Round Diamond: How to NOT Get Scammed Buying Guide

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My Bottom Line Recommendation

I strongly recommend reading the full Round Diamond Guide below; however, if you are here for a quick brief, here’s the scoop on round diamonds:

  • Round-cut diamonds are renowned for their unparalleled capacity for light reflection and perfect symmetry, making them a highly sought-after choice.

  • Cut quality is essential to achieving a stunning round diamond as it influences the stone’s light performance, symmetry, and visual appeal.

  • For an ideal round diamond with high-light performance, look for a diamond with depth(%) 59-63 and table(%) 54-60. The settings are ready for you here with the diamonds filtered.

  • If you want to narrow down the options and have the highest light performance, with the most brilliance, sparkles, and fire, look for depth(%) 60-62, table(%) 56-58, crown angle 33.5-35.5, and pavilion angle 40.6-40.8. The settings are ready for you here with the diamonds filtered.

  • Hearts and Arrows are considered the top 1% of round diamonds due to the perfect symmetry that enhances the light performance of the diamond. Such a diamond comes at a 20%’ish premium price, however, if you can afford it, it’s worth it. You can view these diamonds here.

My top picks

1. Best balance

1.01 Carat G VS2

2. Largest diamond

1.31 Carat J VS2

3. Most premium

1.046 Carat D VS1

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Table of Contents

The allure of round diamonds captivates the hearts of many with their timeless beauty and mesmerizing sparkle. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the irresistible charm of round-cut diamonds, their fascinating history, and the essential factors to consider when choosing the perfect stone. Prepare to embark on a journey into the world of round diamonds and discover what makes them a cherished symbol of love and commitment.

The Allure of Round Cut Diamonds

Round-cut diamonds have captured the imaginations of millions for generations with their enduring beauty and exceptional light performance. Their classic appearance and prevalence in engagement rings make them the most popular diamond shape in the world. In fact, brilliant round diamonds account for more than two-thirds of all diamonds sold today.

But what exactly is it that sets round diamonds apart from other shapes?

What is a round diamond?

Round diamonds, also known as round brilliant diamonds, are the epitome of elegance and sophistication. Boasting 58 perfectly symmetrical facets, these dazzling gems are renowned for their unparalleled capacity for light reflection. The modern Round Brilliant Cut, with its precise proportions and intricate facet pattern, offers the most brilliant cut of all diamond shapes, maximizing the stone’s fire and brilliance. Among these, brilliant cut diamonds are highly sought after for their exceptional sparkle and timeless appeal, especially the round brilliant cut diamond.

In contrast to the Old European Cuts and Old Mine Cuts of the nineteenth century, modern round-shaped diamonds showcase perfect roundness and symmetry, further enhancing their appeal. This timeless design ensures that round-cut diamonds will never go out of style, making them a highly sought-after choice for engagement rings and other significant pieces of jewelry.

james allen diamond ring

What are the key features of a round diamond?

The distinct facet pattern, unparalleled brilliance, and fire of round diamonds set them apart from other diamond shapes. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) evaluates round diamonds based on three factors: brightness, fire, and scintillation. An excellent cut round diamond will exhibit the perfect balance of these factors, ensuring a truly breathtaking stone.

Brightness refers to the white flashes visible when observing a brilliant-cut diamond, while fire alludes to the captivating rainbow flashes. Scintillation, on the other hand, describes the pattern of brightness and fire observed in the gemstone and plays a crucial role in determining a diamond’s overall beauty. Together, these factors contribute to the unique and mesmerizing light performance that round diamonds are famous for.

Why is round diamond engagement rings the most popular?

Round diamond engagement rings hold a special place in the hearts of many thanks to their remarkable light performance and timeless aesthetic. The popularity of round brilliant cuts in engagement rings can be attributed to their classic, enduring design, which accentuates the diamond’s fire and brilliance.

The distinct facet pattern of round-cut diamonds allows for exceptional light performance, contributing to their widespread appeal in engagement rings. This dazzling display of light and color serves as a constant reminder of the love and commitment shared between two people, making round diamonds the ultimate symbol of enduring devotion.

james allen pros and cons

The Evolution of Round Diamond Cuts

The history of round diamond cuts is a fascinating tale of innovation and artistry. From the Old European Cut of the late 1800s, with its small table, large culet, and short lower-half facets, to the transitional round brilliants of the early 1900s, which featured smaller table facets and culet sizes typical of cuts from 1870 to 1950.

The modern Round Brilliant Cut, however, represents the pinnacle of diamond cutting technology and craftsmanship. Marcel Tolkowsky, a renowned diamond cutter, specified the ideal proportions for a round-cut diamond that optimized its beauty in 1914. This groundbreaking discovery set the stage for the development of the modern round brilliant cut, which continues to captivate and inspire with its unparalleled beauty and brilliance.

