How Much Does a 2 Carat Diamond Cost?

How Much Does a 2 Carat Diamond Cost?

Are you curious about the price of a 2 carat diamond? Look no further!

Welcome to this informative Twirl Weddings resource, where I will delve into various subjects including:

  • The primary determinants influencing the cost of diamonds
  • The impact of diamond shape on pricing
  • Valuable suggestions for obtaining a 2 carat diamond at a lower expense

What Determines the Price of Diamonds?

If you’re not well-versed in the realm of diamonds, you may assume that a two-carat diamond engagement ring costs twice as much as a one-carat diamond. However, this assumption couldn’t be further from the truth.

While the math might seem logical if diamond cost solely depended on carat weight, the reality is quite different. The price of a diamond is not determined by a single factor, but rather by several. These factors are encompassed by the 4Cs of Diamond Quality.

The 4Cs represent a comprehensive system devised by the eminent authority in diamonds, jewelry, and gemology—the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). As the esteemed standard-setter in the diamond industry, GIA holds the highest regard and expertise in assessing diamond quality.

In the past, diamonds lacked the mesmerizing sparkle we witness today, primarily due to our limited knowledge of cutting techniques required to maximize their brilliance. This historical context explains why ancient royalty often favored colored gemstones over diamonds in their adornments.

However, with the advent of ideal cut diamonds, a revolutionary breakthrough occurred. Simultaneously, the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) introduced the concept of the 4Cs of Diamond Quality: Cut, Clarity, Color, and Carat. These fundamental criteria serve as the cornerstone for evaluating and categorizing diamonds.

Diamond Cut Quality

The term “diamond cut” encompasses two distinct aspects: the diamond’s shape and its foundational characteristics. This duality gives rise to designations such as round cut diamonds or princess cut diamonds.

However, when discussing the quality of diamond cut, it emerges as the singularly vital factor influencing both the durability and aesthetic allure of the gemstone. Cut quality directly impacts the diamond’s resilience and its capacity to effectively reflect and refract light, generating the captivating brilliance we all admire.

While a comprehensive exploration of proper cut quality entails considerable discourse, there is no need for undue distress.

The assessment of cut quality by the GIA is classified into the following five grades:

diamond cuts

A visual representation provided in the subsequent diagram offers a broad depiction of the contrasting paths traversed by light as it enters and exits diamonds across various cut grades.

For those seeking the utmost brilliance in diamonds and desiring precise insights into light performance, I suggest exploring our affiliated partners at Whiteflash. They specialize in providing comprehensive information, including ASET and Idealscope images, which effectively showcase the extent of light reflection within each diamond.

best diamond cuts

Exclusive to round diamonds, the distinction

 

of being labeled as ideal or excellent exists. While you may encounter designations such as ideal cut princess diamonds or ideal cushion cut diamonds, it is important to note that these terms lack official cut grade status.

The term “ideal” is utilized to describe a diamond that exhibits flawless symmetry, a characteristic that is exclusively found in round diamonds. In the case of fancy-shaped diamonds referred to as ideal on retail platforms, it implies that the diamond possesses the most optimal proportions recommended for that specific shape. However, it is crucial to acknowledge that these proportions may not be exact.

Nonetheless, it is advisable to steer clear of diamonds categorized as Good, Fair, and Poor cuts. Poor cut diamonds generally lack marketability, while Fair and poorly cut diamonds are relatively scarce in availability.

How to Save on a 2 Carat Diamond

Diverging from the remaining three Cs, my advice for reducing the cost of diamond cut revolves around procuring diamonds with superior cut grades: Excellent/Ideal or Very Good. If you opt for a round diamond, pursuing the ideal cut is recommended. It’s important to note that this advice specifically pertains to diamonds.

It is crucial to acknowledge that poorly cut diamonds not only compromise the diamond’s sparkle but also its ability to withstand daily wear. While diamonds are generally scratch-resistant, they remain susceptible to chipping and cracking when subjected to forceful impacts in vulnerable areas. Opting for a Poor cut significantly amplifies the likelihood of such occurrences.

It is ill-advised to sacrifice the brilliance and durability of a diamond in an attempt to save money. Numerous alternative methods exist to achieve cost savings.

When it comes to cut quality, compromising is never a wise choice. Opting for the finest cut quality not only saves you from potential expenses of replacing the stone in the future but also spares you the accompanying frustrations.

