The visual shape of a diamond when viewed from above
A diamond’s shape refers to its visual form and how it appears when viewed from above. The shape of a diamond is not to be confused with the cut of a diamond, which relates to its reflective qualities.
There are a variety of shapes to choose from when purchasing a diamond. The shape of a diamond will influence the look and design of your jewellery. Select the diamond shape that appeals most to you.
The round brilliant cut diamond is the most popular diamond shape. It has many reflecting facets and is cut into proportions to allow the most light to pass through to the top of the diamond, achieving maximum brilliance. This diamond shape is the most sparkling of all diamonds and is the traditional choice for diamond engagement rings.
The princess cut is the second most popular diamond shape after the round brilliant. It has a brilliant style cut with many facets, cut into a square shape. The princess cut diamond is the most sparkling of all square shaped diamonds, and comes the closest to achieving the brilliance of a round brilliant diamond.
The cushion cut is a square or rectangular shaped diamond with rounded corners. It has fewer facets and less sparkling that a round brilliant cut diamond. However, these diamonds have larger facets to increase its brilliance. As the name suggests, cushion cut diamonds have a softened appearance, giving a romantic look to your jewellery.
The radiant cut is another square or rectangular shaped diamond. The key feature of this stone is its trimmed corners, which increases its brilliance. This is a unique cut which combines the step cutting of the emerald cut which gives it an elegant look, and triangular facets of the brilliant cut to maximise its brilliance. Diamond rings with a radiant cut centre stone are beautiful set with baguette or round side stones.
The marquise cut diamond has a football-like shape. This distinct shape can maximise carat weight of a diamond, making the diamond appear much larger. With its unique look, the marquise cut is often found in antique style jewellery. Its elongated shape if set along the finger on a ring, can create the illusion of longer and slender fingers.
The oval cut is a brilliant style cut and may appear close to the cushion cut. Similar to the round cut, oval cut diamonds have a beautiful brilliance. Like marquise cut diamonds, its elongated shape when set on a ring can accentuate long and slender fingers.
Also known as a “teardrop” shape, the pear shaped diamond combines the round cut on one end and the marquise cut on the other. Like other brilliant style cuts, it is the pear shape has a beautiful brilliance. It is popular it those who like the round brilliant cut but prefer a more unique look.
The emerald cut has a distinct look with its parallel elongated facets created by step cuts. It is a rectangular shaped diamond with trimmed corners. It has a large open table (the upper flat surface of the diamond when viewed from above) which highlights the clarity of the diamond. It has fewer facets than a brilliant style cut, thus is less sparkling. Instead, the step cut creates a “hall of mirrors” effect with light and dark parallel lines producing an elegant appearance. Originally developed for cutting emeralds, this style cut has become a popular choice for diamonds.
Also known as a “square emerald”, the asscher cut is cut like an emerald with step cuts and trimmed corners, but is square rather than rectangular in shape. Due to its square shape, the cropped corners of the asscher cut results in a nearly octagonal shape and the step cut creates the appearance of concentric squares. Like the emerald, the large open table highlights the diamond’s clarity. Modern asscher cut diamonds often have larger stepped facets, a higher crown and smaller table, which results in more brilliance than emerald cut diamonds.
The heart shaped diamond is a modified brilliant style cut. Most heart shaped diamonds are rounder in appearance, producing a more sparkling diamond. As a symbol of love, the heart shaped diamond is a popular choice for gifts and is set in a variety of jewellery, particularly rings and pendants.
The trilliant cut is a triangular shaped diamond that may be cut with straight or curved sides. These are a popular choice for side stones accompanying square or rectangular shaped diamonds.