What Is a Lab-Grown Diamond?: Lab-Grown vs. Natural Diamonds

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For people who want to get married, the diamond engagement ring is a tale as old as time—and advertisers and media companies alike make the rather expensive tradition seem inescapable. The slogans from South African diamond behemoth De Beers speak for themselves:

“A diamond is forever.”

“Is two months’ salary too much to spend for something that lasts forever?”

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“Show her youll love her for the next thousand years.”

On top of it, the marketplace for diamonds can be really confusing. There are grades of clarity and color that lead to an overall quality rating. And, of course, diamonds are very expensive. The International Gem Society reports that the average amount spent on a diamond ring in 2021 was $5,000. (At the iconic jewelry store Tiffany’s, a budget of $5,000 barely gets you into the diamonds, let alone the showy single diamonds people prefer on engagement rings.)

All of these reasons have driven consumer interest in lab-grown diamonds, and in lab-grown diamond engagement rings in particular. So, we spoke to an expert from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) to learn everything you need to know about lab-grown diamonds—the production methods, the colors, the intangibles, and more. They say lab-grown diamond rings can cost up to 20 percent less than natural diamonds, which would knock that $5,000 ring down to $4,000. It’s not a Black Friday doorbuster percentage of discount, but that’s a lot of money to save.

Lab-Grown Diamonds vs. Natural Diamonds

Sally Magaña is a research scientist and the manager of diamond identification for the Carlsbad, California-based GIA, which now has locations around the world; the GIA creates and upholds standards and education for jewelers around the world. Today, one of its key concerns is telling apart lab-grown diamonds from natural diamonds,

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My Girlfriend Wants a Real Diamond Ring. Can It Be Lab-Grown Instead?

My girlfriend and I have been dating for over two years, and I’m seriously considering proposing to her. In researching different types of engagement rings, I’ve begun to see, no pun intended, clear-cut differences between lab-grown and natural diamonds. While natural diamonds fall under a classic aesthetic, lab-grown diamonds are better for the environment and a better value (I could afford a larger carat) and don’t perpetuate the cruel abuses that take place during their mining.

For these reasons, I’m leaning heavily toward a lab-grown diamond. But I know that my girlfriend is only interested in a large natural diamond and would be extremely angry if given a lab diamond. I’ve considered telling her it’s a natural diamond, as the only way of being exposed is by a jeweler with an expensive loupe — or when she gets the ring appraised for insurance, which is, admittedly, a large risk. What should I do? — Name Withheld

From the Ethicist:

First, let’s acknowledge that there is disagreement about the environmental virtues of lab-grown diamonds; they’re often made in China, using electricity that comes mainly from coal. And you can source natural diamonds from places that regulate working conditions. Even if your assumptions were correct, though, the worldly consequences of your individual purchase, by itself, would not be significant. What is significant is your willingness to consecrate your union with a lie.

The giver of a ring should be concerned, foremost, with what the ring means to the recipient. You’re free to tell your girlfriend that you’re unwilling to buy a natural diamond. But the deception you’re contemplating would be deeply disrespectful of her and her desires — and a wildly inauspicious step toward marriage. That ring is a promise, and you would be establishing that you can’t

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Consumer Report: Lab-Grown Diamonds

The market for lab-grown diamonds is exploding this wedding season, putting larger gems onto more hands than ever.

But some say that shine can wear off when the synthetic stones quickly lose their value.

Pandora, the largest jeweler in the world, is now very much in the diamond business.

Last year, the company that’s well-known for its accessible charm bracelets began selling lab-grown diamonds set in rings and other jewelry.

The diamonds are offered at prices Pandora says make sense for their slice of the jewelry market.

“What we are seeing a lot is people that always dreamed but never had a chance to buy a diamond. Now they can,” said Luciano Rodembusch, Pandora’s North American President.

At Pandora, a one carat diamond ring goes for less than $2,000, while a 2-carat piece sells for roughly $5,000, a fraction of what similar, mined stones would cost.

Pandora says its lab-created diamonds are manufactured in U.S. facility using 100% renewable energy.

“Ours are going to be one-fifth to one-seventh of the price,” Rodembusch said.

According to The Knot, the popularity of lab-grown diamonds has doubled since 2020.

