Emerald diamonds are the most popular step-cut shape. Step-cut refers to the long rectangular facets that move outwards from the center of the stone like a set of stairs. This type of diamond has less facets than a brilliant cut diamond, so it sparkles less but flashes more, reminiscent of a hall of mirrors.

Because there are fewer facets to disguise inclusions, it is best to prioritize clarity over color as necessary when choosing an emerald diamond.

The step-cut pattern also results in less wasted rough, which means step-cut diamonds will cost less on a carat basis when compared to brilliant cuts.

When choosing between emerald diamonds, you will want to consider the ratio of each stone. A lower ratio means a shorter and wider stone; a higher ratio means a thinner and longer stone. 

The emerald shape lends itself well to minimal, sophisticated, and confident designs.

Emerald three stone ring

Emerald diamond tennis bracelet

No matter what shape of diamond you’re looking at, these are a few other considerations to take into account:

  • Who certified the diamond? Some companies sell diamonds that were graded by in-house gemologists; we strongly believe it is best if a diamond is graded by a third-party lab such as GIA, IGI, or GCAL. GIA tends to have stricter standards than the other two labs. This does not mean non-GIA graded diamonds are undesirable, but rather it just means you may not be comparing apples to apples if you’re looking at stones graded by different labs.
  • Are any inclusions visible to the eye? In diamonds with VS2, SI1 and SI2 (and below) clarity grades, there may be small imperfections that are visible without a loupe. The details of those inclusions matter. if they’re in a corner that can be covered by a prong, for example, or if the inclusion is a white feather, it won’t impact the final look of your ring and that stone is likely a great buy. 
  • Is there fluorescence present? Generally with higher colors, it is better to have less fluorescence, because fluorescence often results in a less lively stone. However, fluorescence can also help warmer colors look whiter on their face.
  • How is the symmetry and polish graded? A top grade on both will contribute towards the diamond’s overall brilliance and shine.