There are special techniques that are used to cut and shape a diamond before it gets to the jewelry store. Diamond cutters use these four basic techniques:
1. Cleaving - To cut a rough diamond down to a manageable size, the cutter must cleave it along the diamond's tetrahedral plane, where it is the weakest
2. Sawing - Sometimes, diamonds have to be cut where there is no plane of weakness, which cannot be done with cleaving.
3. Bruiting/Cutting - This technique gives diamonds their shape. When diamonds are cut by hand, the technique is called bruiting -- cutting refers to bruiting by machine.
4. Polishing - To create the diamond's finished look, the cutter places it onto the arm above a rotating polishing wheel. The wheel is coated with an abrasive diamond powder that smoothes the diamond as it is pressed against the wheel.