The Diamond Pro

The Ultimate 8 Carat Diamond Ring Buying Guide

By Michael Fried
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Bottom Line Recommendation:

8 Carat diamonds are rare, valuable and beautiful. You should take care when shopping for an 8 Carat diamond ring, to ensure you pick out a diamond with the right grades to maximize its beauty, and minimize unnecessary costs.

Look for an Ideal or Excellent cut, G to I color and VS1 or VS2 clarity. 8 Carat diamonds with these grades are indeed rare, but you should be able to find a small selection from online vendors such as James Allen, Blue Nile and Abe Mor Diamonds.

8ct H VS2 Pear Shape Diamond from Abe Mor
8ct H VS2 Pear Shape Diamond from Abe Mor

8 Carat Diamond Ring Price

8 Carat diamond rings are exceptionally rare and valuable. You can expect to pay between $12,500 to $40,000 per carat for a ring of this size (assuming you shop for your diamond online at one of our recommended online jewelers).

A truly flawless diamond at this carat weight is going to set you back even more. This 8.45 Carat Round Cut diamond from James Allen is priced at $655,070, due to its size, and exceptional D/VVS2 color and clarity grades.

You don’t necessarily need to spend over half a million dollars on an 8 carat diamond ring (though don’t expect to find one for several thousand either). Cutting back a little on color and clarity results in a big difference in price when we get to this level of rarity. Realistically, you may want to look for something in the I/VS1 section.

To get a further idea of price expectations for 8 carat diamonds, here are some more examples:

Where To Buy 8 Carat Diamond Rings

The best places to buy an 8 Carat diamond ring are James Allen, Blue Nile, and Abe Mor Diamonds.

You may be thinking, “can I (or should I) really buy an 8 Carat diamond ring online?” The answer is yes, to both questions.

Online retailers James Allen and Blue Nile have the best range of GIA or AGS certified diamonds anywhere. I can comfortably say you’re not going to find a diamond as large as 8 carats in your local jewelry store – much less one with a reputable certification and high-quality grades or acceptable price. Both James Allen and Blue Nile, however, offer a small range of super rare diamonds at carat weights of 8 and above.

These vendors also provide the customer service and inspection tools necessary to make the big decision of buying an 8 carat diamond ring. This is vital to ensure you don’t overpay, as the difference from one grade to the next can be tens of thousands of dollars.

Abe Mor Diamonds

Aside from these two retailers, Abe Mor Diamonds is another we highly recommend. Abe Mor is a diamond wholesaler who specializes in rare and larger diamonds. Their buying experience is second to none, and they can help you find the perfect diamond at a wide range of carat weights.

Fancy Colored 8 Carat Diamonds

There’s one more store we can add to the list of recommended places to buy an 8 carat diamond ring. If you’re looking for a fancy colored 8 carat diamond, Leibish & Co are the gold standard. Fancy colored diamonds of this size are doubly rare, and Leibish are probably the only place with a decent range of colored diamonds 8ct and above.

Diamond Size vs Carat: How Big is an 8 Carat Diamond Ring?

Diamond size and carat are often mistaken as the same thing. While 8 Carat diamonds are undoubtedly much larger than your average stone, carat refers to weight, not size. Each carat is equal to 0.2 grams. So a diamond that is exactly 8ct will weigh 1.6 grams.

In terms of size, the exact size differs depending on the shape and cut of the diamond. Different shapes may have more or less surface area, due to the way they are cut.

The most common shape for a diamond (and the most likely to find at this carat weight) is a round brilliant. An 8 carat round brilliant diamond measures approximately 12.7mm across (diameter).

You can check out our comparison image below where we lined up the average sizes of the most common shapes in 8ct next to a US quarter:

size comparison 8ct

Clarity Rating for 8 Carat Diamond Rings

We recommend aiming for a VS1 or VS2 grade when buying an 8 carat diamond ring.

Clarity is a metric that tells how many and what blemishes or inclusions are present in a diamond. The higher the grade, the fewer imperfections present, and the greater the diamond’s brilliance and shine.

When we’re looking at diamonds as large as 8ct, it’s important not to skimp on clarity, as it’s easier to notice inclusions that may be hidden on a smaller stone. However, you can also overpay by picking a grade that is too high.

GIA clarity grades for diamonds are as follows:

  • Flawless (FL)
  • Internally Flawless (IF)
  • Very Very Small Inclusions 1 (VVS1)
  • Very Very Small Inclusions 2 (VVS2)
  • Very Small Inclusions 1 (VS1)
  • Very Small Inclusions 2 (VS2)
  • Small Inclusions 1 (SI1)
  • Small Inclusions 2 (SI2)
  • Inclusions 1 (I1)
  • Inclusions 2 (I2)

I2 is the lowest grade you can get for clarity. A diamond with this grade has clear blemishes noticeable to the eye. On the other end of the scale, FL is a flawless diamond with no inclusions at all, even under extreme magnification. 

These diamonds are extremely rare and valuable – however, it’s not recommended to look for a FL or IF diamond. To the naked eye, it’s just about impossible to tell the difference between a diamond with an IF rating and one graded VS1 or VS2. This means you would be paying a premium price difference for virtually no noticeable difference in appearance.

