Faceted, Rose Cut, and Cabochon - Which Gemstone Cut Is Right for You?

May 21, 2023

Hey Rockstars, have you ever heard of a rose cut or cabochon gemstone?

Today we're going to talk about a few different types of gemstone cuts: faceted cut, rose cut, and cabochon cut. 

Let's start with what exactly, does "gemstone cut" mean? You may have heard of the four "Cs" of diamonds: cut, clarity, color, carat. The same applies to color gemstones. The cut of the gemstone is simply the way the raw crystal was faceted or polished. 

Gemstones have been cut and polished for centuries, revealing the beauty of minerals from deep within the earth. The round brilliant cut is the most popular and has been used for both diamonds and colored gemstones, such as those you'll find in our Metalicious Jewelry collections. Gemstone cutting is an art as much as it is a science, requiring careful analysis of the rough crystal material to decide the best cutting method to bring out its beauty.

In modern jewelry design, you'll see not just faceted stones, but also cabochon and rose cut gems. So what is the difference between these gemstone cuts?

Top and side views showing 3 different gemstone cutting styles

First up: faceted gemstones. 

three birthstones set into silver bezels that slide on a silver chain
Faceted stones feature a deep pointed bottom with a top crown of facets, creating dazzling brilliance. They're perfect for those jewelry pieces that you want to really flash and sparkle in the light.

Next, we have rose cut gemstones. 

image of a silver ring with a bezel set rose cut garnetThese are a bit different, with a flat bottom and a domed top that's covered in triangular facets. The rose cut diamond was named after its triangular shape facets that were said to resemble the petals unfolding in a rose bud.  The result is a lovely, circular stone with a subtle, gentle sparkle. These are perfect for more subtle jewelry pieces, or for a vintage look. Think of antique engagement rings - many of them have rose cut diamonds or other gemstones.

Finally, cabochon gemstones.

White moonstone cabochon set into a sterling silver necklace that looks like a crown

These are the smooth, rounded stones that a flat bottom and a smooth, curved top. They're not cut with any facets, so they have a very different look and feel than the other two types we've talked about. Think of a droplet of water sitting on a leaf. Cabochons are perfect for jewelry pieces where you want the gemstone to really stand out on its own, or in a design where the metal work is meant to be the star of the show.

The way a gemstone is cut affects how sparkly it appears. Each facet reflects the light coming in through the top. The more facets, the more angles the light will be reflected back to you and the more brilliant the gemstone will appear.

3 types of faceted gemstones and the way light reflects in each of them

So there you have it, gems - three different types of gemstones, each with their own unique characteristics and uses. Whether you're looking for a flashy ring, a subtle necklace, or something in between, there's a gemstone out there for you!