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 Size on Hand of a 1.42 Carat Diamond

This 1.42 diamond will look about the size indicated in the photo, on an average-sized woman's finger. An average round diamond with a 1.42 carat size has a width of 7.3 mm, although this can change if the cut is shallow or deep.

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The ring shown in the image is a typical size six ring; of course, the ring you get could be much larger or smaller than this one. You should be aware that illustration like this one are just that - only illustrative - female hand sizes will vary quite a bit. Also take into account the width and overall length of your fingers. Try and avoid making the mistake I made of looking at a potential diamond engagement ring placed on my own, male finger - remember that it is going to go on a usually smaller and more delicate female hand, which will make the diamond appear significantly larger.

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