When picking out an engagement ring, knowing what the cut of a stone is, or the the shape is detrimental to picking out an engagement ring. No two cuts are the same, and knowing the difference between each cut will save you a lot of head scratching time at the jewelry store. Before making a costly investment in an engagement ring, do your homework.
A diamond typically is found in nature as an octahedron-shaped crystal (image two four-sided pyramids with their bases connected). As a result of a diamond’s hardness, it’s very difficult to change its shape. Quality cutting is critical to a diamond’s value. A well-cut diamond captures and returns light through carefully designed and angled planes called facets. When a gem cutter looks at a rough diamond, he will decided the best shape to highlight the diamond’s assets or hide its flaws. The more facets a cut has, the better suited it is to hide flaws.
Cutting quality is rated on certificates as excellent, very good, good, fair or poor.
Diamonds come in a variety of shapes. The most common is the round brilliant, which features 58 facets and is generally regarded as the cut that displays a diamond to best effect.
Other popular cuts include the princess. The princess has a square face that tapers down to a triangular shape.
The emerald is a rectangular shape with less facets.
The oval cut diamond is constructed similarly to the round cut. It has 56 facets.
This square-ish cut with rounded edges resembles a pillow, hence the name “cushion” cut.
One of the most unique cuts with 59 facets.
A somewhat severe version of the oval cut with rounded sides and pointed ends. If you choose this cut, make sure it’s of high quality. Any flaws will show easily.
A radiant cut diamond is a squarish, and sometimes rectangular-ish, cut diamond with trimmed corners. Like the marquise, if you choose this fancy cut it must be of high quality.
A tear drop shaped cut with a pointed end. Usually has 58 facets.
Similar to the cushion or emerald cut but with added facets for maximum brilliance.