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).

Found today: a 0.53 Carat G Color VS2 Clarity Ideal Cut Round Cut Diamond

Here we have a 0.53 Carat G Color VS2 Clarity Ideal Cut Round Cut Diamond, with 0.53 carats of stone.

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Shape: Round

Carat weight: 0.53

Cut: Ideal

Color: G

Clarity: VS2

Price: $1220

Certificate: GIA

Depth: 61.8%

Table: 56.0%

Polish: Very Good

Symmetry: Very Good

Girdle: Medium to slightly thick

Culet: None

Fluorescence: Strong

Measurements: 5.20*5.15*3.20

Item number: 1296557

Click here to see the diamond at James Allen.

Click here to search for other diamonds at James Allen.

While not quite as perfect a cut as Hearts & Arrows, the Ideal cut of this particular diamond means it is significantly cheaper, because you're not forking out money for a "perfectly" cut diamond. If you are a cautious online buyer, this VS2 clarity diamond is a good safe option, since the chances are low of it having any inclusions that can be seen by the naked eye. Girdle thickness (for this diamond the girdle is "Medium to slightly thick") can play an significant role in the size presented by the diamond, which is detailed in my article about girdle thickness. The G color of this diamond provides value for your dollar, as it isn't a member of the expensive premium color grades D-F. For a diamond, a price of $1220 puts it amongst the lowest price group of diamonds, especially in the context of engagement rings.

Through lowering the carat weight of this diamond (0.53 carats), it's possible you might save a few dollars which will help out with other expenses.