It is quite astonishing how changing a single letter in a word can entirely change the meaning of that word. The words ‘carat’ and ‘karat’ tend to differ by more than just one letter. Some people contemplate that these two homonyms are nothing but two different ways of spelling the same thing. But it is not. If you are thinking about whether ‘carat’ is correct, or ‘karat’ is correct, then let us tell you, they don’t even refer to the same measurement or unit! There is a huge difference between the two which goes beyond just the scope of spelling. In order to understand ‘carat’ as well as ‘karat’, we must first know what are the applications of each word, and the relationship they have in their respective domain.
What Is The Meaning Of ‘Carat’?
The word “carat” applies only to gemstones (both precious as well as semi-precious) such as diamonds, emeralds, sapphires, rubies, etc. It is considered to be one of the 4 C’s (the four C’s being carat, color, clarity, and cut) which is used in measuring the quality of the gemstones. Thus, the carat is the unit of measurement that is employed when weighing gemstones. This unit was established more than a hundred years ago.
The history speaks as follows. Earlier, during the 20th century, diamond merchants agreed upon a set weight for measuring the size of a standard diamond. A 1-carat diamond was considered to be equivalent to 0.2 grams or 200 milligrams of finished weight. This is why, the bigger the diamond or gemstone you possess, the higher its weight is in carats. The common way to express carat is “ct.”
What Is The Meaning Of ‘Karat’?
The ‘karat’ starting with a ‘K’ is another word for Karatage. The word ‘Karatage’ refers to the purity of gold. The purity possessed by some jewelry made of gold is measured by the portions of gold in it. This scale for measuring the portions of gold in a particular piece of jewelry is made up of 24 parts. The 24 karats of gold indicate that all 24 out of 24 parts of the metal mixture is gold, or, in simpler terms, the gold is 100% pure. Most of the standard gold jewelry that you will find in various jewelry stores ranges from 10k gold to 24k gold, with high-quality fine jewelry usually using 20-karat gold.
You can use Karats to describe any type of gold alloy as well, such as yellow gold, white gold, and rose gold. The gold color in these alloys comes through changing the proportions of gold and other metals. If you talk about white gold, gold is mixed with silver and palladium.
Difference Between Karat And Carat?
As mentioned above, the carat is a unit that is generally used for the measurement of the weight of diamonds and gemstones in general. One carat of a diamond is considered to be equivalent to 200 milligrams of the finished weight of the diamond. On the other hand, Karat points to the purity of gold and is a scale that is made up of 24 parts for measuring the purity. You can also measure the purity of silver with Karat.
Thus, in simpler terms, carat points to diamond weight, while karat points to the purity of gold. Though the two words ‘carat’ and ‘karat’ sound very similar, the difference between the two is huge, and understanding the difference between these two terms is helpful as you buy jewelry from a jeweler. Although this knowledge won't make you an expert on jewelry, yet, by understanding the difference, you won't sound like a novice as you go out to buy jewelry, and it can also help you to buy gold jewelry and diamond jewelry online with ease and mental clarity.
A Side Note: Why is 24k Gold Rarely Used?
As a novice who does not have much understanding of metal alloys, you might be thinking that the best gold jewelry available would be the one with 24k gold because it has the highest concentration of gold in it. But things are not as simple as they appear – the mixing of metals to make alloys is a much more complex topic.
Despite 24-karat gold is completely pure, it is almost never used in its natural form. It is so because pure gold is one of the softest metals, and it easily falls apart with the slightest amount of friction. Assuming wearing 24K gold on a daily basis would look like gold particles slowly flaking off and chipping off until there is nothing left. For only and only this reason, high-end pieces of gold jewelry are crafted often from a maximum of 20K gold. This particular mixture is 83.3% gold along with other metals such as copper, zinc, silver, and nickel. Even the composition of the alloy, and the percentage of individual metals like copper, zinc, and nickel in 22K gold give the final product its coloration such as yellow, rose, or white.
What Are Some of The Most Commonly Found Karats?
If you talk about vintage jewelry of the past, it was usually made of 21K gold, which is a higher number in reference to gold and has fallen out of fashion. One thing you need to make a note of about other metal alloys (which are mixed with gold) is, that they are not just responsible for the color of the gold. They are also responsible for the durability of the gold, and these metal alloys can impart a higher resistance to dents or scratches to the gold.
18K gold is one of the most popular blends since it is extremely resistant to scratches and damage. Also, 18K gold retains gold’s natural deep yellow hue in spite of other metals being mixed. If you are looking for more budget-friendly options, you can opt for 14K gold or 10K gold, in which less gold is used. These lesser Karatages are great choices when it comes to jewelry for everyday wear. If you have an active lifestyle, and if you want jewelry that is both economically viable and resistant to damages as well, consider buying 14K gold jewelry.
We hope that through the help of this article, you understood the difference between ‘carat’ and ‘karat’. Remember, that as you buy gold jewelry, choose the Karatage based on your lifestyle, budget, and desired coloration. A higher-karat gold might not be the best fit for everyday accessories. Are you a jewelry retailer looking for wholesale gemstone jewelry? If yes, then visit the official website of Rananjay Exports – India’s top wholesale gemstone jewelry manufacturer and supplier since 2013. You can get a wide range of sterling silver jewelry and gemstone jewelry at their website.
You can find gemstone jewelry in over 250+ gemstones such as larimar, turquoise, opal, moonstone, moldavite, peridot, etc. Apart from 925 sterling silver jewelry, they also deal in Handmade Jewelry, Custom Jewelry, Casting Jewelry, Designer Jewelry. Lastly, if you want to buy jewelry in large quantities, consider buying jewelry by gram from them. Thanks for reading this article, we hope that you will have a good day.