3 carat emerald cut diamond ring

Ultimate guide to buying an 3 carat emerald cut diamond

3 carat emerald cut diamonds are a beautiful choice – their shape gives them unparalleled elegance and the incredible flashes of sparkling light they deliver are stunning.

Emerald cuts are one of the most popular shapes for 3 carat diamond rings, which means that there is a good supply of stones available and you should be able to find exactly what you are looking for.

It also means that finding the best 3 carat emerald cut can mean reviewing and rejecting sub-par stones. That’s where this page will help.

3 carat emerald cut diamonds header image

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Key takeaway:

Why working with a diamond specialist makes sense for such a significant investment

While smaller diamonds may be virtually interchangeable, at this carat weight there can be a significant different between two diamonds that look similar on paper.

Their specs may be similar but they are worth very different values.

A diamond specialist will take the time to understand what you are looking for, present several options (often sourced through personal connections and otherwise inaccessible) and guide you towards the diamond which is the absolute best fit for you.

Learn About The Diamond Oak

3 carat emerald cut diamond price

As a broad range, the cost of a 3 carat emerald cut diamond can vary from $15,000 to $84,000.

To understand how much a 3 carat emerald cut diamond costs, we conducted research across three online diamond aggregation services which collectively have over 1,000,000 diamonds available to choose from.

3 carat emerald cut diamond price

That’s a significant range, and the price you will pay will depend on the color, clarity and the ‘make’ if the stone ie. how well the diamond has been shaped.

With diamonds, you generally get what you pay for, so ‘cheap’ 3 carat emerald cut diamonds will likely have a low-price for a reason – this may be significant inclusions (or ‘flaws’), yellow tinges of color or an undesirable shape.

But, when buying a diamond, there is always a balance that needs to be found between the 4Cs and the fifth C – cost. Where that balance is for you is an individual choice, so it can be worth looking at a few options to where you are comfortable compromising, and where you aren’t.

The table below will give you an idea of how color and clarity affect a 3 carat diamond’s price:

How much do 3 carat emerald cut diamonds cost?

This table shows the prices for 3 carat emerald cut diamonds at a range of colors and clarities.

It’s important to recognise that at this carat weight, there can be considerable differences between individual stones with similar specs on paper, so these are very much just a guide.


If a price doesn’t appear, it means that no diamonds at that spec were available at the time this article was written.

These prices are just guides, and factors such as the L/W ratio will affect the price of any individual stone, but should be a good guide to understand the relative pricing of different combinations of color and clarity for 3 carat emerald cut diamonds.

3 carat emerald cut diamond size

A typical 3 carat emerald cut diamond may be around 9.64mm × 7.14mm × 4.64mm.

Here’s how it looks compared to a 2 carat and a 4 carat:

3 carat emerald cut diamond volume comparison

One important thing to understand when you are looking at 3 carat emerald cut diamonds is that carat weight is a measure of weight rather than size.

Carat weight is therefore spread out throughout the volume of the stone ie. length, width and depth.

This can mean that two 3 carat diamonds can actually appear very different sizes when set into a ring and viewed from the top.

As an elongated shape, 3 carat emerald cuts do appear much larger than their closely-related 3 carat asscher cut engagement ring or a round diamond at 3 carats, but may appear smaller than a 3 carat oval diamond ring, depending on the L/W ratio.

3 carat diamond L/W ratio

Length-width ratio is, unsurprisingly, the ratio between the length and the width of a diamond:

3 carat emerald cut diamond length width ratio

This can hugely change what an emerald cut diamond looks like

For smaller emerald cut diamonds, I usually recommend a L/W ration of 1.5:1, as this gives an elegant, elongated appearance.

However, for higher carat weights, a longer stone can look too large, and a shorter diamond may be preferable, both from a looks point of view, and cost.

3 carat emerald cut diamond length width ratio comparison

Lower L/W ratio emerald cuts are generally priced lower that higher L/W ratios, as they use more of the rough diamond (which means less needs to be wasted) and there are more of them available (law of supply and demand coming into effect). 

At 3 carats, a L/W ratio of 1.4 – 1.45 will look great on the finger.

3 carat diamond color

As you likely know, diamond color is graded on a scale from D to Z, although most diamonds used in jewelry fall into the D to M range:

3 Color scale

Higher carat weight diamonds tend to show up color more easily than smaller stones, especially in the corners where they sparkle less.

If you want to ensure your diamond doesn’t have a yellow tint, it’s important to try and keep the color as high up the scale as possible.

On the other side of the equation is the effect color has on price.

In most shapes, the price difference between an H color, I color and J color diamond can be significant,

For most 3 carat diamonds though, I color is a good blend between being white enough so that it doesn’t look yellow, but also not paying more than you need to.

3 carat emerald cut diamond color recommendation

This applies equally to whether you are choosing a white colored setting (ie. platinum or white gold) or a yellow gold setting for your ring.

3 carat emerald diamond clarity

Clarity is a measure of the presence of inclusions (or flaws) within a diamond.

The clarity scale runs:

3 diamond Clarity scale

Emerald cut diamonds are a little different to most other shapes because they have a large, flat table on the top of the stone which can act like a window, making inclusions easier to see.

So, while with some other shapes, inclusions can be hidden under the angled top ‘crown facets’, emerald cut diamonds don’t usually allow this.

At higher carat weights, this issue is compounded as a bigger diamond means a bigger window where inclusions can be seen.

A good starting point for 3 carat emerald cut diamond clarity is SI1:

3 carat emerald cut diamond clarity

However, depending on the diamonds that are available at the time you are looking, you may need to increase this to VS2, or even higher, to ensure that the diamond is ‘eye clean’ and no flaws can be seen.

3 carat emerald cut diamond ring on the hand

Higher carat weight rings mean that additional considerations can be needed to be taken into account, depending on the ring setting style chosen.

These images of 3 carat emerald cut diamond rings on the finger will show you how big your ring could actually look.

3 carat emerald cut diamond solitaire ring

Solitaire settings are a great match for 3 carat emerald cuts – the simple style is a great pairing with the elegance of the diamond.

3 carat emerald

A major trend with settings is super slim and petite bands and prongs, which are effective in making the stone itself look larger.

While these can look great, some care does need to be taken with higher carat weights, as an extremely narrow band may not be wide enough to support the stone. It may twist on the finger and become uncomfortable.

If you’re choosing a solitaire setting to match a 3 carat emerald cut, I recommend you choose a band of at least 2.5mm width.

3 carat emerald cut diamond three stone ring

Three stone emerald cut rings look great when paired with other step cut diamonds, particularly tapered baguette diamonds.

3 carat emerald triology

These work particularly well because the side stones make the transition from the long broad side of the emerald to the narrow band more gentle and more elegant.

Another beautiful way to pair emerald cut diamonds with baguette side stones is to use trapezoid diamonds, set in the same orientation as the center stone:

Best Place To Buy a 3 Carat Emerald Cut Diamond Ring

Why I recommend Alon at The Diamond Oak

I’ve worked with Alon for over five years, helping people who are looking to buy significant diamonds, as well as those who are selling high quality jewelry.

Through that time, I have seen the exceptional service that Alon delivers to each and every client he works with.

I like this review – it sums up how special working with someone who truly cares can be.

If you are seriously considering making a purchase and want to ensure you get a beautiful diamond at a fair price, I recommend you book in a discovery call with Alon: