What is the Most Expensive Cut of Diamond?
One of the main factors that determines the value of a diamond is the carat weight, and it’s predominantly the carat weight that those looking to buy a diamond will consider before making a purchase.
However, in a close second is the diamond cut – also known as the diamond’s shape – can dramatically affect the value.
Why does the cut affect the value of a diamond?
It’s easy to assume that the heavier the diamond’s carat weight, the more expensive it’s going to be. However, the cut of a diamond will also determine the value based on several factors.
Firstly, the amount of diamond that is lost during the cutting process has to be considered. Every natural diamond was of course rough before it was cut into the shape you see on a ring. Each cut, whether it’s round, princess, or cushion, involves a slightly different process to cut the diamond into its distinct shape. And during that process, a percentage of the diamond is removed and therefore wasted. The more that is lost in weight, the more jewelry makers lose in potential revenue. As a result, the value of the diamond increases due to the higher average cost per carat.
For example, a brilliant round cut can lose more than half its weight during the process of cutting it into its unique and desirable shape.
It’s also this desirable shape that determines the value of a diamond. The more a particular cut is wanted, the higher its value – and vice versa for the least popular shapes.
There are also the resources that go into cutting a diamond into shape. More intricate cuts take longer, and require a higher level of skill – both of which can be expensive. The cost of a diamond also has to factor in the many professionals who have mined, transported, cut, polished, and sold your diamond before it even reaches the store you’re browsing it in.
What diamond cut is best?
Deciding what diamond cut is best is, of course, entirely subjective. While you may decide one particular cut is more beautiful and better than the others, somebody else likely holds a very different opinion.
However, thanks to their popularity and value, we can confidently say that certain cuts are viewed as being the best. Below are just some of the best diamond cuts available.
The most desirable and highly valued – and many would say best – diamond cut is the round cut. A round brilliant cut diamond has 58 facets, which is the perfect number of facets needed to produce maximum fire and sparkle – which is what many look for as a sign of ultimate quality in a diamond.
As we mentioned earlier, because so much rough stone is lost during the cutting process of a round cut, that also pushes the value higher than other cuts.
The shape of an oval cut provides brilliance that rivals that of a round cut, thanks to its 58 facets. And oval cut diamonds can be highly desirable as they can look bigger than round cut diamonds of an equivalent carat weight.
Despite its square shape, the princess cut provides incredible fire and sparkle thanks to either 57 or 58 facets. Because less rough diamond is lost during the cutting process, it makes the princess cut a more affordable option, while not having to compromise on quality. One flaw with a princess cut, however, is that the sharp corners are at risk of damage, so it’s important to ensure it’s mounted correctly and properly cared for.
Cushion cut diamonds are comparable to princess cut, with a distinct square or rectangular shape. However, unlike the princess cut, the edges are rounded, giving it a much softer, cushion-like (hence the name) appearance. The facets of a cushion cut are larger, providing plenty of fire and brilliance.
Also known as a step cut, an emerald cut has a distinct square or rectangular shape with layered faceting. An emerald cut displays the color of the stone, which is why it’s also a commonly used cut for colored gemstones.
Check out our diamond buying guide for more information on diamond cuts.
What is the rarest cut of diamond?
While the above cuts are among some of the best and most desirable, they’re all cuts frequently seen and sold by jewelers. However, there are certain cuts of diamond that aren’t as easy to come by, which of course can hugely increase their value.
It can be easy to mistake an Asprey cut for a cushion cut diamond – after all, they have a very similar appearance, with a square shape and rounded edges. However, an Asprey cut diamond has slightly sharper edges than those of a cushion cut and has the letter “A” engraved on the side.
Asprey cuts are known for their incredible brilliance thanks to their 61 facets and are only cut from diamonds with D-G color grade and flawless to VS2 clarity.
Created to mark the golden jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1887, a jubilee cut has 88 facets, with 8 on top in lieu of a flat table and cutlet. However, it’s a striking diamond cut and produces stunning fire and sparkle.
Royal Asscher cut
The Royal Asscher cut is an updated version of the Asscher cut (an octagonal design with 58 layered facets). However, the Royal Asscher cut has 74 facets and a higher crown, and has exceptionally high clarity. It’s said that the number of jewelers who can craft a Royal Asscher cut is less than 100 worldwide.
Eighty-eight cuts are named as such thanks to the 88 facets on the eight-sided, octagonal shape. It has fantastic brilliance and is highly desirable as the number eight is often associated with wealth and good fortune, particularly in some Asian countries.
Reminiscent of a cushion cut diamond, it has a distinct elongated rectangular shape with rounded edges. Because of this, it can be difficult to find rough diamonds that are large enough to produce an Ashoka cut. With 62 facets, it produces incredible sparkle and fire.
Which diamond cut holds its value?
Typically, all diamond cuts will hold their value. After all, natural diamonds have been – and continue to be – highly desirable, and this shows no sign of slowing.
However, as we’ve already discussed, round cut diamonds are the most expensive and will hold their value for as long as people want diamonds.
There are a number of reasons why round cut diamonds are valued the highest:
Brilliance and fire
They reflect light better than other cuts, which gives them the sparkle that those looking to buy a diamond want. The brilliance (aka sparkle, the light show produced) and fire (the rainbow colors produced) are perfectly engineered in a round cut diamond thanks to the ideal number of facets: 58.
For more information on brilliance, check out our blog post on which diamond cut sparkles the most.
Round cut diamonds are the most precise cut of diamonds, all identical and cut perfectly uniform. Square and rectangular cut diamonds can have slight imperfections, which means they’re not always symmetrical.
As we’ve already discussed, round cut diamonds result in the biggest loss of rough diamond, which drives up the cost.
Another factor that drives up the the price of a round cut diamonds is it’s popularity. The round-cut diamond shape is still the most popular shape in 2022. Round cut diamonds are timeless and classic.
As such, you can expect to pay more for a round cut diamond than you would for just about any other diamond shape.
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