How Many Facets Does a Diamond Have?

Written by: Afshin Shaddaie, Jewelry and Gemology Expert
July 26, 2017 – Posted in: Jewelry Blog

When most people think of diamonds, chances are they all picture the same one. But did you know there are more than a few diamond types? Today, we’re going to present you with a crash course on the facets of the most popular diamond types. 

We sort diamonds according to their chemical or physical features. Knowing diamond types in detail probably won’t make a lot of difference to an ordinary shopper. However, if you want to dig deeper and fully understand the ins and outs of diamonds, you’ve come to the right place. 

How Many Facets Does a Diamond Have? 

The gold standard for facets is 58. So round brilliants, cushion, heart, emerald, and oval diamonds all have 58 facets. However, some shapes have less than that.

One of the most significant features of a diamond is its cut. And, the number of diamond facets will depend on their shape and cut. 

Facets in Round Diamonds

SI3 Clarity Round Cut Diamond

The round brilliant cut diamond has 58 facets. It is the most common diamond cut and it’s facet pattern is without a doubt the most famous among all diamonds.

Click here to shop our round diamond rings.

Facets in Cushion-Cut Diamonds

Brilliant Cushion Cut Diamond

The cushion-cut diamond was quite common before the use of modern technology. During that period, diamond cutters couldn’t cut circular diamonds, so they went for square or rectangle shapes. So if you’re a fan of vintage jewelry, a cushion-cut diamond ring is the way to go. 

You can see our cushion-cut diamond ring collection here. 

Princess-Cut Diamonds

Princess Cut Diamond

These diamonds can have around 50 facets, with the ability to additionally change the diamond’s sparkle. The number of facets can go up to 144. However, you are most likely to find them at a lower range. The most common princess-cut diamonds have between 50 and 58 facets. What makes it special is that this cut does a stunning job at hiding inclusions. 

Tip: If you decide to go for the princess cut shape, choose the nearly colorless ones. 

Asscher Cut Diamonds

Asscher Cut Diamond on Grey Background

A typical cut of this type will have 57 facets. The Asscher-cut diamond’s shape is quite unique. That’s because its facets look like a staircase inside the stone. Thanks to its design, Asscher cut diamonds are incredibly sophisticated without the fiery light we see in brilliant cuts.

Have a look at our Asscher cut diamond ring collection here

Trillion Cut Diamonds 

The Trillion cut has 50 facets, and it has less depth compared to other shapes. If you’re looking for an authentic diamond shape, look for these diamonds. Their equilateral shape is a lovely refreshment from the usual circle or pear shape. Also, these rings are commonly used as three-stone engagement rings. 

Emerald-Cut Diamond

Loose Emerald Cut Diamond

The emerald diamond cut is one of the most elegant and timeless cuts out there. It features long step cuts that offer both white and color reflections. Usually, these diamonds come in a rectangular shape. However, you can also find square-shaped diamonds. 

You can have a look at our emerald-cut diamond collection here

Ashoka Cut Diamonds 

Ashoka cut diamonds are one of the rarest, most unique diamond cuts. And the most expensive ones as well. This stunning diamond shape features 62 facets. It’s a modified cushion-cut diamond with rounded corners and of rectangular shape. 

Types of Diamonds – Technically Speaking 

Round Diamond Engagement Ring

If you want to dig deeper, here’s a quick overview of the technical diamond classifications. There are two main diamond categories: type I and type II. Type I diamonds have traces of nitrogen, while type II don’t. 

In addition, there are a few sub-categories within these two types: 

  • Type 1a: the most common diamond type. It makes up to 95% of all natural diamonds in the world. Some processes during the formation period show why this diamond type is the most common. As nitrogen is the most abundant element in the atmosphere, it’s easy for it to find its way into the diamond’s structure. These diamonds often vary in color but are usually yellowish due to the nitrogen influence. We can further divide these diamonds into IaA and IaB sub-categories. This classification is due to different nitrogen atoms that affect the diamond color. 
  • Type 1b: These diamonds are very rare. They make up for less than 0.1% of natural diamonds. The nitrogen atoms come in pairs, and they don’t affect the color as much. 
  • Type 1aB: In this sub-category, nitrogen atoms accumulate next to each other. This process gives these diamonds a yellow or brown shade. 
  • Type 2a: Diamonds that belong to this category have almost no traces of other elements (nitrogen or boron). These are the chemically purest diamonds out there. It’s why there’s a high demand for them. They are mostly colorless but can also come in yellow, red, or blue. 
  • Type 2b: These diamonds make up for less than 0.1% of natural diamonds in the world. Therefore, this sets them in competition with 1b type for the rarest diamonds in the world. Type 2b diamonds contain traces of boron instead of nitrogen. That’s why they’re usually blue or gray in hue. 

Diamond Types for Most Shoppers 

Emerald Cut Diamond Engagement Ring SB1056

You can see how understanding diamond types from the gemological perspective can require a bit of technical knowledge. However, most jewelers and shoppers won’t classify them that way. The next time you shop for diamonds, you can ask for some of these types: 

1. Natural Diamonds 

This is probably the most common diamond type that everyone pictures in their head. White natural diamonds are the most common diamond type available across jewelry shops everywhere. Diamond miners mine natural diamonds from the ground and sell them without modifying their properties. 

2. Treated Diamonds 

These are diamonds that have the same origin as natural diamonds. However, due to lack of color or clarity, they undergo an additional enhancement to give them a better look. Some of the most common treatments include hiding the inclusions on the diamond. Modifying their appearance is the only way to sell these diamonds. And it goes without saying that their price is much lower than the natural diamonds. 

3. Lab-Grown Diamonds 

Lab-grown (or man-made) diamonds are becoming more and more popular each year. These are commercial use diamonds that come from laboratories. And as the technology for manufacturing these diamonds improves, their price keeps going down. At first, the man-made diamond’s price was 30% of the price of a regular diamond. Today, you’ll find artificial diamonds that are 50% cheaper. Predictions are that in a few years, they will be 70% cheaper than natural diamonds. 

Just to give you an example, imagine two diamonds of the same physical properties. You can buy one for $6,000, and the other for $2,000. This explains why there has been a massive increase in demand for man-made diamonds over the years. 

Warning: There are a lot of risks to Lab-Grown Diamonds. Read our Lab Diamond Article before making your purchase.

4. Naturally Colored Diamonds 

Some of the rarest diamonds you can find in the world are naturally colored diamonds. And they certainly are the most stunning type. They come in all colors you can imagine, the most popular being pink, blue, red, and orange. These diamonds have become more and more popular because of a recent trend set by celebrities. They like to show their engagement rings made of natural-colored diamonds on social networks, making others want them too. 

Also, note that there are two subsets of these diamonds – natural-colored, treated-colored, and man-made-colored diamonds. That means you can buy a man-made diamond at a more affordable price. 

Knowing Your Diamond From the Inside Out 

12151 Diamond Engagement Ring

We’ve given you a brief overview of different diamond types and categories. Hopefully, you can better understand the complicated nature of these valuable gems. After all, if you have already decided on buying a diamond, you should know exactly what it is you’re getting. You have plenty of starter points here to help you choose the most precious diamond for you or your better half.