Lab-Grown Diamond Engagement Rings on the Rise

Picking an engagement ring is a daunting task for anyone. There are so many variables involved, such as: What kind of gemstone does your partner like? Though a diamond center stone is the most common choice, some people sometimes choose ruby, emerald, or like Princess Diana, sapphire. What kind of metal should you choose? Yellow, white, or rose gold, or maybe platinum. Should you go big and bold, or subtle and minimalistic? Usually all these questions can be answered by a talk with your partner, but if you don’t want to let on that you’re gearing up to pop the big question, this blog might be a good tool to help you out.

There are plenty of options, so many that it can be overwhelming, but there are ways to get beautiful rings at less cost than you’d expect. Diamonds mined from the Earth are the traditional gem of choice for engagement rings, but modern technology has now brought us the choice of a Laboratory Grown Diamond.

White gold lab-grown diamond link bracelet on a wooden tray.
Rose gold three-leaf clover twist stud earrings set with lab-grown diamonds.

How Are Lab-Grown Diamonds Created?

We’re glad you asked. Lab-grown diamonds are one of the newest and most exciting things in the jewelry world right now. A lab-grown diamond is a diamond created in a laboratory by simulating conditions similar to that of a mined diamond. Scientists start with a diamond “seed” (pure carbon) and, using modern tech, can reproduce the natural situation that grew diamonds, from carbon, in our Earth’s crust nearly 1 billion years ago.

And just like they grew, crystal by crystal in the Earth, they are grown in laboratories but in a much shorter time. As a result, growing is not only less expensive but is ecologically sound and conflict free. To break it down easily, the conditions diamonds are grown in can be simulated in a lab, and thus lab-grown diamonds are made at a fraction of the cost of mined.

Lab-grown diamonds are just as stunning as the mined versions. They have identical chemical, physical, and optical properties as a mined diamond because they are a diamond. Lab-grown stones retain the same brilliant shine and sparkle as a mined diamond but at a much lower cost. What this simply means is that while you are scouring stores for the perfect diamond ring, you might be missing a perfect opportunity to get her the ring of her dreams, all while maintaining your budget.

Picking a Lab-Grown Diamond Engagement Ring

Her ideal diamond is usually one on the bigger size, but that often means significant cost increases. This new option means that she can have a larger diamond which is now comfortably within your budget goal.

For the ladies reading this blog, you might want to show your partner the price difference when it comes to lab-grown versus mined. You just might get the ring (size and quality) you’ve always wanted, and your partner wont’ be upset about the dent it puts in their wallet! That sounds like a win-win situation to us. A lab-grown diamond simply means that beautiful rings are attainable and available to everyone.

If you’re already purchased your diamond ring, but are thinking about getting something bigger, we at Leo Hamel Fine Jewelers will trade up your mined diamond for lab-grown, right here in our store! Show your partner just how important they are, and everything they mean to you, with a beautiful lab-grown diamond! They are the perfect gift for any occasion, not just engagement rings. Call us today at 619-299-1500, and we will be happy to answer any questions you may have regarding lab-grown diamonds and any other jewelry and accessory-related topics you may want to discuss.

Interested in seeing what lab-grown looks like for yourself? Come on down to our showroom, and we will happily discuss your options with you.

What Are Lab-Grown Diamonds?

Three Diamonds and Tweezers

There are a lot of questions to consider when it comes to buying diamonds. Amidst the questions of size, cut, or clarity, have you ever considered choosing between a lab-grown or mined diamond?

What is a Lab-Grown Diamond?

Mined diamonds are formed deep inside the earth’s surface. Through the combination of extreme pressure and heat applied over billions of years, they are brought to the surface by volcanic eruptions. Until recently, this natural phenomenon was the only way that a diamond could be created. But now technology has advanced. Scientists can duplicate this process in a highly controlled laboratory environment using specialized equipment.

Like what happens 100 miles underneath the Earth, a lab diamond is created as carbon atoms bond together to form a diamond crystal, which is then cut into a sparkly diamond. And just like Earth-made diamonds, they have unique characteristics, including carat weight, color, or clarity. The only difference between the two is their origin (the Earth versus a laboratory) and how long they take to make (billions of years versus 6-10 weeks)!

Lab-Grown Diamonds vs. Moissanite vs. Cubic Zirconia

Not to be confused with gemstones such as the moissanite or cubic zirconia, a lab-grown diamond is a 100% genuine diamond. The cubic zirconia is a colorless synthetic gemstone often used to mimic diamond. They are easily spotted when held underneath a light. Cubic zirconia reflects light at a lower rate, so their sparkle is just not comparable to that of a diamond. They reflect a rainbow of light as opposed to white light (a.k.a. brilliance).

The same goes for Moissanite: a laboratory-created gemstone with an entirely different genetic makeup from that of a diamond. Moissanite is known for its “disco-ball” effect as it emits a rainbow as opposed to a diamond’s white light. These two diamond substitutes have their pros and cons, but they have no connection to a diamond.

This is not the case with lab-grown diamonds. A lab-grown diamond is identical to a mined diamond in every single way. They share the same chemical composition, light refractions, hardness, and density, to name a few elements. The untrained and even trained eye can’t notice a difference – because there isn’t any!

Some rather expensive equipment is being developed to distinguish lab-grown diamonds from mined by tiny internal differences caused by their growth patterns, but most jewelers will not have this to hand. A lab-grown diamond is graded for cut, color, and clarity using the same scales as a mined diamond, and many will come with certificates. Many lab-grown diamonds will also have an inscription on the girdle that identifies them as lab-grown.

Two Diamonds and Tweezers

Purchasing Lab-Grown Diamond Jewelry

Given the efficiency of technology, these lab-grown diamonds reduce the cost, time, and equipment required to become the dazzling gemstones we love to wear. Mining the earth has a tremendously negative impact on the environment. Mining requires extensive machinery that erodes soil, ruins forests, and overall causes devastating ecological destruction. You can have peace of mind wearing a lab-grown diamond, knowing they don’t cause damage to the earth and are not involved with humanitarian or ethical concerns.

Since it requires less expense to grow diamonds rather than mine them from the Earth, they are more affordable. You can purchase a larger diamond of higher quality for the same price when investing in a lab-grown diamond.

As you narrow down what you are looking for when buying a diamond, consider adding lab-grown to your list. Lab-grown diamonds have the brilliant shine and sparkle that you want for your engagement ring or diamond jewelry. You can own an authentic diamond with less damage to the environment and your wallet.

You can find beautiful lab-grown and mined diamond jewelry here at Leo Hamel Fine Jewelers. We offer a tremendous selection of dazzling diamond jewelry for every taste and budget. Whether you’re preparing to pop the question or simply want to spoil yourself, you’re sure to find exactly what you’re looking for at Leo Hamel’s!