A diamond for your engagement ring is an important decision. For most of us, buying a diamond represents a significant financial investment and we want to make the best decision possible. To fully understand diamonds requires an extensive level of expertise that most people don't possess (remember their refractive indices from high school physics?).
50 Rottweiler professionals and Co. that you need to know
50 Rottweiler professionals and Co. that you need to know
Additionally, the diamond industry is sadly plagued by a great deal of disinformation and paranoia being spread both within the industry and by outside observers. Natural diamonds have a premium of 400 percent, and most mined diamonds include conflict diamonds. I've heard these claims before (both wild untruths). However, I've heard some people in the industry refer to lab grown diamonds as "fake", which I think is wrong (also completely wrong). To help you break some of the hype, we've created this guide to help you make an informed and logical decision about what type of diamond is perfect for you.
What are lab grown diamonds?
Diamonds created in a laboratory, also known assynthetic diamonds, artificial diamonds, engineered diamonds or cultured diamonds are diamonds that have been artificially grown in a laboratory. Because diamonds are made up of carbon atoms organized into a crystalline structure, scientists can create diamonds by isolating carbon and stacking it on top of itself.
There are two ways they can achieve this. HPHT (High Pressure/High Heat) is a method that mimics the conditions under which diamonds are formed deep below the earth's surface, and CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition) is another method that uses high heat to strip carbon atoms from their molecules loosen, allowing them to settle like snow on a flat surface until they crystallize into diamonds. A mined diamond visible to the naked eye (left) and alab grown diamond(right) can look identical. Can you tell the difference between the two?
diamondsDiamonds created in a laboratory have the same physical, chemical and visual properties as mined diamonds. However, even industry specialists without the use of specialized equipment looking for crystal patterns and impurities cannot distinguish between the two. For example, if a diamond contains nitrogen, it likely came from the earth's crust.
Pros and cons of lab grown diamonds
Once we have established that lab-grown diamonds are not imitations, the question arises as to whether there is a significant difference in spending less on a lab-grown diamond or more on onenaturallyDiamond. Yes that's right. When comparing lab grown diamonds to their mined counterparts, here are some pros and cons.
- The first and most commonly cited benefit of lab grown diamonds is their ability to be environmentally sustainable. Although this has not yet been thoroughly studied, it is generally accepted that creating a diamond in a laboratory takes considerably less energy than mining a diamond from the ground. Additionally, a large amount of soil does not need to be removed to create a lab-made diamond.
- You can determine the origin of your diamond with 100% certainty. The issue of conflict diamonds, sometimes known as "blood diamonds", is very prevalent in the minds of many customers. While the real situation isn't nearly as dire as many people believe (over 99.9 percent of natural diamonds are conflict-free, and you can purchase verifiable Canadian diamonds of known provenance if you so choose), it's comforting to know With lab grown diamonds you can be absolutely sure that your diamond has not benefited from war or child labor in any way. More information on conflict diamonds can be found here.
- Another key benefit of lab grown diamonds is their lower cost. The price of a lab grown diamond is currently comparable to a real diamond thanks to recent technological advances. In most cases, however, you can still save 10 to 30 percent by choosing a lab-grown synthetic over a natural product. Also if you are looking for oneColored Diamond, the discounts are much more significant (natural colored diamonds are scarce and very expensive).
- Laboratory grown diamonds are a novel and fascinating development. The jewelry industry has been around for a long time, to put it bluntly. It is rare that something completely new appears on the scene. Although artificial diamonds have been around for decades, it is only recently that they have been shown to have reached a similar level of quality and size as natural diamonds. If you have one, you can rise to trendsetter status.
- When you buy a recycled natural diamond, you significantly reduce the environmental impact of your purchase. This is not necessarily a disadvantage of lab grown diamonds, but it is something to consider before concluding that buying a diamond will help protect the environment. Our company has been in the diamond recycling business for more than 25 years and has seen many changes during that time. A diamond's ability to be passed from generation to generation once it has been mined and cut significantly reduces the environmental impact of the diamond mining process.
- Many people are probably unfamiliar with the term "lab grown diamond". Of course, you're not required to disclose that you bought a lab-grown diamond (and even experienced gemologists may not be able to tell). However, due to the disinformation discussed earlier, most of the population does not know what a lab-created diamond is. You might conclude that you were stingy and bought oneCZor a fake diamond instead of the genuine item.
- Just as lab-grown diamonds benefit developed economies, they also deprive poorer countries of job opportunities. When properly operated, a diamond mine can be a significant source of income for the host country's economy. These countries are often impoverished, and the mine's employment and income generation can help lift many people out of poverty in these countries.
- The same cannot be said for lab created diamonds which are not as unique as real diamonds. Each earth mined, natural diamond is a unique creation of nature's artistic expression. On the other hand, diamonds created in laboratories are mass-produced in diamond factories. As a result, the mystique or sparkle of the diamond may have been lost.
- When you cut a natural diamond you lose some of the mystique, sense of awe and "it factor" that comes with it. This may sound ridiculous to some, but there is something unique about knowing that your diamond has a long and illustrious history and tradition to back it up. Our ancestors have worn natural diamonds for hundreds of years, from the ancestors of their ancestors and so on. Before being discovered and brought to light, a natural diamond likely spent millions of years under pressure and polished by the Earth's processes before being discovered. Comparing this to the sterile environment of a modern laboratory takes away some of the romance.
