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We Asked 100 Filipino Jewelry Buyers: 'What Diamond Size is Just Right For You?'

What are the most preferred carat sizes for people here in the city? Well, since we've asked around about color, shape and clarity preferences, it would only be right to complete the survey with asking Filipinos how big they want their diamonds to be.

Naturally, we had some light-hearted joking that followed this question, such as replies like "as big as a golf ball!" or "like a closed fist". Obviously people do appreciate carat sizes here in the Philippines, as visual presence is one of the things people look for in a diamond purchase.

Although joviality aside, there was a balance to the ratio of price versus carat size. Our population seemed to be split into three groups when it came to their most favored selections. Some preferred sizes of a third to one half carat, but wanted several stones in a single jewelry piece to make its appearance appear bigger and brighter. These "illusion" style arrangements are quite popular here in our country at the moment.

Other interviewees told us that they would only buy stones that weighed 1 carat or more, but maxed out the range at 2.5 carats. These sizes were fast-moving, and still held considerable value as hard asset investments. It's quite practical to consider both of these selections actually.

The last grouping wanted stones that ranged from 2.5 or 3 carats to 5 carats. This group was smaller in quantity, but represented those who took diamond-buying to the next level. Large stones in this range were still moveable in the trade, of course, but here in the Philippines they might not be as fast-moving as smaller stones due to relatively higher prices. These gems are serious investments and can fetch up to millions of pesos (in the correct color and clarity grade levels).

Most buyers in the Philippines seem to prefer stone sizes that are either "small" (0.50 ct. or lower), but could be made to look bigger through specific jewelry setting designs, or "solitaire" carat sizes (1 ct. , 2 ct. or 5 ct.) that hold more substantial investment value, but are considered as fast-moving assets due to high demand on the market.

Diamonds with larger carat sizes are rarely seen, even here at the laboratory. Stones of 10 or 15 carat sizes could cost as much as a small house, or several condominium units. Most filipinos would rather diversify their purchases if granted this much flexible spending power. Still though, to possess diamonds of this size is rare, and can be a powerful status symbol in the highest societies of the country.

One thing we observed accidentally though, is that a lot of Filipinos tend to assume that larger stones are automatically imitations. The mentality of "it's too good to be true" kicks in, and the dismissive assumption fills their minds quite quickly.

Carat size is one of the 4C's of diamond quality, and we'll be teaching more about it soon, when we reveal the schedule for our upcoming gemstone identification and diamond grading workshops.
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