Absolutely not. While standardized grading will assist you in making a decision on what to buy, there are many nuances that can’t be determined by ‘on paper’ grading alone. AI tools to bundle similarly graded stones and advise on what is better or worse value are simply marketing tools. They over simplify the process and exploit the buyers’ own lack of professional knowledge.
So what can be missed?
Milkiness or haziness
Milky or hazy diamonds can be caused simply by the type of raw diamond that the stone is cut from. Such a stone could have little or no inclusions such as feathers or carbon spots, making it appear like a clean diamond. Grading could range from VS2 to I1 depending on the severity of the milkiness. Furthermore, fluorescence in extreme cases only can cause haziness. This is often misunderstood, causing buyer to avoid fluorescence (and potentially significant savings) despite no visible difference.
Eye clean or not
Whether a diamond is eye clean or not can depend on multiple factors. The type and position of the inclusion, the shape and carat weight of the diamond and how strict the grading was in the first place. Even within GIA grading, a VS2 diamond could be visibly included whereby an SI2 can be eye clean.
As diamond color grading is performed by inspecting the loose diamond on its side, under lab lighting, it won’t tell you whether your diamond is going to look white face up when set in your jewelry. This will depend on the shape of the stone, how well it’s cut, fluorescence and the hue of the color. Brown, yellow or mix-tones are not specified on the diamond certification. Slight brown colors appear whiter in white and rose gold, whereas yellow and mix-tones appear whiter in yellow gold.
Do I need this?
Perhaps the trickiest decision to make is where to draw the line on how high up you go on the diamond grading scale and where you’re ‘safe’ to compromise. Given the large number of factors, including the budget, your own priorities, the jewelry design, metal and any diamond accents, it's easy to become overwhelmed. Our diamonds are hand picked to order by experienced gemologists and are F-VS2 quality as standard (colorless, high brilliance and eye clean).