The short answer is that both are correct. They are both measurements used in the world of jewelry and while they have the same pronunciation, they are spelled differently and measure two completely different things.
What’s the Difference Between Carat and Karat?
Diamond carat (ct) is what’s globally recognized as the standard for the weight of a diamond or gemstone. A single carat weighs .20 grams. Karat, on the other hand, is a measure of gold purity. 24-karat gold is pure gold. Therefore, 12-karat gold is 50% gold and 50% made up of base metals or impurities.
What You Should Know About Diamond Carat
Most importantly: a higher carat size means a higher price, assuming that the other characteristics of the diamond are also the equal. That price will rise significantly, and not by a linear scale, as carat increases. Contrary to popular belief, the size of the diamond is not the carat. The carat is the weight. The size of a diamond is measured in millimeters, length by width, or, in other words, the diameter.
Carat will impact the other 3Cs (cut, clarity, and color) of your diamond. For example, if you have a larger carat size, a diamond with a higher color grade helps the color look more apparent. A higher clarity grade will mean a more clear, bright stone.
The most common engagement ring size is 1 carat. Visually, it’s fairly difficult to tell the difference between diamonds that vary 5-10% in carat weight. A 0.95 ct and 1 ct diamond are nearly indistinguishable.
Where Does the Term Carat Come From?
The word “carat” is derived from Ancient Greek and means “carob seed”. Carob beans were once used to measure very small weights–including that of pure gold coins. Carob beans were utilized because they were said to have very little variation in weight compared to other seeds. With today’s more advanced technology, we now know that there is plenty of weight variation between carob seeds. We can imagine some poor Ancient Greeks didn’t experience fair trades.
What You Should Know About Gold Karat
In its purest form, 24-karat, gold is a bright yellow in color. When incorporated in rings and other jewelry, gold is usually mixed with other metals to create an alloy–giving the metal strength and hue. The more metals that are mixed in with the gold, the lower the karat becomes.
The difference in gold karat drastically changes the look (and worth) of jewelry. For example, 14-karat yellow gold looks a lot different than 18-karat yellow gold–it’s more yellow in tone.
The karat can also impact the durability of a piece of jewelry. Pure gold is relatively soft, which is why lower karats are more common.
The karat will impact the worth of your ring, but less than a change in carat.
Cash in on Your Carats and Karats with Gold Guys
The price of gold is higher now than it has been in years, meaning now is the perfect time to see what your items are worth. At Gold Guys, we are dedicated to getting you a high price for your precious items while ensuring the process is easy and painless. We will work with you to ensure you’re in control of the transaction from start to finish.
Contact us today to learn more about selling your jewelry, gold, and other precious metals for a great price with Gold Guys.