The 11 most popular diamond shapes for engagement rings
Girls’ best friend comes in all shapes and sizes
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If you’re in the market for an engagement ring, first of all, congratulations! Second, you’ll quickly find that there are an overwhelming number of choices out there, including rings of every shape, size, and price point. To narrow down your options, you’ll want to start by choosing a diamond shape.
There are roughly a dozen popular diamond shapes that are widely available in engagement rings, and some are more popular than others. For instance, round diamonds are a timeless option that make up the brunt of engagement ring sales, but for those looking for a more unique design, a trillion or pear-shaped diamond might be the way to go. Once you’ve decided on a diamond shape, you’ll then be able to select the number of carats, clarity, setting, band, and more.
To help you better understand your options, these are the most popular diamond shapes you’ll come across when shopping for engagement rings.
The top 3 diamond shapes from 2020
As mentioned above, certain diamond shapes make up the brunt of engagement ring sales, and they’re often the most timeless choices. According to The Knot’s 2020 Jewelry & Engagement Study, these were the top three most popular diamond shapes among couples who got engaged between April and November 2020:
1. The classic, elegant round diamond
Ask any jeweler, and they’ll most likely tell you round diamonds are their most popular choice for engagement rings. After all, circular stones are generally what comes to mind when we think of a diamond, and this shape is incredibly timeless with an elegant appeal. Round diamonds were the most popular choice among engaged couples in 2020, according to The Knot survey, and The Diamond Pro says this shape actually makes up around 60% of all engagement rings.
What makes these stones so great? Round diamonds have a symmetrical shape that typically features 58 facets, and there are actually two ways these stones can be cut: Brilliant cut diamonds have thinner kite-shaped facets that help them reflect light particularly well, while Old European diamonds have facets with triangular blocks.
Nearly every jeweler you visit—whether online or in-person—will carry engagement rings with round diamonds, and you can find them included in a wide range of ring styles, from solitaire to halo to multi-stone rings. If you’re looking for a particularly brilliant stone, diamond brand Hearts on Fire is well-known for its round stones, which have a proprietary cut that delivers more sparkle and shine.
2. The flattering oval-shaped diamond
While princess-cut diamonds (which we’ll talk about next) are historically the second most popular option for engagement rings, they were edged out by the oval diamond in 2020, according to The Knot’s survey. There are a number of reasons that oval-shaped diamonds are gaining popularity—they often appear larger than round diamonds of the same carat (a.k.a. weight), and many people find the elongated shape to be more flattering on their fingers.
Oval diamonds have been around for centuries, and when you’re shopping for them, you’ll want to consider the length-to-width ratio. A ratio of 1.30-1.50 is often considered the most desirable, but it’s truly a matter of personal preference. Similar to round diamonds, oval stones can be mounted in numerous ways, so you’re sure to find the perfect ring for your tastes, whether you want something simple and ornate.
3. The oh-so regal princess-cut diamond
If you want to feel like royalty every day of your life, a princess-cut diamond—also called a square diamond—is sure to help. This shape was the third most popular choice among couples last year, with 15% opting for this style of stone, and while it’s not for everyone, the bold shape certainly makes a statement on your finger.
Princess diamonds are actually a relatively new style. They weren’t introduced until the 1960s, and while they’re most commonly square, they can also be rectangular. These diamonds typically have 57 to 58 facets, and believe it or not, the cost per carat is usually significantly less than round-cut diamonds—a good way to get the most bang for your buck!
Princess-cut diamonds can be styled in any number of ways, including with halos or on unique asymmetrical bands, but they will almost always have prongs on all four corners to prevent the stone from being damaged.
But there are plenty of other shapes to choose from, too
If none of those diamond shapes tickle your fancy, fear not! There are several other shapes that are readily available at many jewelry stores, all of which make for breathtaking engagement rings.
The cushion shape is another popular option for engagement rings, as it’s essentially a cross between a round and princess cut. The shape is rectangular with rounded edges, resembling a pillow, hence its name. Cushion-cut diamonds typically have 58 facets, and they deliver the most “fire”—rainbow-colored flashes of light—than any other shape.
If you’re looking for a diamond with vintage appeal, the emerald shape is quite distinctive! This shape is characterized by its long, step-cut facets, which create a “Hall of Mirrors” effect. Emerald-cut diamonds are rectangular with slightly rounded corners, but they’re available in different proportions, depending on whether you want a long, skinny stone or a more square shape.
Marquise diamonds are one of the less common shapes, but they’ve been gaining popularity in recent years. These diamonds have a long, oval-like shape with points at both ends—resembling a football—which is often very flattering on the finger. This shape has 56 facets, and it’s most commonly found on solitaire or halo engagement rings.
Radiant diamonds have a similar rectangular shape to emerald-cut stones, but the two look quite different thanks to the radiant’s unique cut, which features 70 facets for an extremely sparkly appearance. These diamonds are captivating and make for a timeless and elegant engagement ring, but due to their intricate nature, you’ll likely want to choose a higher quality cut, as imperfections will be easier to spot.
The asymmetrical shape of pear diamonds makes them a bit polarizing—many people either love the look or hate it! These diamonds are shaped like teardrops, and when used on engagement rings, the stone is traditionally worn with the point facing away from the hand. Pear-shaped diamonds are definitely a modern choice, and they’re often styled as a solitaire or with a halo of smaller stones.
Most people aren’t familiar with the asscher shape, which resembles an emerald cut but with a square shape, but if you watched Sex and the City, you’ve seen one before! The ring that Aiden used to propose to Carrie in season 4 of the show featured a beautiful asscher-cut diamond, which undoubtedly gave the lesser-known shape a boost in popularity. These diamonds have the same long step-cuts as emerald-shaped stones, and they typically have cropped corners, as well.
We’ve got circle, square, and rectangular diamonds, so all that’s left is a triangular one—and that’s where the trillion shape comes in. This shape has three sides, but its corners are rounded for a more elegant look. These diamonds are most commonly used as side stones on engagement rings, but you can find select designs that feature trillion diamonds as the main stone for a unique and modern look.
Finally, there are heart-shaped diamonds—a fairly self-explanatory shape. They typically have 58 facets and symbolize love, making them a popular choice for engagement rings or anniversary gifts.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.