Diamond jewelry is cherished for its beauty, shine, and symbolism. But choosing the right diamond, particularly for an engagement ring or another meaningful piece, is overwhelming. Wulf Diamond Jewelers wants to help educate you about different diamond cuts so the process can be as stress-free and valuable as possible.
Selecting the right diamond cut for your needs is one of the most important aspects of purchasing diamond jewelry. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell a diamond, you should know the popular diamond cuts on the market. Ready for some sparkle? Read on.
What are the best diamond cuts?
The best diamond cut is a question of personal preference and needs. If you’re shopping for a diamond engagement ring, for instance, you may have different needs than if you’re looking for a diamond necklace or diamond earrings.
That said, many jewelers and jewelry enthusiasts would say round cut diamonds are an ideal choice for their classic, timeless appeal and standout brilliance. Others might vote princess cut diamonds as a solid choice due to their updated look and versatility in different diamond settings.
As far as price, round diamonds tend to be on the higher end at all sizes, whereas the other options (also called “fancy cut” diamonds) can be found at lower prices depending on size and other factors.
What are the different cuts and most popular diamond cuts?
There are 10 cuts of diamonds that are the most popular. Our Top 5 are the most popular of all cuts, and for a good reason.
Most Popular – Round Cut
A round cut diamond is a timeless choice.
Its brilliance and fire make the round cut the most popular cut in the industry, making it around a third of all diamond sales. Round cuts have 57 to 58 facets (sides) which make it sparkle the most.
Round cuts are popular diamond cuts for rings because of its versatility. It is easier to design and is beautiful even as stand-alone jewelry. Flaws are not as noticeable as other cuts (Emerald and Asscher).
For the classic, traditional personality, a round cut diamond can stand alone as a solitary diamond. Sometimes, it gets cushioned between several other diamonds. Other times, it receives a sparkling halo of diamonds. In any setting, your classic round cut will maximize the gemstone’s brilliance and shine.
Top 2 – Princess Cut
Next up, we have the princess cut. A more contemporary look, princess cut diamonds work well in a variety of settings.
Contemporary and stylish, these diamond cuts come in square and rectangular shapes. People flock to the princess cut because, while other diamond shapes tend to emit their brilliance from the center, princess cut diamonds emit their brilliance from the center as well as all four corners.
Top 3 – Emerald
Emerald cut diamonds, which have a rectangular shape and a step cut, have a vintage look and lots of luster. It is rectangular in shape and has a typical 57-facet count that is step-cut into the diamond’s center.
Emerald cut is one of the oldest diamond shapes. The reason why this gained popularity is because this art-deco style is “easier” to cut and therefore reduced any chips that may otherwise get a more complicated cut diamond.
What this does is highlight the stone’s clarity because you can almost see right through the diamond’s perfection. Likewise, flaws are noticeable for lower-grade diamonds.
Emerald diamonds are beautiful on its own or when coupled with other cuts. It is popular with 3-stone engagement rings where it is used as side-stones to the main center stone.
Emerald cut diamonds are a great choice for glam and sophistication.
Top 4 – Oval
An oval cut diamond is a more modern, unique take on a round cut diamond.
The modern cut diamond was created by Lazare Kaplan, who used his skill to cleave worthless diamonds into beautiful, yet smaller carats.
If you know someone with long, lean fingers, an oval-cut diamond might make for a gorgeous ring. A unique, bold choice, it’s revered as a modern twist on the classic round cut.
Like it’s comrade, the round cut, it sparkles with intense brilliance from the center and matches well with all other forms of jewelry, given its modernity.
Top 5 – Asscher Cut
The Asscher cut isn’t as talked about as your round or emerald cut, but it’s certainly another dazzling option. They take on a bit of an emerald cut appeal.
An Asscher cut diamond is a square version of the emerald cut diamond. That is, they too are step cut down into the diamond’s center. However, instead of taking on a rectangular shape, they’re cut into a square shape.
Although it looks like a square, it actually has 8 sides since the corners are cut/cropped.
These cuts of diamonds sprang to the spotlight in the 1920s, meaning they come with a gorgeous, retro appeal.
This cut is quite expensive. Asscher cut is not as popular as its counterparts, thus there is a limited supply in the market. In addition, since this cut reflects flaws easily, finding a good one with a perfect combination of Cut, Clarity, and Color is hard.
