Tips for Buying Cushion Cut Diamond Engagement Ring

Cushion Cut Diamond has been gaining popularity recently among people who are looking engagement rings. This doesn’t make the cut less confusing, however. When buying cushion cuts, there are so many terms that you need to understand before anything else. These are modified cushions, modified cushions, classic cushions, chunky cushions, broken glass, crushed ice, no culets, large culets, old minders, square cushions, and rectangular cushions. And if you are in the middle of looking for the best Cushion Cut Diamond for you, then we are here to help you. Below are some tips we have compiled to guide you in buying a cushion cut diamond engagement ring:

But before anything, you need to understand the basics first. They are:

The Difference between Standard and Modified Cushion

Cushion cuts are classified into two categories: standard and modified. At first, their differences are rather small and technical in nature with the effect on the stone’s appearance very minimal. However, when you go into the history of these two stones, you can find that they are completely unalike. As with the name, the Standard Cushions have been around longer than the Modified Cushions. Modified Cushions are simply modern variations of original cushion cut facet patterns.

The Difference between “Chunky” and “Crushed-ice” Cushion

Contrary to popular belief, there really isn’t much difference when it comes to buying a Standard cushion for its chunky look and a Modified cushion for “crushed-ice”. The truth of the matter is that the differences are barely noticeable in a cushion cut’s appearance; may it be Standard or Modified. The “chunky” or “crushed ice” look is in no way dependent on the cut classification. Instead, it is solely found within them.

As with the cut classifications, there are two categories for the “looks” a cushion cut diamond can display: the “chunky” and “crushed-ice”. For Chunky cushions, they have clearly defined and symmetrical facet patterns. You will notice it when looking down into the table of a face-up oriented stone. They have similarities with how round diamonds present themselves. As a result, they are frequently called “antique” cushion cuts.

On the other hand, “crushed-ice” cushions have no discernible faceting when you look through their table. They simply look like broken glass or, as the name states, crushed ice. Radiant cut usually looks like this. You can also find this in the corners of pear-shaped and marquise-shaped stones.

The 3 Cs of Buying the Best Diamond for a Cushion Cut Engagement Ring

After familiarizing yourself with the basics above, let us now move on to the three important C’s you need to consider when buying the best diamond for a Cushion Cut Engagement Ring: Color, Clarity, and Cut Quality.


You need to be careful when it comes to choosing the color of a cushion cut. It is recommended to stick to H color or higher for those planning to buy cushion cut in a white gold or platinum setting. Cushions and radiants retain their color stronger than any other shape contrary to rounds, which are best at masking their color.


Clarity of a diamond can be tricky and confusing for a cushion cut. To overcome this, you have to properly decide first whether you are buying a crushed-ice cushion or a chunky/antique cushion. If you are picking the former, then you can expect that they are generally very good at hiding inclusions. So if you are trying to buy a marquise or pear-shaped diamond, you have to make sure that the inclusions are in the corners so that they can be masked by the crushed-ice.

Cut Quality

Identifying the cut quality entails you to be more observant and meticulous. There are no strict rules that you can follow when it comes to knowing the stone’s parameters. Furthermore, the certificates also won’t be able to tell you the look of a cushion cut diamond—nothing will indicate to you the roundness of the corner or the squareness. With this case, you must learn how to limit yourself to vendors you can trust. Try and look for ones that offer clear magnified pictures of the diamonds in their inventory.

Further Guidelines

  • It is advisable to stick to cushions with a depth under 70% and a table under 70%.
  • It is better to opt for medium girdles than other extremely thick girdles.
  • Look for cushions with an H color or higher with as low of a clarity grade as possible
  • Stick to S12 clarity or S1 clarity to get the best value.
  • For Polish and Symmetry, make sure that it has a Good, Very Good, or Excellent Quality
  • You can freely choose whatever length or width ratio you like
  • Make sure to bring your inspecting eye all the way through the process!
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Kevin Lee is a former tech advisor who cut his teeth in Silicon Valley. He now spends his time sharing his passion for investing in diamonds and jewelry. You can reach Kevin for any comments by using this form.