Emerald-Cut vs Radiant Cut Diamonds: Which Diamond Shape To Faceoff
Diamonds have always been available in a wide variety of quality, cuts, colours, shapes, etc. to customers around the world. While the diamond has many important features, one of its most important aspects includes how the diamond has been cut by the jeweller or designer. Hence, every piece of diamond is available to the customers in various cuts such as the round cut, radiant cut, emerald cut, princess cut, etc. Many of these cuts also seem to appear identical which often leads to confusion amongst diamond shoppers since they often are usually not able to decide which one to purchase due to the many similarities offered by some of these cuts.
One such example is the emerald cut and the radiant cut made in diamonds. Although similar from many perspectives, both the cuts signify different things and are suitable for different kind of diamond wearers. Hence, customers should choose according to their personal preferences and what they think would accurately symbolize the situation for which the diamond jewellery is being bought.
The first thing that customers should be aware of is the general methods of evaluation of all diamonds which is generally done through the evaluation of the 4 Cs of a diamond as given below.
General Guide to Evaluate Diamonds
The universal method used for defining a diamond’s quality lies within the GIA 4Cs – colour, clarity, cut, and carat weight. The most important C concerning diamond studs is ‘cut’ as this aspect has the most visible impact on the appearance and brilliance of the jewellery.
Described simply as the weight of the diamond, it is an aspect related to the size and physical appearance of a precious stone. A carat that best fits the frame of the customer’s face and also falls within the budget must be kept in mind while making the purchase. Although a bigger size is sometimes preferred, people should consider the diamond’s cut above the carat weight as most times larger diamonds lack the lustre and sparkle because it has been poorly cut.
0.50-carat stones are a preference for many.
A diamond’s cut is the description of how it has been shaped. This is the most critical aspect for diamond studs as the sparkle and brilliance of the stud mostly depend on how well and in what shape it has been cut. With different styles like round brilliant and princess cuts, the basic difference between them is how light is reflected.
The GIA grades for diamonds’ cuts are Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, and Poor. When choosing diamond studs, customers must choose one with a rating that falls between Very Good and Excellent as these labels ensure that the purchase made is of the best cut quality that will result in a radiant and sparkling item of jewellery.
This is an important feature to consider when purchasing the clarity of a diamond explains the number of imperfections present inside and outside the diamond, which can be defined as inclusions and blemishes respectively.
These imperfections give a cloudy and dull appearance to the diamond, leading to the jewellery looking less beautiful.
Grades that are used to define the clarity of diamonds include the following: Flawless (FL), Internally Flawless (IF), Very, Very Slightly Included (VVs2), VS1 or VS2 (Very Slightly Included), SI1 or SI2 (Slightly Included), I1 or I2 or I3 (Included).
Higher grades denote that the stone in consideration has lesser inclusions and blemishes and the lower grades describe the opposite.
A grade of VS2-SI1 is generally awarded to eye-clean diamonds and can be purchased by the customers at reasonable prices as these diamonds will look clean and have an adequate amount of sparkle in the eyes of onlookers. This will also allow the client to invest their budget on the rest of the Cs. However, clients that depend on the technicality of the flawlessness of their diamonds can opt for higher graded ones which will invariably cost more.
The color of the diamond must not be confused with coloured diamonds as the difference between them is that coloured diamonds include an array of naturally occurring shades of diamonds such as blue, yellow, pink, etc. whereas the colour is a method to grade the whiteness of a white diamond. These grades fall between the range of D to Z with D indicating the most “colourless” white diamond and Z the label for the most “yellow” white diamond. This factor depends differently from person to person as some might prefer the yellowish tint while others are completely against it.
The different grades of colours are caused due to the reflection of every bit of light including the wearer’s skin tone and metal of the setting, that falls on the surfaces and angles of the diamond.
For a cost-effective purchase, customers must choose a diamond in the range of G-I as it will appear white and cost a lot less than the diamonds which are graded in the range of D-F.
To help customers get a better idea about the differences that lie between an emerald cut and a radiant cut diamond, here are some of the factors that cause the variations between the two.
Difference between Emerald-Cut and Radiant Cut
History of the Diamond Cuts
One of the oldest diamond shapes to exist, the emerald cut can be traced back to the table cut of the 1500s from which the emerald cut was furthermore developed. Originally termed as the multi-faceted table cut, the cut was first and foremost used on emeralds as the name suggests and was only a lot later on brought as another variety into the world of diamonds.
With the term ‘emerald cut’ emerging in the 1920s, it has often been associated with the era of Art Deco wherein clean lines and symmetry were in trend amongst the people and enjoyed their own class of popularity. Then in the 1940s, the cut was furthermore more refined and standardized which could be done with the invention of much more advanced and systematic diamond-cutting tools.
Unlike the emerald cut which is a design of the olden times, the radiant cut is a much more modern style that was an invention made by Henry Grossbard in the 1970s. The term ‘radiant cut’ has been patented by Grossbard so generally on the laboratory certificates provided by GIA or AGS, the cut is referred to as a “rectangular brilliant” or “cut-cornered square”.
The radiant cut was created as a hybrid wherein the cut has many facets that have been designed in a manner to maximise the brilliance and beauty of the diamond. One of the sparkliest varieties in cuts for the diamond industry, the radiant cut diamond is made with a brilliant faceting pattern that is present in both the crown and pavilion of the gemstone.
The emerald cut diamonds have a rectangular outline and the corners are cut in a particular manner. Depending on the dimensions of the gem, the emerald cut diamonds can be home to 50 to 58 step-cut facets. The step cuts are arranged parallelly and this leads to the creation of stunning flashes of light which in turn causes a “hall of mirrors” effect. This cut is known to be slightly more elegant than radiant cut diamonds and also exhibits a more sophisticated sparkle.
The major difference in the radiant cut is that although it is rectangular in shape much like the emerald cut, it does not have step cuts and instead home to 70 triangular or kite-shaped facets which originate from the centre and do an excellent job of maximizing the brilliance and sparkle of the stone.
Carat Weight VS Visible Size
The difference between carat weight and the visible size between the emerald and radiant cuts is almost the same, with both the cuts appearing larger than their actual carat weight.
When comparing a round brilliant cut diamond with an emerald and radiant cut diamond, all of the same carat weight, it is can be easily noticed that both these diamonds appear larger. In the case of emerald cuts, they appear larger due to the top surface is bigger than the one found in round cuts. Radiant cuts are also created in an elongated manner and hence appear bigger than the round cut diamonds, even though they have a slightly smaller face-up measurement when compared with the round cuts of the same weight. With radiant diamonds, it was within Grossbard’s interest to create a diamond that will appear as large as possible by investing not too much. And so, he paired a broad and shallow design with a highly brilliant faceting pattern. This gave rise to an excellent optical illusion wherein the radiant cut diamonds truly felt like they were radiating brilliance and shimmer.
One advantageous factor for both the cut of diamonds is the fact that customers can afford to overlook some of the aspects of the 4 Cs of diamonds which is not possible for the other cuts. The most important aspect that customers must focus on for emerald cut diamonds is their clarity grade since the large top surface of the cut makes any inclusions present within the stone to be very visible. However, other aspects like the carat weight and colour can be compensated with even if a lower grade in these aspects is chosen. In the same way, for radiant cut diamonds, lower grades in clarity and carat weight will not look unappealing but the colour should be one aspect that must not be compromised with. Hence, keeping all this in mind, customers should make the choice regarding which choice suits their preferences the best.