The 4 Cs: Cut

Tuesday, March 22, 2011 1:53:56 PM America/Los_Angeles

We know how you feel. You’re about to purchase your first diamond, and you find yourself swamped by a sea of information. It can be an intimidating experience, but with a few tips, you can make this investment with confidence and even have a little fun with it. There are four key factors to selecting your diamond: cut, color, clarity, and carat. You may have heard these referred to as the “4 Cs” of diamonds. At Hadar Diamonds, we want you to make an informed, confident decision so we have created this four-part series to examine each of the 4 Cs. Let’s begin with “cut.” The cut of a diamond refers to two things: the shape of the diamond and how light is reflected by it. Round diamonds are the most traditional and classic of the shapes. However, other shapes such as marquis, oval, princess, and radiant are also very popular. Ideal and premium cut round brilliant cuts offer the most brilliance and fire. To understand the quality of a diamond’s cut, we need to look at the anatomy of a diamond. Light enters the table and travels to the pavilion where it bounces between facets before reflecting back out the table. It’s this bouncing of light between facets that creates a diamond’s brilliancy, and the shape of your diamond can affect that brilliancy. For example, oval, marquis, and pear-shaped diamonds are longer than other shapes and will have a small area in the center that allows light to pass through, rather than be reflected back out through the table. This creates a slight “bowtie” effect in the center of the stone. Round, princess, and radiant-cut diamonds provide the most reflective qualities because their shapes do not allow light to escape as easily through the pavilion. A diamond’s proportions, symmetry, and polish also affect its beauty. Specifically, a stone’s depth compared to its diameter and how the diameter of the table compares to the diameter of the diamond are perhaps the two most critical factors in determining a diamond’s brilliancy. “Ideal cut” diamonds are crafted to maximize brilliancy. Diamond cutters use specific formulas to calculate these ideal dimensions. But don’t worry! You don’t have to approach your diamond-buying experience with a set of numbers and proportions. Cut is graded from “excellent” to “poor” on a diamond’s certificate, giving you a quick reference when shopping. Diamond cutters may decide to sacrifice certain proportions to obtain a larger looking diamond. This is seen when the depth of a stone is compromised in order to create a larger table, producing a diamond that could look larger than others of equal weight. Diamonds cut like this are referred to as “European” cuts. Just be sure the cut is rated above average!
Posted in Articles By

Julie Foster