Diamond Shape and Cut -They Are Not the Same Thing

Are you shopping for diamond engagement ring and looking for the perfect heart, pear, or oval shaped stone? Maybe you like round loose diamonds or you are interested in square shapes. So often, diamond shoppers believe that a diamond shape and cut are the same thing, but this is not the case. In fact, one should never confuse these two or you could be making a big mistake.

What is Diamond Shape?

The shape of a diamond is very easy to understand. For example, it is simple to tell the difference between a round and square stone. The same is true for heart shaped and pear shaped diamonds. Here are more shapes you may encounter:

  • Marquise – pointed at both ends
  • Baguette – shaped like a thin rectangle
  • Emerald – rectangular with squared off corners
  • Cushion – rectangular with rounded corners
  • Triangular
  • Rectangular

Defining Diamond Cut

The cut of a stone does not mean its overall shape. Cut refers to the way the stone has been cut to form facets which reflect light in all directions. The symmetry and proportions of the facets determine its brilliance and the more skillful the cut, the more fire it delivers.

By far, the most popular of all the diamond cuts is the round brilliant cut. This cut has been scientifically designed to create 58 facets and the most brilliance possible. This type of cut must be done perfectly or it can greatly affect the luminescence of the stone.

Cut Makes a Difference

If you look at sketches of emerald shaped stones and cushion shaped stones you may think the only difference is the corners. However, there is a big difference in the brilliance between the two. The emerald cut produces a “house of mirrors” look, while the cushion cut features many facets with a multitude of light transmitted in many directions. It’s all in the way the stone has been cut.

Step Cuts

Some cuts are done in steps like the Asscher cut. The Asscher is square and because it is cut deeper than the emerald cut, it provides more sparkle and is perfect for vintage style rings, because it has an old world look.

Quality Matters

The kind of cut you choose can make all the difference. Here are the cut ratings:

  • Excellent – the very best
  • Ideal – only the top 3 percent get this rating.
  • Very good – nearly as good as the ideal, but at a significantly lower cost. This includes the upper 15 percent.
  • Good – represents premium quality stones and better than 75 percent of all the others.
  • Fair – considered to be adequate and reflects a reasonable amount of light. This includes the top 35 percent.
  • Poor – this grade is at the bottom and will give you the least amount of brilliance.

When you shop for jewelry and loose diamonds for sale, remember that not all cuts are the same and it matters how skilled the diamond cutter is. Make sure to read the stone’s certificate before buying and Diamonds-USA lets you view certificates online.