In 2022, more than a third of engagement ring center stones were manufactured, not mined.

Regardless of the source, the diamonds are visually and chemically the same.

But, some argue that there is a key value difference.

Olivia Landau, co-founder and CEO of custom jewelry company The Clear Cut, sells only natural diamonds, which she says hold or even increase in monetary value.

“Lab grown diamonds hold zero value. They’re mass produced. You can create an endless supply of them,” Landau said. “They’re kind of the fast-fashion of diamonds, whereas natural diamonds do hold inherent value.”

The Clear Cut does use lab-grown diamonds but it actually gives them away for free,

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How One Ethical Jewelry House Is Going Back To Basics On Diamonds And Gold

From Place Vendôme, home to the Ritz and Paris’ most prestigious heritage jewelry houses, to a relaxed apartment showroom in the city’s 17th arrondissement for Héloise et Abelard, her own brand of circular jewelry, Héloise Shapiro has crossed not only her native city, but also a gulf of expectation. “When I left Place Vendôme, I had a visceral desire to do things differently,” she tells me. “I knew that my brand had to use recycled materials, as goldsmiths always have done by saving their waste gold to melt down and reuse.” But better still, it was going to be upcycled.

Today, Shapiro and her team scour the city’s antiques stores, pawn shops and auction rooms for second-hand stones and antique jewelry to be taken apart and re-made into contemporary designs with a fresh, modern look at an accessible price point. Customers can buy a slim gold band for $450, while her distinctive diamond cluster rings start at $1,900, and while recycling precious metals is nothing new – even if the savings are not always passed onto the customer – producing repeat collections from second-hand materials, is. And customers – including Katie Holmes, who was recently seen wearing an upcycled Héloise et Abelard tourmaline and diamond ring – love it.

Named after two 12th century lovers in Paris, Héloise and Abelard’s circular jewelry is surely the ultimate expression of the romance of natural diamonds. The bulk of Shapiro’s clientele is aged 25-35 and shopping for wedding and engagement rings; a customer base she describes as “well-off, thoughtful and informed” and looking for something more original and heartfelt than

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The Rise of Lab-Grown Diamonds in the Jewelry Industry

There I was, almost a decade ago, a wide-eyed enthusiast stepping into the world of gemstones. Little did I know I was about to become part of a revolution. This wasn’t any ordinary revolution, mind you. It was one brought forth by sparkling, dazzling lab diamonds.

News media websites began to buzz with reports of lab-grown diamonds. This stimulated interest, and people began to pay attention, prompting them to pose queries and have debates. Over time, skepticism eventually shifted into acceptance, which started a new epoch in the jewelry trade.

Fast forward to today, I am not just a spectator but an active participant in this transformation. As a proud manufacturer of lab diamonds, I am thrilled to be part of the shift toward sustainable, ethical, and equally beautiful alternatives to mined diamonds. But, enough of my rambling. Let’s dive into the sparkling tale of how lab-grown diamonds reshape the jewelry industry.

The Inception of Lab-Grown Diamonds

I remember when I first learned about diamonds being manmade. It sounded like something straight out of a science fiction movie. Diamonds, those beautiful, sparkling stones that we’re used to seeing deep underground, being manufactured in a lab? Well, as wild as it may seem, it’s all true.

Let’s take a step back in time. In the mid-20th century that saw the idea of manufacturing diamonds was discussed. Some smart minds questioned why it was necessary to mine diamond deposits deep underground when they were capable of creating them on their own. And hence, manufactured diamonds came into existence.

Back then, it was all about experimentation, trying to mimic Mother Nature’s recipe for creating diamonds. It was a bit like baking a cake without a recipe. You know the main ingredients,

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These Are the 10 Best Places to Buy Stunning Lab Grown Diamond Jewelry

best lab grown diamonds

10 Best Places to Buy Lab Grown Diamond JewelryHearst Owned

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We’ll be the first to admit there’s something undeniably special about natural diamonds (after all, they truly are a girl’s best friend). But if you’re looking to get comparable sparkle out of your jewelry while saving a good chunk of money, you may want to go the lab grown diamond route.

Lab grown diamonds, which have surged in popularity in recent years, can be thousands of dollars cheaper than their natural counterparts—essentially since they’re considered “less rare.” Yet unlike simulated diamonds made from moissanite or cubic zirconia, lab grown diamonds are, indeed, very much real.

