Inclusions in Diamonds

Most diamonds contain inclusions, which can greatly affect stone clarity. Internal inclusions (inclusions inside the diamond) are made during the diamond crystal’s growth billions of years ago. Blemishes (on the diamonds surface) are often caused by the artisans who worked with the stone during the cutting or polishing process. In some cases, external blemishes occur afterwards while being handled by traders and jewelers.

Different types of inclusion affect the price of the diamond. Some inclusions are more visible than others, while others may even affect the stone’s overall durability. Hence, it is of the utmost importance to know what types of inclusions your diamond contains. Inclusion characteristics are always mentioned in the GIA certificate.


The pinpoint inclusion is the smallest inclusion in a diamond, almost like a tiny dot. It is commonly a crystal and can be described as a small piece of dust in the stone. It is one of the most harmless inclusions because it is barely visible.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


Group of pinpoints. If small, it may be a kind and harmless inclusion, but it can affect the stone’s overall appearance (milkiness) if it’s massive. Talk to your jeweler to see if your diamond contains a cloud inclusion and how it is affecting your diamond.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


A long thin needle-shaped inclusion that is usually white or transparent in color and visible at 10x magnification. If they appear in clusters, it might have a detrimental effect on the diamond’s clarity.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


One of the most prevalent inclusions. This type of inclusion can be both harmless and not. The inclusion is most often white (less visible) or black (more visible). Black crystal inclusions are often uncrystallized carbon, graphite. Prices may vary considerably if the diamond contains crystal inclusions, although this will depend on the position and the contrast of the inclusion.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


A cleavage inside the crystal lattice. This type of inclusion is usually described as a bad inclusion because it affects the diamond’s overall durability if located near or on a diamond surface. This is particularly true if the diamond accidentally receives high pressure at that exact point (for example, if the diamond falls on a hard surface). This type of inclusion is not necessarily bad if it’s located far inside the diamond.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


Bearded girdles are caused during stone cutting. It can also be created during the after-handling of the stones if they are rubbing against each other.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


A diamond can only be scratched by another diamond. Scratching can occur if the diamonds have been lying in a bag next to each other.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


This type of inclusion occurs most often in smaller size diamonds stored together.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


As the name implies, polishing lines are caused during the stone’s polishing process. These lines are common in diamonds that already have a poor cutting or low clarity in which the polisher doesn’t want to invest a lot of time in a diamond that’s not going to receive a higher value anyway.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


The diamond cutter has, for some reason, put an extra facet on the diamond, most often done to remove cavities or naturals.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate


Natural implies that a small portion of the rough diamond is kept. The most common reason for this is to save carat weight (common for diamonds that are 1.00ct or 1.01ct). In such cases, diamond cutters think that if they cut off a piece, carat weight may be slightly under 1.00ct, a weight reduction that will reduce the value significantly.

GIA Plotting symbol on Certificate

The A.P. Shaps Promise

When buying a diamond from A.P. Shaps, we want to make it a simple and joyful experience. The customers’ individual needs and preferences always come first, and we strive to make your purchase a simple, easy and enjoyable procedure. All our diamonds are genuine, untreated and conflict-free. If the diamond weighs 0.3 carats or more, it comes with a certificate issued by a third party certifying its quality and functions.

If you have any concerns about the choice of the diamond, you are always welcome to contact us. For us, having our customers satisfied is of utmost importance.

Schedule an appointment in our showroom on Strandvägen 11 in Stockholm.