Diamond Carat Size Explained

Michael Jones Jewellers diamond carat size

When shopping for diamond jewellery, you will almost certainly find yourself factoring carat size into the equation. There are many variables to consider when buying diamonds, and for this reason, it can be more complicated than you think. Given the social importance of diamonds, especially in regards to engagement and wedding rings, you need as much information as possible to guarantee you make the right choice and avoid confusion. In fact, many people who see a large diamond will often ask how many carats it is, mistaking carat as a unit of size rather than weight. Here we will explain diamond carat size, as well as other important factors to take into account when buying diamond jewellery.

What is Carat Size?

Carats are an international measurement of weight for gemstones, including diamonds. As carat weight increases, so does the rarity and price of the gemstone, making higher carat diamonds more sought after. Because of the differences in gemstone density, some gemstones may appear visually larger than others, while still having a similar carat size. For example, a diamond will look bigger than a ruby despite weighing the same in carats. Because of these differences, it is worth viewing diamonds in person to determine the differences between diamond carat size and diamond gem size.

Carat Size vs. Diamond Size

Shopping for diamonds can be tricky because of all the considerations to evaluate. Mostly this will come down to personal taste; for some, the most important factor is the diamond carat size, while for others it is the size of the gem itself from a top view. Carat weight can have a substantial impact on the value of a diamond, so understanding which is more important to you is the first aspect to consider before spending money.

If you are more interested in the carat size, you can pick and choose between a variety of diamond jewellery that fits within your desired diamond carat size range. Start with a smaller carat and move up in diamond carat size from there, a quarter carat at a time. Once you know the exact size you want, you can take your budget into consideration and look at other options.

If you’d prefer to have a diamond that looks larger in spite of diamond carat size, you can look at jewellery with diamonds that have specific cuts; a princess cut diamond will have a larger facing surface area than a round cut diamond, making it appear larger even if it has a smaller carat size.

An example of diamond carat sizes.

Choosing a Diamond Size

If the gem size is more important to you than diamond carat size, the next step will be choosing the right diamond size for your tastes. Focus on browsing through the variety of gem sizes available and ignore carat sizes until you can narrow down the exact size you prefer. Try on different sizes, starting from the smallest and work your way up until you find a size that has a comfortable weight and suits your hand size and shape.

It’s important to note that the bigger and more visible the diamond is, the more flaws or imperfections it may have. However, some flaws are so tiny they aren’t visible to the naked eye, so unless you can see something obvious, don’t be put off if you really love the diamond.

The Price of Carat Sizes

Because diamond carat size plays a huge role in the differences of diamond prices, you may worry about finding a diamond that fits within your budget. However, because of how much diamond carat size causes leaps in price, even small drops in carat size can make a big difference to cost. A 0.40-carat diamond doesn’t look much smaller than a 0.50-carat diamond, but will likely be more affordable. If you have a general idea of the diamond carat size and gem size you’d prefer, you can work down the scale by carats until you find something you’re happy with and fits your budget.

A scale of diamond colours.

Different Diamond Colours

The colour grading of diamonds ranges from completely colourless to light tinted yellow, grey or brown. The best colour of a diamond is considered to be no colour at all, otherwise known as ‘exceptional white’. However, the differences from one colour grade to another can be so subtle that they aren’t visible to the naked eye. Most diamonds sold fall between F and J on the colour scale, while some jewellers will only stock D and E, or brilliant white. When choosing a diamond colour, personal taste is the key factor. If you have your heart set on an exceptional white diamond you can lower the diamond carat size to fit your budget. If the colour grade doesn’t bother you as much as having a bigger gem size, you can compromise a little on colour.

Choosing a diamond should be a uniquely personal experience. Your diamond is an investment for life, so choosing the right diamond is crucial. Always choose a diamond that speaks to you, fits within your budget and makes you happy.

Diamonds at Michael Jones Jewellers

At Michael Jones Jewellers we only stock the best diamonds. Our diamonds are either exceptional white or fall between D and G, making them the most beautiful and impressive diamonds you can buy. We pride ourselves on having the most exquisite diamonds available, and our knowledge of fine diamonds is unparalleled.

For more information on the technical terms of diamonds, visit our Glossary on Diamonds. You can also buy our beautiful diamonds online from our Diamond Collection and our Portfolio of Fine Diamonds.

If you need assistance with choosing the perfect diamond, or want to find out more information on diamond carat size, our friendly staff are always happy to help. In Northampton, we’re based on Gold Street and in the Grosvenor Centre; in Banbury, we’re on the High Street. To get in touch with us, ring any of our showrooms; for Gold Street it’s 01604 632 548, for Grosvenor Centre it’s 01604 636 633 and for Banbury it’s 01295 263 540. Alternatively, fill out our online contact form and a member of the team will happily get in touch.