keep in mind that most diamonds will have some form of an inclusion that gives it a unique characteristic that can at times enhance its beauty.
Believe it or not, we still haven’t covered all inclusions that could occur in a natural diamond. I will continue this series to make sure you are completely informed and educated on all the possibilities. Join me next time as I explore carbon, knots and growth tubes.
Eskae Jeweller – Your Private Jeweller