You have probably heard of the term-Carat. Isn’t it something that you have seen Diamond lovers brag about? Haven’t lofty carats always been synonymous with ‘status symbol’ for people? But apart from all that, Diamond carat finds its place as one of the prominent four Cs (that together work as the efficient value determinants of your Diamond.)
The term ‘Carat weight’ has always been home to considerable amount of confusion. While some confuse them with Diamond size, some simply have trouble understanding it. So, let’s end it once and for all with our Diamond Carat Education Guide that covers everything from what Carat actually means to its impact on the price:
What does the term ‘Diamond Carat’ mean?
Breaking all the misconceptions, "carat" is simply the unit we use to measure the weight of diamonds. In metric terms, one carat is equal to 200 milligrams, or 0.2 grams. Some also rely on the practice of measuring carats in points (where one carat= 100 points). With the assistance of the other Cs, Carat weight speaks volumes of the value of the Diamond.
How did the term Carat come into being?
Back in ancient times, gem traders would often use carob seeds as a standardized measurement to weigh gems in order to ensure that they were being traded fairly. The carob seed was chosen because it was of a fairly uniform size and shape, making it a useful reference for measuring small objects like gems. Interestingly, that’s where the term Carat derives its roots from. Over time, it went on to be widely adopted in the gem and jewelry trade and is now used as a standard unit of measurement for diamonds and other gems.
How is a Diamond weighed?
Assigning weights to Diamonds isn’t as complicated as it may look. In fact, gemologists simply rely on an efficient mathematical tool- a calibrated scale that comes in handy to measure (and read) the weights accurately.
We’re here to break down the entire process if you wish to understand it more precisely. There has been a long tradition of discussing carat weight in terms of points. If we get into the mathematical terms of it, one carat weight is equal to 100 points. In other words, one point is equal to 0.1 of a carat. So, technically you can refer to a 50 pointer as 0.5 carat Diamond.
Difference between Diamond weight and size
We’d call confusing Diamond weight with size one of the biggest misconceptions that needs to be dealt with. So, let’s clear it out once and for all:
- Diamond Weight:
We’d like to stress some more on the importance of weight here to clear out the misconception once and for all. That’s because carat weight refers to the actual weight or mass of the diamond, expressed in carats. . For example, a 1-carat diamond weighs 200 milligrams, or 0.2 grams.
- Diamond Size:
On the other hand, size typically defines the physical dimensions of a diamond that go on to impact how large it looks, such as its diameter, height, and depth. It is often expressed in terms of millimeters.
We’d like to blame the long-term confusion on the fact that larger diamonds generally weigh more carats. But what we sometimes fail to notice is that their size can also vary depending on how the diamond has been cut and shaped. For example, two diamonds with the same carat weight can have different sizes if one has been cut with a shallower crown and pavilion or has a smaller diameter.
Don’t be surprised if you witness a well-cut Diamond with lower carat weight look larger than a poor cut diamond with higher carat weight. So, let’s give you a handy (yet often overlooked) shopping tip- consider both the carat weight and size to arrive at a diamond that offers good value for money.
Effect of Carat Weight on Price
The long term obsession of the rich and wealthy with lofty carats would tell you how they come with a higher price tag, and deservedly so! That is because a Higher carat Diamond speaks of its rarity since it is sourced and shaped from a larger rough crystal that is selectively hard to find. To no surprise, that is not the case with small crystals. So, that in turn, influences the price of the Diamond.
Additionally, if the large rough crystal fits the criteria of a good clarity and color grade too, it is considered more desirable and hence pricey. So if you see, at the end of the day, the price is always dictated by the balance of the 4 Cs, not just by a single C.
Some Pocket-friendly tips
- Let’s just say it out in the open. If you’re running on a budget and would like to save a few bucks there, it wouldn’t hurt to invest smartly on the carats. For instance, try stooping down to a 1.9 carat diamond instead of going for a 2 carat one. That way, the aesthetics stay uncompromised (since the difference between the two is almost negligible) and you’re paying significantly less money.
- If lofty carats are just more your thing because you want your diamond to look larger, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to break the bank. Instead, you can simply trick your eyes into believing that you’re wearing a larger diamond by going for a larger looking shape. For instance, a round brilliant shape looks larger than it is thanks to its weight distribution, and high degree of symmetry and proportions.