Understanding the 4C's for Round Diamonds

When selecting the perfect round diamond, it’s essential to understand the 4C’s: cut, color, clarity, and carat weight. These four factors play a crucial role in determining a diamond’s overall beauty, quality, and value. For example, a round diamond with an eye-clean clarity grade of SI1 will appear identical to a Flawless stone to the unaided eye, yet the price difference between the two can be significant.

Eye-clean SI1

Non eye-clean SI1

By focusing on the 4C’s, you can make an informed decision and choose a round diamond that not only meets your aesthetic preferences but also fits within your budget. Remember, the beauty of a diamond lies in the delicate balance of these four factors, so don’t be swayed by a single attribute at the expense of others.

You can learn more about the 4c’s here.

Cut Quality: The Key to a Stunning Round Diamond

Cut quality is the most important factor in a round diamond’s beauty, as it determines the stone’s light performance, including its brilliance, fire, and scintillation. The GIA cut grades for round diamonds, ranging from Excellent to Poor, serve as a reliable guide for assessing the diamond’s overall sparkle and visual appeal.

diamond cut anatomy

A well-cut diamond will display regular, pristine, and balanced lines, with distinct light and dark areas and symmetrical patterns. In contrast, a poorly cut diamond will appear disorganized and lack discernible patterns. Prioritizing cut quality when selecting a round diamond ensures that your stone will exhibit the breathtaking fire and brilliance that round diamonds are known for.

Hearts and Arrows diamonds

The pinnacle of excellence in round diamonds is embodied by the sought-after ‘hearts and arrows’ cut. This cut, achieved only by an elite 1% of round diamonds, is a testament to flawless symmetry and perfection. It results in a diamond that dazzles more than others, showcasing extraordinary brilliance, fire, and sparkle. The downside? You should expect to pay a premium price for this diamond, often around 20% higher. However, there’s an insider’s secret: By using the guidelines provided below, you may be able to spot a ‘hearts and arrows’ diamond that is classified as a regular ideal cut. Consequently, you might secure round brilliant cut diamonds that are priced at roughly 20% less.

For a decent cut, look for these parameters:

  • Table: 54-60

  • Depth: 59-63

  • Crown angle: 32-36

  • Pavilion angle: 40.5-41.4

Good Triple X

Bad Triple X

For a high-end cut, focus on these ranges:

  • Table: 56-58

  • Depth: 60-62

  • Crown angle: 33.5-35.5

  • Pavilion angle: 40.6-40.8

Round Diamond Color Grades: Making the Right Choice

Choosing the right color grade for a round diamond is a personal decision that should take into account factors such as metal setting, personal preference, and budget. Color grades are determined by a diamond’s hue, saturation, and tone, with the highest color grade (D) representing a completely colorless diamond and the lowest color grade (Z) featuring a noticeable yellow or brown tint. A diamond grading report can provide valuable information on these aspects to help you make an informed decision.

The metal setting can also influence the perception of a round diamond’s color, with certain metals complementing specific color grades more effectively than others. For instance, a yellow gold setting can reflect its color into a colorless diamond, making it appear as a lower color grade. For that reason, you can look for a lower grade in the first place and save some budget on that factor. By selecting a color grade that suits your individual taste and the metal setting of your choice, you can ensure that your round diamond embodies the perfect balance of beauty and value.

You can learn more about how to pick the right metal here.

Clarity Considerations for Round Diamonds

Clarity, also known as diamond clarity, is another important factor to consider when choosing a round diamond. Rather than focusing solely on the highest clarity grades, it’s often more practical to prioritize an eye-clean appearance, where inclusions are not visible to the naked eye.

An eye-clean diamond may possess inclusions visible under magnification but will appear flawless to the untrained eye. This approach allows you to save money without sacrificing the overall beauty of the stone.

When assessing inclusions, it’s also crucial to consider their size, location, and color, as these factors can impact the diamond’s visual appeal.

Carat Weight vs. Visual Impact: Striking the Perfect Balance

Balancing carat weight and visual impact is essential for finding a stunning round diamond within your budget. Carat weight refers to the physical weight of the diamond and does not directly influence its light performance or visual appeal. However, the price per carat of a diamond increases proportionally with its carat weight, resulting in higher-carat diamonds commanding a higher price.

To strike the perfect balance between carat weight and visual impact, consider factors such as cut quality, color, and clarity, as well as your personal preferences and budget. By focusing on these elements, you can find a beautiful round diamond that offers the best value for your investment.

Choosing the Ideal Setting for Your Round Diamond

Selecting the ideal setting for your round diamond can greatly enhance its beauty and complement its shape. A wide range of settings is available, including prong, bezel, pave, solitaire, halo, and antique settings. The classic round solitaire or 4-prong setting, for example, allows the most light to enter the stone, maximizing its sparkle to the fullest extent.

