Red rubies are one of the most precious gemstones you can find and they’re often confused with garnets, but rubies have more value due to their deep red color. Depending on the quality of the ruby and where it was mined, you could pay between $800 and $100,000 per carat if you’re looking to buy a ruby gemstone. Let’s take a look at why rubies are so valuable and how much your next ring may cost you…
Factors affecting ruby prices
The price of natural rubies largely depends on color and clarity, so it’s impossible to say This much per carat. There are four main categories of colored stones: red, pink, purple, and black. Each has its own range of prices depending on hue, tone (darkness), saturation (intensity), and uniformity. For example, buyers may be willing to pay $2–4 per carat for dark red rubies with medium tone or purity but may only be willing to spend $1–2 per carat for lighter-colored or less-uniform gems. In addition to color and clarity, cutting style can have an impact on price. Cutters often use fancy cuts such as star and heart shapes in order to maximize stone size.
While these cuts make for more dramatic jewelry pieces, they also reduce weight—and therefore value—of each stone. As you might expect, cut quality also plays a role in pricing; flawless rounds that show no visible flaws under 10x magnification typically sell at higher prices than those that do. Finally, some sellers try to pass off synthetic gems as natural ones by coloring them with irradiation or heat treatment; buyer beware! These treatments generally lower market value by up to 50%.
Price ranges for different shapes
Different cuts and shapes of rubies command different prices. For example, square-cut rubies are less popular but also cheaper to produce, which means they’re more affordable. On average, 1 carat pear-shaped and cushion-cut rubies will cost more than oval-cut stones. And if you find a stone with good color, that generally increases its value as well. That’s why it’s important to note all these details when negotiating for one—so you can confidently ensure you don’t pay too much or settle for something that doesn’t match your standards. If you want to learn more about how to buy precious gems, check out our in-depth guide here.
Price ranges for different grades
The National Association of Jewelry Appraisers provides general guidelines for diamond grading. A diamond with an appraised value under $1,000 will likely be in lower color grade with no clarity distinction. Medium color and clarity grades range from about $1,000 to about $4,000 per carat. For example, an H/I color and SI1 clarity diamond could have an appraised value of around $2,100 per carat. Colorless diamonds fall in a range between about $3,000 to $20,000 per carat depending on their characteristics and overall quality.
Price ranges for different colors
Pink diamonds and rubies are both among the rarest gems on earth, but they are mined differently. The process for mining pink diamonds makes them far more scarce than rubies. The cost of pink diamonds is dependent on size, quality and color. On average, pinks can be three times more expensive than rubies because they are so hard to find. A 1-carat round brilliant cut pink diamond might range in value from $9,500 to $13,000. Meanwhile, a 1-carat round brilliant cut ruby might cost you anywhere from $700 to $1,200 depending on its color and clarity grade.
To get an idea of how much your stone will cost, take into account factors like size, shape and color. Remember that it’s not just about carats when it comes to pricing; it’s also about how big or small your stone is compared to other gems of similar quality. For example, if you were comparing two one-carat stones—one being a ruby and one being a sapphire—the sapphire would likely be cheaper because sapphires tend to be larger than rubies. Likewise, if you were comparing two half-carat stones—one being a ruby and one being an emerald—the emerald would likely be cheaper because emeralds tend to be smaller than rubies.
Reasons for differences in prices between rubies and sapphires
The main difference between rubies and sapphires is where they come from. Sapphires are typically mined in various parts of Asia, particularly Thailand and Cambodia, as well as some parts of Africa. They come in different colors such as yellow, blue, orange, purple or black. Most are small enough to fit into your palm or be worn on your finger. Rubies typically come from Tanzania and other countries throughout southern Africa.