I strongly recommend refraining from selecting diamonds graded below Very Good in terms of cut. The disparity between a diamond labeled Very Good and one marked Good is still significant, warranting careful consideration.

Poor Diamond Cuts. DO NOT BUY
Poor Diamond Cuts. DO NOT BUY

Diamond Clarity

Distinct from the quality of diamond cut, the clarity of a diamond is readily discernible in photographs or immersive 360˚ videos. Detecting lower clarity becomes less probable when the diamond is worn as a ring. Thus, you may question the necessity of attaining the highest clarity grade.

In essence, the answer is simple: it is unnecessary.

Diamond clarity refers to the degree of inclusion-free purity exhibited by the diamond. Inclusions are minuscule crystal fragments that become ensnared within natural diamonds during their formation beneath the Earth’s surface. Virtually all diamonds possess inclusions, albeit some are more conspicuous than others. In the realm of natural diamonds, there exists a multitude of distinct inclusion types.

Certain inclusions manifest as darkly pigmented and conspicuous, while others assume the form of faint, nebulous wisps.

The clarity grade system serves as a means to gauge the extent to which a diamond remains devoid of inclusions, imperceptible to the unaided eye. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) has established five tiers of clarity classification:

image: https://learningjewelry.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/ljclarityscale-1024×605.png

Occasionally, one may encounter a diamond labeled with the clarity grade of SI3, although these are typically nothing more than diamonds falling within the I clarity range. Diamonds classified as I clarity reside at the lowest echelon of clarity and often exhibit a significant presence of inclusions. It is not uncommon for certain retailers to abstain from offering I clarity diamonds altogether, yet many chain stores specializing in retail consistently stock them, albeit at double the price you would find at an online retailer.

Although the term “inclusions” is commonly employed as a broad descriptor, it is advisable for jewelers to employ the term “blemishes” when referring to external or superficial inclusions, while reserving the term “inclusions” specifically for inclusions located within the stone itself.

Essentially, the significance of inclusions primarily revolves around what visually appeals to your personal preferences.

However, it is imperative to be vigilant as the proximity of blemishes to the surface becomes closer. Blemishes that are in close proximity to the surface or located on the girdle can potentially undermine the structural integrity of the stone.

How to Save on 2 Carat Diamond Clarity Cost

There are various methods to reduce the cost associated with diamond clarity. Remember when I mentioned that possessing a flawless diamond is unnecessary? Well, the same applies to internally flawless or VVS diamonds. Just a glimpse at the price of VVS diamonds would reveal a simple yet effective means of saving a substantial amount of money.

If your budget allows, by all means, go ahead and acquire one. However, ensure that your other diamond grades are appropriate, as a flawless diamond paired with an extremely low color grade does not meet the criteria for good quality. In fact, you can discover diamonds with similar characteristics at significantly lower prices compared to near colorless flawless diamonds, which are considered rare and highly expensive.

However, we should steer clear of diamonds with an I clarity grade that possess numerous black carbon inclusions, which retailers like Kay, Jared, and Zales often attempt to promote. Otherwise, you might find yourself in possession of a GIA-certified I clarity diamond similar to the one depicted below, with its less desirable characteristics.

Purchasing a 2 carat diamond with lower clarity and color grades may not yield a visually appealing result.

If you have your heart set on acquiring a 2 carat diamond, you must be aware that it comes with a significant price tag. The overall cost of a top-notch 2 carat diamond typically falls within the range of $5000 to upwards of $20,000. This wide spectrum is contingent upon the specific combination of your remaining diamond grades.

To cut down on clarity expenses while purchasing a 2 carat diamond, the most effective approach is to opt for online retailers that provide 360˚ viewing options, enabling you to examine the stones thoroughly. James Allen and Blue Nile are our recommended destinations for assessing diamond clarity, although James Allen offers superior magnification capabilities.

image: screenshot of the diamonds+cta+link

These platforms grant you the opportunity to closely inspect individual diamonds and observe the precise location of their respective inclusions.

Although the process may be time-consuming, the rewards will be significant when you manage to save around $1000. How? By discovering an eye-clean 2 carat diamond with SI1 clarity, which traditional retailers may claim is impossible. According to their perspective, SI diamonds will always exhibit inclusions.

However, if you delve deeper into your search, there is a chance of finding an eye-clean diamond. Surprisingly, even with I clarity diamonds, it is possible to uncover such gems if you put in the effort. It requires a bit of thorough investigation and a great deal of patience.

