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10 Popular Diamond Cuts (Shapes) for Great Sparkle W/ Images Chart

Different 10 Diamond Cuts (Shapes) Types for Great Sparkle - Diamond Shapes

Selecting the perfect diamond is an exciting journey that goes way beyond just the size or clarity of the gem.

The shape, often referred to as the cut, is the part of that journey that significantly sprinkles its magic on the overall aesthetics, sparkle, and persona of the diamond.

In this guide, we’ll explore the most popular diamond cut types (shapes), unraveling how each shape crafts its unique influence on brilliance, so that when you’re on the hunt for a diamond, you have enough insights to aid you in making a well-informed choice for that perfect gem.

Diamond Shape or Cut: What’s the Deal?

The terms “cut” and “shape” often dance around synonymously in the glittering world of diamonds. However, theoretically they are completely  two different aspects, each plays its role on diamond’s quality and style.

But here’s a twist in the tale – the term “cut” has now started waltzing around as a synonym for shape, bringing the phrases “diamond cut” and “diamond shape” to the center stage, and they essentially mean the same thing! And guess what? That’s the spotlight of our guide today.

What is Diamond Shape?

When we talk about the diamond shape, we’re waltzing around the outward geometry of the diamond. It’s usually the first aspect that comes in the minds of many as they step into the dazzling world of diamond shopping.

The ever-charming round brilliant takes the crown as the most common diamond shape, but there are many other shapes (tens of them actually), the most popular ones are called “fancy cuts” diamonds.

Some good examples of these fancy cuts are princess (a dashing square), oval, marquise, pear, emerald (a classy rectangle with cut corners), Asscher (its chic square cousin), radiant (a playful kin to princess but with cut corners), cushion (a cozy square or rectangle with rounded corners), and the heart, among others.

Diamonds Shapes

We’ll be diving deeper into the charisma of each of these shapes shortly.

Every shape holds its unique charm and characteristics, making the choice of shape a delightful dalliance of personal taste.

Certain shapes are the perfect partners for specific jewelry styles or might be chosen for their symbolic resonance. For instance, a heart-shaped diamond could be the epitome of a love-infused gift.

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Then, What is Diamond Cut?

The diamond cut is what makes a dance of light, due to the symmetry of diamond facets.

Diamond cut is a testimony to the skillful artistry involved in sculpting the rough diamond into a piece of sparkling wonder.

The mastery of the cutter in crafting the diamond with just the right angles and proportions takes the center stage here, as it’s these factors that choreograph the diamond’s brilliance and fire.

A diamond cut to perfection showcases facets that are accurately positioned and angled, optimizing the stage for the stone’s light reflection performance, this is an example showing how cut is the most important factor in diamond light reflection:

Diamond Cut Light Reflection

When it comes to grading a diamond, the cut is examined on multiple factors such as brightness (the amount of light reflecting from a diamond), fire (the color play as light scatters into a rainbow), and scintillation (the glitter or the flashes of light that play as the diamond moves).

The grading scale for diamond cuts goes from Excellent to Poor, which we’ve discussed in our diamond cut chart.

In a nutshell, the diamond cut is all about the finesse in craftsmanship transforming a rough stone into a sparkling beauty, which directly orchestrates its light reflection and sparkle.

On the flip side, the diamond’s shape is about its physical persona and the aesthetic design it portrays. Both the cut and shape waltz together in importance when it comes to selecting that dream diamond.

Why Picking a Diamond Shape is Critical?

As discussed, the cut, type, or shape (whatever you will call it) of a diamond is crucial when selecting one.

The different diamond cut types, be it the classic Round, elegant Oval, or the modern Princess, are there to cater different personal styles and play the main role in sketching the aesthetics of your jewelry.

Furthermore, the distinct types of diamond shapes are the directors of the gem’s brilliance, orchestrating the light-reflecting symphony that leads to varying crescendos of sparkle.

For instance, the spotlight shines bright on cut types like the Round or Oval, designed to accentuate light reflection, causing a burst of sparkle and shine on the stage.

