Marquise Cut Diamond Guide: How to Make a Good Choice

Is a marquise diamond in your future? 

You're in the right place to learn what you need to know. In this Learning Guide, I'll answer the top questions asked about buying a marquise cut diamond like: 

marquise cut diamond guide
  • Are marquise diamonds cheaper than round diamonds?
  • Do marquise diamonds look bigger?
  • Are marquise diamonds safe for daily wear?

Top 4 Places to Buy Marquise Cut Diamonds

#1 Buying Marquise Diamonds at James Allen

James Allen doesn't have the largest selection of marquise diamonds on our list, but there's other reasons why they're deserving of the number one spot. They carry over 1300 loose marquise diamonds of various grades and qualities.

If you've read any of our other guides, you'll probably notice James Allen frequenting the top of our list. One of the big advantages they have on the other guys is that they have full 360˚ view on all of their marquise shape diamonds. All of their marquise diamonds in their inventory have GIA, AGS, or IGI certifications. I'd advise staying away from IGI certifications for natural diamonds though.

The unique and slender shape of a marquise diamond cut stone limits the types of ring setting available for this shape. James Allen has around 150 settings for you to choose from.

Every engagement ring should have a maintenance plan and a manufacturer's warranty won't cover it. James Allen gives all their customers a free lifetime warranty that covers prong retipping, rhodium plating white gold, and other wear and tear issues engagement rings face over the years.

#2 Buying a Marquise Diamond at Blue Nile

On the other hand, Blue Nile has the biggest selection of marquise diamonds on our list today. With over 4,000 different marquise diamonds of varying qualities and sizes, there's plenty of choices. Unfortunately, not all of the diamonds at Blue Nile have interactive 360 video like James Allen. When we filter that though, we're reduced to around 1,900.

Still, that's a generous amount.

Blue Nile often competes with James Allen when it comes to price. However, when it comes to customer service, Blue Nile has the edge. They were the first online diamond retailer and have built up an excellent reputation with their customers. They are a trusted name in diamonds online.

If you buy your marquise with Blue Nile, you'll also get a free jewelry appraisal, alongside your GIA or AGS grading report. Unlike James Allen, Blue Nile only offers grading reports from the best authorities for natural diamonds.

What they don't give you is a free lifetime warranty to cover the ring setting of your marquise engagement ring. You can get free cleaning and inspections of your prongs, but repair work is done at a cost.

#3 Buying Marquise Shaped Diamonds at Ritani

ritani engagement rings banner

Ritani has a pretty large selection of marquise diamonds for excellent prices. With their diamond market analysis, they have transparent pricing. They show you the cost breakdown of your diamond, including what it costs from the diamond manufacturer.

Not all of Ritani's 1,900 marquise diamonds have 360˚ video. Unlike Blue Nile, you can't filter which ones do. That means it'll take more time to find your perfect diamond. The ones that do have 360 view are uncontrollable. They're video clips rather interactive video.

I do like that you can view the diamond certificate for your marquise diamond right there on the page. Some of our other retailers don't do that.

Vintage Marquise Ring

Ritani's a ring designer, so the settings for their engagement rings may be more expensive than the average retailer. The diamonds themselves are affordable, but the settings are more costly. However, Ritani's exclusive ring settings can't be found in other places.

Ritani has a lifetime warranty that will cover everything you need to keep your engagement ring looking pristine and your marquise diamond protected for years to come. It's also free, but must be registered online.

#4 Buying a Marquise Shape Diamond at Clean Origin

clean origin

Clean Origin has the smallest collection of marquise diamonds but still has over 500 loose marquise diamonds to choose from. You won't be able to be too picky with your grades though. If you're looking for a smaller carat size, Clean Origin might not be the best choice.

You see, all the diamonds at Clean Origin are lab-created diamonds. They are real diamonds that have formed in a lab instead of the earth. Lab diamonds have the same properties as natural diamonds but are less expensive.

