Diamonds have always been known to be the ultimate in jewellery, especially engagement rings. The bigger the diamond in her ring, the luckier a girl was said to be. This is one of the most expensive stones to buy and can cost the price of a house. However, more and more people are now realising that diamonds don’t have to be so expensive. Lab-made diamonds look just as great and are not as costly as a mined diamond.
Here, we’re going to tell you the difference between a lab-made diamond and a “real” diamond. There’s nothing wrong with lab-made diamonds. In fact, they may even make a better option than a mined stone in certain cases. However, if you’re shopping for diamonds, you should know the difference (and similarity) between the two.
1. Lab-made diamonds are “real” diamonds
Firstly, lab-made diamonds and diamonds lookalikes like cubic zirconia are not the same. Even though zircons are made in labs too, they don’t have any carbon crystals in them, which is essential for a stone to be a real diamond. Lab-made diamonds, however, have the same chemical composition as diamonds found in nature. But instead of waiting for nature to take its own sweet time, these diamonds are grown in conditions which simulate the same pressure and heat needed for a natural diamond. Depending on the method of production, lab-made diamonds are classified as HPHT (high pressure, high temperature) or CVD (chemical vapour deposition).
2. The difference in appearance is negligible
Only a trained gemologist or experienced jeweller will be able to tell the difference between a natural diamond and a factory-made diamond. So you don’t need to worry about being called out during a wedding or a party. Diamonds grown in labs will also have flaws like natural diamonds which adds to their appeal. The difference here is that while natural diamonds have crystals, clouds and other natural flaws, lab diamonds have metallic inclusions which affect their clarity. But these flaws are not visible to the naked eye.
3. Lab-grown diamonds are cheaper
As expected, lab diamonds are significantly cheaper than organic diamonds. Since they are manufactured in bulk and not rare at all, lab-made diamonds are an economical alternative to natural diamonds. Diamonds grown in nature can be far too expensive for most of us. Lab-grown diamonds come to the rescue in this aspect. Because there is no perceptible sign of being a lab diamond, these are a great option for engagement rings and other kinds of stunning jewellery, especially if you want a big stone. Unlike natural diamonds which are sometimes mined under questionable circumstances, lab diamonds don’t present an ethics conflict.
4. A diamond made in a factory will have no inherent value
You can’t have your cake and eat it too, you know. If the diamonds are cheaper to buy, then you should know that they won’t have the same value as a natural diamond. A lab-made diamond does not have any inherent or resale value. If you want to buy a cheaper alternative, you should be prepared for what comes, or doesn’t come, with it.
So figure out what you want from your diamond, and choose wisely.