Radiant Cut VS Emerald Cut

by Ultimate Jewelry Guide
Radiant Cut VS Emerald Cut

A diamond is a beautiful gem that symbolizes love, but not all diamonds are created equally. Diamonds come in many shapes and colors, but some of the most popular shapes are the radiant cut and emerald cut diamonds. 

In this blog, we will help you learn the difference between radiant cut diamonds and emerald cut diamonds.

What Is A Radiant Cut Diamond?

A radiant cut is a beautiful variation of the classic princess cut. The main difference between this and a princess cut diamond is that it has tapering points on both sides of the top, instead of just one side like most diamonds. 

These points create more fire and brilliance in your stone without affecting its value or clarity grade! If you are looking for a unique diamond shape that will catch the eye of everyone in the room, this one is perfect for you!

What Is An Emerald Cut Diamond?

An emerald cut diamond is one of the oldest cuts in use and has been popular since around 1920. The pavilion angle starts at 40 degrees but can be adjusted to 45 or even 50 degrees depending on what you prefer for your stone.

Its shape is a modified brilliant cut with an octagon shape that is actually easier to make than the round brilliant.

In terms of value, it’s considered one of the best cutting styles as well as being very popular because it’s easy to recognize if diamonds need cleaning or work done on them. Because of its truncated corners, an emerald-cut diamond will usually last longer than other cuts with pointed corners.

The Differences Between Radiant Cut And Emerald Cut Diamonds

When looking to purchase a diamond, it’s important to know the differences between these two popular shapes and how they can affect your investment. Radiant Cut diamonds feature 70 facets that bring out each stone’s brilliance and sparkle.

Emerald cut diamonds have only 57 facets which make them appear more subtle than radiant cuts with fewer light reflections in different directions. Emerald cut diamonds, however, are typically less expensive than radiant cuts and they also come in a wider variety of shapes and sizes to fit any budget or style preference.

All that said, let’s look at some of the main characteristics that differentiate these two diamond cuts.


A radiant cut diamond belongs to the brilliant-cut group, while the emerald cut is of the step cut group. Because of this, the radiant cut diamond has the most facets.

A step-cut diamond will have fewer facets than that of a brilliant or radiant type. It also means that it lacks some brilliance as compared to its counterparts in more groups. This results in less sparkle and scintillation.

A step-cut diamond has four main groups, namely the baguette cut, bruted cut, emerald, and Asscher cuts. The difference lies in their number of facets on top as well as their proportions. This also determines how much light is reflected back to the eye while looking at the stone from different angles or directions.


When differentiating these two cuts with respect to their facets, it’s mostly to see which of the two appears more linear. A radiant cut has many facets that feature a triangular shape, while others appear non-rectangular.

On the other hand, an emerald cut features facets that are parallel to each other as well as the stone’s girdle. This means that emerald cut diamonds appear to be more linear than the radiant cut types.

Color and Clarity

Since radiant cut diamonds belong to the brilliant-cut group, they feature a strong, reflective light. This is because of its many facets that are cut at an angle and their mirror-like quality or high polish.

On the other hand, emerald cuts might not be as brilliant since they don’t contain angled surfaces like radiant diamonds do. However, this type still emits some amount of refraction through its long and slender shape.

The color grade for both types of diamond cuts is the same, regardless of its clarity grades as well. This means that a radiant cut can have inclusions or blemishes all throughout its body, while an emerald cut might only be included on one side because it’s linear nature. In any case, both still retain the same color grade.

Brilliance and Sparkle

The cut of the diamond is ultimately important because it has an impact on its overall brilliance and sparkle. The reason for this is that a well-cut stone will have long, straight facets with many reflections being sent out from them.

On the other hand, diamonds that are poorly faceted might not be as bright since they contain internal inclusions or flaws that will prevent light from escaping. This is why poorly cut diamonds might appear duller than the others, especially because it contains more dark areas inside of its body due to insufficient reflection.

When it comes to the difference in brilliance between a radiant cut and an emerald cut, the former takes home the trophy. This is because a radaint cut features facets that are shaped and positioned to maximize its brilliance, scintillation, and fire.

But with an emerald cut, the light that is being dispersed from its outer edges might not be as bright or intense. The reason for this is because emerald cut diamonds aren’t cut with the aim of maximizing their brilliance and sparkle.

This means that radiant cut diamonds are the best choice when it comes to finding a stone with superior sparkle and fire.

Price Difference

Radiant cuts are priced lower than emerald ones, despite their very similar appearance and characteristics. This is because of its many angled facets that increase the amount of diamond wastage during production compared to an emerald cut. Emerald cut diamonds also require less polishing after it’s initially shaped before passing inspections.

Therefore, it’s clear that emerald cuts are more expensive than radiant cuts even if they look very similar to each other. The only difference between the two is their shape and how linear they appear. Regardless of this distinction though, both types can be graded with the same color and clarity grades as well.


In conclusion, these two shapes are both beautiful, but each has its unique characteristics. The emerald cut is a beautiful and elegant choice when you’re looking for an engagement ring.

If it’s not in your budget, try the radiant cut. It has many of the same qualities with more brilliance and sparkle that make this particular shape so popular.

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