The Difference Between Diamond Shapes

Today I’m going to go back to the basics and give you a whole breakdown of the various shapes of diamonds out there. I think it can get confusing sometimes for people when there's all this talk about ratios, different carat sizes, colours and clarity, but a lot of people simply confuse the actual shape of the diamond that they're trying to communicate.

Firstly, it’s important to be able recognise the difference in diamond cuts and these can be broadly separated into brilliant cut and step cut. Before a diamond cutter decides on which style to cut, they will assess the rough diamond first in its natural state and plot which cut will get the maximum carat weight. Brilliant cut is the most popular diamond cut of all time and is designed to have a windowing that produces plenty of sparkle. These diamonds, no matter how large or small, contain a certain number of facets which allows light sparkle in every direction. Step cuts on the other hand can be described as square or rectangular and the facets are arranged parallel to each other and these facets are much larger than in brilliant cuts. The name step cut derives from its look as it quite literally looks like a step around the edges. This cut is quite effective when done on larger diamonds made to be centre stones of a ring.

So, starting off with the simplest and probably the most classic would be the round brilliant cut diamond. This is just a circular round shaped diamond and is one of the most recognised shape for a diamond across the world. Some people come in and they call this shape a solitaire but a solitaire is a style of ring that contains no other diamonds, or stones on the ring except for the centre stone on top. About 80% of the diamonds we deal with in our workshop are round so it’s clear they are the popular choice of many.

The next shape is going to be a cushion shape diamond and this is commonly used as a centre stone of an engagement ring. Cushion cuts have this sort of rounded effect but in general it's thought of as more of a square stone. The corners of a cushion are nice and rounded so there is a slight straight one the four edges and a variation of this shape is the elongated cushion which just contains a slightly longer side in one direction making it slightly more rectangular.


Thirdly we have the princess shape which is again instantly recognisable as another timeless classic, however they’re not as popular as some of the other shapes I’ve mentioned so far. Princess shaped diamonds are perfectly square and are also a brilliant cut stone like the round and the cushion. It does differ slightly from the cushion shape as instead of having those rounded corners, the corners of a princess are sharp and pointed.

Next we have the very sought after shape at the moment, the oval shaped diamond. Some oval shapes can be shorter or wider so there are many different ratios associated with this shaped diamond. They’ve definitely been increasing in popularity over the last few years as we now see celebrities such as Hailey Bieber, Blake Lively and Kim Kardashian sporting this shape as their engagement ring diamond. The oval shape suits solitaire and halo cluster rings extremely well which currently are the two most popular settings for engagement rings.

Now I’ll discuss marquise and pear shape together as these are quite similar with just one varying detail. Both of these are brilliant cut stones so there's a lot of sparkle and brilliant. The pear shape is rounded on top and then it comes to a point at the bottom whereas the marquise shape is pointed at both ends. These shapes provide an elongated look which makes them appear bigger just because the weight is more spread out and distributed than the square and round shaped stones which are more symmetrical.

So lastly are the two step cut options which are emerald and asscher cut. Every other stone I discussed were brilliant cut but now both of these are step cuts and you can see in the images how their appearance differs. An emerald shape, which is often confused with emerald coloured green stone themselves, is typically rectangular in shape with parallel lines running down both sides of the stone. This cut provides a large table on top of the diamond which allows for deep clarity when you look into the stone. And lastly the asscher shape diamond is essentially like a square emerald shape and what’s different about this diamond is that it has 74 layered facets. These layered facets give these diamonds an amazing depth and also gives off a lot of brilliant which adds to their appeal.


That wraps up this diamond shape breakdown. I hope it was helpful just to clear up any confusion that you had and if you have any other questions or you're interested in selecting your own diamond, feel free to message us on social media at @topazjewellers or email us on . Thanks for reading and all the support

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