Popular Diamond Cuts – The Runner-Ups
Pear cut diamonds are unique, tear-drop-shaped diamonds.
Pear diamonds are usually mounted as earrings or pendants, but can also be used in engagement rings. It is more common as a side-stone than the main centerpiece but newer engagement rings features this particular cut, either as a solitary or as halo.
Also known as a “pillow cut,” cushion cut diamonds feature softly rounded edges for a classic, romantic look.
It has 58 facets, making it sparkle especially in the olden days where people still use candlelight as their main light source. This cut of diamond, while odd, makes a unique choice and gives a lot of sparkle.
Heart-shaped diamonds are usually chosen as a special alternative to more popular cuts of diamonds. They are quite rare and requires a skilled diamond cutter to create, similar to an Asscher cut. Thus, heart-shaped diamonds are sometimes more expensive than other fancier diamonds.
A truly romantic option, heart cut diamonds are what they sound like: heart-shaped.
The marquis cut diamond is another unique choice. Shaped like a football, it has an elongating effect.
Marquis diamonds are similar to oval but with 2 pointed sides, much like the shape of an eye. It is a modified brilliant cut diamond thus is also a sparkly choice for an engagement ring.
On its own, it makes a sophisticated engagement ring. While any size is good, the ideal size is said to be more than 1 carat. Because of its slender shape, the marquis cut appears to be bigger than other cuts of equivalent carat size.
A radiant cut is a shape that is between a cushion cut diamond and a princess cut diamond. It is also rectangular in size, like an emerald but has a brilliance of a cushion/princess cut.
Radiant cut makes a good engagement ring because of its sparkle while being affordable. They are usually more affordable than other diamond cuts because more diamond rough is used when shaping this diamond, thus, there is less wasted diamonds.
Also, because it is rectangular in shape, it gives the illusion of a bigger diamond than, let’s say a round cut with the same carat.
The Four C’s of diamonds
Diamonds are characterized and rated by what is known as “the four C’s.” The four C’s of diamonds important to know if you want to understand your existing diamonds or make an informed decision when choosing a diamond. Diamond prices are also determined by the 4 C’s and how a diamond stacks up in each category.
- Cut: A diamond’s cut characterizes its proportions, angles, and symmetrical facet
- Color: Diamond color is graded from D to Z (white/colorless to those with a yellowish or brown tint)
- Clarity: The higher a diamond’s clarity, the fewer inclusions or blemishes it contains
- Carat: A measure of the weight (not size) of the diamond
Which is the most important of the four C’s?
The diamond cut is the most important of the four C’s, as the cut is the most determining factor of a diamond’s beauty. Diamond cuts impact not just the shape but also the brilliance and overall look of a diamond more than any of the other characteristics of a diamond. Different types of diamond cuts put off varying amounts of spark, and the cut of a diamond has a major impact on the diamond’s value.
What does cut mean for a diamond?
There’s a misconception that diamond cuts are all about shape. But a diamond cut is much more than just shape. The diamond cut is the arrangement of the diamond’s facets (facets are the flat surfaces you see on a diamond when you look at it closely). A diamond’s cut determines its brightness (white light reflections), fire (flashes of color), and scintillation (contrasting areas of light and dark). In short, diamond cuts determine how much your diamond will dazzle!
How are diamonds cut?
A diamond must be cut in order to be transformed from a raw stone into a beautiful, faceted gem—a process that takes extreme craftsmanship and expertise. Designing or planning a diamond or diamond jewelry piece is typically done using computer software. The actual cutting is performed by hand or machine and involves using a laser or steel blade to cleave or saw the diamond.
Diamond Shapes for Every Personality
At Wulf Diamond Jewelers, we pride ourselves on building relationships with our customers so we can best meet their needs.
With your newfound knowledge of diamond cuts, feel free to scan our engagement ring collection. You’ll see we have a cut and design suitable for every personality.
Or, if you’re coming to the table with a significant amount of inspiration in mind, then consider our custom designed jewelry. We love creating custom jewelry designs. We can pluck your vision out of your dreams and place it into your new ring, earrings, necklace, and more. First, we’ll create a 3-D image of your design. Then, we’ll create a unique wax mold. Finally, we’ll cast your dreams into reality. We look forward to speaking with you!