Jewelry Trends

How Much Are Diamonds Worth?

Rachel Akmakjian


Rachel Akmakjian

Everything You Need to Know About Diamond Prices

You’re in the jewelry store. You’re perusing the counters, and your eyes gaze onto a gorgeous piece of diamond jewelry, maybe a diamond engagement ring.

You look at the price tag, and you’re a little shocked. What determines diamond price, and why can diamond pricing seem so arbitrary?

While current diamond prices may seem somewhat arbitrary to the average shopper and those unfamiliar with the diamond industry, diamond prices are a unique science that relies on several essential factors.

Natural Diamonds

What You Will Learn

How Much are Diamonds Worth? The Factors Influencing Diamond Cost

The Factors Influencing Diamond CostCarats determine diamond prices. If you ever hear someone refer to “diamond carat price,” they’re referring to the price for each carat in a diamond. Carat weights are a diamond’s physical weight; one carat is approximately 1/5 of a gram.

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How can two diamonds with the same carat weight have different diamond prices per carat?

Well, the carat diamond price relies on a few factors. Most shoppers who’ve done even the slightest bit of research into diamonds will know about the 4 Cs — four elements that impact wholesale diamond prices. However, they’re not the only factors at play. Here’s what you need to know.

The 4 Cs

The 4 Cs include:

  • Cut
  • Color
  • Clarity
  • Carat weight

Evaluating diamonds to these four elements provides their inherent price. The better the diamond performs across all four categories, the higher the diamond price per carat.

Cut, on the most basic level, refers to how well a diamond’s proportions and polished surfaces reflect light.

Color designation is given to diamonds depending on their rank on the color scale, whether that is colorless, near colorless, or lower on the scale, commonly with a yellow tinge. Completely colorless diamonds are the most valuable and most expensive.

Clarity refers to internal flaws (or rather, the lack thereof) within the diamond. Diamond prices inflate with fewer flaws.

Carat weight refers to the diamond’s physical weight. While larger diamonds are often more expensive, this is not always true.

Think of these four elements as a grading rubric. Suppose you have a diamond that performs well in clarity, color, and cut but is on the smaller side. In that case, it will still perform better than a large diamond with poor clarity, color, and cut. In other words, the smaller diamond will be more expensive than the larger diamond.

Diamond Shape

Another factor influencing diamond worth and price? Shape.

Diamond shape and diamond cut aren’t the same thing. Diamond cut refers to how well the diamond shape reflects the light with the proper symmetry and proportions. The diamond shape, however, is its actual physical shape, such as oval, round, emerald, pear, and so on.

Some diamond shapes, such as round diamonds, have a higher price tag than others. These diamonds are inherently more expensive due to the amount of waste from cutting the rough diamond into this shape. Additionally, round diamonds are popular, and this demand leads to higher prices.

Suggested Read: What types of diamond cuts are best for my engagement ring?

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Natural Diamonds vs. Lab Diamonds

There are also differences in the price of diamonds per carat when you look at identical diamonds mined from the earth vs. grown in a lab. While lab-grown diamonds are graded according to the 4Cs as well, they’re not as valuable as mined diamonds due to their rarity and long-standing resale value.

(Check out our lab-grown diamond price calculator to learn more and get a diamond price chart that will break down what kind of natural diamond vs. what kind of lab-grown diamond you could get with your budget.)

Fancy Colored vs. Colorless Diamonds

You’ll also find differences in price per carat when comparing colorless diamonds with fancy colored diamonds. For fancy colored diamonds, their value is all in the color.

The more vibrant and vivid the color is in a diamond — whether pink, yellow, blue, and so on — the rarer, and thus the more expensive.

Loose Diamond vs. Mounted Diamond

Lastly, some may think they can get a better price on a diamond by purchasing a loose diamond versus a mounted diamond, already in a jewelry setting. However, this isn’t often the case. While you’ll save money by not paying for a complete piece of jewelry with a set stone, you won’t save that much on the actual price per carat for the diamond.

So, How Much Do Diamonds Cost?

All the above factors aside, how much do diamonds actually cost? What is their current worth?

While jewelry dealers have industry resources such as the Rapaport Diamond Price List that act as an industry benchmark for diamond pricing, actual diamond prices will differ according to where and when you shop. Diamond jewelry prices and overall worth can fluctuate throughout a year, even though diamonds are generally considered a safe, long-term investment.

As of the latter half of 2023, according to CNN, prices for rough diamonds are down, but those rough diamond prices (which apply to the uncut gemstones the average jewelry wearer won’t want) don’t often translate to the average consumer. Instead, CNN found that prices for one-carat round diamonds have grown by 3%, on average, over the last three years.

In contrast, a CNBC article from the same time found that diamond prices are down 18% from their all-time high in February 2022, with one expert reporting that, in late 2023, a “slightly better-than-average-quality, 1-carat natural diamond … is selling for $5,300.”

Recent changes in diamond pricing are fluctuating due to various factors, including the shifting economy, global conflicts, and the growing popularity of lab-grown diamonds.

Protect Your Diamond Jewelry’s Value with Comprehensive Jewelry Insurance

Whether you’re shopping for a diamond engagement ring or interested in making a strategic investment in the diamond industry, if you have any diamond jewelry or even loose diamonds in your possession, you need to protect them. Don’t wait until the worst happens to discover that your homeowners’ or renters’ insurance won’t cover the full value of those diamonds.

Instead, make a minimal investment into comprehensive and specialized jewelry insurance. That’s what BriteCo offers–affordable plans that are convenient to buy, pay for and then use if you ever need to make a claim.

Learn more!

Also Check:

How Much Are Real Pearls Worth?
Types of Rough Diamonds | BriteCo Jewelry Insurance
2023 Diamond Price Trends | BriteCo Jewelry Insurance

Appraisal Tool:

The Easiest Way to Get a Professional Jewelry Appraisal Valuation!



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Rachel's expertise is further enhanced by her distinction as a Graduate Gemologist from the prestigious Gemological Institute of America (GIA), equipping her with exceptional knowledge in gem identification and grading. Her education and experiences have given her an in-depth understanding of the demands and expectations facing jewelers and customers in today’s evolving retail marketplace.