Round cut vs cushion cut? Which one is better? When it comes to diamonds there are so many variables, how do you choose the perfect one? There are many factors to consider before making such a major purchase. One of the most important things to take into consideration is the cut. Read on as we discuss diamond shapes in four categories: style, sparkle, size and price.
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.
With their different cuts, round and cushion cut diamonds are both beautiful. However, they shine in a slightly different way.
When a diamond catches light, it reflects and refracts that light, then emits it. This is what makes a diamond look sparkly. Technically, the sparkle emitted from a diamond is its scintillation. A diamond’s scintillation is actually made up 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 levels of scintillation. Round cut diamonds are without a doubt the most brilliant diamond shape, which may explain their timeless popularity.
On the other hand, cushion cut diamonds are not as brilliant as round cuts, but they do give off more fire.
CHOOSING A 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 is owing to the fact that 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 bigger table (top) per carat than round brilliant diamonds. Additionally, they have larger facets, which can make them appear bigger.
Which diamond cut is more expensive? A round cut diamond is typically more expensive. The round shape leads to disproportionately more diamond waste when compared with other 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.
The cushion cut vs round cut diamond debate is heating up between lovers of each style. So which is better? First, it depends on your preference and once you’ve made that decision, you should look at the 4Cs to ensure you get a high-quality diamond.
Round cut diamonds are the most popular shape for rings. So if you’re looking to make a high-end statement, a brilliant round diamond is probably your best bet. On the other hand, cushion cut diamonds tend to look more unique and less mainstream which some people prefer. Either way, there are plenty of reasons why someone might pick one diamond shape over another and it’s totally up to you.