The cut type of a diamond also impacts the perceived size and cost of the gem. Diamond cuts like Marquise or Pear often appear larger for their carat weight, creating an illusion of a bigger stone. The popularity and demand for specific diamond cut types can also influence their market price.

Therefore, understanding the nuances of various diamond cuts is your ticket to picking that ideal gem, harmonizing with your personal style, budget, and the sparkle that catches your eye.

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World’s Most Popular Diamond Shapes

To sum it up, when it comes to the dazzling world of diamonds, the Round Brilliant Cut proudly wears the crown as the most sought-after diamond cut.

But it’s not the only one, here we will examine why round is the most popular shape, as well as seeing the other common diamond cuts that you will encounter at almost any diamonds store.

Let’s examine different diamond cuts or shapes, highlighting how each uniquely reflects light:

1. The Round Brilliant Shape

Holding the torch for the majority of diamonds sold across the globe, this cut is celebrated for its unmatched talent in playing with light.

This wizardry maximizes the diamond’s potential to shimmer and shine. And, its adaptability across various styles and settings has made it the darling of many, pushing its demand through the roof.

With a stellar track record, 7 out of every 10 diamonds you come across will boast this shape. It’s particularly designed for its exemplary light reflection and mesmerizing sparkle.

A little delve into its anatomy reveals a grand total of 58 facets – 33 on the crown while 25 nestle on the pavilion.

Take a look at this spectacular 1.06 round cut diamond at James Allen.

Diamond cut types - Round

This geometric marvel is finely tuned to optimize its brilliance and fire, ensuring a spectacle of sparkle with every turn.

One of the shining attributes of the Round Brilliant cut is its versatility. This gem is a flattering companion to nearly any setting, weaving a timeless magic that remains a safe and cherished choice for many.

However, these round cut diamonds often come with a higher price tag, caused by the high demand for these diamonds, as well as the significant amount of rough diamond that parts ways during the cutting process.

Take a virtual stroll on any online diamond boutique, like Whiteflash, and you’ll notice the shape sorting gets rolling with the Round:

Whiteflash shapes selection

The story is the same at James Allen:

James Allen shapes selection

And guess what? Blue Nile echoes this:

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This isn’t just a stroke of fate. The brilliance of a diamond, that enchanting play of light, isn’t just a product of a masterful cut.

The shape of the diamond takes center stage here, as different shapes dance with light differently, refracting it in their unique style. The Round Brilliant, with its design, captures this dance beautifully, making it the belle of the ball.

The Round shape is ideal for:

Individuals drawn to the traditional & classic aesthetics. Suitable for every rendezvous, it shines exceptionally bright when chosen for an engagement ring, marking the promise of love with its enduring sparkle.

Shop for Round Shape Diamonds

2. The Princess Shape

With its distinctive square shape coupled with striking clarity, the Princess cut diamond ushers in a fresh, stylish alternative to the traditional round cut diamonds, making a fabulous statement especially in engagement rings.

Nestled in the Brilliant Shape Family, these diamonds sport 58 facets that act like mirrors, amplifying their brilliance and stealthily imperfections when kissed by light.

However, every beauty has its challenges. The unique structure of this cut—akin to a double inverted pyramid with pointed edges—can sometimes be vulnerable  to chipping.

Hence, it’s paramount to select a ring setting that acts like a knight in shining armor, safeguarding these corners. With a little TLC, a Princess cut diamond unfurls a remarkable fusion of contemporary style and timeless elegance.

Diamond cut types - Princess

The Princess shape is ideal for:

Those seeking a contemporary twist on a classic design. A Princess cut diamond is suitable for any occasion but is especially apt for an engagement ring.

Shop for Princess Shape Diamonds

3. The Oval Shape

The oval cut diamond, a delightful twist on the beloved round cut, showcases a shape unique yet boasting a brilliance that rivals its circular counterpart.

