How much do natural diamonds cost? This is a bit like asking, how much does a car cost? It depends: are you buying a Toyota or Honda or are you interested in a Bentley or a Rolls-Royce? We know that, in terms of vehicles, there are a host of characteristics and qualities that influence the price.
A few thousand pounds of steel and four wheels may cost $20,000 or it may cost $200,000. The same is true when it comes to diamonds. A two-carat stone can cost $6000 or it can cost $20,000+.
The cost of natural diamonds is highly dependent on several factors; it is important that buyers equip themselves with information and knowledge as they go through the purchase process.
Why It’s Important to Understand the Cost of Natural Diamonds
For many people, buying a diamond can be intimidating. We tend to associate quality and value (and big price tags!) with carats, for example. But as mentioned, two stones with the same carat weight can be completely different in cost. Why?
Because a diamond’s value, and thus, cost, is not determined by carat alone but rather a confluence of the 4 Cs:
- Cut (quality of proportions, angles, facets, brilliance, fire, scintillation, and finishing details)
- Color (“color” refers to how colorless the stone is)
- Clarity (how clean the stone is in terms of blemishes and inclusions)
- Carat weight (weight of the stone)
How the 4Cs interact, so to speak, will dictate the diamond’s quality and, of course, price. If you had to choose a factor that had more influence, it is, arguably, cut. This impacts the stone’s ability to sparkle. So, let’s say you are comparing two diamonds: one has a higher carat weight but one has a cut grade of Ideal.
Your best bet, in terms of beauty and quality, is the lower-weight diamond with a fantastic cut. It will appear larger, and it will certainly be far more dazzling. Your “smaller” diamond would likely have a higher price tag in this case.
It is important to emphasize that the cost of natural diamonds depends on the interaction of all 4Cs, and buyers should prioritize those factors they feel add to the beauty of the stone. Some, for example, are willing to sacrifice weight and accept a lower color grade if the cut is Ideal or Excellent. The cut, in essence, makes up for or disguises the less-than-perfect color grade and can deliver a vivacious sparkle.
Clear as mud? Well, your diamond will hopefully be a lot more clear! Please check out our helpful guide, “What Is Most Important When Picking a Diamond” for information on the 4Cs and weighing them as you select a diamond.
When trying to determine the cost of natural diamonds to ensure you are getting the quality and value you need from your purchase, it is essential to evaluate the diamond’s grading report and 4Cs. Also, consider:
- Certification. A natural diamond certificate authenticates the stone; this document gives you information on the cut, color, clarity, and carat weight so you can make an informed decision. Certified diamonds do cost more - but they are more valuable.
- Different price points. Shop around. An informed consumer does their research and compares pricing. Look at various in-person and online retailers (always making sure the diamond has a certificate). Figure out a baseline for similar diamonds.
- The setting. Certain settings allow you to “disguise” lower grades in carat weight, color, and clarity. For example, a smaller central stone can sparkle and shine in a halo setting. Or, if you have a diamond that has a color grade of K or lower, a white or metallic setting will emphasize the yellowish tint. It is better to go with an alloy or colored metal to disguise this. The end result can be stunning but it’s about balancing strengths and weaknesses.
Adding Sparkle and Dimension with Melee Diamonds
There is another way to spend less on a central diamond or a piece containing diamonds. Integrating the strategic use of melee. These small stones can make a big impact on the design and beauty of a piece without making an impact on your budget.
For example, if you were designing a halo engagement ring, you could cut carat weight and perhaps accept a lower grade on other 4Cs and then surround the center stone with a sparkling array of melee. This makes the stone appear larger and more dazzling.
If you have questions about the cost of natural diamonds or about using melee in your pieces, please contact K. Rosengart. We are your in-house diamond experts.