Diamonds are the quintessential stone of engagement rings. Despite a gradual interest in other options, you can’t argue with the classics.
Nothing speaks romance louder than a sparkly, shiny diamond set in a delicate gold band. And as far as popular choices go, 2-carat diamonds seem to be a rising trend.
We at Kalfin Jewellery have a few ideas why that is.
But first, a few clarifications.
What is a Carat?
Let’s start with a few quick explanations before we dive into the meat of this guide. What exactly is a carat, and why does the number matter?
A carat is actually a unit of measurement for a diamond ring’s weight. The minimum weight usually starts at around a quarter carat, and 1 carat – or roughly 0.2 grams – is the most common measure people go for.
Contrary to popular belief, the diamond carat does not equal its size. A 1-carat diamond could look exactly the same as a 2-carat diamond despite weighing 0.2 grams more. This is because a carat doesn’t impact table surface area, depth, or shape feature. It only indicates weight.
Are 2 Carats Better than 1?
Usually, 1-carat rings being more common and easily accessible, more and more people find themselves looking for 2-carat options. These rings are “rare” enough to be desirable, and the larger size of the stones – when paired with certain cuts – does offer a number of benefits.
Specifically, these five:
- Pear-Shaped Cut
- Round Cut
Diamond Quality Control: The 4 Cs
If this is your first time investing in diamond engagement rings, here’s an easy metric to remember: 4 C’s.
The cut of the diamond dictates the quality of its light return—the better the cut, the better the light return, the more brilliant the sparkle. The colour, on the other hand, refers to its tint. It follows a D – Z scale, where D is colourless and Z is fully tinted.
A diamond’s clarity refers to the aspect of the diamond that depicts the presence of inclusions and flaws in the stone. And, as we mentioned earlier, the carat measures how heavy the diamond is—not necessarily how big or small it is.
Generally speaking, we would recommend choosing diamonds that have a 100% eye clean to VS1 clarity rating and range from D to F in colour for engagement rings.
If you prefer a more vintage style for your engagement ring (and you’d be surprised how trendy this concept is!)stones that fall from J to K on the colour scale will help achieve that warm, beautiful look.
Don’t worry if that was hard to understand. Any professional jeweller will know what those terms mean and should be able to guide you accordingly. And that was simply an example of how the 4 Cs would work as a guiding metric.
With that said, let’s get into the six most popular 2-carat diamond engagement rings amongst our clientele—and why they’re so in-demand.
Cushion-Cut Diamond Engagement Rings
Cushion cut diamonds are so-named because they resemble cushions, squares with cut corners, the edges softened to form a pillow-shaped silhouette.
It has a very gentle appearance, especially when compared to the princess, emerald, and square-cut stones. High-quality cushion cut diamonds shine brilliantly even in low light.
The elegance of the outline and the softness of the edges create the illusion of subtle power. A fieriness tempered by poise and finesse. This is why people who are naturally confident and genuinely self-assured are often drawn to it.
On the practical side, 2-carat cushion cut diamond engagement rings offer great finger coverage. The slight heft they’ve got – when compared to 1-carat stones – will also make them feel more secure on your hand.
We find that a 4-prong setting emphasises the diamond’s cut without compromising its soft silhouette.
Oval-Cut Diamond Engagement Rings
Whereas cut cushion diamonds are gentle and poised, oval cut diamonds are timeless and trendy. They’re classic, they’re ageless, and they always look so effortlessly stunning—especially with the right ring and setting!
And the sentiment behind them is not the only reason they’re so in demand.
Visually speaking, oval diamonds look a lot bigger than most other diamonds of the same size and carat. And it’s true; oval cut diamonds lose a lot less “rough” diamond during the cutting process compared to others, leaving them with around10% more surface area than other options (like a brilliant round cut or square cut stones).
Here’s the best part: despite the difference in size, oval cut diamonds cost about the same – if not less! – per carat as round cut diamonds with the same rating. Raw diamond loss during the cutting process also plays a huge role in deciding the price, which is why oval cuts are noticeably more affordable.
This means that an oval cut 2-carat diamond gives you a lot more sparkle and a lot more shine for a lot less cost.
People also love how the elongated shape of the oval can make their fingers appear long, slender, and tapered. Because the length-to-width proportions aren’t standardised, they can choose fuller, wider, or slimmer silhouettes that flatter their hands accordingly.
And the lack of sharp edges on this cut also minimises accidental chipping.
