As stunning as they are to the eye, lab grown diamonds offer so much more than just dazzling centerpieces. From their ethical origin to their affordable price point, the question becomes: why wouldn’t you buy lab grown diamonds?
If you’re in the market for an engagement ring or piece of fine jewelry, it’s important you know the facts about your prized adornment. Let’s go over the differences between mined and man made diamonds and get to the bottom of why you should buy lab grown diamonds.
What Are Lab Grown Diamonds?
Simply put, lab grown diamonds (also known as synthetic diamonds and man made diamonds) are diamonds that have been grown in a laboratory much like flowers grown in a greenhouse. While they are chemically, physically, and optically identical to a natural diamond pulled from the earth, they differ most significantly from their mined counterpart in origin and price point.
A lab created diamond costs a fraction of the price of a mined diamond but contains the same allure and chemical composition. They are as real as diamonds pulled from the earth, but without the unethical practices, and sparkle just as brilliantly. If that isn’t enough, let’s talk about the million-dollar question: How are lab grown diamonds made?
How Are Lab Grown Diamonds Made?
Like naturally mined diamonds, lab grown diamonds are made of carbon. And although they’re the same optically, chemically, and physically, they’re created very differently.
Earth-mined diamonds are formed over millions of years in the earth’s crust under extreme pressure and heat. They are then extracted from the ground using one of several methods. The most popular being open-pit, underground, or alluvial mining. The alluvial method is what comes to mind when you imagine mining by hand and often results in hard physical labor and poor working conditions.
Lab grown diamonds are created in a lab using advanced technology under similar conditions of extreme heat and pressure using one of two methods: Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) or High Pressure High Temperature (HPHT). Each method differs slightly, but both consist of a diamond seed slowly forming into a crystalline structure and producing a high-quality carbon diamond that is free of the unethical concerns of a mined diamond. Plus, unlike the millions of years it takes for natural diamonds to form, lab grown diamonds are created fairly quickly, sometimes in just weeks. Simply put, lab created diamonds are real diamonds.
Are Lab Grown Diamonds Ethical?
Many consumers wonder whether it’s ethical to buy diamonds. Since lab grown diamonds and diamond simulants are created in a lab, they aren’t associated with the unethical practices of diamond mining. Let’s dig into the ethical implications of mined diamonds.
When it comes to mined diamonds, sometimes known as “blood diamonds” or “conflict diamonds,” there’s a lot to consider about ethical practices. When a conflict diamond is mined, the rough diamond enters the supply chain to be cut and polished. Profits from the blood diamond trade are then put back into the illegal operation as rebels purchase weapons and war material with the funds.
To combat the conflict diamond industry, the Kimberly Process was created. This process requires that its member countries certify their diamonds as conflict-free. While the number of blood diamonds available in the market has dropped significantly since the Kimberley Process was enacted, the issue of conflict diamonds has not been abolished. In some regions such as Zimbabwe, stones that are imported are considered suspect due to international concern over human rights abuses.
In short, there is no way to know for certain that a mined stone was sourced ethically. This makes lab grown diamonds the superior option when consciously shopping for a stunning diamond engagement ring.
Are Lab Grown Diamonds Eco-Friendly?
Many consumers are waking up to the fact that diamond mining is not only bad for workers, but also for the environment. Let’s look at the differences between lab-grown diamonds and mined diamonds when it comes to the environment.
Mined diamonds wreak havoc on local communities, wildlife, and ecosystems. Since the average diamond in an engagement ring is the product of the removal of 200 to 400 million times its volume of Earth, tailing ponds are created. These are dumpsites where mining byproducts undergo chemical reactions resulting in acidic water that is potent enough to dissolve lead, copper, and zinc. This creates contaminated groundwater for local communities and wildlife.
What’s more, according to a 2012 statement from the Better Diamond Initiative, the electricity used to mine diamonds could power 1 million U.S. households for an entire year.
On the other hand, lab grown diamonds are created in a lab under controlled conditions. This means they don’t have the environmental implications that diamond mining has on the ecosystem. That means no water contamination or waste rock.
Why Buy Lab Grown Diamonds: Top Advantages
Since lab grown diamonds are created in a controlled environment, they offer a variety of advantages. When comparing lab grown diamonds to mined diamonds, man made diamonds offer advantages like lower price point and environmentally superior sourcing practices.
In order to decide whether a lab grown diamond is right for you, you should first consider why lab diamonds are better in every way. Here are five advantages of buying lab grown diamonds
1. Lab Grown Diamonds are Ethical and Eco-Friendly
Unlike the ethical and environmental implications that are caused by mining for diamonds, lab grown diamonds are both an ethical and eco-friendly option.
While mined diamonds are the result of tailing ponds and water contamination, lab grown diamonds aren’t associated with the poor working conditions and environmental damage that diamond mining causes. This makes buying a lab grown diamond a responsible option for any lab diamond jewelry purchase.
2. Lab Grown Diamonds are More Affordable
Lab grown diamonds cost up to 80% less than traditional mined diamonds of the same quality. This means with lab grown diamonds you can get a larger carat weight for the same price. Or, choose an excellent grade in each of the 4Cs.
When you consider the fact that lab grown diamonds are exactly the same as mined diamonds in every way but cost a significant amount less, you realize there really is no need to buy a mined diamond. Not now, not ever.
3. Lab grown Diamonds Last a Lifetime and Longer
Lab grown diamonds are so durable that they will last a lifetime and longer. This is because diamonds are made of carbon and are the hardest material on earth. Though they are not indestructible, with the proper care they will stay stunning for the lifetime of your engagement ring.
Both lab grown diamonds and mined diamonds rank a 10 on the Mohs Hardness Scale. This means lab grown diamonds are as strong as mined diamonds when it comes to hardness, strength, and durability. This makes them the perfect heirloom adornment to hand down for generations.
4. Lab Grown Diamonds are Accessible for All
Mined diamonds are becoming a thing of the past. Lab grown diamonds are now the standard for fine jewelry purchases and therefore the superior choice when it comes to accessibility.
This is especially true when considering that many online retailers now sell lab grown diamonds. Say goodbye to mall jewelers and hello to the new modern way of purchasing fine jewelry and engagement rings.
5. Lab Grown Diamonds are Beautiful
Not only are there many benefits of lab grown diamonds, but they are also one of the most stunning choices for an adornment. From sapphires to morganite and all gemstones in between, there are a lot of center stone choices. Not to mention they come in a variety of stone shapes, from radiant vs emerald, cushion vs round, and emerald vs round, settling on a decision can require research.
Diamonds are steeped in symbolism and are the standard for a stunning piece of fine jewelry. You can be sure that every time you gaze at your stone, it will catch the sparkle in your eye and remind you of the love it represents.
Should You Buy a Lab Grown Diamond Engagement Ring?
Many couples opt for a lab grown diamond engagement ring to symbolize their forever love. We believe they are superior in every way. If you still have questions, we’re here to help. A diamond engagement ring is a purchase that shouldn’t be made lightly. We believe confidence in your purchase is key.
Learn more about lab grown diamonds or reach out to a Customer Care Advisor for more information.