“Lab-grown diamonds are exactly the same on the molecular level as mined diamonds,” explains Meg Strachan, founder and CEO of emerging lab-grown diamond brand Dorsey. “Diamonds deemed ‘rare’ in mined terms can be created in lab-grown form that are just as beautiful as their counterparts and will cost much less. The ability to create diamonds and gemstones in the laboratory also means any color, cut, and clarity can be achieved,” she adds.

Adding to their appeal, lab grown diamonds may be a more ethical alternative to mined diamonds—an industry that’s notoriously been linked to the use of child labor and fueling conflict in war-torn areas. And thanks to innovations in technology, many brands making lab grown diamonds are doing better for the planet by minimizing or entirely eliminating their carbon emissions.

With all this in mind, we took it upon ourselves to curate a list of the best places to buy lab grown diamond jewelry in 2023. From gorgeous engagement rings in all shapes and sizes to an array of timeless baubles, these brands have tons of

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How lab-created diamonds are becoming choice for many

Is a diamond only a diamond when it’s formed over millions of years in the ground?

Evidently, the answer to that question is becoming a resounding “no” to many who shop for jewelry.

More and more, people are turning to diamonds made in labs, not found in mines.

According to reports, the lab-grown diamond market is expected to be a $50 billion industry by 2030.

Diamonds made by scientists in a lab are often a much less expensive option for jewelers and consumers, and more readily available than diamonds that have to be mined.

But how exactly are diamonds made in a lab and just how authentic are they?

Dr. James Shigley, research fellow at the Gemological Institute of America, lent insight on how diamonds are produced in a lab compared to naturally, and their authenticity.

Is a lab created diamond a cubic zirconia?

It should be noted that there are differences between lab-created diamonds and a cubic zirconia, as explained here by Luminesce Lab Grown Diamonds.

How are diamonds naturally formed?

Shigley said diamonds are naturally formed over millions of years in the ground in certain parts of the planet.

“Once the diamond crystals form in the Earth, they stay down there in that high temperature and pressure environment for millions of years,” he said. “They kind of come up accidentally in a way by eruptions of a special magma called kimberlite. It’s kind of like an elevator bringing them to the surface. They’re blown up on the surface by an eruption. That is what’s being mined today for natural diamonds.”

How are diamonds made in a lab?

Shigley said there are two main methods to doing, both of which are similar to “growing sugar crystals in hot water.”

“You’ve got a source of carbon, which

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This is what broke records for the most diamonds set in one ring

The Guinness World Records has a new record-breaking diamond ring, thanks to a Kerala-based jeweller. This mushroom-shaped diamond ring from Kerala has broken the record for the most diamonds set in one ring.

This was recorded in Karathode, Kerala, on May 5, 2022. According to Guinness World Records, this mushroom-shaped diamond ring is set with 24,679 natural diamonds. The ring is aptly titled ‘Ami’, which means immortality in Sanskrit. The ring is based on the shape of a pink oyster mushroom, as the mushroom represents immortality and longevity. The ring also entails a quote from SWA Diamonds Managing Director Abdul Gafur Anadiyan.

The mushroom-shaped diamond ring from Kerala that’s breaking records.

A lot of thought and hard work was put into the making of the ring. Not to forget, time too. It took the jeweller three months to make this ring. According to Guinness World Records, “After 3D printing, liquid gold was then poured into the mould, cooled and filed into the overall shape of 41 unique mushroom petals. With the base complete, each diamond was then meticulously placed by hand on each side of the mushroom petals. Natural diamonds were used.”

mushroom-shaped diamond ring Kerala

Image: Courtesy SWA Diamonds

With a hefty price tag of $ 95,243 (approx. RM424,640), the ring weighs 340 grams, which is three-quarters of a pound. The Guinness record was awarded to the mushroom-shaped ring from Kerala after it was verified by a team of independent gemologists. After this, the number of diamonds was counted by Guinness officials using a microscope, who also evaluated and confirmed the clarity, carat, weight, cut type and the type of diamonds used.

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This record was previously held by Meerut-based businessman Harshit Bansal, who had achieved the title in 2020 for his

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