Step by Step guide: How to choose an Ideal Heart Shaped Diamond ring

Heart-Shaped Diamond:

We all know “Heart shape” is the symbol of love since ages.

Heartbeats signal life, more so if you are in love. The heart always knows where there is love. It symbolizes compassion. So, whenever you see that silhouette painted in red it evokes many emotions. Suddenly the wind begins to blow pleasantly; you start feeling like you are flying in the air in slow-motion, petals of roses falling over your head from the sky etc. This little image of “Heart” has such a wonderful effect on our thought.

Needless to say, if you are choosing a Heart shape that too in diamond that means it will have a magnetic effect on you if you are receiving it or vice versa.

Making a heart-shaped diamond requires unmatched skill and craftsmanship. It takes years of expertise and experience for a cutter to make it. Undoubtedly, few people have mastered this art. Hence, the price of a heart shape diamond is higher than other fancy shape diamond.

As you are paying a premium amount to get this, you must know what to look for in a Heart shaped diamond. What does a quality heart shape mean? What are the things that you should keep in mind before choosing a heart-shaped diamond that is worth your hard earned money?

In the next five to ten minutes I will be explaining all these in details. I will also give you some important tips on how to save some money without compromising on quality based on my 15 years experience in this industry. So, be with me till the end.

What does it mean by a “Quality Heart Shaped diamond?

In simple language there are two factors that contribute to the beauty and sparkle of a Heart shaped diamond i.e. Outer shape (how the silhouette appears to your eyes) and Inner quality (characteristics essential for brilliance and sparkle).

Besides these, there are some other important factors like ideal carat weight and ring settings which play an equally important role in making the heart-shaped diamond ring gorgeous.

First, know about the features that make the outer shape perfect and attractive. There are three factors that contribute immensely to this.

  1. Length to width ratio
  2. Polish &
  3. Symmetry

Let’s understand it one by one.

  1. Length to Width Ratio: Heart Shaped Diamond

This is a very important aspect that adds beauty to the outer line of the diamond. An ideal length to width diamond will always look attractive and appealing.

Ideal Length to Width Ratio of a classic Heart Shaped Diamond is between 1:1.10 and 1:1.20. However, people prefer a slightly narrow shape for pendant which appears longer.

Heart Shaped DiamondIdeal Length to Width Ratio
For Ring1:1.10 to 1:1.2
For Pendant1:1.05 to 1:1.15
Most pleasing to eyes for Ring

(slightly wider)

0.95: 1.02

The above length to width ratio is the perfect guidelines to get the best heart shape. You should choose what appeals you the most.

See the real images of heart-shaped diamonds in different length to width ratios.

heart ideal Length width ready.jpg

  1. Polish: It refers to the quality of smoothness and finish of the surface of the diamond. Think of the shinning and metallic finish of a brand new car. Same goes with the diamond.

An excellent quality polished diamond has the same shinning and smoothness like a brand new car. Have a look at the following images of two cars. The car in the left is attracting you more than the car in the right. This is polished effect in diamond.

An Excellent grade Polished diamond will have the same effect on you.

heart polish car ready.jpg

A diamond’s Polish grade is divided into 4 categories as per its quality i.e. Excellent, Very Good, Good, and Poor.

Buying Advice: Always choose a diamond either from Excellent or from Very Good polish grade to get the best result.

  1. Symmetry: Symmetry in simple language means whether a shape is looking visually attractive or not. A heart shape has five important parts:
  2. Cleft
  3. Lobe
  4. Belly
  5. Wing &
  6. Point

Have a look at it in the diamond.

know heart shape ready.jpg

If anyone of them is not made perfectly then it will look odd to your eyes. Mismatch of edges, variation in proportions, irregular facet sizes, wavy girdle, are some of the symmetrical errors that make the diamond look odd to normal eyes.

It may still be looking like heart shape but it will not be that attractive. You will know something is missing from the very first look when you see an asymmetrical heart-shaped diamond.

Hence, you must know about them. Let’s understand it with an image. asymmetrical heart shape ready.jpg

Buying Advice: Choose a Heart shape diamond with Excellent or Very Good Symmetry. You will find its grade mentioned in the certificate. Do not go below Very good otherwise, you will compromise with the quality.

Make it a rule to buy certified diamond either by GIA or AGS for hundred percent sureties that you are getting what you are paying for.

Characteristics that contribute to sparkling & brilliance: Inner Quality of a Heart Shaped diamond

  1. Cut Proportions
  2. Clarity
  3. Color
  4. Bow-tie Effect
  5. Fluorescence
  6. ASET report
  7. Cut Proportions: For an ideal Heart Shaped Diamond

This is debatable. Because, there is no CUT- grade guidelines by GIA (Gemological Institute of America) or AGS (American Gems Society), the most reputed and reliable Labs in the diamond industry about it that certify Diamond’s quality.

