If you’ve been researching diamonds, you may have heard that buying a diamond that weighs just under two carats will save you a lot of money over buying a diamond that hits the 2 carat mark. Diamonds are priced per carat, and diamonds under two carats cost less per carat, so when you reach the two carat mark, the price per carat jumps up a rung. While on paper, this is technically true, and it sure as heck sounds like a good trick, it doesn’t always work that way. Why not?
Diamond cutters and dealers are savvy to this cost saving trick – trust me, it’s one of the oldest ones in the book. They often price the diamonds that are in the 1.90 CT range a bit closer to the price they’d charge per carat for a 2.00 carat diamond to make up that gap.
Diamond cutters will do everything in their power to save weight when they are working with diamond rough that will likely yield them a two carat finished stone. The result of this is that there are far more two carat diamonds out there than 1.99 carat diamonds. Since there are far more two carat diamonds out there, there are far more deals to be had. This is a double edged sword, because occasionally, the result of trying to save weight when cutting is that they cut diamonds that are not to ideal proportions, and thus, don’t disperse light well, or look smaller than they should for their weight.
Since the quality of a diamond’s cut has the most impact on its beauty, that should factor in before carat weight when diamond shopping. A 1.80 carat diamond with a perfect cut will be only fractions of a millimeter smaller (if at all), but will look brighter and livelier than a poorly cut 2 carat. When you’re looking at a difference of fractions of a millimeter, and thousands of dollars, comparing diamonds in person with a jeweler you trust will give you the tools you need to choose the best diamond possible, and get the best value out there.