8 Carat Diamond Ring Colors

Along with clarity, color is an important grade to look at when making the decision to buy an 8 carat diamond ring. The GIA gives a color grade from D to Z – D being the clearest and most colorless diamond, while a Z diamond having a noticeable yellow or brown tint.

Most of the time (an obvious exception is if you’re buying a fancy colored diamond), you want a diamond that appears totally colorless to the naked eye. As with clarity, there is a big difference in price from one grade to the next. The key is finding the balance between price and grade, where you get the best appearance to the naked eye for the best price.

It’s important to understand that, above a certain grade, there’s almost no visible difference. Take these two examples:

The two diamonds above are both excellent cut, SI1 clarity and almost identical in carat weight.

The first is an 8.02 Carat, D Color Round Cut. Its price is $297,818.

The second is an 8.01 Carat, H Color Round Cut. Its price is $216,775.

These two diamonds are identical in cut and clarity. To the naked eye, they are identical in color as well, as there is no discernible difference between an H color or above. The difference in price is significant, though; $81,000 more for the higher grade.

As long as the diamond appears white or colorless to the naked eye, you can save a lot of money on color. That’s why we suggest looking for a grade of G to I for color. Anything higher than this is largely unnecessary.

One final thing to consider when we’re talking about color is your setting. As it’s important that your diamond appears white, the color of your setting can make a bit of a difference. A setting made of a darker metal, such as rose gold or yellow gold, can make a diamond with a lower color grade appear white. You may be able to get away with a J or K color diamond, where the same diamond on a platinum or white gold setting would have a slight yellow tint.

8 Carat Diamond Ring Shapes

You can find beautiful diamonds in a wide array of shapes, to fit the wearer’s taste, different settings, and differently shaped fingers. Your choice will be a little more limited when looking at super rare 8 carat diamonds, however, there should still be a small variety of shapes to choose from.

The round brilliant is the most popular shape and a timeless look that fits just about any setting, and looks beautiful on anyone’s finger. Round diamonds are also the most common, giving you a little more choice in areas like cut, color and clarity at higher carat weights.

While different shapes are not necessarily worth more or less than others, some shapes, such as oval, pear and marquise cuts, have a larger table surface area (the “face-up” area at the top of the diamond). This gives these shapes a larger appearance, which can give the illusion of a larger diamond at the same carat weight.

Here are a few of the different 8 Carat diamond shapes you can get:

How to Get the Best Value for an 8 Carat Diamond Ring

An 8 carat diamond ring can be expected to cost a fair bit, due to the rarity and beauty of diamonds this large. You can, however, cut down the price a little by focusing on color and clarity grades that give the best appearance to the naked eye.

Following these recommendations will help you pick out a truly stunning 8 Carat diamond:

  • Cut: only consider diamonds with an Ideal or Excellent cut. Any lower grade than this will have a clear dropoff in brilliance and fire at this carat weight.
  • Color: look for a color grade in the range of G to I. These grades will appear colorless while saving you the premium price tag of a diamond in the D to F range.
  • Clarity: VS1 or VS2 clarity will give you a diamond that appears eye-clean. Anything lower will sacrifice quality, while a higher grade may not give a noticeable difference in appearance.
  • Shape: choose the diamond shape that best fits the taste and finger shape of the wearer. A round brilliant shape is more common and will present more options, but going with an elongated shape like an oval or pear shape can give the appearance of a larger diamond for your money.

In addition to the points above, make sure you only buy a diamond with a certificate from a reputable entity. We recommend diamonds with GIA or AGS certificates, as these are the most trustworthy grading laboratories out there.

Finally, when making as big a purchase as this, you should always closely inspect your 8 carat diamond before making a decision, either by yourself or with the help of an expert.

Famous 8 Carat Diamond Engagement Rings

Many notable celebrities have chosen an 8 carat diamond to make the perfect engagement ring. After all, diamonds this rare and beautiful are the kind you expect to see on the finger of the rich and famous.

Justin Theroux proposed to Jennifer Aniston with an enormous 8 carat diamond ring, estimated to be worth $500,000. Another famous and stunning ring is the 8.80 carat oval diamond ring NBA player David Lee used to pop the question to tennis star Caroline Wozniacki. This diamond is not only huge, it also boasts a perfect D color and FL clarity.

If that’s not enough, there’s also the 8.50 carat cushion cut diamond ring Dwyane Wade proposed to his now-wife Gabrielle Union with, which is valued at a cool $1 million. Yet none may be as beautiful as Kate Upton’s round cut diamond ring, estimated to be $1.5 million for an 8 carat ring in a platinum setting.

Final Thoughts

An 8 carat diamond ring is an exceptionally large, exceptionally rare piece of jewelry that is sure to turn heads anywhere it goes. You can expect to pay a significant price for a diamond of this carat weight. But by focusing your budget towards the right areas, you can get a one of a kind ring for great value.

You can make your search for an 8 carat diamond ring easier by reaching out to us for assistance. We can help you pick out the perfect diamond, and ensure your money is spent in the right places.

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About the author
Michael Fried
Mike learned the diamond business from the ground-up at Leo Schachter Diamonds - one of the world's top diamond manufacturers. He has been recognized as a diamond industry expert by Time, PeopleMoney, The Daily Mirror, NerdWallet, The Times Herald, Yahoo Finance Australia, The Art of Charm, The Washington Diplomat, The Next Web, and more.
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