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Cut is the only one of the 4Cs (cut, clarity, carat, color) influenced by the human hand. The rest – color, clarity, carat - are created naturally as diamonds form in the earth.
Diamond cut refers to the angles and proportions a skilled craftsman creates in transforming a rough diamond into a polished diamond. Based on scientific formulas, a well-cut diamond will internally reflect light from one mirror-like facet to another and disperse and reflect it through the top of the stone. This results in a display of brilliance and fire. Diamonds that are cut too deep or too shallow lose or leak light through the side or bottom, resulting in less brilliance and ultimately, value.
Cut also refers to the shape of a diamond. Seven diamond cut styles can be found on the market: Round, Marquise, Emerald, Princess, Pear, Oval and Heart. Side-stone options include Baguette and Trillion cutting styles. A round diamond is symmetrical and capable of reflecting nearly all the light that enters, thus labeling it the most brilliant of all diamond shapes. Non-round shapes, also known as “fancy shapes”, follow different proportion guidelines to be considered well-cut. Diamond cuts and cutting styles work in harmony to create a diamond’s brilliance.