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All About Lab Grown Diamonds?

Lab-grown diamonds or Simulated diamonds have given everyone an opportunity to own and flaunt these precious stones. Diamonds have been the most acclaimed and sought-after gemstones for centuries.  They are associated with royalty, nobility, and the high-life. Owning a diamond is something to boast of. It is also a seal of commitment when it comes to proposing a life of togetherness with your intended. There is just one small problem. Diamonds are very expensive. 

Diamonds are the most expensive precious stones in the world. The privilege of owning a diamond is restricted to the few who have the money for it. Lab-grown diamonds have broken this divide and given everyone an opportunity to own them. They obviously lack the holistic integrity and romance of a mined diamond. However, as a commoner, it is difficult to tell mined and simulated diamonds apart. Lab-grown diamonds contain all the qualities of mined diamonds and in a lot of ways are more ethical as well. Not paying heed to the puritans, let us tell you everything you need to know about simulated diamonds and how they can help save you a ton of money. 

What is a Lab-Grown Diamond?

As the name suggests, lab-grown diamonds or simulated diamonds are artificially produced diamonds. They lack the physical, optical and chemical properties of mined diamonds. However, they do bear a stark resemblance to them.  Colorless quartz, topaz, sapphire, beryl, and zircon are common varieties of diamond substitutes. Synthetic gems and particular natural gems also fall under the category of diamond substitutes. 

Certain puritans do not consider these simulated stones as real diamonds and they are not completely wrong.  However, lab diamonds have taken the world by storm and are growing in popularity every single day. This has also become a cause for concern. Since these simulated diamonds bear a close resemblance to mined diamonds, people have been duped into buying them while paying the price of natural diamonds. To save yourself from fraud and also have a better idea about these diamond substitutes, you need to know the difference between them. 

How are Lab Created Diamonds Different from Mined Diamonds?

Lab-created diamonds do not fall under one category, different simulated diamonds have unique properties. They do bear resemblance to mined diamonds with certain differences. The first difference is their toughness and strength. 

Mined diamonds are susceptible to a lot of wear and tear. In fact, diamonds are created underneath the earth’s surface facing immense amounts of pressure and heat. Lab-created diamonds, on the other hand, cannot withstand this level of pressure and heat. They are more brittle as compared to mined diamonds. 

Mined diamonds can also withstand heavy polishing. The brilliance and fire of natural diamonds are unique and incomparable. Simulated diamonds, on the other hand, have amazing brilliance, however, in certain cases, they have a brilliance that makes them not look like natural diamonds. In situations like this, it becomes easy to distinguish between these two diamond types. 

Natural diamonds have a lesser density than simulated diamonds. This makes them appear bigger than lab diamonds. As mentioned before, there are several kinds of lab-grown diamonds. Of them, the most popular are the following

Cubic Zirconia vs Moissanite 

Cubic Zirconia is obtained by melting Zirconium Oxide at 4982 degrees Fahrenheit and cooling it down to form crystals. Polishing and cutting these crystals give us the desired simulant. Cubic Zirconia weighs 8.5 on the Mohs scale and can be cut to resemble diamond shapes like Oval cuts and Cushion cuts. 

Moissanites are a crystalline form of Silicon Carbide that are grown in laboratories. Moissanites also occur naturally but these are not the ones that are compared to natural diamonds. They weigh 9.25 on the Mohs scale and bear the closest resemblance to natural diamonds. 

Fire and Brilliance

Cubic Zirconia is very easily distinguishable from mined diamonds. The primary reason is that they have a very low refractive index of just 2.15 or 2.18. Light passing through these simulants is hardly reflected back to the eye. They also have a higher depression rate than other diamonds. This causes the CZ to have something which is referred to as the rainbow effect. The rainbow effect is an easy way to distinguish fake diamonds from their natural counterparts. Certain people are of the opinion that diamonds sparkle with the colors of the rainbow. However in reality this is not the case at all. It is important that you remember this and do not get cheated.

