Round Cut vs Cushion Cut

 

Here's what you'll learn in this post:

  • SELECTING A RING STYLE
  • THE DIFFERENCES IN RING SPARKLE
  • CHOOSING A CARAT SIZE
  • LOOKING AT RING CLARITY
  • COMPARING RING PRICES

 

 

There are many different types of diamond cuts, and each has its own unique sparkle and look. Two of the most popular diamond cuts are round diamonds and cushion-cut diamonds. So, which is better?

 

1. SELECTING A RING STYLE


 

The brilliant round cut diamond is one of the most popular diamond shapes due to its classic design and timeless appeal and, for this reason, is a favorite among brides-to-be.

Conversely, cushion cut diamonds are a unique and vintage-style shape. Today's cushion cut diamonds are an evolved version of an old-fashioned shape: the old mine cut. A cushion cut shape is similar to a square with softly rounded corners (mimicking a cushion), just like old mine cut diamonds, but they feature modern brilliant-cut faceting.

 

2. THE DIFFERENCES IN RING SPARKLE


 

With their different cuts, round and cushion-cut diamonds are both beautiful, but they shine slightly differently.

When a diamond catches the light, it reflects and refracts that light, then emits it. This reflection property is what makes a diamond look sparkly. Technically, the sparkle emitted from a diamond is its scintillation. A diamond's scintillation consists of two types of light: white light (called brilliance) and rainbow light (called fire).

Round cut and cushion cut diamonds have different amounts and types of scintillation. Round diamonds produce a higher amount of sparkle due to higher scintillation levels. Round-cut diamonds are undoubtedly the most brilliant diamond shape, explaining their timeless popularity.
In contrast, cushion-cut diamonds are not as brilliant as round cuts, but they do give off more fire.

 

3. CHOOSING A CARAT SIZE


 

Next, let's discuss the size of round and cushion cut diamonds. You may have heard that different diamond shapes can look like different sizes, even if they have the same carat weight. This more prominent appearance is because some diamond shapes have a higher table surface area (the section on the top of the diamond) due to their form.

Usually, most fancy-shaped diamonds appear larger than round cuts. However, in this situation, it's a bit of a tie. Cushion-cut diamonds have a slightly large table (top) per carat than brilliant round diamonds. Additionally, they have more significant facets, making them appear more prominent.

 

4. LOOKING AT RING CLARITY

 

Because round diamonds are a brilliant cut, it allows you to choose a lower clarity grade than other fancy shapes. Brilliant-cut diamonds, for example, have a fire that masks inclusions that would otherwise be obvious in an emerald cut diamond or a step-cut diamond.

 

5. COMPARING RING PRICES


 

Which diamond cut is more expensive? A round-cut diamond is typically more costly. The round shape leads to disproportionately more diamond waste when compared with other stone shapes like a cushion-cut, so diamond cutters must charge more for the additional labor it takes to shape. Another reason is the popularity of round brilliant cut diamonds leads to a price increase.

So, for instance, a cushion-cut diamond of the same carat weight and quality as a round diamond would cost about 25%-50% less. Cushion cut diamonds are becoming more popular, thus pricier, but they're still one of the most affordable shapes.

 

WRAPPNG UP


 

When comparing round and cushion-cut diamonds, consider style, sparkle, size, and price. Choose a round diamond if you're looking for a classic shape with the most brilliance. If you prefer a unique vintage-style diamond with more fire, go for cushion-cut diamonds. And finally, keep in mind that all else being equal, cushion cut diamonds are more affordable than round diamonds.

Now that you know more about these two popular diamond shapes, it's time to start shopping!