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The Princess Cut Diamond

By Frank

Highly experienced diamond polisher who loves to share his knowledge with you. Continues to stun his colleagues with interesting - or simply bizarre - facts about diamonds and gems.

September 20, 2017

Today’s second most popular diamond shape is the Princess cut. It’s a square diamond with sharp edges and 59 facets. Even though it is a relatively young cut, it has stolen many hearts already. When you look at the Princess cut from above, it appears square. But if you look at it from the side, it looks like an upside-down pyramid. Many women adore this cut because of its beautiful, simple and timeless design. That is how the Princess has become a real classic over the years. However, also more and more men feel attracted to the Princess cut. The lovely strong square shape looks manlier than the round brilliant cut.

perspectives princess cut diamond
Although the Princess cut is often placed in engagement rings, it looks great in all jewelry because of its versatility. The Princess is beautiful in diamond rings, bracelets, earrings and necklaces.

The history of the Princess Cut

The Princess cut as we know it today, can be traced back to 1971. In that year, the diamond cutter Basil Watermeyer patented a new diamond cut with the name “the Barion”. This looked already a bit like the Princess, but the many symmetrical lines of the Barion made it very difficult to cut this shape correctly. In 1979, the “Quadrillion” was introduced. This cut looked a lot like the Barion with one big difference. While the Barion had over 80 facets, the Quadrillion only had 49.

The Barion and the Quadrillion were important steps in the foundation of the Princess cut. However, the basics of the famous square cut date back to 1961. The diamond polisher Arpad Nagy from London created a new cut he called the “Profile cut”. Years later, this name changed into the Princess cut. Cutters like Watermeyer have made the Princess cut popular with their tweaks.

woman wearing princess cut diamond ring skyline city background

The modern Princess

What makes the modern Princess such a beautiful and popular diamonds? You can thank this to years of research that were dedicated to exploring the customer’s wishes. There was investigated which diamond shapes consumers missed and many hours were spent in perfecting the grinding corners. This led to the modern Princess cut. The 59 facets are positioned in almost the exact same way like on a brilliant cut. Therefore the Princess has almost the same glimmering as the famous round diamond cut.

princess cut ring in a box

Pros and cons of the Princess cut

The Princess cut is square. Therefore the cutter needs to polish away less material to achieve the optimal sparkle for this cut. A diamond only loses 20 to 25% of its rough material when it’s cut into an ideal Princess shape. To create a Brilliant cut, a diamond will lose up to 60% of its material. Therefore, a one carat Princess is always more economical than a one carat Brilliant. One of the cons of a square stone is that because of the sharp edges, there are always dead corners in the cut. A part of the light and therefore the sparkle gets lost. That is why a well-polished Princess will never shimmer as bright as a well-polished Brilliant. On the other hand: you can get a bigger diamond for the same amount of money when you go for a Princess instead of a brilliant. So that’s up to you.

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