Everything You Need To Know About Oval Cut Diamonds
Updated: Aug 5, 2019
Oval diamonds go back centuries. They have been the diamond of choice for royals, celebrities, and the rest of us for good reason.
Ovals are a variation on the classic: round brilliant.
Why is this significant?
Because no shape can play with light like a round, brilliant cut diamond.
Since ovals are a close relative of the round, an oval diamond can have extreme brilliance compared to other fancy cut stones. Oval diamonds can have incredible sparkle and fire, but only if they’re cut well. Here is what you need to know if considering an oval shaped diamond:
1. Oval diamonds have a Spanx effect.
Yep. You read that right. The elongated shape of an oval diamond will actually make your hand and finger appear slimmer.
2. Ovals look bigger than they are.
Because ovals have a larger surface area than their round counterparts, a well-cut oval diamond will actually appear larger than other stone of the same weight. In other words, a one-carat oval diamond will look larger than a one-carat round diamond.
Put another way, if size matters to you, with oval diamonds you won’t have to spend quite as much to get the look of a bigger stone.
3. Ovals are sturdier than other cuts.
Like rounds, ovals have no corners or sharp angles. This means they are more durable and less prone to chip than other fancy cuts.
Oval diamonds can vary a lot in proportions. Some are too tall and narrow. Their shoulders are like sharp, straight lines. Other ovals are cut too wide and have shoulders that bulge.
Some ovals are shallow. Others are deep. Neither will sparkle as it should.
Because there is so much room for variation, there are a lot of poorly cut oval diamonds in this world. You’ll want to be sure you are getting a good one.
The ‘bowtie effect.’
The bowtie refers to a dark shadow that occurs across the belly of an oval cut diamond. Some level of bowtie is unavoidable; it’s just inherent to this shape. However, the better the cut of the oval, the less of a bowtie there will be.
The bowtie occurs when an oval is cut too shallow, but if you overcompensate with a stone cut too deeply, your diamond will look dull and lifeless instead of shadowed.
With ovals, there is a definite sweet spot and you can’t find it unless you look at a lot of stones. Don’t buy an oval diamond online. There’s just too much potential variation in this cut’s proportions. Oval diamonds are stones you have to see firsthand.
It is worth noting that lab-grown oval cut diamonds have less variation in cut quality than traditional, mined diamonds.
With lab-grown ovals, you are guaranteed to get a consistently high quality cut with minimal bowtie and maximum brilliance.
Oval cut diamonds may be 6th in America in terms of popularity, but they are second to none in terms of beauty.
When it comes to personal style, ovals are simply hard to beat. They look amazing when flanked by just about any other shape or color of stone. They are equally gorgeous alone as they are in a halo or bevel-style mounting. And while rounds may have the monopoly on perfect sparkle, ovals can offer something altogether different.
Ovals are unexpected. They are evocative, timeless, and elegant.
Maybe that’s why generations of style-makers including Princess Diana, supermodel Miranda Kerr, and actresses Blake Lively and Anne Hathaway, all chose oval cut diamonds for their engagement rings.
If you’re considering an oval diamond, you’re in good company, and we commend your brilliant taste.