How much does a one carat diamond cost? It depends. A one carat diamond can cost anywhere from around $1,000 to around $12,000, which is quite a range! So why is there so much variation in one carat diamond pricing? There are three factors that impact the cost of a one carat diamond: quality, shape, and rarity.
Quality and One Carat Diamond Price
Together, the 4Cs (cut, clarity, color, and carat) describe a diamond’s qualities. And each of the 4Cs has an impact on how much a one carat diamond might cost. Of course, carat weight has a big impact on the price of a diamond. The higher the carat weight, the higher the price. But the other three of the 4Cs also have a big impact on a diamond’s price, which is why one carat diamonds can have such a wide price range.
Cut is generally considered the most important of the 4Cs, as cut quality determines how well a diamond captures and reflects light. A poorly cut diamond will look dull and dim, while an expertly cut diamond will be highly brilliant. Because diamond cut has such a large impact on the beauty of a diamond, cut grade has a strong impact a diamond’s price.
Clarity also impacts a diamond’s price. Clarity is a measurement of how flawless a diamond is. In the eyes of most buyers, the fewer flaws, the better. Therefore, diamonds that have higher clarity gradings will have higher prices.
Color is a measurement of how white a white diamond is. White diamonds range from colorless to noticeably yellow. The more colorless a white diamond is, the higher its price will be.
In addition to the 4Cs, the main indictors of a diamond’s quality, there are also things like polish, symmetry, and fluorescence, which can affect a diamond’s quality and, therefore, price. Also, the balance of a diamond’s 4Cs can affect its price.
It’s important to note that, while diamonds with higher quality gradings are more expensive, they won’t necessarily be the most beautiful to you (or beautiful enough to justify the price difference). Many times, people cannot tell the difference between a diamond with the highest gradings and one with slightly lower gradings, at least not with the naked eye. For example, a VVS1 clarity diamond won’t look much different from a flawless diamond (unless you look at it under magnification), but a flawless diamond will cost quite a lot more. As you shop for a diamond, just take some time to think about what makes a diamond beautiful to you and decide how you want to balance the 4Cs of your diamond within your budget.
Shape and One Carat Diamond Price
Did you know that two white diamonds of the exact same qualities and carat weight can be wildly different prices? They can, if they are different shapes.
Most of the time, round diamonds are more expensive per carat than other diamond shapes. This is partially because round diamonds lead to more rough diamond waste during the cutting process and partially because round diamonds are the most popular shape. In general, fancy shaped diamonds are less expensive than round diamonds. Princess, cushion cut, oval, marquise, trillion, and pear shaped diamonds tend to be less expensive per carat than round diamonds.
This isn’t always true, however, as some fancy shaped diamonds are more rare than round shaped diamonds, which means they have higher prices. Notably, asscher cut diamonds and highly graded emerald cut diamonds tend to be more rare (and therefore more expensive) than round diamonds of similar quality.
Rarity and One Carat Diamond Price
Another thing that can affect the price of a one carat diamond is its rarity. Often, the more rare a diamond is, the more desirable it is. And the more desirable the diamond, the higher the price.
White diamonds of exceptionally high quality are rare (and highly desired), but that’s not the only type of rare diamond. Many types of colored diamonds are rare and are often more expensive than white diamonds. Also, as we mentioned in the last section, some fancy shaped white diamonds are more rare and expensive than round diamonds.
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