February 13

What is the Most Expensive Diamond Shape? | How Does it Affect the Value?


Author: Alene Geed

What is the most expensive diamond shape, you ask? When it comes to pricing, not all diamond shapes are equal. One of the key factors determining a diamond's value is the diamond cut, also referred to as the diamond’s shape. Making all the different diamond shapes requires different raw material quantities and effort – all these inevitably determine how expensive the diamond will be. 

Key Takeaways

  • Diamond prices vary from shape to shape. The simpler the shape, the more pricey the diamond. 
  • The higher the loss of rough diamond during the cutting process, the more expensive the diamond, and vice versa.
  • The fancier the diamond shape, the more money you’ll save; Asscher and emerald cuts can save you the most.
  • When shopping for cheaper cuts, choose the low-clarity grade to get the most from its shape.

While all diamonds are pretty pricey, some diamond cuts make the stone even more expensive. Here’s a list of the ten most costly diamond shapes on the market to get a glimpse into the world of high-end diamonds.

What is the Most Expensive Diamond Shape?

A good cut shows the insides of a diamond while hiding its flaws and emphasizing its features. A diamond’s shape depends on its girdle, and the girdles vary in size, from extremely thin girdle to extremely thick. Below are some of the most expensive shapes:

The Round Brilliant Cut

The round brilliant cut diamonds are known for their dazzling brilliance and are the most expensive shape on the market. This cut is a popular diamond shape that dates back to the 17th century but gained popularity about 100 years ago when Marcel Tolkwosky perfected its design. Although stone cutters used traditional diamond cutting techniques to make round, brilliant cuts back in the day, jewelers today use computers to cut the diamonds into perfect symmetry. 

The result of technology use is that there’s no wastage of the original gemstone while giving the final cut a sparkling finish. Moreover, the round diamond is mostly ideal for engagement rings

There are several reasons why round brilliant cut diamonds have the highest value:

Fire and Brilliance

Round cut diamonds reflect light better than other cuts, giving them a sparkle that no different cut can provide. Their fire (the rainbow colors) and brilliance (their light show) make a perfect blend courtesy of its 58 facets. 


The round cut diamond has the most precise cut, is perfect, and is uniform. On the other hand, rectangular-cut diamonds (see baguette diamonds) or square-cut diamonds may have slight imperfections, meaning they’re not always symmetrical. 


As discussed earlier, round cut diamonds have the most significant rough diamond loss. That results in high prices.


Another reason for the high cost of the round cut diamond is because they’re a popular round diamond shape. Round cut diamonds are still among the most popular. These diamonds are classic and timeless.

engagement ring

The Emerald Cut

The emerald cut diamond is known for its clarity grade and has 57 facets, but is also, together with the Asscher diamond cut, the cheapest cut of diamond. Because of the shape’s flat surface, you can see through the stone’s core while you enjoy its subtle sparkle. The shape dates back to the 1500s, but the term “emerald cut” emerged in the 1920s as the art deco movement increased the shape’s popularity.

Angelina Jolie is among the many jewelry lovers who’ve added this jewel to their collection. She owns a 16-carat emerald diamond worth over $100,000. 

Emerald Cut Diamond Ring

The Pear Cut

The pear-shaped diamond was an invention of Lodewyk Van Bercken through the invention of a diamond polishing machine in 1475. This invention allowed users to create completely symmetrical facets, which was infeasible before Lodewyk’s machine.

Among the fantastic designs created during the machine’s groundbreaking was the pear cut shape, a subtle design with a pointed culet and curves. Given the shape’s uniqueness, pear cut diamonds are a popular choice for contemporary jewelry. Some designers opt to have the diamond on its side to create an asymmetrical look.

