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).

1.59 Carat Size on Hand

This 1.59 diamond will look about the size shown in the illustration, for a typical woman's finger. This 1.59 carat diamond (round shape) has a diameter of about 7.6 mm which you can see in the picture. It is good to be cautious when looking at a picture - a picture alone won't be completely representative of all finger and hand types - you are best off getting an idea in store with an actual ring. Don't make the mistake I made of looking at a potential diamond engagement ring placed on my own, large male finger - remember that it is ending up on a usually smaller and more delicate female hand, where it will likely not shrink quite as much as when placed on a male hand.

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Go searching for diamonds this size at James Allen by clicking on the banner below and dragging the carat slider to the appropriate setting:

Actual Diamond Photos from JamesAllen