Understanding the Difference between Carat and Karat

When it comes to measuring precious stones and metals, two terms that often cause confusion are 'carat' and 'karat'. Although these words sound similar, they have completely different meanings and applications. In this article, we will explore the differences between carat and karat to help you better understand their significance.

What is Carat?

Carat is a unit of measurement used to determine the weight of gemstones, such as diamonds. One carat is equal to 200 milligrams or 0.2 grams. The carat weight of a gemstone plays a crucial role in determining its value and rarity. The higher the carat weight, the larger and more valuable the gemstone is likely to be.

What is Karat?

Karat, on the other hand, is a unit used to measure the purity of gold. It indicates the ratio of pure gold to other metals in a piece of jewelry. Karat is expressed on a scale of 24, with 24 karat gold being pure gold. The lower the karat, the higher the percentage of other metals present in the jewelry. For example, 18 karat gold contains 75% pure gold and 25% other metals, while 14 karat gold contains 58.3% pure gold and 41.7% other metals.

The Difference in Applications

The main difference between carat and karat lies in their applications. Carat is primarily used in the diamond and gemstone industry to measure the weight of stones. It helps determine the size and value of a gemstone, as larger stones are generally more valuable.

Karat, on the other hand, is used in the jewelry industry to denote the purity of gold. It provides information about the amount of pure gold in a piece of jewelry and helps buyers make informed decisions based on their preferences and budget.


Carat and karat may sound similar, but they have distinct meanings and applications. Carat measures the weight of gemstones, while karat measures the purity of gold in jewelry. Understanding the difference between these terms is essential when buying or selling precious stones or gold jewelry.

Whether you're in the market for a diamond ring or looking to invest in gold, knowing the difference between carat and karat will empower you to make informed decisions and ensure you get the best value for your money.