Naturally occurring diamonds are extremely rare and valuable, but since 1953 those precious stones can also be created artificially in a laboratory. With the latest improvements in the manufacturing process, cultivated diamonds can now fully match or even exceed the properties that are sought after in a diamond, namely hardness, coloration and light refraction. In recent years, they are causing the traditional gemstone market to adjust to the increased supply, and many diamond dealers are pressed hard by the competition from synthetic diamond manufacturers.
Since general public is largely unaware of the similarities and differences between those two varieties, natural diamonds still dominate the market at the moment, but that’s quickly changing. Here is a brief summary of the reasons why synthetic diamonds should be taken very seriously:
Real Diamonds Created by Humans
It’s a popular misconception that synthetic diamonds are somehow fake or non-authentic, but the truth is they have exactly the same chemical composition and structural organization as diamond crystals found in nature. They are created from carbon atoms exposed to high temperatures and pressures, under specific conditions that simulate the original environment in the Earth’s crust where diamonds are formed. Thus, synthetic diamonds are much younger than the ones we dig from the ground, but in all other aspects they are essentially identical. Thanks to this fact, lab-grown diamonds can be considered a worthy alternative for the hard-to-get natural specimens of high quality.
Better than Mother Nature?
Crystallization process can be controlled far better when it takes place inside of a lab, so the resulting stones have almost no faults, as opposed to natural diamonds that often contain minor imperfections in the crystal matrix. For this reason, they can endure higher levels of stress without cracking, making them useful for industrial applications. Synthetic diamonds also come in many lively colors (green, purple, champagne, red…) so their visual appearance is truly impressive. Despite the popular perception, it may not be an overstatement to say that lab-grown stones actually represent an improvement over the finest diamonds that Mother Nature was able to create on its own.
Unlimited Supply and Better Prices
Significant deposits of gemstone-quality diamonds can be found in just a few locations in the world, and even those sources are being rapidly depleted. In contrast, synthetic diamonds can be produced from any material containing carbon, without any barrier to producing large quantities if needed. Because of such availability and the possibility to plan for future deliveries, they cost far less than natural diamonds, with the difference typically in the 3:1 range. It’s not a surprise to see lab-grown diamonds increasingly used to make jewelry or as presents, as they simply offer more value for the price. Established diamond traders stand to lose a lot once the customers realize they are paying a lot of money for no good reason, and this moment is coming soon. The demand for cultivated diamonds is on the rise, and this trend is highly likely to continue in the near future.