Quick and Easy Buying Guide

Carat weight: 1 carat = 200 milligrams = 6.5 mm diameter. Doubling weight doesn't double diameter.

Diamond clarity: FL/IF/VVS/VS = super expensive, near perfect. SI = best value if you can check a photo for obvious inclusions (defects).


Color: D-G = colorless, expensive, only if you have money to burn. H-J = best value. Can go lower in gold metal settings than white metal.

Cut: Better cut ratings let more light into a diamond, making it sparkle more. Very important property, don't skimp here.

Set a budget and minimum cut (Premium). Go J color for gold and I/H for white metals. Go searching for SI1/SI2 clarity diamonds at James Allen. Pick a diamond with small/no inclusions. Choose a ring setting and buy it risk-free (60-day returns).

Diamond Carat Size on Hand - The Over One Carat Diamonds - 1.0 to 1.75 Carats

If you want a stone that truly looks sizeable on the hand, then this is probably the range of diamonds that you should start looking in. While smaller diamonds will still be noticeable, especially ones with a superior cut that shine and sparkle, if size is your thing, 1 carat and above is where you start looking (assuming you can afford it).

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Now, a quick word of warning – in some cases, a diamond in this size range may actually appear too large for a select group of women, or be impractical for their active lifestyle – it’s important to find this out either explicitly or quietly behind the scenes. No point spending more money on something that is going to be an annoyance to your better half.

Use the “to size” pictures of diamonds in this carat range below to get an idea of what the diamond will look like on your partner’s hand. If you’re not yet set on a particular size, it can also be illuminating to start at the bottom 1 carat diamond, and then move your way up gradually to the 1.75 carat diamond to see how the size changes – it may not be as much as you think. There doesn’t seem to be a heck of a lot of purchases in the 1.25 to 1.9 carat range – people either stick near the 1 carat range or go the whole hog and get a 2 carat plus monster.