Think of a pear-shaped diamond as a blend between the marquise cut diamond and the round brilliant. It has one round end and a sharp pointed end. And no, this is not a recent cut and has in fact been around for over 500 years. This ultimately makes the pear cut among the oldest diamond cuts out there.
The pear cut looks like a teardrop and will very often be placed as side stones to an engagement ring as it complements the center stone perfectly. You will also find the pear cut in drop rings as well as pendant stones. There is a unique feeling that comes with the pear cut when set as the center stone; that of uniqueness class and is absolutely stunning.
The pear cut shares more with the brilliant round cut than just the edge. It also has 58 facets. This allows the stone to provide excellent light reflection, resulting in great sparkle and brilliance. When it comes to the fancy cut diamonds, none eludes more fire than the pear cut. It is an excellent choice for an engagement ring because I will work perfectly on any finger and has a unique ability to make the fingers appear elongated.
Size is one advantage of going for the pear cut diamond. Thanks to the elongated shape, it appears larger than other diamonds in the same carat weight. But that is not all as the diamond is also 8% larger than a round diamond on the top side.
What this means is that even a small diamond can have a big impact and that is not even considering the large diamond which can appear huge. Compare this to the Asscher cut which has the largest portion of the diamond on the underside making a relatively sizeable diamond appear smaller.
Another advantage of the pear shape is that it can be cheaper than a similar sized round diamond. But there is a catch, getting a perfectly cut diamond can be difficult and the clarity ratings will not tell you about the quality of the cut.
But to get a quality pear-shaped diamond can be quite the challenge. These are rare owing to the fact that the shape can be extremely difficult to cut. If you’ve decided to go for a pear cut diamond, here are a few things you need to know.
The anatomy of the pear shape diamond
The pear shape is one of the “fancy” cut diamonds. This means that it has a shape other than round. All the main parts of a pear cut diamond will influence the beauty of the stone. Because of this very fact, it is crucial to understand them in order to gain a discerning eye.
There is the head, which is the round part of the diamond. This curves to form the shoulder as it starts to bend towards the tip.
The bend continues to form the belly, then the wing and lastly the sharp tip called the point. Always pay close attention to the outline of the pear cut diamond. The shoulders and the wings should be gently rounded with good looking arches on the wings.
If the wings were too flat, then this would cause the diamond to look too narrow. On the other hand, when they are too rounded, then the stone looks short and stubby.
Other than the outline of the diamond, you also need to consider the facets.
First off is the culet. This is a smaller facet situated at the bottom of the pavilion. It prevents the tip from chipping. If the gem doesn’t have a facet in this location, then it is said to have a closed culet.
The crown is the facet at the very top of the diamond located on top of the girdle.
The girdle is a narrow band around the crown and separating the crown from the pavilion.
The pavilion is the part of the gem that is under the crown and the girdle. It has the function of reflecting light towards the crown.
At the center of the crown is another facet known as the table.
Culet placement and inclusions in the pear cut
Where the culet is placed has a significant impact on how the pear cut diamond looks. Simply put, and following the fact that both sides of the diamond should mirror each other, the culet should be in the dead center of the stone.
Some pear cut diamonds will have the culet set at the keel line which extends down the center of the diamond and where all the facets will meet. The keel line needs to also divide the diamond by half for it to be symmetrical.
The point of the diamond is where most inclusions are likely to be and where most of the damage is likely to occur so keep your eye focused on this area. Also note that if the pear shape diamond has a large table facet, this will make the inclusions more apparent. This is one more reason why you need to go for the clearest diamond you can find.
The table needs to also be at the center of the pear cut diamond. This will allow the most brilliance and fire. If say, the table was not centered, then this would make the crown facets appear larger on one side than on the opposite side.
The symmetry should be perfect
Symmetry is absolutely critical when dealing with pear cuts. Why you might ask? Because if there is even a tiny bit of imperfection in the cut, your eye will be drawn to it and it will show.
So, if you were to take a perfectly cut pear-shaped diamond and drew a line straight through the center, then the left side should be a mirror image of the right side. Also, the sharp point of the diamond should align with the tip of the round end.
Then there are the sides of the pear cut diamond. These should have no straight edges and should instead be curved all the way to the sharp point.
The length-to-width ratio of the pear cut
This also has a huge impact on the shape and appearance of the pear cut diamond. The rounded edge and the tip should have the right balance; never too wide as this can cause the diamond to appear more triangular than pear-shaped.
The best length to width ratio should be anywhere between 1.50 to 1.75. Below the 1.50 ratio and the stone will have a squat look while above the 1.75 ratios, the stone will appear a bit too narrow and long.
However, it’s important to note that it all comes down to your individual preferences and you may find a diamond that falls over or under these parameters to be much more ideal.
While going through a video of the pear shape diamond is a great choice, there are some challenges involved. The first is that in the video, the diamond is going to be lying on its side and at an angle. Because of this, it can look as though it is not well cut but in reality, it actually is.
To get around this, drag the camera and get the same distance from both the shoulders to the end and check the symmetry and shape. Next, get the same distance with the wings of the diamond. If after doing this the diamond still looks a bit off, then you should pick another diamond.
The table below will serve as an excellent guideline for analyzing the pear shape diamond cut.
|Depth%||58-62||56-57.9 or 62.1-66||53-55.9 or 66.1-71||50-52.9 or 71.1-74||<50 or >74|
|Table%||53-63||52 or 64-65||51 or 66-68||50 or 69-70||<50 or >70|
|Girdle||Very thin- slightly thick||Very thin- slightly thick||Very thin- thick||Very thin-very thick||Extra thin -extra thick|
|Length-to-width ratio||1.45-1.55||1.40-1.44 or 1.56-1.65||1.35-1.39 or 1.66-1.80||1.25-1.34 or 1.81-2.00||>1.25 or<2.00|
The shape of the pear cut diamond
The pear cut diamond that you choose should have the right shape. That means that it should have round shoulders and a semicircular side. The wings should curve gently towards the tip of the diamond.