The major retailers intentionally keep this valuable resource hidden from consumers because they lack its provision. Unlike James Allen, they won’t provide you with the opportunity to closely examine around 600,000 loose diamonds.

Their intention is not to assist you in saving money. Instead, they are solely focused on encouraging you to spend, enabling their employees to meet their sales targets and support their families. While this may be understandable from their perspective, it is undeniably unjust to you, the customer.

Diamond Color

Similar to achieving clarity, it is possible to adjust the shades of color in your diamond grades to economize. For a 1 carat diamond, a JKL color grade can be acceptable. However, if you opt for a 2 carat diamond, higher color grades become necessary, even if it possesses a brilliant cut shape. It is worth noting that the color grade is interconnected with the carat weight, just like clarity.

Nevertheless, the requirement for higher color grades does not automatically imply the need for a D color grade. If you desire and have the means to acquire a superior, colorless diamond, by all means, go for it—they are truly magnificent. However, if such a choice exceeds your budgetary constraints, there’s no need to worry.

Avoid buying a yellow diamond unless you specifically want a fancy yellow diamond. Fancy yellow diamonds are deliberately chosen, while faint yellow diamonds denote lower quality.

image: https://learningjewelry.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/ljcolorscalereal-1024×607.png

Personally, I harbor a strong dislike for faint yellow diamonds, and I possess the ability to discern a JKL grade through visual inspection. Hence, I consistently gravitate towards diamonds that are either colorless or nearly colorless. However, for individuals who are not accustomed to scrutinizing diamonds on a daily basis, distinguishing between various color grades can prove challenging.

It is often stated that one does not truly perceive disparities in color grades unless they differ by at least two grades. For instance, the dissimilarity between an I color diamond and an H color diamond may not be readily apparent. However, comparing an I color diamond to an F color diamond would likely yield obvious discrepancies.

By opting for diamonds with inferior color grades, one can achieve a cost reduction ranging from $100 to $500, evading the need for colorless grades.

Saving on 2 Carat Diamond Color Expenses

When dealing with a 1 carat diamond, it is feasible to consider purchasing diamonds with lower color grades. However, the same cannot be said for a 2 carat diamond. Therefore, if you currently find the diamond’s yellow hue to be somewhat bothersome, it is crucial to recognize that it will appear even more pronounced in a larger carat weight.

Unless you possess a preference for warmer-toned diamonds, my recommendation is to steer clear of K and L diamonds, instead focusing your attention on J color graded 2 carat diamonds after visually examining them.

One approach to maintain the desired bright and white appearance while opting for a lower color grade is to carefully select the appropriate cut and shape for your diamond. Additionally, this decision is influenced by the other grades assigned to your diamond.

When considering a 2 carat round brilliant cut diamond, it is possible to opt for a J color grade and even venture into the realm of K if it appeals to your preferences. It is important to bear in mind that round diamonds, due to their brilliant cut, exhibit a substantial amount of fragmented white light reflection.

Assuming you have followed my advice and purchased an ideal cut round diamond, the chosen cut grade should mitigate some of the diamond’s yellowish tint, much like it does with clarity. It serves as a sort of diversion from the color aspect.

However, if you have opted for a step cut diamond shape or a shape that possesses a larger surface area, there is a likelihood that your diamond may appear noticeably more yellow. Step cut shapes, such as Asschers and emeralds, feature elongated facets that provide a comprehensive view of the gemstone.

image: screenshot of the diamonds+cta+link

If your primary goal is to maximize savings by selecting a diamond with a lower color grade, it is indeed achievable. However, it requires a high level of flexibility. While white gold remains the favored choice for engagement ring settings, opting for yellow gold or rose gold can provide you with the opportunity to choose a diamond with a lower color grade.

This strategy is particularly effective when paired with yellow gold. The color of the metal can counterbalance the subtle yellowish appearance of a K diamond. It can also work with rose gold due to its pinkish hue, although it is essential to assess it firsthand, as individuals may vary in their ability to notice the distinction.

Diamond Carat Weight

One common misconception among consumers when it comes to diamonds revolves around carat weight. However, the prevailing notion in their minds pertains to the size of the diamond rather than its weight. Their desire is to possess a large gemstone while paying a minimal price.

Alas, diamonds rarely come with a low price tag. In fact, if they do, there is a higher probability that they are inferior in quality and deceitfully marketed as superior gems.

