Buying Guide for 1-Carat Diamond Ring

Buying Guide for 1-Carat Diamond Ring

Looking for a store with the best 1 carat diamond ring price this year? Before you buy, read our tips for finding the right 2-carat diamond ring, as well as the online jewelry stores that offer the best value for your money.

What is the price of a 1-carat diamond ring?

Need some assistance with selecting a 1-carat diamond ring?

Would you like a professional opinion on the clarity and cut grades to consider when buying a 1-carat diamond?

If so, you have come to the right place!

In this guide, we’ll look at:

  • What is a 1-carat diamond ring?
  • How are 1-carat diamond rings priced and how much do they cost?
  • The best place to buy a 1-carat diamond ring
  • And a lot more!

1 carat diamond ring

This guide has all the information you need, whether you are looking for a wedding or an engagement ring that weighs 1 carat.

After reading this article, you should be able to make an informed decision about buying a 1-carat ring.

Let’s jump right in.

Best Place to Buy a 1 Carat Diamond Ring

Online jewelry shops have come from far and gained a good reputation for selling high quality diamond rings at great prices (almost 20% cheaper than buying in store)

Online diamond stores like Blue Nile and James Allen offer customers 360-degree high definition images and videos of the jewelry they are selling.

Here is a list of the best places that you can purchase a 1-carat diamond ring:

  1. James Allen (overall best)
  2. Blue Nile (best 360-degree video)
  3. Brian Gavin (best warranty and value for diamonds)
  4. Whiteflash (best diamond return policy)
  5. Abe Mor (best store to sell used diamonds)
  6. Leibish & Co (best fancy colors of diamonds)

We have also  diamond carat weights for you. Check them out below:

What is a 1-Carat Diamond Ring?

To start, a carat (abbreviated as ct) is the standard measure of diamond weight. A diamond stone that weighs 1 carat is equivalent to 200 milligrams or 0.2 grams.

Most fine jewelry weigh 1-carat or less.

When a diamond ring is one carat, this means it is set with only 1-carat of diamonds. The quality of such a diamond, together with its value and beauty, is determined by other Cs that make up the the 4Cs grading system for diamonds. These are clarity, cut, and color.

The 4Cs determine the price of a diamond. This is why you will find the price of two 1-carat diamonds is different.
We shall discuss this a little later.

Diamond Carat Weight is Not the Same as its Size

Many people tend to confuse carat weight with diamond size. The weight of a diamond ring does not directly affect its size, the table surface area, or any other physical features of the diamond.

The size of a diamond can be seen from its cut, shape, and general appearance.

For example, a marquise cut diamond may have the same carat weight as a round brilliant diamond. However, the marquise will look bigger since it has an elongated shape.

Is a 1-Carat Diamond Ring Expensive?

Generally, the cost of 1-carat diamond engagement rings ranges from $2,500 and $10,000. For example, look at this ring that costs approximately $5,000.

1.01-Carat Round Cut Diamond
1.01-Carat Round Cut Diamond

On the other hand, this here goes for about $10,000.

1.03-Carat Round Cut Diamond
1.03-Carat Round Cut Diamond

The price of the second is almost three times the cost of the first. However, each of them weighs 1-carat.

How are 1-Carat Diamonds Priced?

The price tags you see on those pretty diamonds in the stores are highly determined by the carat weight.

Talking about weight, there are two factors to look at in relation to pricing: the weight value and price for every carat in the weight.

The price per carat or price for every carat is the total price of the diamond divided by its weight.

To illustrate this, let’s use a diamond ring with a $5,000 price tag and that weighs ½ carat.

Take the price of the diamond ($5,000) and divide by the weight (1/2 carat); you will get the price per carat of $2,500.

Following the same formula, an $8,000 diamond that weighs 1-carat will have $8,000 as its price per carat.

Some diamonds have a higher price per carat because of different cuts, clarity, and color grades. For example, a diamond that is 1-carat, VVS2 clarity and H color grades cost about $7,800 for every carat. On the other hand, a 1-carat diamond that has VVS2 clarity and E color grade may go for $10,350 per carat. Read our guide on VVS2 diamonds to understand why the stones are expensive.

GUIDE: Is Diamond Clarity Important?

However, keep in mind that an increase in weight does not necessarily correspond to an increase in price per carat.

Most people attach feelings when shopping for diamonds, and this is likely to impact the price they end up paying. Since the price of diamonds is very subjective, you need to be selective of where you buy. See our recommendations of the best place to buy diamond engagement rings.

Best Place to Buy a 1-Carat Diamond Engagement Ring

When shopping for diamonds, it is good to shop at online jewelry stores since they have an extensive collection to choose from. Moreover, their prices are affordable compared to what you will score at physical diamond retailers.

Shopping for a 1-carat diamond online is hassle-free; from picking loose diamond to cut and shape, as well as types of metals and settings.

Different diamond vendors have something to offer. Therefore, deciding which one of them to buy from can be challenging.

However, from our vast experience in the jewelry industry, we can confidently say that Blue Nile and James Allen are the best diamond stores on the market.

Let’s briefly look at these two places where you can buy diamond rings online.

