Diamonds might be a girl's best friend, but other precious gemstones are becoming popular choices for contemporary jewelry. Given the controversy surrounding diamonds, gemstones are often friendlier to peoples' consciences; they come in more colors, too, as well as have a higher variety of gem cuts. Gemstones are less expensive as a whole, making them more accessible to jewelry fans.
The beauty of gem cuts ultimately rests in the eye of the beholder, but we've compiled a guide to the different gem cuts and shapes that are all the rage. We'll break down the type of gem cuts, why they matter, and everything else you need to know.

An Overview of Gem Cuts

Let's be clear. There are a lot of different ways to cut a gem. Humans have been cutting gems for centuries, so the work has a rich history filled with evolving methods and tools. Today, there are a handful of popular gem cuts that you will see in jewelry sold on the market. Here are the more common ones:

BRILLIANT CUT

PRINCESS CUT

TRILLION CUT

EMERALD CUT

CUSHION CUT

OVAL CUT

PEAR CUT

MARQUISE CUT

BAGUETTE CUT

Do Gem Cuts Matter?

We won't mince our words: yes. Gem cuts do indeed matter. In general, gems are cut in such a way to accentuate the gemstone's natural beauty. This usually means that the cut to the gem is made to give better clarity to the gem or highlight the its facets so that light catches in just the right way.

It's not all about beauty, though: the cut of a gem also factors into how it can be set into jewelry. As much as a gem cut is about making the gem look the best, the cut of the gem also determines the style of the jewelry that the gem finds a home in.

For example, a round brilliant cut is often seen in rings, while teardrop cuts are generally seen in earrings and pendants. Different jewelry styles rely on specific gem cuts, so jewelers pay a lot of attention to placing the right gem, cut the right way, into the right piece.

Tips About Gem Cuts

There are a couple additional things that might be helpful when shopping around for jewelry, especially if you are in search of unique or contemporary jewelry that utilizes uncommon gem cuts. Most importantly, you should be aware of the distinction between shape and cut.

SHAPE VERSUS CUT

HOW DO JEWELERS DECIDE GEM CUTS?

Conclusion

different cuts of gems on the table

Image by Colin Behrens from Pixabay

Gems are cut so that light is directed through the gem, which enhances the gem's clarity, makes its color more vivid, and makes the gem really sparkle. The way a gem is cut plays a key role in how attractive the gemstone is and the kind of jewelry a gem can be set into.

The way a gem is cut matters to the overall finished product, which is why some gem cuts are more popular than others. The most common styles of gem cut you will see are the brilliant cut and the princess cut, but there are other cuts, like the trillion cut, that are gaining popularity in contemporary jewelry.

Featured Image by Peter Lomas from Pixabay