It is important to distinguish between diamond carat weight and carat size as two distinct concepts. Carat weight refers to the actual weight of the diamond, whereas carat size denotes its perceived size or the surface area it occupies. The reason for our confusion lies in the fact that we are informed about the weight, but our perception of size is influenced by conventional diamond cuts such as round brilliants or princess cuts.

image: GD1

Upon exploring less conventional diamond shapes such as marquise or emerald cuts, an intriguing revelation emerges regarding their distinctive visual characteristics. It becomes apparent that a 2 carat round diamond appears significantly smaller when compared to a 2 carat emerald diamond. The reason behind this phenomenon lies in certain shapes having shallower proportions, resulting in a wider face-up appearance. In contrast, round cut diamonds possess greater depth.

It is worth noting that the carat weight of a diamond is primarily concentrated in its lower regions.

image: GD2

Speaking from a personal standpoint, carat happens to be the most dispensable factor among the four Cs in my opinion.

As the carat weight escalates, so does the accompanying price surge, due to its influence on enhancing the overall quality grades of the diamond. Moreover, the exorbitant pricing associated with 2 carat diamond rings can be attributed to the challenges faced by gem cutters when dealing with larger diamond rough that possesses superior clarity and color compared to lower carat weights.

Hence, it is unrealistic to anticipate that the cost of a flawlessly clear 1 carat diamond would merely double when seeking an equally pristine 2 carat diamond. In reality, the price may even triple, considering the significant disparities involved.

It is crucial to grasp the distinction between total carat weight and center carat weight to make informed choices. Total carat weight encompasses the combined weight of all the diamonds present in a ring. Consequently, a “1 carat ring” could consist of a center stone weighing half a carat, while the remaining 0.5 carats are distributed among the pave setting.

When encountering the abbreviation TDW (Total Diamond Weight) on a tag or website, it is imperative to ascertain the specific carat weight of the center stone. This knowledge becomes essential as it can lead to significant disparities in pricing.

Given our strong desire for a 2 carat diamond, we find no need to employ any techniques to create the illusion of a larger stone. Even in shapes with a relatively smaller visible table, the diamond still possesses a considerable size that appears substantial to most individuals.

Nevertheless, if one wished to enhance the visual impact of a 2 carat marquise diamond by incorporating a small halo around it, it is indeed feasible. However, it is crucial to bear in mind that although a shape like the marquise may not possess extensive surface area, its elongated form may appear peculiar if paired with an excessively large halo.  We’ve previously covered halo settings for engagement rings.

It is worth noting the prevalent practice of expressing engagement ring carat weights in fractional measurements such as 1/3, 1/2, 3/4, and 1. This approach is often employed by numerous chain stores, which primarily advertise carat weights using fractions rather than decimals and carat points.

Retailers like Jared and Zales restrict customers from selecting diamonds with varying carat weights as they are aware that such freedom empowers buyers to save money.

However, by opting for an online vendor that allows you to choose diamonds based on carat points, you can potentially secure some savings. The “rule of 7” governs carat points, enabling you to venture up to 0.7 above or below the desired 2-carat mark.

It is noteworthy that diamonds weighing anywhere from 1.93 to 2.07 are all categorized as 2-carat diamonds. However, many establishments tend to charge a premium for precisely 2.0-carat diamonds due to their widespread appeal and demand among buyers.

When it comes to seeking a 2 carat diamond, it is natural to focus exclusively on whole numbers like 2.0. However, it is advisable to reconsider this approach. Diamonds falling within the 0.7 range often exhibit no discernible visual distinction from their whole-number counterparts, yet they often differ in price by a few hundred units.

The reason behind this pricing discrepancy lies in the additional carat points, which contribute to a slight increase in weight in the diamond’s pavilion or lower section. Since this portion remains hidden from view when observed face-up, it becomes illogical to opt for a 2.0 carat diamond over a 1.93 carat diamond when there is no perceivable disparity. After all, why would one be inclined to pay more for something that remains unseen?

Other Different Factors

Diamond Shape

By now, it’s likely that you’re aware of the influence diamond shapes have on the price of a 2 carat diamond. A key factor contributing to the high cost of round diamond shapes stems from the significant amount of rough stone that gem cutters must discard during the process of faceting rounds.