This leads to speculations and interpretations of ideal Cut proportions by many in many ways. Having said this I would say there is near unanimity among the experts about the ideal cut proportion that makes a sparkling and brilliant heart shape.

However, these GIA & AGS labs do grade its Polish & Symmetry. Let’s see what the ideal cut proportions are.

Cut ProportionsFor an Ideal Heart shape
Table %52 to 63
Depth %58 to 62
CuletNone to Very Small
GirdleThin to Slightly Thick
Length to Width Ratio0.95:1.02

Remember these are mere guidelines to filter the best. You should choose what appeals you most at the first glance.

  1. Clarity Guide: Which Clarity grade suits best for a Heart shaped diamond?

Inclusions in the heart-shaped diamond are easily visible due to its cut style. So, it is highly recommended to go for upper clarity grade for the best result.

This is the known fact that in larger size diamond inclusion are more noticeable to unaided eyes. So you have to be extra careful while choosing a clarity grade.

In the next paragraph, you will know about the right size in relation to clarity. Before that let’s have a look at the Clarity chart of GIA to understand it better.

Clarity GradeCharacteristicsQuality
FL (Flawless)Absolutely Clean, no blemishes*Rare
IF (Internally Flawless)Absolutely Clean, may have blemishesBest
VVS 1 (Very very slightly included)Pinpoint type inclusions very difficult to locate even under 10x magnificationExcellent
VVS 2 (Very very slightly included)Pinpoint type inclusions difficult to locate under 10x magnificationExcellent
VS1 (very slightly included)Inclusions slightly bigger than VVS clarityExcellent
VS2 (very slightly included)Inclusions somehow easy to find under 10x magnificationExcellent
SI1 (Slightly Included)Inclusions easy to find under 10x magnificationVery Good
SI2 (Slightly Included)Inclusions can be seen in naked eyesGood
I1, 12 & I3Big inclusions, affects durabilityLow to Lowest

*Blemishes are not inclusions but flaws occur during the manufacturing process. These are polished lines, burn marks, scratches etc

Now you can draw your own conclusion and can choose as per your preference and budget.

Remember if you are choosing a diamond from 0.50 carat to 1.00 carat then it is advisable you should go for VS1 clarity or better for the excellent result. VVS2 clarity or better is recommended for above 1.00-carat size.

  1. Color Guide: Which color to choose for heart shape diamond?

Like Clarity, it is also very important to choose a color that will suit the metal of your ring setting. It is widely accepted that white color blends well with platinum or white gold while warmer colors (I, J, K) fit well with yellow or rose gold.

There is no right or wrong choice of color. You should choose what is appealing to you because the heart is always right even though it is in the left.

Let’s understand the color grade and its characteristics in a diamond.

Color GradeCharacteristicsQuality
D, E, FColorlessBest
GNear Color LessExcellent
HNear ColorlessVery Good
INear ColorlessVery Good
JNear ColorlessGood
L, MFaintNot advisable**
N to RVery LightNot advisable**
S to ZLightNot advisable**

*K color diamond has yellow tint visible to naked eyes. Choose wisely if you like it in a setting

**Not advisable if you prefer to choose a diamond in the white color category

If you want to choose a colorless diamond then you have the option to choose from D to F. I can assure you that “G-color” though categorized as near colorless can give you good value for money. I am saying this because of my 15 years of practical experience in this field.

  • Read “Color” chapter to know how each color diamond looks in real (illustrated with images)
  • How to save money by choosing the right Color grade diamond?

H, I and J are also a very good color. Again I would say pick the color if you like it in the setting. Search for more diamonds to see how it looks in different metal settings. The more you see the more you will understand about it.

Color diamonds or Fancy Color diamond:

If you are a big fan of color diamond (fancy color diamond) then it couldn’t have a better choice than a heart-shaped diamond. Heart shaped diamond is available in almost all colors.

As color diamonds are very rare it is obvious that they are exponentially high in price. If you are ok with the price, it will give you that proud feeling to have it.

You can also find lab-colored good quality diamonds at much less price than the natural one. I am giving the links below where you can find lab-colored diamonds and compare it with natural color diamonds.

I have seen many diamonds from different sites but in my view, this is where you can find the diamond and ring of your choice. They have excellent collections. Visit the site to see more.

heart ring leibish ready.jpg

  1. Bow-tie Effect:

    Like Marquise, Pear, and Oval, Heart shape diamond too shows bow-tie effect in it. A diamond shows negligible to a more noticeable shadow of bow-tie in the heart-shaped diamond depending on its Cut proportions.

