You probably hear a lot of people use the term karats or carats when describing their personal items. There is often some confusion when hearing or reading these terms. But what is the difference between karats and carats?
A karat (K or Kt)** is the fractional measurement of gold to determine the purity. 24 parts whole gold is PURE gold.
18 karat gold is 18 parts gold and 6 parts of various other metals, 14 karat is 14 parts gold and 10 parts other metals, etc. When you have a piece of jewelry it will be marked with its gold fineness, on the band or on the clasp. The marking can be very small and difficult to locate. Other ways it may be marked will be parts per thousand. Some markings could look like 750 (for 18k, 75% gold), or 585 (for 14k gold, 58.5% gold). The price of gold is always determined by karat weight and the current spot price.
A carat (ct)** is a unit of mass used to determine measurements for precious gems such as diamonds, defined as 200 milligrams. A carat has 100 parts or “points”, and jewelers and business owners use this to determine the carat weight, such as .25 carats or .95 carats. The larger the diamond, the greater the value of the stone. However there are multiple things to keep in mind when you are pricing your stone. Two stones which both weight 1.5 carats could be substantially different in pricing. The jeweler will look at clarity, color, and cut. If you have a loose stone, it will be placed on a stone scale to determine the weight. If it has already been placed in a setting such as a ring or bracelet, the jeweler will measure the stone or stones with a tool that reads the millimeters of the stone. Pricing will vary and will be determined after an examination of your stone.
**Note- Karat and carat could be used in the same meaning in the UK for measuring gold