When it comes to diamonds, the carat refers to the weight of the diamond. The word ‘carat’ is named after the ‘carob’ seeds, which served as a perfect counterweight to a diamond and was used to measure the weight of the stone prior to the twentieth century.
Diamond Size and Diamond Carat Weight
The carat weight of a diamond is proportional to its size. When a rough stone is cut and polished to form a fine diamond(s), about 2/3rd of its total weight will be lost. Since it is rare to spot a large rough diamond of high quality than smaller rough diamonds of similar quality, a large single diamond of, say, two-carat will be priced higher than two one-carat diamonds of the same quality.
The weight of a diamond will increase much faster than it increases in actual face-up diameter/width. To make it more clear, consider an ideal cut diamond of one-carat will measure approximately 6.5mm in width. Now, a diamond twice that weight will measure only 8.2mm in width - gaining only approximately 30% increase in width.
Which Carat Weight Is Right For You?
This is not an easy question to answer especially because it is a choice that depends on one’s personal preferences and budget. However, when you are viewing a diamond engagement ring, you are most likely to notice the size of the stone in its face-up position. It is difficult to measure the carat weight of stone just by looking at it. Even though the carat weight affects the price of the stone, it is always ideal to give more importance to its cut and diameter while shopping for your diamond engagement ring.