Diamond Shape Guide

Top Engagement Ring Diamond and Gemstone Shapes

When shopping for an engagement ring, you’ll notice that the stones are available in a variety of shapes. These diamond and gemstone shapes, otherwise known as cuts, give a gem its style and are responsible for how the light is reflected within it. Some cuts produce bright, cheerful sparkles while others create more dramatic flashes of light.

Note that diamond shapes (or cuts) are sometimes mistaken for cut grades. A diamond shape is the geometrical and faceting design of a gem, while the cut grade refers to the workmanship in terms of faceting and polishing - in short, how well a gem is cut.

Some diamond shapes have nearly universal appeal, while others speak to those with a more specific style. We craft lab-grown diamond and moissanite engagement rings in a variety of shapes and settings and sizes - and can work with you to design a fully custom engagement ring with the center shape of your choice!.

We’ve highlighted the most popular diamond shapes for engagement rings below. If you need help selecting the perfect piece or have any questions, please contact us. We’re happy to help!

Round versus Fancy Cuts

There are two categories of diamond cuts; round diamonds and “fancy cuts.”

Round diamonds are the classic diamond that everyone is familiar with, which is also the cut that's been the most perfected and has the highest level of sparkle.

"Fancy cuts," are all of the diamond shapes that are not classically round, including but not limited to princess, oval, marquise, pear, cushion, emerald, Asscher, and radiant cuts.

Brilliant versus Step Cuts

The term "brilliant cut" refers to diamonds of any shape that have facets that are mostly triangular in shape. This particular cut reflects the greatest amount of light, hence the name brilliant. They make for the sparkliest and most dazzling of diamonds!

The step-cut process results in facets that are linear and mostly see-through. Step-cut diamonds don’t “sparkle” as much, but rather display elegant flashes of light, making them the perfect choice for a more minimalist look.

1- Round Brilliant Cut

Engagement ring with brilliant cut round diamond
Levi Diamond Engagement Ring - Shop Now

Round diamonds


Round-cut diamonds are by far the most popular diamond cut of any shape available, accounting for more than 70% of all diamonds sold.

The specific proportions of this cut combined with 58 dazzling, brilliant-cut facets to create a sparkle that is second to none, thanks to its superior light-reflecting capabilities. It is literally the perfect hall of mirrors!

To ensure the most sparkle, be certain that your diamond is cut with precision, by choosing a cut grade of Very Good, Excellent, or Ideal. The good news is, at Identity Diamonds, we only offer diamonds within those cut grades, never settling for diamonds that are dull because of the poorly executed faceting. This way, we take out all of the guesswork for you, because just like you, we also love as much sparkle as diamondly possible! (Learn more about our diamond cut grades here.)

Round-cut diamonds are a natural choice for a timeless piece with wide appeal. They pair well in a variety of classic halo and side-stone settings, as well as more intricate and unique asymmetrical designs. You can literally not go wrong with a gorgeous round-cut gem!

2- Oval Cut

Oval diamond engagement ring
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Oval diamonds

Oval-shaped diamonds share similar qualities with round diamonds but in a more elongated oval shape. Oval-shaped diamond engagement rings are very feminine in style and have become quite popular in past years.

The elongated oval shape and large surface area can create the illusion of a larger size stone, and can also make the finger of the wearer appear longer and more slender.

Numerous things must be considered when choosing this shape, including the ratio of the stone, which can be shorter and stubbier, or more elongated and slender. Getting guidance when choosing this shape of diamond will help you stay away from stones that display a large dark area in the center of the stone, referred to as a “bow-tie effect”.

Oval gems are perfect for someone who wants a classic look with a timeless appeal but is also looking for a slightly more unique shape than the traditional round. At Identity Diamonds, oval-cut diamonds are our second most sought-after shape for engagement rings!

3- Princess Cut

Princess cut diamond engagement ring
Ashley Princess Cut Diamond Engagement Ring - Shop Now

Princess diamonds

The Princess Cut was created in 1980 and is still popular to this day. They are similar in design to round-cut diamonds, with a 4-sided pyramid shape pattern.

Make sure to select a princess-cut gem that is symmetrical, as a gem that’s slightly rectangular can look odd and make your entire ring look a bit off. (Rest assured, at Identity Diamonds we only ever used princess-cut gems that are truly square.)

Princess cuts also tend to have a smaller surface appearance than other shapes, allowing you to go with a large size without it looking over the top.

Princess-cut engagement rings will appeal to those looking for a classic look that’s a just little bit sculptural.