Pear-Shaped Diamond Engagement Rings
Also known as teardrop diamonds, pear cut or pear-shaped diamonds are, as advertised, a rounded shape that narrows into a point on one side. It’s basically a beautiful combination of a modified brilliant round cut (specifically, the 57 to 58 facets typical of this cut) and a marquise cut (because of the pointed tip).
The vibes of both cuts – the regal bearing of a marquise and the brightness of a brilliant round – blend seamlessly into the pear cut diamond.
This makes this cut the perfect choice for poised, passionate people who appreciate the attention to detail.
Much like the oval cut diamond, a pear-cut diamond can often look larger than other diamonds of the same carat but different cut. Though the surface area difference is not as obvious as that of the oval cut, you can still get a fair amount of extra shine for the same price.
Here’s the fun part; the higher the pear-shaped diamond’s carat, the bigger the price gap between it and other styles. A pear cut – like the oval – produces minimal waste during the process. Not a lot of raw diamond is lost. Hence the lower price point.
Unlike round cuts or brilliant round cuts, the price difference between carat levels for pear cuts are not as exponential. Say a 1 carat round diamond and a 1-carat pear-shaped diamond engagement ring both retail for $8,000 US.
A 2-carat pear-shaped diamond would cost $13,000 US. A 2 carat round diamond, on the other hand, would jump to a whopping $23,000 US.
As far as cost is concerned, you get a lot more value for the same price with pear-shaped diamonds.
Princess-Cut Diamond Engagement Rings
A princess-cut diamond is fiery and brilliant—much like the people drawn to it. Clean edges and corners coupled with an inverted-pyramid shape maximise the brilliance of the diamond by showing up to 58 facets.
That abundance of sparkle is one of the main reasons why 2 carat and 3-carat princess diamond engagement rings are such a popular choice.
Aside from its distinctly pyramid-esque silhouette and its iconic sparkle, 2-carat princess cut diamonds have other key features that make them stand out. Princess cut stones often contain two to four chevron patterns.
Two chevron patterns allow for bigger, bolder flashes of white and coloured light.
Four chevron patterns, on the other hand, give the stone more scintillation. This results in smaller but sharper – and more frequent – flashes of light are often visible even with slight movement.
Round-Cut Diamond Engagement Rings
Recent statistics show that although modern, more uncommon cuts – like the cushion cut, princess cut, or marquis cut – are gaining appreciation and popularity, the most searched for and most purchased cut remains the round cut (or the round brilliant-cut). It averages about 60% of all engagement ring searches. The second-place spot goes to princess cut, with around 23%.
As you can see, the gap is still quite large.
High-quality round-cut diamonds offer the most brilliance and shine than any other cut. They show a minimum of 57 facets, allowing for nearly 100% of light return.
Remember that the princess cut, despite being known for its brilliance as well, still has an unfortunately wide range of 50 to 58 facets per stone.
This means that round cut diamonds are capable of reflecting most – if not all – of the light that enters.
Round cut diamonds also show the least amount of body colour. It can be quite difficult to tell the tint of a round brilliant cut diamond engagement ring, largely due to the way the cut traps and reflects light. So the chances of your intended catching the difference between an H-coloured round cut and a G-coloured round cut are pretty minimal. Should you need to, you could afford to compromise on the colour of the stone without settling for a severe tint.
Radiant-Cut Diamond Engagement Rings
For those who care about diamond sparkle, the radiant-cut diamond is not far behind the round-cut diamonds.
Introduced to the world by Henry Grossbard in 1977, the birth of radiant diamond heralded a popularity boom for square and rectangular engagement rings with meticulously beveled corners.
Uniting the best features of the round brilliant shape and the emerald cut, the precision of radiant cuts’ 70 facets in its pavilion and crown emanates brilliance, fire, and extra shine. This makes the radiant cut a dream come alive if you want a non-round diamond with invincible sparkle.
Interestingly, the radiant cut looks bigger than its actual size, an illusion that serves as a positive feature for people who prefer a larger diamond at a lower cost.
Moreover, because of its cropped corner, radiant cuts come with great durability and are less likely to chip which is perfect if you or your loved one has an active lifestyle.
No doubt the radiant cut answers all your deepest engagement rings desires. Not to mention its traditional elegance and immeasurable brilliance.
Remember, 2-carat diamond engagement rings are beautiful. They are also very expensive (which is why we call them investments).
Regardless of what cut or setting you’re going for, only consider 2-carat diamonds with a GIA or AGS certificate. Don’t be tempted by seemingly good deals or prices that feel like a ‘steal’. If it sounds too good to be true, it often is.