Oval Cut vs Round Cut: What’s the Difference?
Choosing the right engagement ring for your spouse-to-be can be a tough decision to make. And when it comes to planning the dream proposal, you’ll want to make sure the ring you’ve chosen is perfect for your partner. Perhaps they’ve dropped hints about the types of diamond they prefer, or maybe it’s up to you alone to decide on the perfect gemstone to suit them.
Round cut diamonds are always a popular choice, but oval cuts have become increasingly popular in recent years. But what are the differences between the two? Here, we compare oval vs round diamonds, so you can decide on the best diamond ring to wow your partner – both on the day of the proposal and for the rest of their life.
What makes oval cut diamonds so special?
While oval cut and round diamonds have their similarities, oval cuts have a larger surface area. This can create the illusion of greater size compared to a round diamond of the same carat weight.
If your partner prefers larger, show-stopping diamonds, an oval cut diamond may be the better choice. The slender body of the oval cut creates a stunning, elongated look that can make the wearer’s hand and fingers appear longer and slimmer. The oval cut is also less likely to chip as it has no sharp corners. So, if you favor a classic style of ring, but you’re after a diamond that stands out from the crowd, an oval diamond is a timeless and elegant choice.
What are the major differences?
When comparing the main differences between the two types of diamond, it’s important to assess a few factors that can affect their appearance.
Most judge the beauty of a diamond by its ability to sparkle and glisten. The way it sparkles depends on the precision of its cut. The intricate cuts that form the shape of the diamond are called facets, and they refract light throughout the stone.
Round cut diamonds are renowned for their sparkle due to their faceting structure. Round cut brilliant diamonds are cut to have 58 facets which allow light to enter the diamond and reflect off of every facet, creating a dazzling sparkle.
While an oval cut may not offer the same sparkle as a round cut, it is still one of the most glistening diamond shapes, with a similar faceting structure. Oval cuts fall into the diamond category of “brilliant cuts”, meaning their cone shape allows light to bounce around the top of the stone. So, while a round diamond may offer slightly more sparkle than an oval cut, both types will offer plenty of dazzle.
The size of a diamond is measured by its carat weight.. As well as carat weight, there are also the dimensions of a diamond to consider, which can affect how big it appears to the eye. Two factors to consider are the table size (the largest facet of the diamond found on the very top surface) and depth of the diamond. By dividing the width of the table by the overall width of the diamond, you will find the table percentage. The ideal table percentage of a round cut is 54-57%, and the ideal depth percentage (dividing the diamond’s physical depth measurement by its width) is 59-63%.
Whereas, the ideal table percentage for an oval cut diamond is 53-63%, with an ideal depth percentage being less than 68%. By looking for a diamond within these ranges, you are sure to maximize both sparkle and size. But while it’s important for a diamond’s table to be large enough to allow light in, this doesn’t mean that a bigger table is necessarily better. A good table needs a balance of being large enough to let light into the stone, but not so big that it doesn’t refract light onto the diamond’s crown.
If size (of the illusion if it) is what you want, oval cut diamonds appear larger than round cuts of the same carat weight, due to their elongated shape.
When looking for the dream diamond ring to represent the love you both share, you’ll also need to consider certain imperfections.
Round cuts are unlikely to show color imperfections as much as oval cuts, which means you may get away with a lower color grade when choosing a round diamond over an oval cut. So, while round cuts are generally priced higher than oval cuts, you generally won’t need to opt for such a high color grade.
It’s also worth considering the bow-tie effect, which is a dark patch in the middle of the stone where light isn’t reflected. A round cut will never have a bow-tie, regardless of how it is cut, whereas oval cut diamonds can have the bow-tie effect due to their elongated shape.
Clarity is another factor to consider when deciding between an oval cut and round cut diamond. Oval cut diamonds tend to hide inclusions and blemishes better than round cuts, especially near the sides of the gemstone.
Which should you choose?
Whether you should choose a diamond cut or oval cut to pop that very important question is ultimately down to your prospective spouse’s personal taste, and what you want from a diamond. To summarize:
- Size: Oval cuts can appear larger to the eye compared to a round cut, even if they are of the same carat weight – so it at least looks like you get a larger jewel for your money.
- Sparkle: Nothing quite compares to that signature sparkle you’ll get with a round cut. But equally, oval cuts offer magnificent sparkle due to their similar faceting structure.
- Imperfections: Round cuts are less likely to show color imperfections as much as oval cuts, but oval cuts often hide inclusions and blemishes well compared to round cuts.
- Personal taste: When deciding between the two, you will need to assess what characteristics matter most and appeal to your partner’s taste. Perhaps they would prefer a ring that flatters and slims their finger. Or they may marvel at the traditional and elegant style of a round cut – perhaps the quintessential diamond shape, though both types offer a timeless look.
Whichever you choose, you’re guaranteed to gift your partner a ring that represents your endless love and devotion.