4- Cushion Cut

Olivia Cushion Cut Diamond Engagement Ring
Olivia Cushion Cut Diamond Engagement Ring - Shop Now

Cushion cut diamonds

This classic cut has existed for over 200 years and was the de facto diamond cut until the early 20th century. Its shape is either square or rectangular in proportions, with rounded edges giving it a pillow or cushion-like appearance.

Just like the square princess cut, cushion-shaped gems tend to have a smaller surface appearance than other shapes, allowing you to go with a large size without it looking over the top.

Cushion-cut engagement rings are THE perfect shape for those who embrace a vintage or antique style.

5- Pear Cut

Jenny Pear Cut Moissanite Engagement Ring
Jenny Pear Cut Moissanite Engagement Ring - Shop Now

pear shaped diamonds

Reminiscent of a drop of water, the Pear shaped diamond is rounded at one end and comes to a point at the other end. There’s much debate as to whether it should be worn with the point facing up or facing down! We personally are on the side of wearing it whichever way you love it best! #youdoyou

The pear-shaped diamond engagement ring is both classic and iconic and is most well-known as being worn by Elizabeth Taylor during her marriage to Richard Burton. It’s a great shape for a unique engagement ring and has a romantic je-ne-sais-quoi appeal that will speak to anyone looking for a slightly more bohemian look.

6- Marquise Cut

Marquise diamond engagement ring
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Marquise cut diamonds

Funny story: Marquise diamonds have a long and storied history and were first envisioned by Louis XIV of France who allegedly had a diamond cut to resemble the perfectly-shaped mouth of the Marquise of Pompadour (otherwise known as Madame de Pompadour, his mistress!)

As with oval-shaped diamonds, the Marquise diamond is elongated in shape but has pointed ends that give it an antique feel. Just like oval diamonds, it’s important to assess each gem to avoid a large area of darkness (bow-tie effect) in the center of the gem.

Its long shape is very flattering on the finger of the wearer, and is an excellent choice for all types of halo designs, or as the star of the show in a classic solitaire or simple diamond-accented engagement ring.

7- Emerald Cut

Emerald cut diamond engagement ring
Ashley Emerald Cut Moissanite Engagement Ring - Shop Now

Emerald cut diamonds

Diamonds that are emerald cut are, indeed, cut in the same pattern as what used to be used for emerald stones. Emerald-cut diamonds are typically rectangular in shape with clipped corners.

Their large flat, uninterrupted top surface (known as the table) produces a see-through effect that is both unique and dramatic. Because of that crystal clear attribute, it is important to select a high-clarity gem, as any imperfection (especially located in the center of the gem) will be readily visible to the naked eye.

Emerald-cut diamond engagement rings are an elegant choice for those with the most refined taste, and who prefer to stay away from the dazzle of brilliant cuts.

8- Asscher Cut

Asscher cut diamond engagement ring
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Asscher cut diamonds

Somewhat similar in appearance to the squared-off emerald cut is the Asscher cut diamond, with its 58 facets that are larger and wide-set (three rows on the top, three rows on the bottom), and the stone is nearly octagonal in shape.

The Asscher cut was originally a proprietary cut (protected by a patent until WWII) that was first developed in the early 1900s by Joseph Asscher, and became popular in the Art-Deco movement following WWI. Until the early 2000s, rings of this style could only be found in antique shops.

Its vintage, art deco style is a perfect choice for those looking for a unique piece that is both classic and modern, and elegantly unique.

9- Radiant Cut

radiant cut engagement ring
Levi Radiant Cut Diamond Engagement Ring - Shop Now

Radiant cut diamonds

The radiant cut could be coined as the emerald cut’s little sister. Designed in the 70s, this cut has recently soared in popularity and is now one of our most requested diamond shapes!

It features the benefits of an elegant emerald cut outline and large table while maximizing sparkle with its brilliant (pun intended) faceting. The radiant cut has a stunning sparkle comparable to its brilliant cut counterparts, such as the oval and elongated cushion shapes.

With a radiant cut gem, ratio highly matters, and guidance is recommended to ensure you choose a gem that has the perfect proportions and matches the look you desire.

As in other elongated shapes, its flattering gem design incorporates a modern element with its long straight lines and the perfect amount of sparkle for dazzle lovers!

Learn More

We know that no matter which style of engagement ring you select, it is going to be a beautiful expression of your love. Our team of experts is here to guide you and answer any questions you might have about diamond shapes - from the settings they look best in, to combinations that pair well, and everything in between. As always, we will be honored to guide you!

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