When choosing the perfect setting for your round diamond, consider factors such as the size and shape of the diamond, the type of metal used, and the overall design of the setting. By carefully selecting a setting that enhances the diamond’s natural beauty and aligns with your personal style, you can create a truly captivating piece of jewelry.

White gold vs platinum

Diamond Alternative Options: Lab-Grown Diamonds and Moissanite

For those seeking budget-friendly and eco-conscious alternatives to natural diamonds, lab-grown diamonds and moissanite offer excellent options. Lab-created diamonds are identical in terms of chemical, optical, and physical properties to mined diamonds but are produced in a laboratory setting.

Moissanite, on the other hand, is a gemstone that provides a beautiful and cost-effective alternative to diamonds. Moissanite has an even more fiery rainbow sparkle than a diamond, which some people find particularly appealing.

Both lab-grown diamonds and moissanite can be custom-created to suit your preferences and offer a sustainable and affordable choice for those looking to make a conscious decision without compromising on beauty and quality.

Tips for Buying a Round Diamond Online

Purchasing a round diamond online can be a daunting task, but with the right guidance and knowledge, you can find a stunning stone that meets your requirements and budget. First and foremost, prioritize cut quality when selecting a round diamond, as it determines the stone’s brilliance, fire, and scintillation. Aim for a triple X: excellent cut, excellent polish, and excellent symmetry.

Next, consider color and clarity grades when selecting a round diamond online. It’s recommended to choose a diamond with a color grade of H or higher and a clarity grade of VS2 or higher, as those are considered the sweet spot and the safest to go with. Remember, an eye-clean diamond will appear flawless to the naked eye, even if it has inclusions visible under magnification.

Lastly, understand the ideal proportions for a round diamond to maximize its beauty. Seek a diamond with the following proportions:

  • Table: 54-60

  • Depth: 59-63

  • Crown angle: 32-36

  • Pavilion angle: 40.5-41.4

For a high-end cut, focus on these ranges:

  • Table: 56-58

  • Depth: 60-62

  • Crown angle: 33.5-35.5

  • Pavilion angle: 40.6-40.8

By following these tips and conducting thorough research on reputable online retailers, you can find the perfect round diamond that offers excellent value and captures your heart.

shallow round diamond cut
ideal cut round diamond
deep round diamond cut

Best Place To Buy a Round Diamond

The best place to buy a round diamond is from reputable online retailers, which offer expert advice, competitive prices, and a vast selection of diamonds to choose from. Some renowned online retailers include Blue Nile and James Allen. These retailers are known for their reliability, customer service, and commitment to providing high-quality diamonds at fair prices.

On both websites, each diamond is listed with a 360 premium video that allows us to inspect it very easily, see the flaws, and the diamonds’ accurate color. Their video technology is well-known in the industry and considered top-tier and the most reliable. This way, you can feel safe that what you see is what you get, unlike other retailers that manipulate their diamond videos.

Conclusion - My Personal Experience

From my own experience, I’ve found that about 70% of my clients who enlist my services to find their ideal diamond ultimately choose a round diamond. The primary reason for this is its exceptional light performance. When chosen correctly, a round diamond can exhibit intense fire and a multitude of sparkles, contributing to a profound WOW factor. No other diamond shape can match the level of brilliance offered by a round diamond.

In summary, round diamonds captivate the hearts of many with their timeless beauty, exceptional light performance, and classic appearance. From understanding the 4C’s and prioritizing cut quality to selecting the ideal setting and exploring alternative options like lab-grown diamonds, this comprehensive guide has provided you with the knowledge and tips necessary to make an informed decision when choosing the perfect round diamond.

Frequently Asked Questions

A round diamond is also known as the round brilliant cut, which is the most common and popular type of diamond. Its popularity is due to its facets, which work together to create a beautiful sparkle that dazzles onlookers.

Yes, round diamonds tend to be more expensive than other diamond shapes. This is because round diamonds are the most popular cut for diamonds, so they can command a higher price due to their increased demand.

Furthermore, as round diamonds have more facets than other shapes, this also adds to their cost.

Overall, round diamonds are generally better than square diamonds as they have more brilliance and sparkle due to their perfect design. This creates a classic and timeless look that allows the diamond to hide its flaws and mask color better than other shapes.

It is generally accepted that round-cut diamonds cost more than oval diamonds, especially when comparing the same carat weight and quality. Round diamonds are usually 10-30% more expensive due to the higher market demand.

This is because round diamonds are more popular and in higher demand than oval diamonds. This means that the price of round diamonds is higher than that of oval diamonds. As a result, if you are looking for a diamond, you are looking for a diamond.

Round diamonds are the go-to choice for many when it comes to engagement rings, thanks to their classic shape, extraordinary sparkle, and ability to complement any style.

Their timeless beauty and versatility make them a popular choice for couples looking to express their love and commitment.

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