5 myths about lab-grown diamond engagement rings

Jan 25, 2024 | Engagements
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When you start the quest to find your dream engagement ring, you'll soon come across lab-grown diamonds. An alternative to natural diamonds mined from the earth, lab-grown diamonds are shaking up the industry thanks to their sustainable credentials and lower price point. In fact, you can expect to pay 15% to 30% less for a lab diamond than a comparable mined diamond.

Many couples are curious about lab-grown diamond engagement rings, and as with any big investment, it's crucial to arm yourself with accurate information to help make an informed decision. So, we spoke to NYC-based online jeweler, With Clarity, to dispel the myths around lab-grown diamonds and find out how they compare to their natural counterparts. Hint: They're just as real and radiant!

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Myth 1: Lab-grown diamonds are not real diamonds

Firstly, lab-grown diamonds certainly are real diamonds. They are grown by scientists in laboratory conditions that replicate the process of nature. Lab-grown diamonds are identical to natural diamonds mined from the earth, sharing the same physical, atomical and chemical properties, just with a different origin.

Engagement rings with lab diamonds and mined diamonds are considered to be real by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Officially, the FTC defines a diamond as “a mineral consisting essentially of pure carbon crystallized in the isometric system” and whether a diamond is mined or created, both share this chemical composition.

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Myth 2: Lab-grown diamonds lack brilliance and sparkle

As lab grown diamonds are identical to their naturally grown counterparts, they share the same beautiful visual traits as well as the same chemical composition that makes diamonds the hardest substance on earth. To look at them, you would never know they have a different origin.

Of the 4Cs that determine diamond quality, cut is the key element that determines how well a diamond interacts with light, known as brilliance. Cut refers to how well the stone is faceted, proportioned and polished - and this applies whether the diamond is natural or lab-grown.

If you're looking for next-level sparkle, look for diamond shapes, settings and ring styles that optimise shimmer and shine. For example, With Clarity’s Luxe Collection features a captivating array of diamond engagement rings and wedding bands with extra dazzle, with designs inspired by the style and heritage of New York City.

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Myth 3: Lab-grown diamonds are inferior quality compared to natural diamonds

Like natural diamonds, lab-created diamonds require carbon, intense heat, and high pressure in order to grow. And as with mined diamonds, lab-grown diamonds have natural unique variations in color and clarity, known as inclusions. These distinct markers are what make each diamond truly one-of-a-kind. The polished diamonds are then graded on the same scale as mined diamonds, known as the 4C’s, and receive a certificate documenting their individual cut, color, clarity and carat weight.

Lab-grown diamonds are sometimes referred to as sustainable diamonds, but crucially, they are not to be confused with synthetic or simulated diamonds. These are diamond alternatives, such as cubic zirconia, and are not real diamonds at all as they do not have the same visual or chemical properties as lab or natural diamonds.

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Myth 4: Lab-grown diamonds are harmful to the environment

Not at all. In fact, lab-grown diamonds have ushered in a new era of sustainability, offering environmentally friendly choices in an industry historically dominated by mined diamonds. If you are a conscious consumer, lab-grown diamond engagement rings are a viable choice, however there are still many factors to consider when making your decision.

The lab diamond industry has a significantly lower environmental impact compared to traditional diamond mining, but it's important to ask questions of your jeweler regarding the carbon footprint of their production processes and overall commitment to sustainability.

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Myth 5: Lab-grown diamonds change color over time

Now we have discovered that lab-grown diamonds share the same chemical composition as natural diamonds, we can see how they are identical in every way except origin. So rest assured, a high-quality lab-grown diamond will not change appearance over time. Like natural diamonds, they will neither change color, fade, nor get cloudy.

However, when it comes to diamond color, both natural and lab-grown diamonds are valued by how closely they approach colorlessness – the less color, the higher their value. So diamonds do vary in color but these variations occur regardless of whether they are grown in a lab or mined from the earth.

Color is one of the 4Cs that measure diamond quality. The GIA color-grading scale for diamonds is the industry standard and begins with the letter D, representing colorless, and continues with the increasing presence of color to the letter Z.

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Lab-grown diamonds are the epitome of luxury and a genuine equivalent to their naturally mined counterparts. With advancements in technology and engineering, the popularity of lab-created diamond engagement rings has skyrocketed in recent years, providing consumers with a stunning, sustainable and lower cost alternative to traditional diamond engagement rings.

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