Cushion Cut Diamonds: Your In-Depth Guide - Do Amore

Cushion Cut Diamonds

Born from antique mine-cut stones, Cshions have soft corners, like a pillow. Cushion cut diamonds are timeless. In fact, the Hope and Tiffany Diamonds are both Cushions! Because Cushions vary greatly in their proportions, they can range from perfectly square to quite rectangular. Some Cushions display large facets which give big flashes of sparkle. For couples who want an explosion of smaller sparkle in their Cushion cut engagement ring, modern cuts have also been developed.

Table, Depth & Other Specifications for Ideal Cushion Cut Diamonds

Cushions are all unique! For that reason, specifications vary greatly. Some are square, some are rectangular. Some have antique “big flash” sparkle, others have more modern crushed-ice “scintillation.” Like all fancy diamonds, GIA does not give cut grades for cushions. So, when a jeweler states a cushion cut is “ideal” or “excellent,” that is the jeweler’s opinion. Also, there is no industry standard for what makes a great Cushion diamond. As a result, picking a Cushion can be a little tricky. To help our couples, we have included our suggestions for choosing a beautiful, well-proportioned stone below.

Pro Tips for your perfect Cushion Cut Diamond!

– Vintage, big flash sparkle (like chunky glitter): Look for a small table (the large facet on the top of your stone) and big facets on the bottom of your stone (the “pavilion”). You will also often see four large facets on the pavilion that make a noticeable star shape in vintage-look stones.

Modern scintillation (like fine glitter or crushed ice): A large amount of small facets will create a large amount of smaller-sized sparkle. So, look for a large amount of skinny facets on the bottom of your stone.

cushion

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"Ideal" Cut (Most Sparkle)

Premium Cut

Average Cut

Table %

A percentage measuring the width of the top facet of the diamond, divided by the overall width of the diamond

58 - 66

56-57 or 67-69

Below 55 or Over 70

Depth %

A percentage measuring the height (depth) of the diamond divided by the overall width of the diamond.

62 to 68

60-61 or 69-70

Below 59 or Over 71

Culet

The small area at the very bottom of a diamond that looks like a point.

None

Very Small

Small

Girdle

The outermost edge of the diamond where the top (crown) of the diamond intersects with the bottom (pavilion) of the diamond.

Very Thin to Slightly Thick

Very Thin to Slightly Thick

Under Very Thin or Above Slightly Thick

Light/Dark Contrast

Some darkness in your stone creates liveliness and sparkle. But, you want the darkness to be even throughout the stone.

Even

Slightly Uneven

Uneven Dark Patches

Color Recommendations for Cushion Cut Diamonds

The “color” of a Cushion is its whiteness or its yellow hint. Diamonds are graded on a scale beginning with “D” color and ending with “Z” color. So, D, E, and F color diamonds are colorless, like water. G through Z color diamonds have increasing tints of yellow. As Cushions were designed before electricity, and because warm colored candlelight masks color better than today’s bright white LEDs, many Victorian Cushion cuts were warm-toned colors. This is why cushions are also referred to as “candlelight” diamonds today! Some couples prefer these warmer colored Cushion cut engagement rings for this reason. Others prefer a more colorless look. The chart below provides a general guide for choosing your perfect Cushion.

cushion

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Carat Weight

No Visible Color

Slight Tint

Warmer Color

< 0.5

D - I

J - K

L - Z

0.5-1.0

D - H

I - J

K - Z

1.0-1.5

D - H

I

J - Z

1.5 +

D - G

H - I

J - Z

Clarity Recommendations for Cushion Cut Diamonds

The clarity of your Cushion is how “crystal clear” the gem is, that is to say, how many internal marks (“inclusions”) it has. Almost all diamonds have some inclusions, and they are all unique. It is like your diamond’s fingerprint! Because Cushions are “brilliant” stones, they give off a lot of sparkle. This is important in terms of clarity because sparkle can mask inclusions. As a result, couples choosing a Cushion cut can often select a VS2 or SI1, and it will appear flawless to the naked eye. This is a great value! Visually inspecting the gem is important, however, as some larger stones may show small inclusions that are not obvious, but still eye visible. The following is a helpful chart for evaluating clarity in cushions.

Clarity Tip! Ratings in the Eye Clean column expect that your jeweler will double check the stone. Every engagement ring purchased from Do Amore is confirmed “eye-clean.” We inform the customer if it isn’t.

cushion
cushion

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Carat Weight

Eye Clean

Visible Blemishes OK If Not Obvious

Inclusions Impact Beauty

< 0.5

FL-SI2

I1

I2-I3

0.5-1.0

FL-SI1

SI2-I1

I2-I3

1.0-1.5

FL-VS2

SI1-SI2

I1-I3

1.5 +

FL-VS1

VS2-SI2

I1-I3

Length to Width Ratio for Cushion Cut Diamonds

All diamonds in our conflict free diamond search engine have the length to width listed. This ratio, which is simply the length divided by the width, determines how square or elongated the Cushion is. A larger the length to width ratio means the diamond is taller than it is wide (a more elongated or rectangular stone). The smaller the length to width ratio means the length isn’t that much greater than it’s width (a more square stone).

If you want a perfectly square Cushion diamond, choose a Cushion with a length to width ratio less than 1.03.
Couples that want an elongated Cushion diamond should choose a length-to-width above 1.10.

loose cushion cut diamond with 1.00 length to width ratio

1.00

loose cushion cut diamond with 1.03 length to width ratio

1.03

loose cushion cut diamond with 1.05 length to width ratio

1.05

loose cushion cut diamond with 1.10 length to width ratio

1.10

loose cushion cut diamond with 1.15 length to width ratio

1.15

Settings that Pair Well with Cushion Cut Diamonds

Cushions look great in ethical engagement ring settings which showcase their square or rectangular shapes. Duchess Meghan’s Cushion is set in a classic three-stone! The following are some of our favorite Cushion cut engagement rings:

Money Tips

When looking for a Cushion cut diamond, make sure you get the maximum measurements for your carat weight. Cushion cuts are notorious for their deep proportions. So, look for a stone no deeper than 68% – and try to get under 67%! This will help ensure you get the biggest bang for your buck. All of our Recommended conflict free diamonds have their weight maximized.

3 Things to Ask Your Jeweler

  • 01.

    Photo & Video

    Always ask the jeweler for a close-up picture or video, like the ones listed here. Check out its length-to-width ratio and facet size!

  • 02.

    Inspect It

    Ask the jeweler to physically see the diamond and inspect it. Look for any eye-visible inclusions, and confirm the size sparkle you want!

  • 03.

    Measure It

    Make sure you get the biggest measurements for your diamond’s carat size. Remember, try to get a depth percentage under 68% for the most bang for your buck.

Other Ring Resources

See our in-depth educational guides, which were made to give practical advice with every aspect of your ring.

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