In excellent cut proportions, the effect is minimal while in lower cut grade it is more visible.

Bow-tie is the shadow created when the light is blocked by the facet when a person views it.

The most interesting thing about the Bow-tie effect is that you will not find a mention of it in the grading report. So, you have to judge its effect by your own eyes by face-up viewing.

Online vendors like Jamesallen and Bluenile have excellent technology where you can view a diamond’s HD image in a 360-degree angle.

Simply put choose a better cut grade (as per the ideal cut proportions mentioned above) diamond, see it personally or its HD image and then decide whether the bow-tie is acceptable or not.

  1. ASET image Report: Simple yet more scientific method to judge a diamond’s Sparkle and brilliance.

This is by far the most important aspect of any Fancy shape diamond, be it Heart shape or other. As GIA or AGS does not certify its CUT grade, it becomes more essential to have this report to get the best Heart cut diamond.

What is an ASET report?

ASET (Angular Spectrum Evaluation Tool) report is a scientific and logical method to evaluate a diamond’s Cut grade based on its light performance. In a diamond, light plays a very important role in making it sparkling and scintillating.

After analyzing a diamond ASET prepares its image in different colors. Red is for excellent light return, green means reflective light returns, blue is for contrast (essential for brilliance), and black or white represents light leakages.

Have a look at the ASET image of two different diamonds certified by GIA.

heart aset ready.jpg

Look at the two diamonds; one has more red areas which signify its excellent light returns while the other one has more green and white areas.

Now if you compare both diamonds, it is clear from the image which one is better to choose? This is the best tool to date to judge a diamond’s sparkle and brilliance.

Buying Advice: Always ask for an ASET image report of a diamond especially if you are going for a fancy shape. Take the help of technology as it comes handy for both newbie and experts.

Vendors like Jamesallen, Whiteflash, Leibish, and Fascinating Diamonds are supported with AGS ASET report. Visit one or more sites to gain first-hand experience.

Ideal scope too analyzes diamond’s light performance like ASET but it has limitations especially when it comes to Fancy shape diamond like the Heart shape. So be aware of it. You should only rely on the ASET image report.

  1. Fluorescence:

A diamond when exposed to UV light (Ultra Violet) or direct sunlight or Fluorescent lamp if turns blue that means the diamond is having fluorescence in it.

Fluorescence is divided into four categories i.e. Faint, Medium, Strong and Very Strong.

Fluorescence heart.bmp

Fluorescence in diamond has a negative perception. It is considered to be a flaw by many people in the diamond industry. That’s why a strong to very strong fluorescent diamond’s price is 10 to 15% less than a non-fluorescent diamond.

GIA (Gemological Institution of America) has done an extensive research on the effects of fluorescence in the diamond. Interestingly, they found a very negligible effect on the color in rare cases. There is also no significant effect on the transparency of the diamond barring a very few instances.

My practical experiences say in some cases strong to very strong Fluorescence makes a diamond look oily or hazy. But that’s very rare. Otherwise, it is absolutely fine to choose a fluorescent heart shape diamond.

Buying Advice: If you like blue fluorescence but do not want the hassle of finding the right one then there cannot be a better place than Brian Gavin’s blue fluorescent diamond.

Brian Gavin’s have excellent collections of hand-picked blue fluorescent diamonds that take care of all your concerns. Go for it if you wish to choose a blue fluorescent heart-shaped diamond. You won’t regret. It is worth every penny. See it & believe.

Importance of Size in Heart Shape:

Choose the Right Carat Wight: A unique shape like this, the cleft of the heart is not clearly visible in ring settings if it is small in size. So keep this thing in mind. It is recommended that 0.50-carat or above is the ideal weight that you should be looking for the best result. More the carat weight more noticeable and attractive your heart shape is.

Ring Settings that go well with Heart Shaped diamond:

Simple classic solitaire and halo are the best ring settings for Heart shaped diamond. Bezel setting is also good value for money.

If you can be a little innovative then a combination of Bezel with Halo will add unmatched beauty to your ring.

I have found some excellent collections of heart shaped diamond ring for you. Have a look.

heart ring jamesallen ready.jpg

Want to see more? Hundreds of more beautiful diamonds in different settings are waiting just for you!!! Go, satiate your eyes.

heart ring fascinating ready.jpg

Now that you have a fair idea about the heart-shaped diamond it’s time to remember some simple tips on how to save money without compromising on quality.

You can save money on every three characteristics of the 4Cs’ i.e. Color, Clarity, and Carat. I will strictly advise you not to go for low cut-grade to save money as it highly diminishes the quality of the diamond.

Read next…… How to save money on Color?


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