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Buying Guide for 1-Carat Diamond Ring

Do you need some assistance picking 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?

You have come to the right place! Here we are going to 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!

This guide will give you all the information you need, whether you are looking for a wedding or an engagement ring that weighs 1 carat. At the end of reading, you should be able to make an informed decision about buying a 1-carat ring for your engagement.

Let’s jump right in.


The Best Jewelry Shop to Buy a 1-Carat Diamond Engagement Ring

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

Online jewelry shops like Blue Nile and James Allen offer their customers 360-degree high definition images and videos. 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 and Co (best fancy colors of diamonds)

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


What Is A 1-Carat Diamond Ring?

To start with 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, it 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 listed in the 4Cs grading system for diamonds. These are clarity, cut, and color. This is why you will find the price of 2 one carat diamonds is different-we shall discuss these a little later.

Diamond Carat Weight Is Not the Same as Its Size

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

The size of a diamond can be seen from its cut, shape, and general appearance. You will find a marquise cut diamond that has the same carat weight as a round brilliant diamond, but the marquise will look bigger since it has an elongated shape.

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Is A 1-Carat Diamond Ring Cheap Or Expensive?

Most 1-carat diamond engagement rings cost between $2,500 and $10,000. Look at this ring that costs approximately $4,000. This here goes for about $11,000. The price of the second is almost three times the cost of the first, but 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 counted in the weight.

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 that has a $5,000 price tag and 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. Also, an $8,000 diamond that weighs 1-carat will have $8,000 as its price per carat.

Some diamonds will have a price per carat that is high 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, whereas a 1-carat diamond that has VVS2 clarity and E color grade go for $10,350 per carat.

Read Here: Is Diamond Clarity Important?

However, it is good to know that an increase in weight does not necessarily correspond to an increase in price per carat. Most people attach feelings to the process of shopping for diamonds which is likely to impact the price. Since the price of diamonds is very subjective, you need to be selective with the diamond brands that you shop for.

The Best Place to Purchase a 1-Carat Diamond Engagement Ring

When shopping for diamonds, it is good to go to online shops since they have an extensive collection and their prices are also affordable compared to physical diamond retailers.

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

Deciding which online diamond vendor to buy from is not easy since they all have something to offer. From our vast experience in the jewelry industry, we can stand by our word when we say Blue Nile and James Allen are the best diamond stores in the market.

  • James Allen: This online-only store has been in the business of selling a variety of high-quality diamonds for close to two decades. Their products have great prices and also carry GIA and AGS diamond certificates. This shows you how reliable and consistent James Allen is in observing integrity. They offer 360-degree images that help you pick the best 1-carat diamond in the store. If you are looking for an affordable diamond, do not worry, you will surely get it. Their customer service channels are also available 24/7 if you need advice or have questions to ask.
  • Blue Nile: this is the store if you have been looking for a place with a wide range of diamonds. They have a variety of cuts like princess cuts, marquise cuts, and round brilliant cuts. Ring settings also come in plenty and you can choose bezel, cathedral, or solitaire settings. Also, 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 either from GIA or AGS, these denote quality. In these reports, you will find a report number that is very handy if you want to cross-check the diamond information provided to you by the seller. Using that report number, you can check 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 cut grade that is high automatically makes the diamond look more beautiful and brighter.
  3. Settings do a good job protecting your diamonds; as such you should select a diamond ring that has high-quality settings. For many people, gold is the setting of choice and most jewelers offer choices ranging from white, rose, and yellow gold for 1-carat diamonds.
  4. Try as much as possible to compare products of one seller to the others before buying a 1-carat diamond ring. Compare the diamond 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.

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

The 4Cs (clarity, color, carat, and cut) are the major components 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 exists a standard grading system for all diamonds but 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 and the ones we recommend are GIA and AGS. These two will 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 best suit you?

We 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.

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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, which means that a diamond in this grade does not have visible blemishes under 10x magnifier. This is also the highest priced diamond, so 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 whose 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 or a flawless.

If your budget is a little tight, even a VS2 one-carat diamond is good. If you get a diamond with VS2 and SI1 clarity grade, these are also 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, so go shopping from stores like James Allen which provide 360ndegree 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.

Diamond color is as important as clarity when looking for a 1-carat diamond ring. You most probably would not like to have 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 and these are always the most expensive. Lower color grades include diamonds that are yellow or tinted and are usually not attractive.

The kind of ring setting you choose will also affect the diamond color either by making it look more white or colorless. This 18K 1-carat diamond ring in K color grade sits in a yellow gold solitaire setting. 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).

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 compared to the first ring.

Overall, a 1-carat diamond engagement ring that falls in the G-I GIA grade should look good on you. These color grades look almost colorless even when put in light-colored metals. You will also find these at affordable prices.

Quick tip: the shape of a diamond greatly affects how tinted it looks. Pick quality cut diamonds since it is not easy to notice tints in them.

Best cut grade

To complete the 3Cs list is diamond cut.

While the diamond cut is also referred to as shape, it 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 that have the best cuts attract 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, and princess among other types of cuts.

You can never go wrong 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 that have these kinds of cuts always offer the best scintillation, fire, and brilliance, making them beautiful and lovable by most jewelry enthusiasts.

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


If you shop at Blue Nile, you will get to see a diamond size chart that shows different sizes of a 1-carat diamond basing on the shape when viewed from above. Look at the chart here.



How Does A 1-Carat Diamond Ring Look?

Like many other new diamond shoppers, you may have confused the diamond carat weight with its size. Carat is the term used to describe the weight of the diamond, not its 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.

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For some people, diamond size is important but we recommend you put more weight on the diamond cut if you want to get something of high quality. 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?

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 quality.

However, it is not easy to resell your diamond ring 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.

If you buy this 1-carat diamond ring from James Allen, it will cost you $4,300. You can set the resell price between $2,580 and $3,100.

There are many channels through which you can resell your 1-carat diamond ring. You can choose to trade in, sell on consignment, auction, 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

It is our goal that when you read our guides, you get enough information to go through the jewelry shopping process without any stress and get the best value for the money you spend. It is very possible to buy a pretty 1-carat diamond ring without spending more than you had planned to, and we are going to make sure that is what exactly happens.

The first thing and the most important to keep in mind is to buy a diamond ring that has a grading report from AGS or GIA.

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

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

You can confidently shop from James Allen and Blue Nile since these carry GIA and AGS diamond certificates.

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

Clarity: minimum clarity grade should be VS1 or VS2. When you buy this grade, your diamond will look clean to the eyes and no one will be able to notice any inclusions.

Color: Diamonds that have colors that lie between grades G and I are almost as colorless as those in grades D to F. They are affordable and will give you better value for money.

Cut: 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 since 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.


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



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