This diamond cut, also known as the pendeloque or teardrop cut diamond, is having a moment, with Cardi B and Ariana Grande being two celebrities with these rings. It’s referred to as the modified brilliant cut and is wonderful for concealing inclusions. The shape often represents independence, empowerment, strong will, and the wearer’s great sense of style.

pear cut diamond ring

The Asscher Cut

The invention of the Asscher cut came about in 1902, courtesy of the Asscher Brothers of Holland. King Edward VII even once commissioned Joseph Asscher to cut the largest gemstone in the world—a 3,106-carat stone.

Looking at the diamond from the top, you see the X shape from the converging facets. This shape is most famous for its brilliance and clarity grade, and it’s a popular option for diamond stud earrings and engagement rings.

a diamond

The Radiant Cut

The radiant cut has 70 facets, making it shine and glimmer, as the name suggests. Henry Grossbard invented the cut in 1977 to unleash the full potential of a diamond’s brilliance. 

Brilliance in the diamond world means the light reflecting off a diamond to give it its shiny, bright look.  Like other famous diamond cuts, the radiant shape has well-known fans too. For instance, Lamar Odom chose a 12.5-carat radiant cut ring when proposing to Khloe Kardashian.

Considering the price of a radiant cut, it’s fascinating to imagine how much Khloe’s ring costs with more than 12 carats.

a diamond ring

The Marquise Cut

Also known as the football-shaped cut, the marquise cut diamond has a slim design and works well as an accent for rubies and other high-value stones. King Louis XV of France in the 18th century asked a jeweler to shape a diamond resembling his mistress’s (Jean Antoinette Poisson) lips.

After that, the marquise cut became a status symbol for power and wealth. The cut’s name comes from the royal court’s ranking—Marquess.

a diamond ring

The Heart Cut

A heart cut is a popular option for non-traditional wedding bands. It dates back to the 1400s, and the shape was a royalty symbol. Interestingly, Mary Queen of Scots gifted a heart-shaped diamond ring to Queen Elizabeth in 1952. The ring went down in history as a friendship symbol among royal families. 

Also, recently, Taylor Kinney, Lady Gaga’s ex-fiance, gave her a heart-shaped diamond ring. 

a diamond

The Princess Cut

In the 1960s, a diamond cutter from London, Arpad Nagy, created a version of the princess cut diamonds known as the “profile cut.” Basil Watermeyer, a South African diamond cutter, patented Nagy’s design in the 1970s and called it the “Barion cut". The diamond cut offers a modern and clean design, with a mix of round and sharp corners depending on the cutter’s design.

The princess cut diamond offers a fiery and bright sparkle, and it’s mostly for rings. 

a diamond ring

Oval Cut

The oval cut diamond is brilliant and elegant. In addition, oval cut diamonds have an elongated shape that makes fingers appear longer. They seem more prominent than other diamonds of the same carat weight. And cost less per carat weight too. 

a  diamond ring


What Shape of Diamonds is the Least Expensive?

Asscher and Emerald cut diamonds are the least expensive shapes. Because they’re step-cut, there’s minimal wastage of the rough diamond.

What Shape Diamond Holds the Best Value?

Typically, all diamond shapes hold their value. However, as already discussed above, the round brilliant cut diamond is the most expensive diamond cut because there’s lots of rough diamond wastage – around 60% on average. 

What Diamond Shape is the Best?

The round brilliant cut diamond is by far the best diamond shape. Its 57 perfectly aligned facets outshine other diamond cuts. When it comes to diamonds, their internal reflection is vital because light travels through the stone to give optimum glow and sparkle.

Why Does the Cut Affect the Value of a Diamond?

A diamond’s cut affects its value because it determines the amount of light the stone reflects. While the diamond cut may have carat weight, clarity, and color, it becomes dull and lifeless if it only reflects minimal light. On the other hand, a diamond with an excellent cut emanates allurement, fire, and sparkle. 

About the Author:

Alene Geed

I am a published writer and an experienced jewelry designer. In my designs, I use gold, steel and silver, and adds gemstones to enhance the beauty of my unique, sparkling pieces of jewelry.

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