Lab Created Marquise Prices from Clean Origin

Some of our other diamond retailers like Ritani and James Allen also offer lab created center diamonds. But Clean Origin is the only one that has ring settings with lab created accent diamonds. All of their gold and platinum is recycled. If buying ethical diamond engagement rings are a must on your list, Clean Origin would be an excellent option.

As for warranties, the Forever Service plan is a great option to add to your purchase. Their warranty covers all the routine repairs you'll need for your engagement ring. The only downside is that it's a paid warranty, not free. Still, it's worth it. Plus it's based on the overall cost of your diamond.

What to Look for When Buying Marquise Cut Diamonds

Cut Quality and Grades

Like majority of fancy shapes, the marquise cut diamond doesn't have an official cut grade, though they may be sorted that way online. When choosing the cut quality of a marquise diamond, you need to pay attention to its shape appeal, not just the numbers and measurements.

The recommendations for a marquise cut diamond with excellent cut quality are as follows:

Length to Width Ratio

The length to width ratios of diamonds can be abbreviated as L/W ratio under diamond details. The ideal length to width ratio of a diamond varies among shapes. For a marquise diamond, it can determine how skinny or wide the heart looks.

Length to width ratio (L/W ratio) to look for: Between 1.85-2.0

The length to width ratio of your marquise diamond will determine the overall shape appeal. Though most online views have a magnified view of their diamond, there's also some that have a minimize feature. This can really help you see if you have a well-cut marquise diamond on your hands.

Marquise diamonds with length to width ratios of 1.85 may appear shorter, while 2.0 will make it appear longer. Some retailers will even let you filter them by their length to width ratio.

Girdle

A girdle is the outermost edge all the way around a diamond. Most diamond girdles are thin to slightly thick.

What to Look for in a Girdle: Thin, slightly thick

It's better to choose a marquise diamond that is slightly thick at the ends. Thin is okay too, but stay away from extremely thin girdles. The girdle thickness can impact the pointed ends of marquise engagement rings.

Other Recommendations:

Desirable Table Size: 53-63%

Desirable Depth: 58-62%

Clarity Grades

Marquise diamonds are brilliant cut, so they have extra facets that can hide diamond inclusions. There are many types of inclusions, but too many of them can affect your diamond's appearance. Some are more prominent than others and some have a larger number of inclusions. Your diamond's clarity grades determines whether you have an eye-clean diamond or not.

SI2 Marquise Diamond Clarity

VS2 Marquise Diamond Clarity

A marquise diamond doesn't need a super high clarity grade, unless you really want it. If it was a step cut diamond shape, like an emerald cut diamond, it'd be another story.

The bottom line is, it's not hard to find eye-clean marquise diamonds without obvious imperfections on the SI clarity tier. But if you'd like to go higher to VS2 clarity, there's nothing wrong with that either.

Color Grades

Evaluating color of a marquise diamond is up to personal preference. Some people are more sensitive to brown or yellow tint in a diamond, while others not so much. Some people notice the tint and prefer the diamond's color for their skin tone.

The color grade you choose for your marquise diamond doesn't impact its brilliance or durability. It is completely up to you. Of course, marquise diamonds of high color grades such as DEF will be considered more valuable-and more expensive.

K Color Marquise Diamond

I Color Marquise Diamond

F Color Marquise Diamond

If you want a recommendation, I'd stay above an I color grade for a marquise diamond. I'm very sensitive to color and a marquise diamond can reveal color tint more than with some of the other diamond shapes. I suspect it has much to do with the elongated shape of the marquise diamond.

Carat Weight

While the elongated shape of a marquise diamond isn't a huge advantage toward a cheaper color grade, it works in your favor regarding carat weight. Fancy shapes that have elongated edges look bigger than other diamonds.

For example, a here's a 2 carat marquise diamond cut next to a 2 carat round diamond. The cutting styles for each shape is different. Marquise diamonds are cut more shallow with longer face-up carat size. Round cut diamonds have a deeper pavilion and a smaller face-up size. They may be the same carat weight, but the perception of size is different.

Keep in mind that this only works if you've purchased marquise diamonds with ideal length to width ratios.

