“Cut” is one of the 4 C’s of diamonds, and a very essential design fixture of any engagement ring. Cut is measured by the number, arrangement, and quality of the diamond’s facets.
The round or round brilliant cut is one of the most popular for diamond engagement rings because it offers the maximum sparkle. Round cuts have a total of 58 facets, and people like them because they are so versatile.
Princess is a relatively new cut developed in the 1960s, second in popularity today only to round brilliant diamond rings. The princess cut highlights color, so it’s not recommended for J color diamonds. Princess cut diamonds have pointed corners and are usually square shaped, though they may be rectangular as well. The published length-to-width ratio can help you choose a ring that complements the style of your ring best.
Emerald cut diamonds are rectangular in shape with rounded corner facets. They reflect less light than many other kinds of cuts because of the top’s flat surface, but remain popular choices for engagement rings because of their timeless elegance. The emerald cut’s rectangular facets highlight the clarity of a diamond.
As the name implies, cushion cut rings are cushion-like in shape: square to rectangular with rounded corners. They typical cushion cut diamond has a small length-to-width ratio, giving it an appearance like a slightly elongated square rather than a thin rectangle. The facets are generally larger than other cuts of diamonds to increase brilliance. Cushions cuts are making a comeback in engagement rings, once seen mostly in vintage jewelry.
The unique and instantly recognizable heart-shaped diamond is perfect for an engagement ring. The 59 triangular and kite-shaped facets really make the light “dance” off of a heart cut diamond, but be careful when choosing a diamond with some color to it. The color of J-color diamonds may be slightly visible with this type of cut.
The pear cut is another brilliant-cut diamond that maximizes sparkle and brilliance of your engagement ring. Its sophisticated teardrop shape is slimming, especially when the point faces the fingernails rather than the palm of the hand. (However, there is no traditionally “correct” way to wear a pear cut diamond ring and it depends entirely on your personal preference.)
Marquise cut diamonds are slender ovals with pointed ends, giving a flattering illusion of length to the wearer’s hand. You can choose the slimness of this cut by specifying the length-to-width ratio you want. The marquise is brilliant-cut, utilizing the 58-facet design that maximizes a diamond’s fire and brilliance. If you are buying a smaller carat diamond, consider the marquise which makes the most out of your diamond in terms of carats: small diamonds appear larger with this cut.
The oval cut diamond comes in a variety of length-to-width ratios, varying from very tall and narrow to almost circular. Oval cuts have brilliance similar to the round cut, but the elongated shape is more flattering to women with small hands or short fingers. The oval cut has enjoyed a recent revival in popularity in engagement rings.
Radiant cut diamonds are square to rectangular, combining the brilliance of round with the elegance of emerald. Like the cushion cut, these are most often closer to a square than a true rectangle and are reminiscent of vintage jewelry.
The asscher cut diamond is almost identical to the emerald cut diamond except that it is square in shape. It is known for its deeply trimmed edges and having more brilliance than emerald cuts. If you are interested in an asscher cut diamond be aware that the rectangular facets highlight clarity of the diamond, and that slight color (J) may be visible at the corners.
Trillion cut stones are three sided (triangular) cuts. The trillion cut used to be reserved for side stones only, but can easily hold their own as solitaires or are often featured in pairs as complementary center stones on an engagement ring. The brilliant cut allows for plenty of sparkle and a chance to do something adventurous with your ring.
When paired with the right setting, any number of diamond cuts can make for a beautiful engagement ring. Whether you are looking for something traditional, modern, or vintage there is a perfect diamond cut for you.
A word about quality: be sure to obtain a diamond grading report (also called a gem lab report). It assesses many characteristics of your diamond, including its cut. A cut that is too deep or too shallow will not reflect light properly, nor will a poor cut where the facets don’t interact with the light correctly. The brilliance of a diamond depends largely on the quality of its cut.
♥ Jenny Evans
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