The Princess Cut

After the round or brilliant cut diamond, the square or rectangular princess cut is the most popular amongst diamond merchants, cutters and customers. The reason is simple: the princess cut results in a diamond that is very similar in its brilliance to the traditional round cut but with one significant advantage for all – less of the rough stone is wasted during the cutting and polishing process (some 35% as opposed to the 50% wastage in a round diamond) which means that the final stone will cost less than the equivalent round brilliant.

Other points that have made the princess cut so popular since its “invention” in 1979 are its square or rectangular shape which gives each a unique look to what could otherwise be an ordinary ring and the fact that the diamonds shape and proportions tends to hide the tiny flaws and inclusions present in almost all diamonds.

One thing that you should be aware of when purchasing a princess cut diamond is that its square shape means that it has four corners which are susceptible to damage if knocked. For this reason, the princess cut is usually set in a four pronged setting but, even so special care must be taken to protect your stone chipping or even cracking.

Perfect proportions

Many factors influence the quality of a diamond, the main one being the precision of its cut and its proportions. This is especially true of the princess cut.

  • Whilst no hard and fast standards have yet been set in place for this cut, it is vital that the grade of the cut be exceptionally high if the diamond is to achieve its full potential.
  • The length to width proportions of the diamond should be in the range of 1.0 (for a square diamond) to 1.05 (for a rectangular diamond). In general, the closer the diamond is to a rectangle, the lower its price. Having said that, in the right setting, especially one where the diamond is set with side diamonds, a rectangular princess diamond can look as if it’s a square.
  • The crown, or top surface of the princess diamond is usually about 10% smaller than that of a round cut stone. However, the corner to corner dimensions can be 15% greater which gives the overall impression of a larger stone.

Color is subjective

Deciding on what color princess cut you want is an entirely subjective and personal choice. There are no rules but, and this has to be said, the rules of supply and demand are such that people are prepared to pay premium prices for D to F color grades. In actual fact, identifying the differences between these higher color grades and G –H color grade diamonds is almost impossible with the naked eye.


Because of its size and setting, for most princess cuts, a clarity rating of “eye clean” (SI) should be sufficient as the stones tiny flaws are rendered almost invisible by the setting and the cut.

If you have questions about princess cut diamonds and fine jewelry, contact JRD’s service agents who are waiting to help you in any way they can.