The Most Common Cushion Diamonds are the “Cushion Modified Brilliant” Cut.
The cushion diamonds you will see most frequently in retail shops are called “Cushion Modified brilliant” cut diamonds. This is a term used by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) on its certification. As these are the most common cushion cut type, most people will not have seen other better cushion cuts and assume, incorrectly, that all cushion diamonds are the same. Nothing could be further from the truth.
If you are to have a great looking diamond of this type you cannot simply go by the name “cushion” or “cushion modified brilliant”. It would be like assuming every pair of shoes are identical. There are many variations in the way cushion modified brilliant’s are cut. There are some very beautiful examples, as well as a lot of options that are really not good at all. As always, if you want a fantastic looking engagement ring, it all starts with great diamond selection. For cushion diamonds, the cut is probably the most critical aspect to look at. If poorly cut, it doesn’t matter what it is in the other grading areas, it will not look good, no matter what the grade.
This image shows a “Cushion Modified Brilliant” of the more rectangular variant. It is a top diamond, a 1.50 D/VS1.
It is also possible to have this cut design in what is called a Square Cushion.
If you look very very carefully you will just see the VS1 inclusion in the top right corner. One tiny little speck that has been there for over 2 billion years.
The “Cushion Modified Brilliant” Should Not be Confused With the “Cushion Brilliant”
The only thing all cushion diamonds share is a generally soft squarish outer shape. The “Cushion Brilliant” is a specific cut of cushion that is not as common as the “Cushion Modified Brilliant” and is a vastly superior cut. Please read more about the cushion brilliant in this link: Cushion brilliant.
Careful selection is critical in all diamonds, but particularly so in cushion cut. The degree to which they vary in the way they are cut is why it is so important to get expert advice, as many cuts are so poor. The outcome for the ring will be very disappointing if you choose unwisely.