Lab-grown diamonds have become increasingly popular over the years…
Recently, they have become the choice not only for engagement rings, but also for other types of jewellery. But really, does a lab-grown diamond compare to a mined diamond? Do we consider lab-grown diamonds to be real diamonds?
If these questions are on your mind, then you are in the right place. But first, take a few moments to familiarize yourself with lab-grown diamonds and how they compare to natural gemstones.
What are lab grown diamonds?
A lab-grown diamond is produced in a controlled environment, which is usually a laboratory. Natural diamonds, as we know, are mined kilometres below the earth's crust in diamond-rich areas.
Lab-grown diamonds have become popular for several reasons, including the intensive process associated with diamond mining, the high cost of production, and the environmental and ethical harms of the mining poses. Therefore, the goal of lab-grown diamonds is to present a product that would be comparable to mined diamonds without presenting any of those known challenges.
How are lab-grown diamonds made?
Lab diamonds are produced by mimicking the processes that occur in the earth's crust using a controlled setting in a laboratory. The manufacturing process is classified into two different methods: high pressure, high temperature (HPHT) and chemical vapor deposition (CVD).
HIGH PRESSURE, HIGH TEMPERATURE (HPHT)
In this method, diamonds are grown by mimicking the high pressure and temperature levels that create natural diamonds from the earth. At the necessary temperature and pressure, pure carbon would break down and then crystallize to form diamond.
CHEMICAL VAPOR DEPOSITION (CVD)
CVD uses a diamond seed on which to build a newly grown diamond. The diamond seed is placed in a sealed chamber filled with carbon-rich gas. A high level of heat is applied, up to 800°C, which leads to the decomposition of the carbon-rich gas. The pure carbon then settles around the carbon seed and crystallizes to make a larger diamond.
Are lab-grown diamonds real diamonds?
Absolutely! Lab-grown diamonds are real diamonds. Although not natural, lab-created diamonds are not the same as zircons or synthetic diamonds, which are made from materials that can mimic the characteristics of diamonds to some extent.
Because lab-grown diamonds are made of pure carbon, they possess the same chemical, physical, and optical characteristics as their natural counterparts under the same conditions under which mined diamonds are formed.
Did you also know that lab-grown diamonds are eligible for certification from recognized authorities such as the International Gemmological Institute (IGI) and the Gemmological Institute of America (GIA)? This further proves how authentic lab grown diamonds are.
How do lab-grown diamonds compare to natural diamonds?
More than just real diamonds, lab grown diamonds have some qualities that have earned them recognition over the years. In fact, most consider these very qualities to be their advantage over mined diamonds. Let's check some of them:
THEY ARE LESS EXPENSIVE
Let's cut to the chase. Lab-created diamonds are super affordable. We already know that diamonds mark the expensive box in the jewellery section. But if you have to decide on a diamond and want something that is high quality but affordable, you should consider buying a lab grown diamond. These laboratory gems cost 10-50% less than the cost of a natural diamond of equivalent carat size.
BUYING LABORATORY DIAMONDS IS AN ENVIRONMENTALLY CONSCIOUS CHOICE
We are in an era of conscious consumerism, and yes, it makes sense to care about where the products we use come from. Lab-grown diamonds do not cause land destruction due to mining, high energy consumption, or the use of manual labour. Everything is done in the laboratory under sustainable and ethical conditions.
NO ONE WOULD EVEN KNOW!
Unless you decide to let your friend or next-door neighbour know that the jewellery you're putting on is lab-grown, no one will be able to tell the difference—not with the naked eye. Therefore, you can enjoy the benefits that these gems offer without worrying about what people around you are saying.
While we may all be tempted to think that only mined diamonds can offer us the real deal, lab grown diamonds will do just that with some added benefits. A lab grown diamond has all the chemical, physical and optical characteristics of a natural diamond and will serve you just as well as a natural diamond. Now that you know better, you can start taking steps toward purchasing a lab-grown diamond.