What You Need to Know About Different Diamond Shapes and Cuts

Close Up of Diamond Engagement Ring

When choosing a diamond, there are many factors to consider. Two of those factors are the diamond shape and cut. Many people believe these to be one and the same, but it’s important to understand the difference when shopping for a diamond.

At Made You Look, we want our customers to know what they’re purchasing. If you’re buying a diamond, it’s crucial to understand how the diamond shape affects the price and how the different diamond shapes are suited to different lifestyles and needs.

While the diamond shape and diamond cut are two different things, they do work together in the overall look and impression of the diamond. Let’s look at how they differ.

What’s the Difference Between Cut and Shape

When it comes to diamond shapes and cuts, the cut of a diamond is responsible for the overall shine and beauty of the gem more than any other factor. You’ve heard of the 4 C’s – colour, clarity, carat, and cut – which are the different ways of grading diamonds. The cut comes down to the stone’s reflective qualities and doesn’t impact the overall look of the diamond. It’s how a diamond cutter cuts the facets and angles on a diamond, allowing the light to shine through it and making it sparkle, giving the diamond its brilliance.

With a well-cut diamond, the light enters through the top and journeys to the pointed end, where it then reflects from one side to the other and back out through the top and into the eye of the observer. This journey of light is the flashing sparkle of a diamond that makes them so mesmerizing to look at.

The shape of diamond rings is often the first decision for engaged couples when they begin the process of choosing your engagement ring.

Some of the diamond shapes names include the traditional shapes of round (aka round brilliant) and the more modern square (aka princess cut). And then there are fancy shapes, which include shapes of diamonds like pear, cushion, heart, and marquise. The shape is the style, and how that shape is cut creates the sparkle and dazzle of the diamond.

Pair of Tweezers Holding Up a Type of Diamond

Round Diamond Shapes

Round brilliant well cut diamond shapes are classic, ageless and engineered to create the most sparkle, which also makes them appear larger. Their brilliance and dispersions are unmatched in diamond shapes. That sparkle makes them extremely popular. Round cut diamonds represent more than two-thirds of all diamonds sold.

Square Diamond Shapes

The second most popular option, square or princess cut diamonds are a brilliant diamond shape. The sharp corners can be prone to snags and chips, making it essential that prongs protect the corners. It’s also important to ensure there are no inclusions close to the edges of this diamond shape.

Fancy Diamond Shapes

There are a variety of fancy diamond shapes that appeal to different tastes. One item of note is that diamond shape can significantly impact how big a diamond appears. The face-up size of a diamond is how big it appears when it’s been set and varies greatly depending on the different diamond shapes. Here is a brief overview of a few of the various diamond shapes.


An attractive shape that hides inclusions well, this elongated shape is an attractive option for engagement rings with an enchanting look. With this shape, make sure the tip is properly protected with the prongs. Watch out for the bowtie, the dark area that runs across the centre of the diamond. All pear diamonds and most fancy shapes have bowties; just ensure it isn’t too prominent.


Many people love oval diamond shapes for the lengthening effect the elongated shape has on the finger. This diamond stone shape also hides inclusions well but is less forgiving with colour. However, because the shape lacks points and edges, it is a more durable option.


A very old cut, cushion diamonds are soaring in popularity right now and for a good reason. This shape has a luxurious appeal, and the angles of a cushion diamond create a flash of brilliance and fire that are hard to match.


The baguette shape is elongated, thin and rectangular and tends to run on the small side. This shape is often used as a side stone in addition to another centrepiece stone on an engagement ring.


Another elongated shape that makes the finger appear slimmer, marquise cut diamonds also have the largest face up area of all shapes. However, their tapered points need to be protected by prongs to prevent getting snagged or chipped.


This diamond shape has an antique look to it, making it popular for people who want a vintage look. The facets resemble the petals on an unfolding rosebud, and the shape gives off more of a glow rather than an intense sparkle.


Very different from the other shapes, rough diamonds look less like other diamonds and more like a piece of glass or quartz. They aren’t polished or cut and lack the brilliance of other shapes, so they aren’t nearly as popular, but they are growing in popularity due to their uniqueness and charm.

Other shapes to consider include asscher, emerald, heart, radiant, drop, ball, mine, and trillion. Come by our store and browse the different shapes. We have a wide selection of engagement and wedding rings to look at, the finite details of which are always best viewed in person. Or you can stop by to inquire about having a ring custom made. We love chatting about all things jewelry and would be happy to discuss any of your ideas.

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.