My wife wearing a half carat cushion cut halo ring I bought recently.
When it comes to a diamond engagement ring, there are a lot of diamond shapes and styles available to choose from. But one thing that never changes (and probably never will) is that everyone wants to buy a beautiful, brilliant diamond ring.
For people who want the extra sparkle and are looking to create a visual impact, you will love cushion engagement rings with a halo setting. In fact, these settings are so popular that people are choosing them even if they aren’t buying a cushion cut diamond.
But what is a cushion cut halo diamond ring and what are the things you should look out for when making a selection?
Whether you are a first-time novice or a seasoned veteran shopping for your perfect diamond ring, we have some great tips and information for you in this article. Read on!
Here is a list of topics we will be covering:
A GIA certified cushion cut diamond with curved edges. Click image to view video.
First of all, a cushion cut diamond is something like a hybrid between a square princess cut and a round cut diamond. Cushion cut diamonds tend to have squarish outlines but have a softer looking appearance due to its rounded edges. For this reason, it is often called the pillow cut diamond because of its outline.
Next, a halo ring is basically a setting design that encircles the outline of the center stone with small-sized diamonds. This “halo” of diamonds adds another dimension of sparkle and creates the illusion of a larger looking ring.
In the market, the 2 most common shapes of halo used are round and cushion. Check out the images below to help you visualize how they look like in real life.
As the name suggests, a round halo gives the ring setting a roundish appearance while a cushion halo gives the ring setting a more squarish appearance. Also, it’s pretty common to see round cut diamonds being set in cushion shape halo rings.
Well, this is really an open-ended question because the price of a cushion cut halo ring would largely depend on the specifications of the diamond as well as the cost of the setting.
Obviously, a larger carat size diamond would cost a lot more than a smaller size diamond and likewise for clarity/color ratings. A well made cushion cut halo ring setting would cost roughly $1000 and depending on the diamond you choose, the total price would differ significantly.
To give you an idea of what prices would be like for popular carat sizes, check out the following comparison of previously purchased rings. Basically, the main driver of a diamond ring would be the carat size and material quality of the center stone.
As you can see, cushion cut halo engagement rings can be very affordable and you don’t need a large budget to get something that looks great. Of course, you could also go all the way to the other end of the spectrum to get something extravagant if you have more disposable money to spend.
The key to choosing a diamond that looks brilliant and full of life is to place your emphasis on cut quality. On top of that, a cushion cut diamond with better light performance will exhibit sparkle and brilliance that can help mask color tints and inclusions.
To learn how to pick out a well cut cushion diamond, I’ve dedicated an entire segment of Beyond4Cs.com to show you how. In terms of other guidelines of the 4Cs like color and clarity, I recommend the following for practical reasons.
Cut: As good as possible
Color: G or better
Clarity: SI1 or better
Note that these are general guidelines to get an eyeclean and white looking diamond. If you are buying a larger sized diamond above 1.5ct, you may need to go higher in clarity and color ratings. Vice versa, if you are buying a smaller sized diamond, going down to an H or I color would still give you a white looking diamond.
Also, your subjective preferences would take precedence here. If you have an acute eye for detecting color, you may even need to go up as high as an E to get a white looking diamond. Or if you are choosing a stone for a vintage style halo design, it is perfectly OK to buy a K color diamond!
Lastly, since we are choosing a diamond for a cushion cut halo ring design, you may want to consider matching the color of the center stone to the color of the melee diamonds.
For example, if a setting uses G-H color melee stones, I would recommend choosing a center stone that is within 2 color grades of the melees. In this particular case, a cushion cut center diamond between F to I color would match the setting well.
I bought this cushion shaped halo diamond ring for my wife.
Ever since I started Beyond4cs.com, I’ve bought a number of rings and loose diamonds from many different vendors. In fact, I use the same exact process that I teach on Beyond4cs.com to assess a diamond and make educated shopping decisions.
This particular cushion halo ring was bought from James Allen and they are one of my favorite vendors to work with because of the data they provide. Using James Allen’s video listings and scope images provided, I could easily cherry pick a diamond with superior light performance.
For this particular ring, I picked a half carat E VS1 cushion cut diamond from their TrueHearts collection and you can view the details of the stone below.
After deciding on the diamond, I selected a pave and halo setting design to boost the overall bling factor of the ring. The choice of metal used for the ring was 14k white gold and again, this is done for practical reasons to keep costs low and having a durable ring.
The total cost of this cushion halo ring is less than $3,000 but the final product that was received sure looks a lot more expensive than that. Because the halo created the effect of a larger looking diamond, I could save money on the center stone by choosing a relatively small carat size.
I’ve also recorded 2 videos to showcase the light performance of the cushion cut diamond to give you an idea of what a well cut stone would look like in real life in different environments.
The other video below examines the craftsmanship of the ring and the things I look out for when reviewing how well it is made. Basically, I examine things like the consistency of the shanks, how well matched the melees are and mounted, overall symmetry and finishing of the ring.
Most halo diamond rings make use of smaller stones (melees) and they are a very cost-effective method to achieve a larger looking ring without the massive cost of buying a large carat size diamond.
Besides offering more sparkle, halos also act as an additional buffer for security and prevent the center stone from accidental damage. Below, I’ve rounded up 5 of my favorite cushion cut engagement rings with halo designs.
Feel free to click on the images to get full details of the rings you are interested in…
This ring setting offers the nostalgic outline of a cushion shape halo and combines it with a pave shank that is lined with diamonds. And if you have been paying attention, this is a very similar ring design to the one I bought recently.
An art deco inspired ring design with an octagonal halo surrounding a cushion cut diamond. This classic looking ring features milgrain edge detailing and micro-pave shanks that give it a glittery appearance.
A majestic looking cushion halo engagement ring featuring double rows of melee diamonds that gives it the wow factor. If you are looking for a ring that packs a punch in visual impact, this is it.
This unique looking cushion cut halo diamond engagement ring is a fusion between modern and vintage styles. With a halo comprising of 38 round cut diamonds and 6 neatly arranged baguette cut diamonds on the flanks, it is a ring that will make heads turn.
This cushion halo ring literally puts a playful twist into its contemporary design. With a streamlined and meticulously crafted pave shank, this design is ideal for people who want to stand out of the crowd while being subtle.
Hopefully, you found this article useful and you now know what a cushion cut halo engagement ring is and more importantly, how to choose a great looking one. I’ve also shown you how I bought a ring for my wife and the things that I personally look out for.
Lastly, I want to wrap up this article by showing you where the best places to buy a cushion cut halo diamond ring are and why. These are vendors that I personally bought from and received my stamp of approval for their reliability.
They also offer an intuitive shopping experience and risk-free sales policies to give you complete peace of mind.
Blue Nile – You will find a large selection of GIA certified loose cushion cut diamond rings ranging from small to large carat sizes. Regardless of your budget, you will be able to find something nice and choose from a variety of great looking ring designs.
James Allen – One of my favorite vendors because of their transparency in selling diamonds and helping consumers make educated buying decisions. James Allen’s video technology allows you to scrutinize the smallest diamond details and helps you perform better analysis.
With that, I wish you all the best as you search for the ring of your dreams. If you have any questions or need help with a selection, feel free to reach out via email or drop a comment below!