Its elongated silhouette not only tricks the eye into seeing a larger size but also graciously compliments the hand when set in a ring, lending a touch of elegance and an illusion of elongated, slender fingers to the wearer.

Sporting 58 facets, just like its round sibling, the oval cut diamond can be tailored with varying pavilion numbers to create a dance of light that mirrors the outstanding brilliance and fire characteristic of round diamonds.

This cut is generous in its appearance, often seeming larger than other diamonds in the same weight class, making it a coveted choice for wedding rings.

So, for those charmed by the radiant personality of a round “Ideal” cut but yearn for a distinct silhouette, the oval cut diamond is like a dream woven with threads of tradition and individuality.

Diamond cut types - Oval

The Oval shape is ideal for:

Anyone captivated by the round cut’s brilliance but desires a touch of uniqueness. The oval cut diamond fits like a dream in wedding rings, engagement rings, or as a standout piece in a bespoke jewelry item, making a statement of personal style while preserving the classic allure of timeless sparkle.

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4. The Marquise Shape

The Marquise shape, with its lips-like shape and pointy extremities at both ends, holds a magical charm that’s hard to overlook.

This unique form casts an illusion that makes the diamond appear larger than its actual size, yet without compromising on its weight—a true master of deception in the most delightful way!

The Marquise shape is particularly known for its larger physical appearance, laying out a large surface area for admiration without diving deep into its table. This attribute allows most of its size to be visibly appreciated, making it a a great choice for those who yearn for a diamond that generously flaunts its dimensions.

Diamond cut types - Marquise

The Marquise shape is ideal for:

Perfect for those who loves to stand out in a crowd, the Marquise diamond sparkles with exceptional brilliance, shining bright and bold in any setting it finds itself in.

So, if a larger-than-life appearance paired with a dazzle that dances with light tickles your fancy, the Marquise shape might just be your dream diamond.

With its surface generously displaying the gem’s grandeur and its sparkle mirroring the stars, a Marquise diamond is a bold yet elegant statement of individuality

Shop for Marquise Shape Diamonds

5. The Pear Shape

Pear cut diamonds, also known as teardrop diamonds due to their rounded bottom and tapering point, provide a unique blend of the round and marquise shapes. The slimming elongated effect offers a flattering appeal when set in a ring, while the rounded end provides brilliance and sparkle.

In blending the traditional brilliance of a round cut with a distinctive shape, the pear cut stands out with its 58 facets. Ideal for rings, earrings, and pendants, this cut exudes elegance in any setting. However, its distinctive brilliance does come at a price, and a substantial budget is necessary.

This unique shape, combined with a well-executed cut, makes pear-shaped diamonds a captivating choice, exuding elegance and individuality.

Diamond cut types - Pear

The Pear shape is ideal for:

The Pear cut is perfect for those who appreciate shapes that are both unique and elegant. It’s a favorite for engagement rings, pendant necklaces, and drop earrings, this cut often conceals inclusions and enhances color, making it also an excellent choice for colored diamonds.

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6. The Heart Shape

Heart-shaped diamonds, a nice twist on the pear shape with a darling notch at the top, are nothing short of a love symbol.

However, crafting this romantic silhouette demands a mastery of cutting skills to unveil the diamond’s true splendor.

Belonging to the brilliant family, these diamonds flaunt a sparkle that’s hard to miss, reflecting light in a playful dance that captures hearts.

Symmetry here is crucial more than ever, the two halves must mirror each other flawlessly to sketch the love-heart shape.

However, it’s better to opt for a larger carats if you’re drawn to this shape.

The heart’s shape can be so tiny in smaller stones, especially those below 0.5-0.6 carats.

Smaller diamonds can appear even smaller once nestled in prongs, hence a bezel or a three-prong setting might play a more flattering host to these diamonds.

Diamond cut types - Heart

The Heart shape is ideal for:

Romance & love of timeless designs.

Whether you’re marking a significant milestone or simply looking to express your love, a heart-shaped diamond is a poetic testament to the romantic journey you cherish.

