Tips and Tricks

What are Square Engagement Rings?

One distinctive aspect of jewelry that makes it stand out, is shape. Diamonds in particular are known for being in the iconic round brilliant cut. Recently, geometric shapes have been taking up the jewelry spotlight and it’s no different for diamonds. You’ve probably noticed while shopping lately there are a lot of triangle, hexagon, and square-shaped pieces. Well, we have definitely noticed and we are here for it! While square engagement rings haven’t always had the limelight, they have always been around.

Although we are only talking about square-shaped diamonds, that doesn’t mean they all look the same. Under the umbrella term, “square”, these cuts find their ways to stand apart from the rest. The way these cuts differ is in their facet arrangement.

What Diamond Shapes are Square?

Origins of the Princess cut are fuzzy, but people believe it first made its appearance in London around 1961 as a “profile cut”. More recently, this cut has been renamed the show stopping princess cut we know and love today. A princess cut brings out a diamond’s natural sparkle while hiding any clarity characteristics inside the stone with its hall of mirrors type of appearance. Princess cuts are easily recognizable with their signature “X” shape when viewed face-up. With distinct lines and sharp corners, these cuts are the drama queens of the square cuts.

princess solitarire.jpg

Cushion Cut is a Rounded "square" Shaped Diamond

A cushion cut’s gently curved corners may make more sense for someone who lives a busy life and wants to lessen the risk of chipping. Cushion cuts are a modern tribute to “old mine cuts” which were popular throughout the 1700s and 1800s. However, the old mine cut and cushion cut are not the same. With the advancement in gem cutting technologies, our modern cushion cut now boasts more facets that intensify its sparkle and reflected light. This cut beautifully converges brilliance and history.

prong cushion.png

Emerald Cut, Can This be Square?

Okay, I know what you’re thinking. “An emerald cut isn’t a square”. Well yes, you my friend are correct. A traditional emerald cut is a rectangle, but they can be square, as well. If you thought the cushion cut had an impressive family tree, then hold onto your hat! The emerald cut’s origins can be traced back to the 1500s. The emerald cut’s predecessor was the table cut, a very simplistic and primitive gem cut that was originally designed for a verdant gem that everyone can appreciate; emeralds. Due to the nature of its cutting style, emerald cuts don’t enhance sparkle like other cuts. It's encouraged to use a high clarity and color diamond for this cut because any inclusions or hints of color will be more noticeable than in other cuts.

An emerald cut diamond ring with a halo in white metal

Asscher Cut, a Glamorous Square Shaped Diamond!

Asscher cuts were created in 1902 by the prominent gem cutters, the Asscher family. Normally, only high clarity diamonds are fashioned into asscher cut diamonds. The asscher cut is technically a square emerald cut, but the only difference is asscher cuts normally have wider cut corners than square emerald cuts. The signature shape of an asscher cut strongly resembles an octagon due to the extra large cut corners.

asscher diamond solitaire ring in white metal

Radiant Cut is usually Rectangular, but Dare to be Square!

With 70 facets, the radiant grabs attention like no other. This cut was designed in 1977. What was it designed for, you ask? Glamour! This beauty is a hybrid between a round brilliant cut and an emerald. This cut flaunts the familiar outline of an emerald cut while also incorporating the dazzle and clarity hiding features of a round brilliant, all rolled up into one brilliant design.

a radiant center stone with emerald cut flanking it. 3 stone

Exactly How Many Square Diamond Shapes Are There?

There are plenty of other square cuts that haven’t been mentioned in this article. After all, diamond cutters are a mix between scientists and artists, so at any point they can make a square cut that in some way is different than the ones I listed, and they give it a name and ta-da! A new square gem cut is born. The sky is the limit when it comes to gem cuts, but don’t let that intimidate you. Use it to your advantage to express your individuality. Have fun appreciating all the shapes in which a gem can be presented to the world.

All of the above cuts can be found on You can use our search filters to find diamonds that fit your preferences and your new favorite square shape or chat with a gemologist for help searching!

Elizabeth Callnan
Elizabeth Callnan
Elizabeth grew up toddling around in her Grandfather's rock shop which shaped her love and passion for gemstones. Started by her Great Grandfather, she has definitely followed in her family's footsteps. She has recently completed her Graduate Gemologist courses at the GIA and is now working on studying pearls. When she's not adoring the dazzle of gemstones (or writing about them) she's enjoying the captivating beauty of her home state, Hawaii!