1. James Allen

Shop at James Allen

James Allen has been selling high-quality diamonds for close to two decades. Their products come at great prices and also carry GIA and AGS diamond certificates. This shows how the store is consistent is in observing integrity.

James Allen offers 360-degree images, which makes it easy for customers to pick the best 1-carat diamond in the store. If you are looking for an affordable diamond, will get it at the online jewelry store.

Their customer service channels are also available 24/7, just in case you need advice or have questions to ask.

Read our James Allen review to find out what to expect from the store.

2. Blue Nile

Shop at Blue Nile

Blue Nile has a wide range of diamonds. Its cuts include like princess cuts, marquise cuts, and round brilliant cuts.

Ring settings also come in plenty. For example, you can choose bezel, cathedral, or solitaire settings.
Finally, their diamonds are graded by AGS and GIA.

Tips for Buying a 1-Carat Diamond Ring

  1. Buy a 1-carat diamond that has a grading certificate from either GIA or AGS. A certificate from any of these two is an assurance of quality. The certificates have a number that is very handy if you want to cross-check the diamond information provided to you by the seller. You can check the report number at GIA and AGS for the diamond clarity and color.
  2. Buy an “Ideal” or “Excellent” cut diamonds to get the most brilliance, fire, and sparkle out of your 1-carat diamond. A high cut grade automatically makes the diamond look more beautiful and brighter.
  3. Settings do a good job protecting your diamonds. Therefore, select a diamond ring that has high-quality settings. For many people, gold is the setting of choice and most jewelers offer white, rose, and yellow gold for 1-carat diamonds.
  4. Compare the diamond rings of one seller to those of others before buying. For example, compare the attributes of a diamond ring from James Allen against the same attributes from Blue Nile. By doing this, you will get the product that offers the best value for your money.

Color, Clarity, and Cut of a 1-Carat Diamond

The 4Cs (clarity, color, carat, and cut) are the major attributes that define the beauty and structure of a diamond. Each of these attributes is graded on a pre-defined scale that dictates the quality and value of a diamond.

There is a standard grading system for all diamonds. However, the results from various grading labs come out differently. This simply means that no two grading entities grade the same diamond the same way.

The most trusted entities, which are also those that we recommend, are GIA and AGS. These two offer consistent results.

So, which is the best color for a 1-carat diamond ring?

What about the clarity grade and cut grade?

Which ones suit you best?

Let’s look at each of the 3Cs below.

Best Clarity Grade

The clarity of a diamond means that the diamond does not have any natural inclusions or blemishes and defects on its surface.

Diamond with I1 clarity.
Diamond with VVS1 clarity.
Diamond with FL clarity.


The GIA clarity grading scale has the following grades, from worst to best:

  • Included (I1, I2, and I3)
  • Slightly Included (SI1, and SI2)
  • Very Slightly Included (VS1 and VS2)
  • Very, Very Slightly Included (VVS1 and VVS2)
  • Internally Flawless (IF)
  • Flawless (FL)

The best clarity is Flawless. A diamond in this grade does not have visible blemishes under 10x magnifier. This is also the highest priced diamond. Therefore, maybe a 1-carat diamond would be better in a lower clarity grade.

If you can afford it, go for a 1-carat diamond ring that is VVS2 clarity grade. At this grade, inclusions cannot be seen by the naked eye. If you cannot see any inclusions with the naked eye, we can as well say that a VVS2 diamond is as good as an Internally Flawless (IF) or a Flawless (FL) grade diamond.

If your budget is a little tight, even a VS2 one-carat diamond would be good. If you get a diamond with VS2 and SI1 clarity grade, it would also be good if the blemishes are on the edges of the diamond. You can cover the blemishes easily using a prong setting based on how the diamond is shaped.

It is important to see your diamond before ordering. Therefore, shop at stores like James Allen, which provide 360-degree images for their diamonds. Using this technology, you can view the diamond clarity personally.

Best Color Grade

Diamond color simply means how colorless or white a diamond stone is.

Checking the color is as important as clarity when looking for a 1-carat diamond ring. You definitely don’t want a yellow diamond delivered to your address.

GIA uses a color grade system that ranges from D to Z. This scale measures how colorless a diamond is by using special viewing and lighting conditions.

Diamonds that are more colorless lay on the higher side of the grading scale. These are usually the most expensive. On the flip side, lower color grades feature diamonds that are yellow or tinted. These diamonds are usually not attractive.

The ring setting you choose will also affect the diamond color, either by making it look more white or colorless.

For example, this 18K 1-carat diamond ring in K color grade sits in a yellow gold solitaire setting. The K color grade normally has a yellowish tint, which in this case looks colorless. It is colorless because it has been put in a dark-colored setting (gold).

1.01 Carat K-VVS1 Princess Cut Diamond 3.3mm Cross Prong Solitaire Engagement Ring
1.01 Carat K-VVS1 Princess Cut Diamond 3.3mm Cross Prong Solitaire Engagement Ring

Moving on, this is a similar diamond ring except for the setting (14K white gold solitaire setting). Although the color grade is the same, this ring looks more tinted and not as pretty as the first ring.

