Diamond Carat Weight

What is diamond carat weight?

Diamond carat weight is another often-misunderstood diamond characteristic. Diamond carat weight refers to the weight of a diamond and is often used as a measurement of its size. One carat is equivalent to 0.2 grams, and a diamond's weight is usually measured to the nearest hundredth of a carat.

Are larger diamond carat weights always better?

Bigger is not always better when it comes to diamond carat weight. Yes, traditionally a "big rock" has been a status symbol when it comes to jewelry, but larger carat weight does not directly relate to sparkle or brilliance. The radiance or sparkle of a diamond is mostly due to the cut of a diamond, not the carat weight. In fact, if you compared two diamonds side by side that had different carat weights (one larger and one smaller) but the smaller diamond had a better cut (say very good or excellent) then the smaller diamond will actually appear larger!

Are larger carat weight diamonds more expensive?

The short answer is, yes, but it is more accurate to say that carat weight has the biggest impact on price. There's several reasons for this, including the value we as consumers place on larger diamond carat weights, as well as the fact that larger diamond need to be cut from larger rough crystals which are harder to source (rarity and scarcity equals bigger price tag).

Diamond Carat Weight Buying Tips

1. Choose carat weight sizes slightly below whole and half carat weight numbers, such as 0.90 versus a 1.00 carat. This will shave a good chunk off the purchase price and you'll honestly never know the difference by looking at it.

2. If you value size, then try for a fancy shape diamond. Fancy shapes are generally less expensive than round diamonds when comparing carat to carat. In fact, some fancy shapes will actually appear larger than their carat weight due to the way they're cut.

3. Keep proportions in mind! The smaller the finger/ring size, the larger the diamond will look. A 1.00 carat diamond solitaire, for example, will look a lot larger on a size 3 finger versus a size 6. If your significant other has smaller fingers, then don't feel pressured to search out larger diamonds, focus on those other 4Cs.

Our most asked questions about diamond carat weight