While there’s obviously a lot of information to comb through about the four C’s when you’re shopping for an engagement ring, the first thing you’ll probably need to decide is which diamond shapes work the best for the ring you need. The shape of a diamond is not included in the four C’s, but it’s arguably the most important characteristic of an engagement ring.
Every diamond shape has a different origin and characteristics. Like anything in the fashion and jewelry industry, the popularity of the different shapes ebbs and flows as styles change.
Currently, there are 10 shapes that jewelers consider to be the most common. They are round, rectangular (princess, Asscher, radiant, emerald), square (cushion), heart-shaped, pear-shaped, oval, and marquise. There isn’t a true “best” shape, but there are some things to consider when you’re choosing!
What diamond shapes work the best for what you need?
Easily the most popular diamond shape right now, the round cut diamond known for its exceptional fire and sparkle. Typically, round cut diamonds have a higher cost per carat than other fancy diamonds. This is because the demand is very high, and also because there a lower yield from the rough stone than other cuts. Round diamonds work well in multiple settings and ring designs.
The princess cut is considered to be the most popular fancy diamond shape. It was created in the 1980’s, and gained popularity very quickly due to it’s fire and sparkle that is similar to that of a round cut diamond. Like round cuts, the princess cut is extremely versatile and will work in multiple designs.
The marquise cut diamond is perfect for someone who is looking to maximize how large the diamond appears to the viewer. It’s football-like shape has a much larger surface area than other fancy diamonds, which helps to give the illusion of a larger stone. For someone with long, slender fingers, the marquise diamond works well.
Similar to the marquise cut diamond, the oval cut is great for achieving the illusion of a larger size. The oval cut diamond possesses plenty of fire and brilliance, and is a great alternative to the popular round cut diamond.
Over the past few years, the cushion cut diamond has surged in popularity. Once known as a diamond that lacked fire and brilliance, recent upgrades in technology and cutting techniques have enhanced this cut greatly. If you’re looking for an alternative to the princess cut or round brilliant, the cushion cut is a great option.
The pear shaped diamond is perfect for making a finger look longer and more slender. It’s essentially a mix between a round cut diamond and a marquise cut. Ideally, the “wings” of this cut (the left and right sides) should be symmetrical, and the point at the bottom of the diamond should be in centered with the top of the stone.
Radiant cut diamonds are extremely versatile. They have plenty of brilliance, and due to the rounded corners on its rectangular shape they can be used very well in a halo setting. Round or square accent diamonds are appropriate for use with the radiant cut diamond.
This cut is a throwback to the 1920’s when the asscher cut was at its height in popularity. It was originally created by the Asscher Brothers of Holland in 1902, and is best known for being used in antique jewelry. If your future bride is a fan of estate or vintage jewelry, the asscher cut may be the perfect stone for her!
Easily one of the most unique diamond shapes on this list, the emerald cut is known for its “hall of mirrors” effect produced by the step cuts around its edges. If you are looking for a diamond with brilliance, the emerald cut may not be the right stone for you. However, this cut will absolutely stand out due to how unique the shape is.
Heart shaped diamonds are as beautiful as they are unique. These stones are commonly found it both engagement rings and solitaire pendants. When looking for a heart shaped diamond, be sure to check the symmetry of the two sides of the heart. The cleft in the center of the diamond should be defined and precise as well.
Diamond shapes are a personal preference
If you are considering a fancy diamond, be sure that it’s what she truly wants. The four C’s are extremely important, but even the most flawless diamond will still be the wrong one if it’s not the shape she desires! Take some time to do the research and don’t be afraid to ask your future bride about her favorite shape.
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