1.00 Carat K-VS1 Good Cut Round Diamond 2mm Knife Edge Solitaire Engagement Ring

Overall, a 1-carat diamond engagement ring that falls in the G-I GIA color grade scale will look good. These color grades look almost colorless, even when put in light-colored metals. The diamonds also come at affordable prices.

The shape of a diamond greatly affects how tinted it looks. Pick quality cut diamonds since it is not easy to notice tints on them.

Best Cut Grade

To complete the 3Cs list is diamond cut.

While diamond cut is also referred to as shape, there is more to the shape than people think. The cut of a 1-carat diamond is not only its shape but also the facet arrangement and its interaction with light. Diamonds with the best cuts have more brilliance and sparkles, making the ring look very beautiful.

Like any other diamond ring, a 1-carat diamond ring comes in several cuts. You can find round, brilliant, marquise, princess, among other types of cuts.

Think carefully when choosing a cut for your diamond. The best diamond cuts and the ones you should buy are “Ideal” or “Excellent”, as GIA calls them. Diamonds with these kinds of cuts offer the best scintillation, fire, and brilliance. Such diamonds are beautiful and loved by most jewelry enthusiasts.

Watch the video below to see diamonds that have the highest prices in the world.

Blue Nile has a diamond size chart that shows different sizes of a 1-carat diamond based on the shape when viewed from above. See the chart here.


How Does A 1-Carat Diamond Ring Look?

Like most new diamond shoppers, you may think that the diamond carat weight is related t its size. Carat is the term used to describe the weight of the diamond, not the size. The size and appearance of a 1-carat diamond will be different for different diamonds.

Some diamonds will look bigger than others because of their cuts and shapes. Some diamond shapes and cuts have larger table surface areas than others. For example, an oval cut diamond like this looks larger than this princess cut here.

Oval Cut Diamond
Princess Cut Diamond

For some people, diamond size is important. However, we recommend you put more weight on the diamond cut if you want to get a high-quality ring. Think of how a 1-carat round brilliant diamond will sparkle and attract attention than a marquise cut of the same carat weight.

How Much Can You Sell Your 1-Carat Diamond Ring For?

You can only know the value of a 1-carat diamond ring if you evaluate its clarity, cut, and color. A diamond ring will be more valuable if it has minor or no blemishes or inclusions, and if the cut is of high quality.

However, it is not easy to resell a diamond rings since they retain their value if not lowering. Depending on where you bought it, you can resell the ring and still get about 60%-70% of its initial value.

For example, this 1-carat diamond ring from James Allen costs $4,300. When you want to resell it, you can set the price between $2,580 and $3,100.

1.01 Carat E-VVS2 Princess Cut Diamond 2mm Comfort Fit Solitaire Engagement Ring
1.01 Carat E-VVS2 Princess Cut Diamond 2mm Comfort Fit Solitaire Engagement Ring

There are many channels through which you can resell your 1-carat diamond ring. You can choose to trade in, sell on consignment, auction it, or sell it back to the retailer from whom you bought it.

Analyze the merits and demerits of each of the resell options before proceeding to resell the ring. Doing this will make it easy for you to sell the diamond at a friendly price and also avoid surprises.

Getting the Best Deal When Buying 1-Carat Diamond Ring

Our goal of publishing these diamond buying guides is to give you adequate information so that you can  go through the jewelry shopping process without any stress and get the best value for your money.

You can buy a pretty 1-carat diamond ring without spending more than you had planned to. In fact, we’ll make sure you do so.

Follow the tips below to get the best deal when buying a 1-carat diamond ring.

To begin, buy a diamond ring that has a grading report from AGS or GIA.

GIA and AGS are the most prominent and consistent grading entities. These bodies are trusted in the jewelry industry to give accurate diamond reports using a set criterion.

If the retailer you wish to buy a 1-carat diamond ring from does not have GIA or AGS certificates for their diamonds. or has certificates that are not from the two bodies, you are better off shopping elsewhere. Other grading laboratories normally report diamond grades lesser than they actually are.

You can confidently shop at James Allen and Blue Nile. These two online jewelry stores carry GIA and AGS diamond certificates.

We recommend the following color, cut, and clarity grades when shopping for 1-carat diamond rings:


The minimum clarity grade should be VS1 or VS2. At this grade, your diamond will look clean to the eyes and no one will notice any inclusions.


Diamonds that have colors that lie between grades G and I are almost as colorless as those in grades D to F. However, the diamonds in the G to I grades are affordable and offer better value for money.


Look for a 1-carat diamond ring that has an “Ideal” cut or GIA’s “Excellent” cut. High-quality cuts bring out the best brilliance and fire in a diamond.

When it comes to shape, look for a diamond that looks appealing to your eyes. Keep in mind that the shape does not affect the price.

If you want a big diamond ring, go for a marquise or oval cut 1-carat diamond ring. These shapes make the diamond appear big.


Finding the best 1-carat diamond ring for your engagement or wedding is not easy. Hopefully, you now have the requisite knowledge to make the right decision and get value for your money.

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