The heart shape is a a great choice for engagement rings, embodying the very essence of love. It also lends itself beautifully to pendants and earrings, allowing a tender reflection of affection to be elegantly displayed.

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7. The Radiant Shape

Radiant cut diamonds are a gorgeous fusion of the classic cushion and chic princess cuts, emanating a lively vibe thanks to its up to 70 facets (ranges from 53 to 70 facets).

Born from the creative mind of Henry Grossbard in 1977, the radiant cut was conceived with a simple yet profound intention: to honor the allure intrinsic to each diamond type while crafting something distinct and captivating.

They pledge a stunning display of brilliance and fire, and their beveled corners are not just about the aesthetic appeal, they lend extra stability and a burst of luminosity, making them an ideal companion for those with an active beat to their lives.

However, it’s worth to note that while radiant cut diamonds offer a cornucopia of features, they don’t exactly fall into the budget-friendly bracket.

Diamond cut types - Radiant

The Radiant shape is ideal for:

The radiant cut is best suited for those who value brilliance and desire a unique shape. Radiant cuts can be employed in various types of jewelry, from engagement rings to earrings and pendants.

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8. The Cushion Shape

The cushion cut diamond, often known as a “pillow cut” as well, carries a soft and romantic aura about it with its near-square form and gently rounded corners.

While it may not boast the highest degree of brilliance due to the challenges in mastering its shape, the cushion cut emanates a classical, romantic charm that captures many a heart.

Its roots trace back to a harmonious blend between the Old Mine Cut, a darling of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and the modern Oval Cut Diamond.

The Old Mine Cut, marked by its large facets and rounded corners, was handcrafted to enhance  the cozy glow of candlelight, a characteristic that lives on in the cushy charm of the cushion cut.

It may not play with light as proficiently as its round or princess-cut cousins, but its larger facets, usually summing up to 58, optimize its brilliance.

Furthermore, despite its unique allure, the cushion cut serves as a cost-effective choice for budget-conscious romantics.

Diamond cut types - Cushion

The Cushion shape is ideal for:

This cut is a love letter to those charmed by antique-inspired aesthetics. With its old-world romance, the cushion cut finds itself often cradled in engagement rings and retro-style jewelry.

Ideal for romantics swayed by vintage allure and time-honored aesthetics, the cushion cut is a great choice for engagement rings, and it lends a quaint charm to earrings and pendants.

Shop for Cushion Shape Diamonds

9. The Emerald Shape

Distinct from the effulgent brilliance typical of other cuts, the emerald cut diamond, a classic step cut, holds its own with its impeccable clarity.

Even though its fewer facets may give off less sparkle, the outstanding clarity more than compensates for it. The deliberate design of elongated, rectangular facets serves to magnify the diamond’s clarity, making any inclusions or imperfections easily visible.

Originating from a cut fashioned exclusively for emeralds—hence its name—the emerald cut has been held in high regard for its precision and elegance throughout history.

Often described as akin to gazing into a crystal-clear glacier, the mesmerizing clarity of the emerald cut has a tranquil allure.

This cut is typically implemented on square or rectangular diamonds and is revered for its depth, sheen, and refinement, which endure the test of time regardless of the setting.

Although it may not be celebrated for head-turning brilliance, the emerald cut diamond is a treasure trove of flawless clarity. Moreover, it presents a financially sound option for those in pursuit of a sizable diamond with a classical demeanor.

Diamond cut types - Emerald

The Emerald shape is ideal for:

Those who value clarity above sparkle and are drawn to vintage or Art Deco designs.

Emerald cuts are often featured in engagement rings, but their sleek lines also make them apt for various types of jewelry.

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10. The Asscher Shape

In the early 20th century, the Asscher Brothers of Holland introduced to the world a diamond cut that carried a distinct vintage charisma—the Asscher cut.

Crafted meticulously in 1902, the Asscher cut diamond emerged with a unique stepped square design, earning it the title “square emerald shape” due to its semblance to the emerald cut in its prioritization of clarity over sparkle.