Moissanites have amazing brilliance and fire. In fact, when evaluating these cuts, it gets very difficult to distinguish them from natural diamonds. As mentioned before, this simulant is closest in resemblance to mined diamonds. Owing to this reason, it is important to get your Moissanite assessed by a diamond expert. 

Toughness and Strength

When it comes to psi values, here is where Moisannites and CZ stand with respect to natural diamonds.

  • Moissanite: 7.6 psi
  • Cubic Zirconia: 2.4 psi
  • Mined Diamond: 14.6 psi

As it is easily observable the pound-force per square inch of a Moissanite is much higher than a Cubic Zirconia. Infact, CZs are not known for their toughness. They are easily scratched and get cloudy over time. They are also denser than natural diamonds. This means that a one-carat CZ will appear smaller than a one-carat mined diamond. A local jeweler can easily tell the difference between CZs and natural diamonds.

Moissanites are nearly half as tough as natural diamonds. Their lack of cleavage adds to their durability. They do not chip or scratch easily. The cut of a Moissanite, however, does not make a difference. Diamonds are very tough however, the edges of a Princess cut diamond are prone to chipping and damage, the same goes for the edges of a Marquis cut. 

Clarity and Color

All diamonds have inclusions, the cut quality and clarity grade of diamonds depends on their ability to mask these very inclusions. Simulated diamonds like the Cubic Zirconia look too flawlessly to be even acknowledged as a diamond in situations. Selecting a VS1 or VS2 clarity CZ is generally recommended. CZs have an orange hue to them which is generally liked by people. 

Moissanites do not show imperfections and appear eye-clean. They radiate a brownish and yellowish hue in certain situations. This hue makes Moissanites resemble J to M-colored diamonds. Although Moissanites are eye-clean in general, finding one under budget can be tasking.  They can also be nearly colorless, emulating the G to I or D to F range. This makes this stone extremely difficult to tell apart from mined diamonds. Moissanites also radiate the signature yellowish hue present in mined diamonds. 

Value and Size

There is no comparison between the price range of mined diamonds and cubic zircons. A 1-carat CZ will cost you about $14, whereas the cost of a 1-carat mined diamond can range anywhere from $1000 to $3000, depending on the kind of diamond. In most situations, the setting might end up being more costly than the CZ itself. The price range does elevate with higher carat weights. However, it is still in no comparison to real diamonds. The price of a 3 carat CZ might go up to $300.

Moissanites are more expensive than CZs however, they don’t compare to the price of mined diamonds. A 1 carat Moissanite might be worth $500. This particular diamond might be about 8% larger than a mined diamond. The size difference ranges to almost 20% when compared to D to F colored diamonds. 

Cause Of Popularity for Simulated Diamonds

While they are an alternative to mined diamonds, simulated diamonds do not compare to the real thing. The reason for their popularity is for ethical reasons. Diamond mining affects the environment in several ways, also the idea of exploited labor is prevalent in diamond mining. Simulated diamonds on the other do not have any such implications to them. 

Being cheap is actually a secondary factor in certain situations. Although simulated diamonds have given the entire world the opportunity to own diamonds. Even if couples want to celebrate their weddings or engagements with mined diamonds, they choose simulated diamonds for occasions such as anniversaries. 

The environmental impact of mining diamonds is immense and encourages people to buy simulated diamonds. 

The Best Place to Buy Simulated Stones 

You probably don’t need to worry about getting scammed when buying simulated diamonds, however, being scammed into buying simulated diamonds for the price of mined diamonds is never a good thing. A reliable jeweler is necessary to ensure you are always getting the right things at the right price. Finding the right jeweler can be a task. Our unique algorithm helps you connect with jewelers near you, with whom you have the option of connecting virtually. All you have to do is log in to our website and fill out the information pertaining to your preferences. That is it. Diamond shopping has never been easier. Visit our website today for all necessary information about mined and simulated diamonds.