There is an emerging trend in the diamond engagement marketplace towards purchasing lab-created diamond engagement rings. With increased consumer interests in sustainability and a desire for larger, more impactful stones, more and more people are falling out of love with natural mined diamonds.
What is a Lab-Created Diamond?
Lab-created or lab-grown diamonds are diamonds grown in highly controlled laboratory environments using advanced technological processes that imitate the conditions under which a diamond naturally develops when they form in the mantle beneath the Earth's crust.
Lab-created diamonds are also known by many names, such as man-made diamonds, synthetic diamonds, engineered, or cultured diamonds, along with many others.
Are They Real Diamonds?
One word answer would be, 'Yes'.
These are REAL diamonds in all aspects - chemically, physically, and optically. The only difference is that they are produced artificially under simulated conditions.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC) defines a diamond as pure crystallized carbon in the isometric cubic system, whether mined from the Earth or grown in a lab. These man-made diamonds consist of actual carbon atoms as arranged in the characteristic diamond crystal structure. Since they are made of the same material as natural diamonds, they exhibit the same optical and chemical properties.
Natural and lab-grown diamonds exhibit the same qualities and characteristics.
- Chemical Composition: C
- Crystalline Structure: Cubic
- Refractive Index: 2.42
- Dispersion: 0.044
- Hardness (MOHS): 10
- Density: 3.52
So, in a nutshell, whether mined or grown in a lab, a diamond is a diamond (irrespective of the way it is formed/produced).
Why Choose a Lab-Created Diamond Engagement Ring?
A diamond created in a lab is just as real as a mined diamond, with the same physical and chemical properties, but without the argued and questionable ethical practices involved with mining natural diamonds. In fact, lab-grown diamonds are often of better quality due to the controlled environment and fully monitored process.
Some of the most significant factors on why should you buy a lab-created diamond engagement ring include:
- Brighter quality and higher purity standard
- Fewer defects comparatively
- Ethical and environment friendly
- Greater affordability
- Rare natural colored diamonds can be purchased for fraction of the cost
- Trackable origin source allows to source diamonds from reputable places
Grading of Lab-Created Diamonds
All lab-created diamonds are REAL diamonds and treated the same as natural, mined diamonds. Once a diamond is grown in a lab, it gets sent to independent gem labs, where they are examined by a gemmologist and graded in the same manner as a natural diamond.
The grading process focuses on – carat, cut, clarity, and color of the gemstone.
- Carat – Carat is the measure of the diamond's size and weight. For a regular diamond, the price increases with an increase in carat weight.
- Cut – Cut is one of the most critical factors in diamond grading, as it is a diamond's 'cut' which is responsible to bring out the best brilliance in a diamond.
- Clarity – All diamonds possess some level of imperfection. Even diamonds with the best clarity have microscopic inclusions. In white diamonds, a better clarity grade defines the finer quality of the stone.
- Color – In white diamonds, color grades the whiteness of a diamond. The whiter a diamond, the more expensive it is.
Each lab-grown diamond is carefully examined and assigned a quality grading and certification.
Tips for Buying Lab-Created Diamond Engagement Rings
#1 Do thorough research
Research to be sure that what you are purchasing is a lab-created diamond. As most companies sell lab-created diamonds online, be sure that the seller is reputable and trusted. Over the internet, many companies are selling diamond simulants by calling them lab-created diamonds.
#2 Size of the stone
Lab-created diamonds these days are available in many shapes and sizes, which previously was a pretty uncommon practice. However, specific shapes and sizes still might not be readily available. Understand what your partner's preferences are, and then begin looking. The size and shape of the diamond will be a significant factor in choosing the ring setting.
#3 Engagement ring style
Not all stone shapes complement all settings. So, once again, try to figure out what is your partner's dream engagement ring. If that is a task, then nothing can beat the classic solitaire ring. Be sure to check your seller's return policy in case there is a need for exchange later for any reason.
#4 Consider buying a colored lab-created stone
One of the most prominent jewelry trends of today is colored diamonds. Colored diamonds are not only stunningly beautiful but are also unique, bold, and daring. Fancy color lab-grown diamonds are offered at a fraction of the cost compared to their earth-mined equivalents and offer even greater savings than colorless lab-grown diamonds.
If you are considering buying a ruby, emerald, or sapphire, then consider buying a fancy colored lab-created diamond engagement ring.
#5 Learn the 4Cs
Whether you are buying a lab-created diamond or an earth-mined diamond, the 4Cs (color, cut, clarity, and carat weight) are very important. The 4Cs are how you will know the quality of your diamond and its effect on the overall cost.
One bonus tip to add here is that rather than looking for a diamond ring scoring highest on clarity and therefore costing a bomb, you should look for a slightly lower quality diamond that is still eye-clean.
#6 Grading matters
Don't purchase a lab-created diamond if it does not come with a certified grading report from a reputable lab, like the EGL USA, IGI, or GIA. If you did not receive a grading report, you might not have purchased a lab-created diamond.
#7 Make your engagement ring extra special
A bit of modification can add uniqueness to your ring. But how?
You can change up the center stone shape or the style of the prongs; you could add diamonds to the band, or depending on the design, you can incorporate your birthstone into the band. Adding a simple engraving can add a special touch.
#8 Don't rush into buying
Engagement rings undoubtedly are one of the most priceless possessions one can have. It's not just a ring but a symbol of your love, commitment, and trust in your partner. So, it is important for you to find an engagement ring that is the best price, style, quality, and most importantly, something that your partner will adore for the rest of their life.
Best Places to buy Lab-Created Diamond Engagement Rings
Listed below are some of the most reputed and trusted online sellers. Check these out for a smooth, hassle-free, and fabulous shopping experience.
James Allen is one of the largest privately held online diamond and bridal jewelry in the world. Their mission is to offer consumers online the highest quality diamonds and the most extensive selection at the best price. Every diamond they sell is certified conflict-free in compliance with the Patriot Act, the Kimberley Process, and United Nations resolutions.
They have 200,000+ certified conflict-free diamonds, all photographed in 360° HD. They also offer 24/7 diamond experts' advice, with an option for real-time diamond inspections, lifetime warranty, free shipping worldwide, and hassle-free returns with a 100% money-back guarantee.
Blue Nile was founded in 1999 with the idea that the diamond and engagement ring business was ready for innovation. With their 'customer-first philosophy,' they have cut out the middleman to pass the best diamond value to their customers, all while preserving exceptional customer service and the highest quality diamonds and gemstones.
Their diamond and jewelry experts ensure the quality of Blue Nile lab-grown diamonds and jewelry before they ship so that every piece meets the industry-leading standards. Apart from these, they offer GIA-Graded diamonds, secure Delivery, 30-day returns, and lifetime guarantees.
LovBe is committed to providing unsurpassed value. With their exceptional lab-grown diamonds, you will have the opportunity to select a lab-created diamond up to 2X's the size of a mined diamond for the same price. They have the highest quality diamonds certified by independent third-party diamond grading laboratories for maximum sparkle, fire, and luster. In addition, they have magnified 360 degrees videos to provide the best visuals of their jewelry.
With their excellent level of customer service, buying your dream engagement ring from LovBe will undoubtedly become one of your most cherished lifetime memories.