What type of diamond is best for me?
Diamonds are a surprisingly complicated subject. There are many diamond alternatives that have appeared on the market in recent years. They are often referred to as “fake”, “simulated”, or “synthetic”. Lab made diamonds are often called “man-made or synthetic”.
Simulated diamonds are stones that are not diamonds at all and only replicate the look. These can include cubic zirconia, white sapphire, moissanite, zircon, rutile, synthetic garnet, and spinel.
Lab created diamonds are not synthetic. Lab grown look identical to a natural stone. They have the same properties. The only difference is where they are formed.
Where there is a big difference is in the perceived value. Lab- crafted diamonds are man made. They share the same physical characteristics as natural stones. The price difference though is roughly 30% less.
Simulated diamonds (which are not technically diamonds at all and differ in structure chemically). They look just as dazzling but are 50 to 60% less expensive.
How can you tell the difference between lab grown, simulated, and natural diamonds?
Despite similarities there is a huge difference in cost and overall resale value. There is a tiny chemical difference between lab and natural being that the natural ones contain a trace amount of nitrogen. A gemologist needs special equipment to tell which is which. With magnification it can be spotted which is which, but to the naked eye there is usually no difference.
Natural diamonds are an investment. They hold value over time. This is because they are a limited resource. Lab grown, there is no limit to the amount that can be created. Because of this the prices may just continue to fall. If its simply the look and style you are after lab created is fine as are their even less expensive counterparts in the synthetic range, but if you want your jewelry to hold value over time, choose nature created stones.
There is a difference in hardness between real and lab created stones vs synthetics like cubic zirconia and moissanite. Natural mined stones are a 10 on the hardness scale (Mohs) while cubic zirconia falls at 8.5 and moissanite at a 9.
Want to make sure of what you are buying? Unlike many pawn shops First Pawn of Jewelry and Loan of Naples Florida has a full-time in-house master jeweler on site who inspects every stone that comes through our door, so items are verified and priced correctly accordingly.
Come see us for your next diamond purchase or sale.
889 Airport Road South, Naples, FL 34104 | 239-434-7296
1331 Homestead Rd N, Lehigh Acres, FL 33936 | 239-369-2274