What is the difference between diamond cut and diamond shape?
Contrary to popular belief, there is a difference between diamond cut and diamond shape. Diamond cut refers to how a diamond is cut and polished so that its facets can absorb and reflect light. A diamond shape is a geometric shape the diamond is cut into and describes its silhouette.
What is a diamond cut?
Diamond cut refers to how well a diamond is cut and polished. The best diamond cut is perfectly proportioned, symmetrical and beautifully polished so that the highest amount of light can enter and reflect out of the stone. A well-cut diamond will appear sparkly and bright, while a poor-cut diamond will appear dull and lack-lustre.
How do you cut diamonds?
How are diamonds cut to shape? Well, diamonds are cut with precision and skill by a qualified diamond expert. The cutting process consists of five parts: planning, cleaving, bruting, polishing and inspecting. After cutting, the diamond is sent for assessment and graded on the 4 Cs (including cut).
Types of diamond cuts
Each diamond is assessed and graded on its cut quality - otherwise known as the diamond cut grade. A diamond cut grade is assessed on several factors such as brilliance, symmetry, polish and fire and ranges from excellent to poor. The higher the cut quality, the more sparkle the diamond is likely to have, so you should consider the cut when buying a diamond.
Excellent cut diamond
An excellent cut diamond is the best diamond cut and also the most beautiful. It means that it is perfectly proportional and has the best brilliance, symmetry, polish and fire. An excellent or ideal cut diamond reflects almost all the light that enters it, so it sparkles beautifully.
Very good cut diamond
A very good cut diamond is almost the same compared to an excellent cut diamond. It still enables most of the light that enters it to reflect but attracts a lower price.
Good cut diamond
A good cut diamond reflects a substantial amount of light that enters it. The diamond does not have the same amount of fire or brilliance that an excellent cut or very good cut diamond has, but it is a more affordable choice for those on a budget.
Fair cut diamond
A fair cut diamond typically reflects a small portion of light. For those looking to maximise the carat weight over other things, a fair cut diamond may be the only choice for a higher carat weight on a budget.
Poor cut diamond
A poor cut diamond is a diamond that has been cut too deep or too shallow. When this occurs, the diamond will lose significant amounts of light. The only benefit of this type of diamond is the price. A diamond that is a poor cut will be significantly lower in price than any other diamond cut grade while also lacking sparkle.
Diamond cut chart
Ever thought about how are diamonds cut to make jewels? Our diamond cut chart illustrates how light passes through different types of cuts. As you can see here, cut quality directly impacts how a diamond sparkles due to the way light enters and reflects from the stone.
What is a diamond shape?
A diamond shape is otherwise known as the geometric shape of a diamond or silhouette. Often, a diamond shape is known as a cut, and the different diamond cuts can be referred to as either round or fancy shape diamonds. Fancy shape diamonds are any shape that isn’t a round brilliant diamond.
Types of diamond shapes and what they are best for
There are many types of diamond cuts and shapes to choose from, and the one you select should be based on your taste and preferences. If you are buying a gift for your loved one, such as an engagement ring, it is a good idea to find the perfect diamond shape for your partner. Here are the types of diamond shapes you can choose from when buying diamond jewellery.
The cushion cut diamond features rounded corners and large facets to increase brilliance. This diamond shape is loved for its timeless appeal and has been a favourite for over a century.
The princess cut diamond is a square-shaped diamond, thought to have grown in popularity due to its modern appearance.
The pear diamond shape is a popular and elegant cut, also known as the ‘teardrop’ for its rounded shape and pointed tip.
The ultimate symbol of love and adoration, the heart diamond shape is perfect for the romantics amongst us.
With its pavilion cut in rectangular facets to create an elegant finish, the emerald diamond shape is truly unique.
Perfectly proportioned and unique, the oval shape diamond also has a similar brilliance to that of the round diamond.
A square version of the emerald, the Asscher diamond shape is truly unique and features a pavilion cut into rectangular facets.
Originally the marquise diamond shape was commissioned by Louis XIV of France. Its elongated shape is perfect for those looking to maximise carat weight.
The radiant diamond shape has a similar brilliance to the round shape diamond but with a modern and unique shape.
Which diamond shapes, cut and sizes are best for brilliance?
Here are our top tips on how to find the most brilliant diamond based on its shape, cut and size.
Choose a better cut quality
A diamond's cut quality directly impacts how much it sparkles. An excellent-cut diamond is cut with perfect proportions, symmetry and polish to allow as much light to refract as possible. A poor-cut diamond appears dull and lacklustre. That is why if you want a brilliant diamond, you should choose a better cut quality.
Consider diamond size and weight
If you are looking for a large diamond on a budget, you shouldn't compromise on cut quality because a poor-cut diamond can appear smaller than an excellent cut diamond of the same weight and will not have as much brilliance and fire.
Best diamond shapes for brilliance
Round shaped diamonds naturally have more brilliance and fire. It is possible to choose a cut grade of Good (or better) for a beautiful looking diamond. If a fancy diamond shape is more your thing, it is a good idea to select a cut grade of Very Good (or better) for the perfect symmetry, proportions and polish.