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).

The One Carat Range

If you've got the money but you don't want to be too extravagant in your purchase, then diamonds around the one carat size are probably what you need to look at. One carat diamond is about 6.5 mm in diameter and looks quite large on a typical hand. Because it is such a popular diamond size, you may want to consider buying a diamond which is just under one carat in size, as there may be a potential price advantage.

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