Inclusions & Blemishes

Diamond Blemishes: Scratches | Rare Carat

A Diamond scratch shown on GIA certificate:

Diamond scratch shown on GIA certificate

Fancy yourself as a diamond buyer, I see?. Welcome to our blog page - the Rare Carat equivalent of Aladdin’s cave, where you will find all manner of wonders pertaining to diamonds. Think of me as genie, but instead of wishes you get knowledge. Now, before we launch into this post on diamond scratches (sounds suuuper interesting, right?) – I want to direct you to our introductory post on all things related to diamond imperfections. It tells you what they are, where to find them, and why they matter. It’s basically a great little foundation for you before you launch into the rest of the series which you can find back in the main cave on the main blog page.

Now back to the humble diamond scratch.

Diamond scratches are pretty much exactly what you’d expect them to be, and look sort of like when the unthinkable happens and you scratch your phone screen, like this:

I Can’t Look… Make It Stop

What a diamond scratch can look like

Diamond scratches are the result of a bit of rough-and-tumble the polished diamond has endured on its journey to your ‘maybe’ pile. The reason for these scratches can vary. For one, diamond dealers often transport or store diamonds in little packets of folded over paper (doesn’t seem like the safest place for something so precious, right?!), and in those packets the diamonds are getting very well acquainted, banging off each other and generally getting very close indeed. In close quarters, accidents can happen, and scratches can result. They can also come about from diamonds rolling around with each other inside jewelry boxes, or from careless jewellers not storing diamonds in the correct manner. 

The good news is that these scratches will not impact the durability of the diamond in any way. They will not increase in size over time or causing cracks or fractures down the road – although you might accumulate more if you are careless like me. And in even better news, diamond scratches can generally be polished out of a diamond very easily (not by you though so don’t even try it). 

That said, we are certainly not giving you the all clear to buy a diamond covered in scratches. You’re spending a wad of cold hard cash here; do you really want to be stuck with a diamond that’s covered in scratches? My guess is no. If you are willing to foot the bill for the stone to be re-polished then that’s totally cool, but if you’d rather not have any extra work to do, make sure you check the diamond grading report for any mention of scratches. If there’s something that’s worrying you, the best course of action is to ask the retailer’s in-house gemologist for their opinion on how the scratch might impact the stone (or how much it would cost to re-polish it) - or better yet ask our team of diamond nerds! They live to help you guys smash this diamond-buying business, so ask away! 

And remember, a keen eye can avoid purchasing a stone like this:

diamond showing scratches

OK This Might Be a Tad Dramatic, But You Get the Idea

Diamond scratches magnified

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Dr. Rian Mulcahy
Dr. Rian Mulcahy
Rian is officially a Diamond PhD - just ping us if you’d like to read her fascinating 200-page thesis, titled Facets of Value: An Investigation into the Formation of Worth in the Diamond Market. She has consulted various firms all along the pipeline, from the rough diamond market to the recycled diamond industry. She holds an MA in Globalisation and Development from University College Cork and a PhD in the Sociology of Diamond Valuation from the London School of Economics.