Does Cut Affect The Value Of A Diamond

Does Cut Affect The Value Of A Diamond

There are 4 factors that affect the cut of a diamond and these are called the 4 C’s – cut, clarity, color and carat. The carat refers to the weight of the diamond. Color and clarity to the purity. The cut defines how the stone is shaped, cut and therefore set.

Of all these, cut affects the value to the greatest degree. Few people are aware of this and assume it is the carat weight or the clarity that has the greatest impact on value. Some people are also under the misconception that color diamonds are more valuable than “white” diamonds.

While pure, clear diamonds are the most valuable, it is the cut that brings out the brilliance and sparkle in the stone. You can have the biggest, most pure diamond in the world and the incorrect cut can greatly detract from its beauty and therefore its’ value.

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Different types of diamond cuts are also more valuable than others. This is dependent on preference or the popularity of a certain cut at a specific time. Popular diamond cuts on the other hand are influenced by the cut due to the value that is contributed to the brilliance of the diamond. For example, the princess cut created in 1980 became more popular and in demand after the engagement of Princess Diana to Prince Charles and therefore gained value.

The brilliance of a specific cut is largely dependent on the number of facets that a diamond contains. The flat surfaces on the diamond are referred to as the facets and the more facets, the greater the sparkle and therefore the greater the value.

It also depends on the quality of the cut. A master cutter has better accuracy and will deliver a higher quality cut than a novice. Diamonds shaped by a master cutter are often more expensive than those cut by an amateur who is new to the trade.

A master cutter from Elizabeth Diamond Company will assess a raw diamond and determine what the best cut will be for that specific stone. He will take into account any flaws, imperfections, blemishes and inclusions and how to best hide these while bringing out the greatest brilliance.

Currently, and for the last few years, the most popular diamond cuts include:

  1. Round Brilliant

This is by far the most preferred choice for consumers with jewelry stores reporting that 75% of buyers are looking for a round cut. Of course, the cut is ideal for an engagement ring setting but is also perfect for earrings, bracelets, pendants and necklaces. This brilliant cut has 58 facets which makes it by far the most sparkling of all the different diamond cuts.

  1. The Princess Cut

This is a perfectly symmetrical square shape that is normally set in a ring although it is also used for earrings and pendants. Originally, the Princess cut contained 58 facets, just like the Brilliant Round Cut. However, this has been cut down to 49 facets which creates a larger surface area meaning that the stone is larger but does not have the same amount of sparkle that of the Round cut diamond.

An important factor to keep in mind before buying a Princess Cut Diamond is the corners. These are created from the very edge of the raw diamond and are most likely to have inclusions or flaws. These flaws are due to the presence of impurities such as carbon or boron and weaken the diamond making the corners susceptible to chipping or cracking. The corners should always be covered with a claw setting to prevent this from happening and to hide these flaws.

  1. Oval Diamonds

Third on the popularity list, the Oval cut is very versatile and is perfect for setting in most types of jewelry items. Just like the Round Brilliant it consists of 58 facets (sometimes 57). However, due to its elongated shaped, the number of facets does provide a greater surface area and therefore less brilliance. This is one of the reasons that it is less valuable than the Round Brilliant. Another reason is that the Round cut is simply more popular among consumers.

  1. Marquise

The Marquise cut comes in 3 different shapes – oval, pear and elongated with points at each end. The defining feature of this cut is that it contains 58 facets but it’s elongated shape creates the appearance of a much larger diamond. The Marquise is popular for ring settings and is also often used in pendants as well as earrings.

The oval shape of this cut provides a “bow-tie” formation in the center of the stone that is enhanced by the brilliance or shine of the diamond. It is important to pay attention to the points in the pear and elongated shapes as these can be prone to chipping just like the Princess cut described above and should ideally be covered by a claw.

  1. Pear Shaped

Pear cut diamonds resemble a teardrop with a rounded edge on one side tapering to a point on the other side. It also contains 58 facets and is basically an integration of the Round Brilliant and the Marquise cuts. Like the Marquise cut, it also presents a bow-tie area in the center of the stone. These teardrops are ideally set in earrings or as pendants although they do appear in ring settings.

  1. Cushion Cut

This cut has far more surface area than any of the more popular cuts described above giving it a larger appearance and a greater cartage or weight. The cut consists of 4 pavilion facets instead of 8 and has rounded edges unlike the Princess cut diamond. It gets its name from its appearance which is like a cushion and has a crushed ice brilliance which is referred to as modified brilliance.

It is important to keep the cut of a diamond in mind when buying and that it does play a larger role in determining value than clarity, color or carat. Don’t be fooled by a jeweler trying to sell you a less popular cut at the same price as stone that has similar weight and purity.

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