When buying diamonds, your decision has to factor in various aspects. Given the high value of the gemstone, you want to be sure that your purchase delivers its intended value. The precious stone is a significant investment, and usually for the long term. Therefore, whether buying it for yourself or another person, you need to know what works. The shape is one of the elements to consider carefully when buying diamond pieces. Thanks to its versatility, the rock can be designed into a variety of shapes. The chosen shape can reflect the character of the wearer. So, learn the meaning behind each one before the final pick. This guide looks at the different cuts to expect when shopping for diamonds.

Round

The round cut is the most popular one because it is created to maximise brilliance. A round-shaped stone reflects light from all sides, thus, generating maximum sparkle. This piece has a 360-degree symmetrical shape with 58 facets. The cut flatters most hand shapes, which is another reason it is popular. Similar to a wedding band, the round shape signifies never-ending love. It represents traditional romance and, so, is considered conservative. Round cuts are simple but timeless. It can look stylish even in plain settings. The shape is also identified with trustworthiness, honesty and elegance. Marcel Tolkowsky created the round cut in 1919.

Princess

The princess shape denotes style, class and fashion. The wearer is seen as a trendsetter. Princess diamonds provide as much brilliance as round cuts, but with more style. The design suits the hopeless romantics. Arpad Nagy invented the princess cut in the 1960s, and since then, it has become almost as popular as the round shape. Originally, it was called the profile cut. True to the name, princess diamonds profile the wearer beautifully. They draw attention and deliver an inherent sparkle. Depending on the size, a princess cut can have anywhere between 49 and 144 facets. The more they are, the brighter it shines. For this reason, the wearer is viewed as one not to shy away from the spotlight. It is bold and suggests a sense of excitement.

Oval

When you look at an oval diamond cut, it is not that far removed from the round. So, visually, it gives the illusion of a circular design except with some originality. The oval denotes creativity. Its elongated outline encompasses the finger, making it look slender. Hence, it is a favourite among people with small fingers. The wearer appears a tad traditional but with a sense of adventure. Some wearers look at the egg shape of this design as a symbol of fertility. The oval shape also represents stability. Besides rings, oval diamonds are ideal for necklaces. Lazare Kaplan introduced the cut in the late 1950s.

Pear

Shaped like a teardrop, the pear is one of the most elegant stone designs. Its round-edged top and tapered tip give this cut a refined look. The shape connotes good taste and adventure. It is also romantic and slightly edgy. Although it showcases individuality, it also depicts an appreciation for tradition. The wearer is said to set high expectations for herself and the people around her. Since it’s a unique shape, the pear cut represents non-conformity. It indicates a tendency to play by one’s own rules. For some people, the teardrop resemblance signifies tears of joy. Pear diamonds work as necklaces as well as they do as rings.

Cushion

Another option for diamond shapes with excellent brilliance is the cushion. The shape looks like a square with round corners and sharp facets. Due to the rounded edges, this cut reflects light magnificently. It catches the light at different angles to accentuate the stone’s best features. So, you can expect it to shine and attract just enough attention. Traditionally, the cushion or pillow cut was synonymous with royalty. Therefore, nobility is its biggest trait. Cushion diamonds have a softness to them, regardless of size. The classic cut denotes a love for family, tradition and individuality. It oozes charm in the subtlest of ways.

Emerald

Another classic shape that goes back centuries is the emerald. It consists of long facets layered over each other with bevelled corners. An emerald cut also has a large surface, which is its dominant characteristic. The shape came about during the art deco period. So, it symbolises a passion for fashion. It is bold, exuberant and confident. The large surface and highlights the diamond’s clarity, which quickly reveals any flaws. However, it is not as brilliant as the round or oval cut. Thus, it takes a certain poise to pull off an emerald piece, whether it’s a ring or necklace. Additionally, it also requires the highest quality gem stone. Emerald diamonds portray the wearer as sophisticated, self-assured and direct.

Asscher

An Asscher-shaped stone resembles an emerald, but it’s not as elongated. The shape is more of a square than a rectangle. Nonetheless, it creates a broad surface that makes even the smallest cut look grand. This shape is fashion-forward and feminine. The openness of the design signifies individual clarity. Joseph Asscher crafted it for King Edward VII. So, the Asscher is a vintage style that has a regal air to it. The Asscher shape delivers a classic appearance without looking too traditional. It is the right amount of trendy. Wearing this cut demonstrates a flair for the dramatic.

Marquise

If you are going for opulence, then the marquise is the right shape. This cut makes the stone appear larger than it is. So, if you intend to get a small gem, this is one shape to consider. A marquise is an elongated cut that is round at the middle and tapered on both ends. It’s also called a football, eye or boat cut. This design gives the stone an extravagant look. It is daring, glamourous and elegant. A marquise cut indicates a larger-than-life personality. The ends of a marquise symbolise internal and external strength. This shape also has a high spread factor, which provides excellent finger coverage. Marquise diamonds are ideal for engagement rings because they elongate fingers. The cut paints wearers as chic, daring and creative.

Heart

As you might have guessed, heart-shaped diamonds signify romanticism. It’s the most sentimental of cuts. After all, the heart is the universal symbol of love. It represents a fairytale perception of the world. An engagement ring with a heart-shaped gem mineral highlights the romance of marriage. A heart depicts an emotional, affectionate and feminine wearer. This gem cut works well when set as the dominant stone with smaller accent pieces. The heart blends well with other shapes.

Radiant

The radiant shape is halfway between a round and a princess cut. It’s among the most versatile shapes for the gemstone. Radiant diamonds work for rings, earrings and pendants. Besides its diversity, the radiant cut is not popular. Therefore, it demonstrates a unique sense of fashion. It’s subtly flirty. As the name suggests, this shape makes the wearer radiate. A radiant stone fits the bubbly personality who is also fashion-forward. Radiant diamonds can be combined with several other stones. It looks stylish whether in a single or multi-stone setting.

So Many Shapes, How to Choose?

Knowing diamond shapes meaning helps with the selection process, but settling on one piece can still be difficult. Whether buying diamonds for yourself or someone else, you have to know what to look for in the perfect cut.

Start by identifying the character of the wearer. From the descriptions above, it’s clear that each shape says something about a person. Hence, you want the personality to align with a gem’s characteristics as much as possible. For example, a fun and outgoing individual might not appreciate a conservative cut. One rule to keep in mind is that every stone has a story to tell. Thus, be certain it conveys the right one.

If the stone is for an engagement ring, then you have to factor in the recipient’s hands. Finger shape, size and length determine how different shapes look. Wide fingers can make big statement cuts work. For a person with short hands, elongated shapes like marquise, oval and pear make the fingers appear slender and longer. Thin fingers can pull off bold crystal designs easily. Hence, know the wearer’s hands to see what would work best.

Budget is another aspect that dictates your alternatives. As much as you might have the perfect choice for a gemstone cut, it could be out of your price range. Some shapes tend to cost more than others. For example, round diamonds can be affordable because they are common. A rare cut such as a radiant can be expensive. You might need to compromise on some things like the carat size to get the gem you want. Before browsing your options, set a budget and know what you are willing to give up to get your desired piece.

With the extensive variety of diamonds out there, picking just one can be difficult. For this reason, you should arm yourself with enough data like the type of shapes available and their meanings.