Remarkably, in the case of a 1 carat diamond, approximately 40% of the initial diamond rough ends up being eliminated and deemed unusable.

image: https://learningjewelry.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/Screen-Shot-2020-10-19-at-12.22.07-AM-1024×535.png

Let’s consider another immensely popular diamond shape, such as the princess cut. Interestingly, only about 20% of the rough diamond material is discarded during the cutting and shaping process. This discrepancy in waste between the princess cut and the round brilliant cut is one of the contributing factors that can lead to princess cut diamonds of similar grades being priced lower compared to their round counterparts.

Diamond Fluorescence

The average customer seeking a ring or diamond purchase often possesses limited knowledge regarding diamond fluorescence. This topic is typically neglected in discussions, primarily due to jewelry stores deeming it unnecessary and the potential for modest cost savings associated with it.

Fluorescence can be present in all diamonds, but it is not a universal trait. Most jewelry retailers that do not offer the option to personally select diamonds are unlikely to disclose this information unless the diamond is certified. It is plausible that even most regular employees lack familiarity with this aspect.

In essence, when a diamond is exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light or a black light, it has the potential to emit a blue glow. Diamond fluorescence is typically classified into categories such as Very Strong, Strong, Medium, Faint, or None, as indicated by specific details of the diamond.

In general, the typical individual is unlikely to discern a noticeable disparity between a diamond classified as Very Strong in fluorescence and one categorized as None. It is worth noting that diamonds with Strong or Very Strong fluorescence may emit a subtle blue glow when exposed to intense ultraviolet (UV) rays outdoors. However, this luminescence is not as vividly blue as one might initially imagine.

Diamonds lacking fluorescence are generally deemed as “superior,” although the majority of individuals are unable to perceive any noticeable distinctions.

Indeed, that is correct.

From a personal standpoint, I find the subtle blue glow exhibited by fluorescent diamonds to be incredibly captivating and distinctive. Therefore, I would personally prefer a diamond with fluorescence over one without. Additionally, the prospect of fluorescent diamonds being available at a lower cost is enticing to me. How about your preference?

Diamond Grading Report 

Most conventional physical stores tend to limit your ability to personally select a diamond, as they are aware that significant cost savings can be achieved through such a process. Another aspect of these establishments is their tendency to downplay the significance of obtaining a certified diamond unless specifically requested.

By now, it is clear to you that each diamond possesses its own unique qualities. While they may all be diamonds, their quality can vary significantly. The same principle applies to diamond certification. It is imperative that you never purchase a diamond lacking proper certification.

A certified diamond or one that is accompanied by a comprehensive grading report ensures that your purchase aligns precisely with what you expect. On the other hand, an uncertified diamond is merely a suggestion, indicating that the advertised diamond grades may not entirely reflect their true attributes.

It is a matter of concern that numerous subpar laboratories exist, whose grading standards are notably inferior compared to others. For this reason, it is strongly advised to exclusively purchase 2 carat diamonds that are certified by either the GIA or AGS. It is unwise to acquire diamonds labeled as “independently certified” or originating from alternative laboratories, as their grading leniency surpasses that of the aforementioned reputable institutions. The GIA and AGS hold the utmost authority in the realm of diamonds and establish stringent benchmarks to uphold industry standards.

GIA diamond certification
Colored Diamond Grading Report

RECOMMENDED: Where to Buy GIA Certified Diamonds Online

Conclusion – How Much Does A 2 Carat Diamond Cost?

Unfortunately, diamond pricing tends to be quite capricious. It becomes apparent that numerous elements influence the cost of a 1 carat diamond, with carat weight itself playing a minor role. The predominant factors determining the price of a diamond are commonly known as the four pillars of diamond quality: Cut, Clarity, Color, and Carat.

On average, the price range for a superior quality 2 carat diamond fluctuates between $5,000 at the lower end and an astonishing $60,000 at the higher end.

Additional minor factors contribute to the overall cost, including the diamond’s shape, certification status, and specific attributes like fluorescence or the length-to-width ratio.

The positive aspect to note is that it is unnecessary to acquire the highest quality in each of these fundamental aspects, and there exist numerous methods to effectively compare and differentiate various clarity and color grades, facilitating cost savings when selecting the ideal diamond.

Before concluding, allow me to provide one additional valuable tip for reducing expenses when purchasing a 2 carat diamond. If your goal is to save a substantial 40% or more, it is worth considering the purchase of a lab-grown diamond, also referred to as a synthetic diamond. Clean Origin offers a selection of top-notch 2 carat lab-grown diamonds known for their exceptional quality.

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