What’s the Most Expensive Diamond Cut?
Not all diamonds are created equal, and shopping for them can be overwhelming. Whether you are a first-time diamond buyer looking for an engagement ring on a limited budget or have saved a considerable amount of money for a lavish 25th-anniversary gift, you will need a basic understanding of how diamond cuts are graded to make a sound buying decision.
Diamond cuts are part of a group of characteristics known as the 4 C’s: cut, carat, color, and clarity. Many people rank cut as the most important of the 4 C’s; we will explain them all below.
Read on to learn more about making informed diamond buying decisions before we reveal the most expensive diamond cut (spoiler alert: it’s also the most in-demand cut, so chances are it may be the type of diamond you seek!)
What Are the 4 C’s in Diamond Shopping?
The Four Cs are the recognized industry standard when it comes to what you should focus on when buying diamond jewelry.
Carat refers to the metric weight of the diamond (not its physical dimensions, a common misconception!) The weight system used for measuring diamond carats has a metric weight defined as 200 milligrams, and then the carat is subdivided into 100 points. This means the measurements are drilled down to the hundredth decimal.
The most expensive diamonds are colorless, but the naked eye cannot see color variations in many cases. The D-to-Z color scale, first introduced in the 1950s, has the highest graded or “D” diamonds at colorless, and at the bottom of the scale, the Z diamonds will tend to have a yellowish or brownish hue.
Gemologists use a clarity scale to rate the diamond’s imperfections, which exist due to the way the stone is formed under intense heat and pressure. Using 10x magnification, diamonds are assessed for the number of imperfections, size, and location.
There are six categories on the diamond Clarity Scale:
- Internally flawless
- Very very slightly included
- Very slightly included
- Slightly included
The cut of a diamond is often the most important consideration of the 4 C’s, greatly impacting the stone’s value and price.
Sometimes people mistakenly assume “cut” is the same as shape; however, the two are indeed different. The cut refers to the proportion of the stone’s dimensions rather than its visible “shape” (such as a pear).
The stone's cut determines the diamond's ability to reflect light, and even diamonds with high clarity and color grades can be negatively impacted by a poor quality cut, resulting in stones that appear dull and lack brilliance.
Gemologists rate diamond cuts as Excellent, Very Good, Fair, and Poor. And any reputable jeweler should be able to answer questions about how the diamond you are considering is graded as far as cut goes or any other characteristics named above!
What Is the Most Expensive Diamond Cut?
When you think about the cut of a diamond and what makes it expensive, you might also think of it using some familiar movie editing terminology: “What is left on the cutting room floor?”
Based on what is wasted from the rough stone, the round brilliant is the most expensive diamond cut. Over half of the rough stone is typically wasted to achieve this cut. So the consumer is, effectively, paying for the amount of stone wasted just as much as what happens to land on the ring.
Round brilliant diamonds are far and away the favorite choice for engagement rings and are also seen often in other pieces such as earrings or necklaces. What makes this cut so desirable is the sparkle factor: no other cut boasts the same brilliance as this type of diamond. And even in a consumer market filled with some of the most intricate jewelry designs imaginable, a simple round brilliant diamond engagement ring never seems to go out of style.
While a round brilliant diamond costs more than other cuts, it does not necessarily mean you will need to break the bank to purchase one. The other characteristics (carat, clarity, color) will also play a role in the price.
To stay within your budget, you might sacrifice some color quality to afford a round brilliant cut. Or you might consider how a “halo effect” can add more of a sparkle factor to smaller diamonds and opt for a more intricate setting than the simple round diamond on a plain metal band.
One of the great advantages of the round brilliant cut is its ability to conceal inclusions. Some imperfections that lower the price of a stone may not be visible to the naked eye.
How Can I Save Money When It Comes to Diamond Cut?
While round brilliant diamonds are certainly stunning and wildly popular for good reason, plenty of other diamond cuts still make for gorgeous jewelry pieces. Not only can you save money by opting for some other cuts, but you may also end up with a ring that sets you apart from the crowd!
A number of other cuts waste less of the rough stone, which means they are priced lower than the round brilliant cut that wastes so much of it. Some examples of cuts that produce less waste are pear-cut diamonds, oval-cut diamonds, and marquise-cut diamonds. These are all fantastic options to consider when shopping for engagement rings or other special pieces.
How Should I Take Care of My Brilliant Round Diamond?
If you invest in a stunning round brilliant cut, take proper care of the diamond by paying attention to the following.
- When in Doubt, Take it Off! If you are gardening, painting, or working with your hands in other ways, store your ring somewhere safe until your work is complete.
- Insure It! Make sure you take out a specific jewelry policy to protect your investment.
- Clean It Often! Clean your diamond often but do so gently. Be sure to set a drain trap in a sink before you begin, and clean it gently with warm water and mild dish soap. You can use a toothbrush to gently scrub away any debris.
Diamonds of Every Cut at Happy Jewelers
Not only do we have a stunning selection of round brilliant cut diamonds, but we have every other cut and style imaginable, as well as the ability to create a custom piece just for you! Let our expert staff help you find the right diamond cut for your style and budget: Contact us today.