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24.01.23

6 Reasons Not to Buy a Marquise Diamond

By Stephanie Dore

You’re unique. Your love is unique. Your style. So obviously you want a unique engagement ring to boot. Which is, perhaps, why you’ve ended up here, reading a blog post about the marquise diamond, one of the most unique diamond shapes available. Choosing a marquise engagement ring is a bit of a throwback. It’s a shape that’s been around a long time — like, 18th century long time — and has just never really been that popular. And for good reason. It’s so pointy, it requires special settings, it can look a little, well, dated. Marquise diamonds aren’t for everyone, and here’s why:

Marquise Diamond is Out of Style

Sure, Selena Gomez might have touted “I’m in my marquise diamonds, I’m a marquise diamond, could even make that Tiffany jealous,” which makes this diamond shape sound hot, but frankly, it’s just not. Way back when, King Louis XV decided he needed a diamond shaped like the lips of his mistress, and thus the marquise was born. Historical precedent aside, however, the marquise diamond has hung back from the popular diamond shape crowd. Sure, there was a surge of popularity in the 1970s, but no one wants a ring that looks like their mom’s, right?

The good thing for you? Modern designers are having a bit of a moment playing with the potential for new marquise engagement ring styles that stand out from the dated and dull crowd. Whether it’s a sleek, east-west set solitaire, a vintage-inspired take, or a floral fantasy, there are plenty of unique marquise diamond ring settings to choose from. The bad thing for you? Because the stone still isn’t that popular, there are less diamonds to choose from and because the cut isn’t standardized like, say, a round, you’ll have to inspect each one closely because no two are alike. If you find one you love, don’t let it go!

Our Twist Marquise engagement ring stacks
beautifully with our Paisley Band
This center stone speaks for itself
with the vintage-inspired bezel setting

Marquise Diamonds are So Pointy

There’s really no way to get around the fact that marquise diamonds are sharp stuff. And that means more risk involved in both the setting and wearability of this diamond shape. Hear us out. Diamonds are hard, sure. In fact, the hardest substance on Earth. But they are not unbreakable. And the thinner and pointier they are cut, the more at risk they are to breakage. All it takes is a good knock on your granite countertop and you’ve chipped the point off! And no one wants that. If you’re choosing a marquise diamond engagement ring, you’ll want to ensure that your setting has prongs or a bezel that covers each pointed end to protect it from potential hazards.

Marquise Diamonds are Wonky

If you’ve ever looked at a marquise diamond and something just seemed a little off, the likelihood is you’re not wrong. Like we said up top, unlike round diamonds which have been standardized and cut to perfection, each marquise diamond has its own unique personality when it comes to cut and proportions. This can make choosing one feel like an endless battle. But it’s easier if you know what you like. 

For instance, you’ll want to decide on length-to-width ratio (how long or how wide your diamond will look) first. Some people prefer a longer, skinnier marquise while others like a wider, shorter one. You’ll also want to make sure that all the angles look even and the middle line runs straight through the stone when you’re looking through the crown. If one is off, it can make the whole diamond look, well, wonky! Also consider how you will set your marquise diamond (north-south or east-west) when choosing the shape that you like.

North south or east west? Up to you.
There is nothing more modern
than a minimalist prong setting.

Marquise Diamond has Bow Ties

What sounds fancy but isn’t? A diamond bow tie. What are we talking about? Well, it’s something you’ll find in elongated diamond shapes like ovals, pears, and yes, marquises. This dark area, shaped like a bow tie, runs horizontally through the center of these shapes. It’s actually caused by the facets reflecting the shadow of your head as you gaze into the stone (no we’re not joking) and can be seen as you rock the diamond back and forth. While you can find stones where it’s less noticeable, bow ties aren’t 100% avoidable. How to do that? The only way is by actually looking at the diamond. Or having a good buddy (i.e. us) help you out.

Marquise Diamonds are Dull

One of the downsides of any fancy shape diamond (fancy means anything but round) is that they don’t have standardized cut grades, which makes it harder to determine a diamond’s brilliance, aka its sparkle. But that doesn’t mean they don’t sparkle, darlings. You just have to know what to look for. 

And when it comes to marquise diamonds, a table percentage of 53%-63% and a depth percentage between 58%-62% should be safe for visual appeal and brilliance. You’ll also want to look for excellent polish and symmetry to make sure your facets are sharp and well aligned. These parameters are a great starting point to narrow your search for the perfect marquise diamond, but the only way to really ensure your diamond’s got that bling is to check out photos or video of the real thing and see how it looks. If it’s not absolutely catching your eye, it’s not the one.

The Marquise Nouveau Three Stone is
the height of elegant extra-ness.
If the prong setting is your style you can also opt for six progs to add more security to the stone

Marquise Diamonds are Cheap

Ok, first of all, who doesn’t like an affordable diamond? But let’s break this one down. An expensive diamond does not inherently mean more beautiful. Yes, diamonds are priced based on their 4Cs — cut, color, clarity, carat weight — but it’s more than that. Round diamonds, because they’re the most popular and most available, actually command a much higher price tag than most fancy shape diamonds. And marquise diamonds are less popular than other fancy shapes, thus they do provide some easier-on-the-wallet price tags. But get this — they also face up about 15% larger for their carat weight than a comparable weight round. So you’re getting even more look for your money. Don’t let the price fool you into thinking a diamond isn’t going to look big and beautiful and blingy, baby.

Marquise Diamonds are For You

If you’re still convinced that a marquise diamond is the shape for you, then you’ve come to the right place. 

Explore our collection of signature engagement ring styles, all handcrafted in NYC from recycled gold or platinum. Or jump in and find your perfect diamond first! Check out 360-degree images of more than 10,000 diamonds, or book a virtual or offline appointment at our New York salon to view certified lab-grown and natural diamonds in person.

Not finding what you’re looking for? Email us at hello@frankdarling.com with a bit about your inspo and budget and we’ll curate a list of 5-7 exclusive stones that are just right for you.

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