How are lab created diamonds made?
To understand how lab created diamonds are made, one must first understand how naturally mined diamonds are made. During billions of years beneath the earth's surface, pure carbon is exposed to extraordinarily high temperatures and pressures, resulting in the formation of natural diamonds. Centuries of ground movement have brought the diamonds to the surface, where they are found embedded in huge boulders. These natural diamonds are mined from the rocks by miners who then sell them to the general public once extracted.
Just like naturally mined diamonds, the process of creating lab grown diamonds begins with the application of tremendous heat and pressure to carbon. When a single carbon "seed" (a tiny sliver of a natural diamond or a lab-created diamond) is brought into a laboratory, it undergoes a process designed to mirror the Earth's natural mechanism for creating diamonds. The carbon seed is slowly converted into a crystalline structure using one of two methods: high pressure high temperature (HPHT) or chemical vapor deposition (CVD). Laboratories can “create” diamonds that are chemically, physically, and optically identical to diamonds mined from the earth's crust using modern technologies.
Why choose a lab grown diamond?
In the past two decades, diamond mining companies have made great strides towards becoming more environmentally and socially conscious businesses. The cultivation of a diamond in the laboratory, on the other hand, has a significantly lower environmental impact.
Mining a single 1-carat diamond in the rough requires mining a whopping 250 tons of earth. Destruction of ecosystems around a mine can also occur through deforestation. Mining companies have to comply with strict environmental regulations in some countries, while mining companies in other countries are not regulated.
Another topic that has sparked the interest of buyers considering buying diamond jewelry is the topic of blood diamonds, sometimes known as conflict diamonds. These diamonds were mined in war zones to fund armies and rebel groups fighting civil wars in their respective countries. Due to the Kimberley Process, introduced in 2003, most conflict diamonds were removed from the jewelry market. It is the responsibility of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) to impose strict standards on its member countries to certify shipments of rough diamonds as 'conflict free', thereby preventing conflict diamonds from entering the legitimate diamond trade.
On the other hand, the system has been criticized for not taking into account the often deplorable working conditions of the miners. Other challenges such as child labor and health and safety at work persist. Lab-grown diamonds give the buyer peace of mind that no workers were subjected to harsh working conditions during the diamond's creation. Also, assurances that the money spent on the project was not used to promote violence.
Is it worth investing in a lab grown diamond?
Lab grown diamonds are precious and worth investing in. Some of the world's highest quality diamonds are created as a result of the efforts of scientists, laboratories, engineers, equipment, time, effort and the expertise of a team of professionals.
Clients of traditional jewelers are often told that lab-made diamonds are worthless, but that couldn't be further from the truth. In addition to having a resale value, most diamonds mined from the earth have a resale value comparable to lab-created diamonds.
Can you tell if a diamond was created in a laboratory?
Diamonds created in a lab are almost indistinguishable from natural diamonds. It is impossible for someone who is not trained to tell if you have a man-made diamond. Even many jewelers cannot tell the difference without many tests. To ensure that lab grown diamonds are not confused with natural diamonds, jewelers are required to place laser inscriptions on the diamond's girdle, the outer edge.
Are lab grown and mined diamonds the same?
Despite their lower cost, lab-grown diamonds are inferior to lab-grown diamonds in terms of quality or durability. Natural diamonds are also referred to as mined diamonds in some circles. Synthetic diamonds are less expensive than natural diamonds because manufacturers can avoid the costs of long supply chains. With no mining costs associated with this sustainable alternative, you don't have to sacrifice style or appeal when choosing this option.
Diamonds created in the lab are identical in appearance and structure to diamonds mined from the earth. They have an internal structure close to that of real diamonds, as well as hardness and durability. Also the light reflection of the stones is identical from one to the other.
Laboratory grown diamonds, often known as ethical diamonds, are verified in the same way as mined diamonds, using the same system and standards. Similar to natural diamonds, they are therefore individually graded on the four Cs - carat, cut, clarity and color - to determine their value.
The only difference between mined diamonds and lab grown diamonds is the source of formation of the gemstones. One comes from deep within the earth, while the other is "made" in a laboratory by reproducing the same processes that occur in the earth. These are intense pressure and heat, the same conditions natural diamonds are subjected to when found in the ground.
For the most part, lab grown diamonds are larger and have a higher luster than their naturally occurring counterparts. They have the same crystal structure as diamonds. However, they did not originate naturally on Earth. This decision is of course entirely yours. If you're feeling pressure or guilt about buying a diamond you don't want, resist the temptation. There are many people who will tell you that buying a natural, earth mined diamond is morally wrong or unethical, and the same goes for the opposite. Hopefully you're aware that what you're looking at is (to use a technical term): Bologna.
The goal is to determine what is essential to you in a diamond (peace of mind, romance, price, how you feel about the purchase, etc.) before you buy it. Now that you are aware of the real pros and cons of lab grown diamonds, you can decide whether or not to buy one.