Ensure that one side is not flat and that they are both semicircular. Also, make sure that the wings are not bulging. This will not only make the diamond unappealing but will also hide the weight of the stone.
Checking for the bowtie
A bowtie is a dark area in the center of the diamond as you look on it that has the shape of well, a bowtie. This is created when the light travels through the pear cut diamond. It is a result of misaligned facets and improper cutting.
In this case, instead of the light being reflected back to the observer, it will travel through the diamond on one side and come out through the other side.
One of the main reasons why checking for a bowtie in a pear-shaped diamond is crucial is because the shape itself is very susceptible to bowties. These could be anywhere from undetectable to severe. When the diamond has an undetectable bowtie, then it will have perfect alignment in the faceting.
This again emphasizes the importance of viewing the diamond yourself to be able to judge the quality of the cut. The certificate will not provide you with such information. If after observing the diamond, the first thing that you notice is the bowtie, and then it’s better to choose another diamond.
Picking the right setting for the pear shape
The sharp pointed end of the pear shape diamond could easily catch into clothes or even chip. This is why it is crucial to pick a setting that provides protection to the point.
Often the best is a setting that features six prongs. Five of the prongs will be holding the diamond while the sixth has a v shape and holds the point.
Many people will also go for the five-prong setting. It holds the diamond in a similar way but has a prong less than the six prongs. Unlike some shapes such as the Asscher cut which will not work with the bezel setting, the pear cut works perfectly with this setting.
A rule of thumb is you should always ensure that the setting you choose provides protection to the tip of the pear cut diamond.
A halo setting is known to add extra sparkle to a diamond, and for something that is as brilliant and that has as much fire as the pear cut, the result is simply breathtaking.
Choosing the right style for your pear-shaped diamond
When in the market for an engagement ring always note that you have many options to work with as far as the pear-shaped diamond is concerned.
If you go for the solitaire ring, the diamond will look absolutely stunning. On the other hand, you may want to go for a more classic and traditional style. In this case, you can opt for a 3 stone pear diamond with two smaller pear cut diamonds on the flanks of the larger pear cut diamond.
Pear cut diamond color grade
Due to the fire and brilliance of the pear cut, the diamond will highlight even the slightest tint of color. As most diamonds, the higher up you go on the color grade the higher the price.
While some people prefer a bit of color, the more colorless the diamond, the higher it is in the color grade as well such as D-G. Note that while there may be the slightest tint in these grades, it is hard to see with the naked eye and there could be a huge difference in price between colors grades in this section.
The more colorless diamonds can go with a platinum or white gold setting. However, with a bit of color in your diamond, go for the rose gold or yellow metals.
The chart below will help you evaluate color in pear shaped diamonds.
|.51 to 1.0 ct.||D-F||G||H-I||J-K||>K|
|1.0 to 2.0 ct.||D-F||D-F||G-H||I-J||>J|
|Fluoro||None||Faint- medium||strong||Very strong||Very strong|
Pear cut clarity grading
You can hide inclusions well with the pear cut owing to the shape and the fact that it is brilliant. The clarity grading systems ranks from flawless to very slightly included, that is, if you are going for a smaller stone of less than 1 carat.
On the other hand, you may want a bigger stone. In this case, it is advisable to go for a Flawless to Very Very slightly included 2 ratings. This is owing to the fact that it is much easier to see the inclusions in a larger stone than a smaller stone.
It is always a good idea to ask for videos and photos of a pear cut diamond that you are interested in and checks whether it is eye clean.
Take a look below at the list of clarity ratings as per the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).
- FL—Flawless, no inclusions
- IF—Internally Flawless, no inclusions only blemishes
- VVSI and VVS2—Very Very Slightly Included, has inclusions but difficult to spot
- SI1 and SI2—Slightly Included, the inclusions are noticeable
- I1 and I2— Obviously Included
Buying the pear cut diamond online
There are a few factors that you need to consider when buying a pear cut diamond online. First, the retailer should be reputable. They should also have plenty of experience in diamonds and lastly should be in a position to provide you with the certification.
Once you see the certification, always ensure that the laboratory is also reputable such as GIA, EGL, and AGS. The diamond report should provide you with a clarity grading, cut color, and carat. Also ask for photos and videos to help you make the decision as to the diamond’s color, clarity and most importantly symmetry.
The antique pear cut diamond
The old saying old is gold certainly applies when it comes to antique pear cut diamonds. However, always make sure that you are on the safe side by requesting for an authentication document or certificate. After all, there are cons out there that will rip you of your hard-earned money if you are not careful.
Bring an expert with you to double check the authenticity of the stone. It becomes harder with antique pear cut diamonds as they cannot be evaluated on a lab since they are already in their setting. However, the expert will help a great deal.
Whenever you want to buy a diamond, there is one rule of thumb—always takes a look at the stone yourself as the lab reports will not mention anything about the curves as they appear.
Wearing the pear shape diamond
It is completely up to you on how you want to wear the pear shape diamond. Some people will prefer to wear it with the point towards the nail while others with the point facing up.
Some people will also prefer that the point faces in a horizontal fashion. This makes the diamond acquire a more distinctive and contemporary appeal.
The pear cut exudes the delicateness of a tear and shines bright and powerful. It is no wonder it has such power to draw a keen eye toward it. When it is all said and done, it is how the diamond looks that should guide your decisions.