Upon first sight, the Asscher cut may present almost an octagonal allure owing to its cropped corners.

These diamonds exude a radiant, crystalline aura, reminiscent of the pristine clarity of glacial ice, allowing an unobstructed view through the heart of the stone.

However, this emphasis on clarity is a double-edged sword as it makes any blemishes or inclusions conspicuously visible to the naked eye. Therefore, the quest for an Asscher cut diamond often becomes a pursuit of an eye-clean clarity grade.

Diamond cut types - Asscher

The Asscher shape is ideal for:

The Asscher cut is a reverie for those with a penchant for vintage aesthetics and a preference for clarity over sparkle.

The elegance of Asscher cut diamonds extends seamlessly more than just rings, as it fits well with other pieces of jewelry, such as earrings or pendant necklaces, adding a sprinkle of old-world charm and sophisticated allure.

Shop for Asscher Shape Diamonds

Popular Diamond Shapes Quick Comparison

Here is a quick comparison that highlights the main differences we covered for each of the 10 most popular diamond cuts, remember that everyone is unique, styles differ and what can be considered vintage for some is seen as most modern for others, at the end, it’s our own taste for things:

Diamond Shape

Key Characteristics

Ideal For

Round Brilliant

Optimum light reflection, versatile settings

Classic and timeless designs, engagement rings

Princess

Square silhouette, striking clarity

Modern styles, engagement rings

Oval

Elongated silhouette, comparable brilliance

Unique and personal styles, engagement rings

Marquise

Elongated with pointed ends, vintage appeal

Bold, vintage styles, engagement rings

Pear

Blend of round and marquise, unique

unique and elegant styles, engagement rings

Heart

Romantic shape, requires expert cutting

Romantics, vintage aesthetics, unique jewelry

Radiant


Vibrant, lively due to 70 facets

Brilliance lovers, versatile jewelry designs

Cushion

Soft, romantic aura, antique-inspired aesthetics

Romantic allure, engagement rings, retro-style jewelry

Emerald

Notable clarity, sleek lines, vintage charm

Vintage or Art Deco designs, various jewelry types

Asscher

Stepped square cut, vintage charm

Vintage styles, clarity lovers, elegant jewelry

Popular Diamond Cuts – Shapes Chart

As we explore the captivating realm of diamonds, it’s crucial to understand that a diamond’s aesthetic allure is heavily influenced by its shape.

The distinct cut of each diamond shape orchestrates its interaction with light, setting the stage for the brilliance and sparkle that it will exhibit.

Here is a chart of diamond shapes representing all the different diamond cuts we have discussed above:

Diamond Cut Shapes Chart

Summary

While shape and cut are often used interchangeably, a basic understanding of diamond shapes will enable you to make the perfect choice for that special someone in your life.

Each diamond shape narrates a unique story, embodying a blend of historical reverence, technical craftsmanship, and aesthetic allure.

Moreover, the recipient’s personality, style, and distinctiveness should guide the selection of the shape or cut that will best suit them. Keep in mind, diamonds are forever, so choose one that will resonate for a lifetime.

It’s highly advised to acquire your diamonds from reputable online establishments. James Allen and Blue Nile are commended for their extensive collections, providing a vast array of options to peruse. On the other hand, if your preference is to shop directly for premium quality diamonds, Whiteflash stands as a distinguished destination.

Still not sure where to buy your diamond?


We always recommend shopping diamonds online and created a Full guide to shop diamonds like a Pro.
Among online retailers, here are our favorite stores click their logo to visit store

  1. James Allen:

    Our favorite online store, best diamond imaging technology available today, comes with the largest collection with more than half a million loose diamonds.


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  2. Blue Nile:

    Widest collection of loose diamonds of all sizes, great imaging technology for most of their inventory (hundreds of thousands of diamonds), great customer support.


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  3. Whiteflash:

    Home Of A CUT ABOVE® Super Ideal Diamonds, they stand out from the crowd by offering premium diamonds cuts, tailored to those who love the details, at great prices too.


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