How to Decide Between Princess Cut and Marquise Diamonds

woman wearing princess cut diamond ring holding man's arm

It's not that we think princess cut diamonds and marquise diamonds look at all similar. They clearly don't. But you like what you like, and sometimes you like more than one diamond shape — even if they're not remotely similar. These two different loose diamonds would add completely different characteristics to your engagement ring, which is probably where you're stuck. So here's what you need to know about each to help you make your decision.

Marquise diamonds

The marquise cut diamond, also known as the football-shaped cut, boat-shaped cut, or the eye-shaped cut, is one of the least common diamond cuts among the engagement ring world. Its elliptical shape is centuries-old, but in terms of popularity, the princess cut diamond is much higher on the popularity scale.

Although a marquise diamond does not shine the brightest of all the cuts of diamonds, it does have an allure created from its special shape. This sparkle brings a new level of sophistication to the diamond world. A marquise cut diamond engagement ring is particularly flattering as it makes the wearer’s fingers appear longer and slenderer. However, the pointed edges do make chipping more likely.

The marquise cut diamond has a royal origin as it dates back to King Louis XV in the 18th century. His commission of a diamond led to a shape that mimicked the shape of his mistress’s lips. The name “marquise” refers to regality as well. It was considered to be a rank between a count and a duke. These courtiers were commonly seen showing off their marquise diamonds in order to flaunt their rank in society. This regal and historical connection brings a fascination and appeal to the modern bride, as seen by the plethora of celebrities proudly displaying a marquise engagement ring on their left hand. Because of the antiquity of the ring’s history, many buyers prefer to add a tint of color instead of purchasing the typical colorless diamond.

When purchasing a marquise diamond engagement ring, Cut remains most important out of the Four C’s (Cut, Clarity, Color, and Carat). Buyers should be careful of the bowtie cut, a slightly broader body than that of the marquise cut, which creates large dark spot in the middle of the stone resembling a bowtie. Buyers should also avoid the football cut, a body that is too narrow to be considered marquise, because the radiance is significantly lowered. The perfect marquise cut has enough surface space for light to properly reflect without causing the bowtie effect.

Princess cut diamonds

The princess cut diamond, on the other hand, is extremely popular in the engagement ring world. A princess cut diamond engagement ring is the second most popular style of engagement ring offered. Unlike the marquise cut, however, the princess cut was only recently developed. It was created in 1980 and its overall flexibility in jewelry makes the cut particularly fascinating to buyers.

Princess cuts are not only popular but also cheaper than most other cuts of diamonds. This low price can be attributed to the process in which princess cut diamonds are made. Two princess cut diamonds can be cut from the same rough stone, keeping the stone at a high profit, but lowering the waste immensely.

Square in shape, the princess cut may also stray into rectangularity. However, this is at a cost; the more rectangular the princess cut, the lower the overall value of the stone. This cut of stone is particularly susceptible to chipping and inclusions near the corners, and therefore, any princess cut diamond engagement ring should have prongs that securely cover the corners of the stone.

Popular settings for princess cut and marquise diamonds

No matter which diamond shape you ultimately select, there are some setting styles that are just perfect pairs. They're very popular for their ability to work with the bold silhouette of the marquise as well as the prim and proper angles of the princess. Check them out below:

princess cut vs marquise crisscross diamond

Crisscross Diamond Engagement Ring

The Crisscross Diamond Engagement Ring features two smooth metal bands which crisscross over one another to give the ring further dimension and detail. This modern, solitaire ring would pair perfectly with a princess cut diamond as the squareness complements the symmetrical style of the bands. A marquise cut does less blending in with this engagement ring, but rather, it stands out in its magnificence.

princess cut vs marquise classic cathedral solitaire

Classic Cathedral Solitaire Diamond Engagement Ring

For a more simplistic ring, the Classic Cathedral Solitaire Engagement Ring shows off a smooth band with a little added detail through its cathedral window which elevates the diamond.

princess cut vs marquise trellis solitaire diamond

Trellis Princess Solitaire Engagement Ring

Similarly, the Trellis Princess Solitaire Diamond Engagement Ring presents a smooth band with an elevated stone, but in this style of engagement ring, the diamond is elevated through a trellis design. The structural nature of the band creates a setting perfect for a princess cut diamond.

princess cut vs marquise twirling solitaire diamond

Twirling Solitaire Diamond Engagement Ring

The Twirling Solitaire Diamond Engagement Ring is also in a solitaire style. Romantic and graceful metal twirls up the band to create an interesting background to complement the stone.

princess cut vs marquise open cathedral diamond

Open Cathedral Diamond Engagement Ring

Once again with a smooth, structural band, the Open Cathedral Diamond Engagement Ring gives a thicker band to create a more industrial look. The cathedral setting allows for a sturdy, yet elegant, addition to the engagement ring.

princess cut vs marquise cascading channel set

Cascading Channel Set Diamond Engagement Ring

The Cascading Channel Set Diamond Engagement Ring shows off 12 accent diamonds that cascade down from the center stone to give an already shiny ring some added sparkle.

yellow gold pear shaped engagement rings pave halo

Princess Diamond Engagement Ring

Similarly, the Princess Diamond Engagement Ring shows off its own 14 accent diamonds, but these accent diamonds are uniquely princess cut, making this engagement ring style pair well with a princess cut center diamond.

princess cut vs marquise braided row diamond

Braided Row Diamond Engagement Ring

Finally, the Braided Row Diamond Engagement Ring features a set of finely-twisted accent diamonds to add elegance and complexity to the engagement rings band for a more luxurious look overall.