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Diamonds Defined: Understanding Carat

When it comes to the 4Cs of diamonds - cut, color, clarity, and carat - the most well-known “C” is the latter. Carat is a reference to the diamond’s weight, not its size. One diamond carat is equal to 0.2 grams - roughly the weight of a paperclip. Carat weight is significant because it indicates the size of the rough diamond it was cut from. Diamonds at higher carat weights are rare, whether mined or created.

Carat size & shape

Carat weight can look different from diamond to diamond and shape to shape. The way a diamond is cut influences the appearance of its size and carat weight. And while carat and size aren’t interchangeable, they are definitely related. Size, measured in millimeters, can make diamonds of equal carat weight look very different. If greater weight is on the top, or table of the diamond, it can appear larger; if the weight is heavier at the bottom, it can appear smaller. With perfect proportion and symmetry, the round brilliant diamond is truest to its carat size. Unique shapes with elongated tables, like the emerald, oval, pear, and marquise appear larger than a round brilliant of the same carat weight. With slightly larger tables, cushion and trillion shapes also maximize carat weight.

Choosing your carat weight

Choosing your carat weight

A common misconception regarding carat weight is that bigger is always better. In fact, a higher carat diamond with a poor cut can appear smaller than a lower carat diamond with a high quality cut. The difference between .10 carat is also indistinguishable to the untrained eye but can make a considerable difference in price. Choosing a quality cut diamond just below your ideal carat weight can offer added savings.
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Carat weight & setting

Carat weight & setting

The way a diamond is set can also enhance the appearance of its carat weight. In a halo setting, smaller diamonds surround the perimeter of the center stone. This gives the impression of a larger center diamond and increases the total carat weight at a lower cost.
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Carat weight & band

Carat weight & band

The band size the diamond is set against also plays into its proportions. Selecting a thin band can make a smaller diamond appear larger in contrast. Ring size will also make a difference in the appearance of a diamond’s carat weight. The same carat weight diamond can look larger or smaller depending on the finger it sits on.‎

Our cutting-edge technology, developed over years of research and development, allows us to sustainably create diamonds from less than a carat to more than 5 carats. Since even a fraction of a carat can significantly alter its value, most of our diamonds are rounded to the hundredth of a carat.

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Our Diamonds: VRAI created

No matter the final carat weight, all of our diamonds sustainably created by VRAI are cut to maximize beauty. For more information on the carat weight that’s right for you, we invite you to speak with a diamond specialist.

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