Red Flags When Buying A Marquise Shaped Diamond

Every shape has it's pros and cons. The marquise cut diamond engagement ring is no exception. Here are some things to keep in mind before you buy marquise engagement rings.

Engagement Ring Settings

Marquise diamonds have pointed ends, which means they're extra vulnerable to chipping. But don't worry, this can be a problem with many diamond shapes. As long as the marquise's pointed ends are covered by either prongs or metal that protects the edges.

marquise ring with claw prongs

Round prongs and claw prongs can protect the edges of a marquise diamond engagement ring, but V prongs are the best protection. Instead of just the pointed ends being covered, the whole corner is secure.

However, you should know that all prongs are suitable for a marquise diamond, but you can always take extra precaution if you're worried.

The Bow Tie Effect

A bow tie is an optical effect that appears on certain fancy shaped diamonds. Marquise cut diamonds, oval cuts, and heart cut diamond shapes can show the bow tie effect.

Bow ties show on nearly all these shapes. They're not necessarily a bad thing either. The bow tie effect is purely optical and has no contribution to the durability of your diamond. Some people feel a bow tie gives their diamond some extra character.

Prominent Bow Tie

Medium Bow Tie

No Bow Tie

You be the judge yourself.

A bow tie happens on a marquise cut diamond during the cutting process. It happens to shapes that have brilliant cutting techniques. Brilliant cut diamonds have extra facets. When the facets aren't cut optimally, the light reflection casts a shadow shaped like a bow tie. A more prominent bow tie will usually cost less.

Deciding whether the bow tie effect adds or takes away from your shape appeal is up to you. You can't sort marquise cut diamonds based on their bow tie. That's why shopping online from a wide selection of marquise diamonds will give you more options. You'll have a much harder time spotting a bow tie in-store, even under a microscope. 360˚ views online make them much easier to see.

How to Get the Best Deal When Buying Marquise Cut Diamonds

Now, I know that's a lot of information. You've learned all the ins and outs to buying marquise cut diamonds. Here's my final thought and recap of the most important things to remember when shopping for a marquise cut diamond. 

  • Make sure your engagement ring setting covers the pointed ends of your diamond's girdle. V-shaped prongs can offer extra protection for a diamond's girdle.
  • Marquise diamonds appear larger than other diamonds of the same carat weight, so you don't have to have a high carat weight to increase size.
  • Choose a marquise diamond with a girdle thickness of thin to slightly thick.
  • Keep your length to width ratio between 1.85-2.0 for ideal marquise diamond engagement rings.
  • Select a loose marquise diamond online instead of in-store for a bigger pool of diamonds to choose from
  • Choose an online retailer that offers 360˚ view on their marquise cuts to see the bow tie effect clearer
  • Choose an online retailer that offers a warranty, whether paid or free.

Marquise Cut Diamond FAQs

Marquise cut diamonds have been a long time favorite of aristocrats, royalty, and anyone who opts for dramatic center stone look.

It is said the marquise diamond made its debut because King Louis XV had requested a diamond to be cut in the shape of lips belonging to Marquise de Pompadour, who was his mistress and lover. It can also be called the navette cut diamond.

Here are the most asked questions about marquise diamonds.

Is it Cheaper to Buy a Marquise Shape Diamond Online?

On average, buying a diamond online of any shape is usually less expensive. That isn't always the case though. Diamond prices are affected by many details other than shape.

Are Marquise Diamonds More Expensive?

Marquise diamonds aren't the cheapest diamond shape, but they're not the most expensive either. A round diamond is the most expensive, but marquise diamonds typically cost much less. But when the carat weight increases, you'll find a marquise diamond can get expensive — quick.

On average, a marquise diamond cut can be 10-30% cheaper than a round brilliant of the same carat weight and diamond grades.


Meet Your Jewelry Expert

Learn More About Jewelry

Want to learn more about jewelry? Check out these other helpful resources written by our jewelry experts!

Ask Your Jewelry Question Here

We are a team of jewelry experts who will teach you to identify scams and avoid spending money on features you can’t see.

Tell us as much information as possible to help us help you (ie, budget, preferences, etc.)