What’s the Deal with Lab-Grown Diamonds?
As jewelry buyers have become more conscious about how their diamonds are sourced, more and more people are opting to purchase lab-grown diamonds.
To answer the most-asked question, whether or not lab-grown diamonds are real diamonds: The answer is a simple and absolute yes.
But how? And what really are lab-grown diamonds? Let’s find out.
What Are Lab-Grown Diamonds?
Lab-grown diamonds, also known as man-made diamonds, are a form of diamond that is created by man rather than mined from the earth. They are equal to mined diamonds in every way, having the same chemical make-up, physicality, and optical features.
They are also virtually indistinguishable from mined diamonds without the usage of high-tech lab equipment.
Many people confuse lab-grown diamonds with diamond simulants.
A diamond simulant is a gem made to look like a diamond but does not share the same chemical, physical, and optical properties. Some common diamond simulants include Cubic Zirconia and Moissanite.
Lab-grown diamonds are not identified as diamond simulants because they share all of the qualifications of a true diamond. They are even made in a way to replicate the natural process of a diamond’s formation in the natural world.
How Are Lab-Grown Diamonds Made?
Lab-grown diamonds are a modern technological miracle. They are made in a way that simulates the natural process of a diamond’s formation, only in a lab setting and at a quicker rate.
There are two processes that are used to make lab-grown diamonds, and each is equally as effective.
The first process is known as High Pressure-High Temperature or HPHT.
This process begins by taking a small diamond seed and placing it in carbon. The seed is then exposed to temperatures up to 1500 degrees Celsius and pressurized to 1.5 million pounds per square inch.
The pure carbon shell melts and starts to form a diamond around the original diamond seed. Then, the material is cooled leaving behind a pure carbon diamond.
The second process is known as Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) and utilizes similar methods.
The process also begins with a diamond seed, however this time it is placed into a sealed chamber without any carbon. It is heated to 800 degrees Celsius.
Then, the chamber is filled with carbon rich gases like methane. The gases are ionized into plasma using technology that is akin to a microwave. This ionization breaks the bonds in the gases and releases pure carbon which then adheres itself to the diamond seed.
The diamond slowly crystallizes and grows larger as the carbon in the gases binds itself to its surface. To complete the process, the diamond is then cooled and released from the chamber.
How Do Lab-Grown Diamonds Compare to Mined Diamonds?
Lab-grown diamonds are held to the exact same standards as mined diamonds. They are sent to the same labs and the same tests are performed in order to determine their grade and certification.
There are various labs where diamonds are sent and no one lab is better than another. At each lab, they perform various tests that grade based upon the 4Cs (cut, clarity, color, and carat) of a diamond.
Multiple people grade the diamond and the score is averaged to keep everything fair. Lab-grown diamonds are held to the exact same standards as mined diamonds for this process.
That essentially means a 5-carat mined diamond is equal to a 5-carat lab-grown diamond for all intents and purposes.
What Are the Benefits of Lab-Grown Diamonds?
Lab-grown diamonds come with varying benefits, but the main reason people choose lab-grown diamonds is cost.
Lab-grown diamonds, although still expensive, are almost always cheaper than mined diamonds. This is not due to quality; instead, it is due to the costliness of the mining process and transportation of mined diamonds.
A mined diamond requires payment for the process of being mined and then of being transported. This in itself is incredibly expensive.
Lab-grown diamonds require far less hassle and only require payment for the materials used in making them, making them cheaper overall.
Another benefit of lab-grown diamonds is they are always cruelty-free.
Sometimes, mined diamonds cause war and bloodshed due to their value. They also can come from slave labor. This is not the case for all mined diamonds, but many people choose lab-grown diamonds to keep their conscience clear.
Lastly, lab-grown diamonds have the ability to be manipulated in color.
You can easily buy a lab-grown diamond with pink, yellow, or other colored hues. Some people like this option because it makes the diamond more unique.
Whatever the case is, lab-grown diamonds can be just as wonderful as a mined diamond and both have their unique benefits.
In the end, a diamond is a diamond and it’s all about finding what you love.
Quality Diamonds in Frederick, MD
At Gold Thumb Jewelry we provide a premier selection of diamonds for our customers. Many of our diamonds are sourced out of Antwerp, Belgium, which is known as the “Diamond Capital of the World.” Contact us today to find your perfect diamond!