The diamond carat, not to be confused with the karat of gold (totally different), is a basic but crucial aspect of any diamond… it is literally part of a diamond’s identity! When a diamond is being graded, there are four factors considered. These are affectionately known as the 4 C’s: cut, color, clarity, and carat weight. Of these grading components, carat weight is by far the most easily understood. I mean really, the clarity and color grading scales are a lot to understand without a little help and the cut grade being based on proportions is also weirdly complicated. But carat weight! Now that is easy and straightforward. We are going to talk about what carat weight is, why it is important, and what a good size looks like.
What is a Carat
Maybe you’ve heard the term “carat” a million times but have never really thought about it in an official capacity. Technically, a carat is how the international gem community consistently measures a diamond’s weight. One carat = 1/5th or .20 of a gram. Carats can also be expressed as points where 1 carat equals 100 points, and ½ carat is 50 points, etc. but most likely you won’t hear many people use this term (but if you do, now you know!). So, when someone says their ring is 1 ct., you know that the loose diamond weighs precisely 1/5th of a gram or is exactly 100 points. Don’t be afraid to drop this knowledge on random people (who probably didn’t even ask) just for funsies.
Why is Carat Weight Important
Moving on, and this may seem obvious, but carat weight is extremely important because it is a huge aspect of pricing. The other grading factors (clarity, color, and cut) have pre-designated categories and scales that the diamond will fall into. These three grades are intended to judge the quality of the diamond, and hence the price range the gem will fall into. Regardless of the grade of the diamond in any of these categories, larger carat weights will always increase the value of the diamond. The reason is super simple - the larger diamonds are rarer and less available than smaller diamonds, which translates into increased value.
What is a Good Size Diamond
This may seem surprising, or maybe not, but the majority of diamonds that are used in jewelry are less than 1 carat. I think a good size is mostly dependent on personal style and/or budget preference. With that being said, literally any size diamond is a good sized diamond. I firmly believe there is no diamond too small, and let’s be real, there is no diamond too big either.
The carat is what literally defines the diamond for most people, often being the first (and maybe only) question asked about your big beautiful ring. It is also a very important grading factor when it comes to pricing - if not the most important (especially considering a diamond is priced per carat). The diamond carat is just a unit of measurement in the diamond world, but really it feels like much more to us.