The Ultimate Guide to Diamond Shapes

While there are many different types of gemstones to choose from when selecting an engagement ring, a diamond is usually the traditional choice.

When you start thinking about what type of diamond ring you want to purchase, shape is likely where you’ll start, as it’s a direct reflection of her taste.

As you learn more about diamond shapes, you’ll frequently see the term, cut. You may even hear shape and cut used interchangeably. While they do go hand in hand—a diamond has to be cut to get its shape—they do refer to different things.

The shape of the diamond refers to its physical appearance, while diamond cut refers to the proportions in which it is cut. The cut affects light performance, and so it will impact how much it sparkles.

Now that you have a better understanding of how diamond shape and cut go together, here’s a breakdown of the ten most common diamond shapes. We’ve also answered some frequently asked questions we hear regarding diamond shapes.

Common Types of Diamond Shapes:

  • Round: This circular diamond is known for its brilliance.
  • Princess: This four-sided diamond can appear in a traditional square cut or slightly rectangular cut.
  • Cushion: This diamond is shaped like a cushion, with rounded corners.
  • Emerald: Its hall-of-mirrors effect gives it a unique look compared to other diamond shapes.
  • Marquise: This diamond has rounded sides and two tapered points on either end.
  • Pear: This diamond is in the shape of a tear drop.
  • Asscher: This shape is similar to an emerald, but is square rather than rectangular.
  • Radiant: Another rectangular diamond, this shape has cut corners with brilliant cut faceting.
  • Oval: The oval diamond is more elongated than its round counterpart.
  • Heart: This diamond shape is one of the most unique, and typically more popular in solitaire pendants.

What is the most popular diamond shape?

Round brilliant cut diamonds are the most popular choice for engagement rings. Its popularity is most likely due to its brilliance; as almost all round diamonds are brilliant-cut. Brilliance is the amount of light returning from the diamond. Light enters the top of the diamond and reflects off of the pavilion facets and returns back through the top to the viewer’s eye.

Note that other diamond shapes are brilliant cut, but again, round brilliant cut is the most popular.

What is the most expensive diamond shape?

Round diamonds cost more per carat. When cutting a round diamond, more of the rough stone is lost compared to fancy shapes, making it more expensive. The demand of round diamonds also influences their price.

What is the least expensive diamond shape?

Generally speaking, assuming cut, carat, color, and clarity (4 C’s) are all equal, any fancy diamond shape will cost less than a round diamond. Typically, cushion, asscher, and emerald are more affordable.

What is the best diamond shape for an engagement ring?

While any of the shapes mentioned above can make for beautiful engagement rings, round, princess, and cushion are the most popular choices for engagement rings because of their brilliance. These three also look great in a multi-stone ring or in a solitaire setting.

Don’t forget the setting. The setting may have an impact on what shape you choose for an engagement ring. Cushion diamonds look beautiful in a halo setting, while asymmetrical shapes like pear diamonds look stunning in a solitaire setting. Ultimately, you may find that you choose a shape because of the setting.

Which diamond shape is right for her?

Again, the diamond shape you choose will have a lot to do with her taste and style. Does your significant other like vintage? A cushion diamond is a great option. Does she prefer something classic and timeless? A princess or round-shaped diamond will suit her taste. If she wants a shape that’s more rare, she might like a radiant diamond.

When looking at diamond shapes, don’t forget about quality! Shape is important, but you’ll need to consider quality for a “complete picture” of the diamond. Use the 4 C’s and your jeweler’s expertise to help you find the perfect diamond ring for her.

Shopping for an engagement ring can be an overwhelming process! Not sure where to begin? Make an appointment to view our selection or discuss a custom ring design. Our staff is here to answer all of your engagement ring questions.

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