What Are Lab-Grown Diamonds?

By Brenna Ferrentino on June 01, 2020

Lab-grown diamonds, also called lab-created diamonds, man-made diamonds, and synthetic diamonds are real diamonds that have the same chemical, physical, and optical properties as earth-grown diamonds. When placed side by side, you will not be able to tell the difference between the two. The only difference between the two is their origins.

Can you tell which diamond is lab-grown and which one is earth-grown? 

 The diamond to the left is earth-grown and the diamond to the right is lab-grown!

A lab-grown diamond will test as a diamond using a diamond detector - they are not the same as diamond simulants, such as cubic zirconia or moissanite. Like earth-grown diamonds, lab-grown diamonds also have a hardness of 10 on the Mohs scale. They are also equally as durable as natural diamonds. Lab-grown diamonds can even come in fancy colors such as fancy pink, fancy yellow, and fancy blue. 

Even gemologists cannot tell the difference between a lab-grown diamond and an earth-grown diamond. However, most lab-grown diamonds will include an inscription on their girdle indicating that they are lab-grown, which can be seen through a loupe. If no inscription is present, a diamond can be sent to a laboratory to determine if it was lab-grown or earth-grown using advanced technology.

What is the difference between a lab-grown diamond and an earth-grown diamond?

The main difference between a lab-grown diamond and an earth-grown diamond is their origin - earth-grown diamonds are formed beneath the earth’s surface, while lab-grown diamonds are grown above ground in a highly regulated environment.

Another difference between the two is that earth-grown diamonds are 3 billion years old, while a lab-grown diamond only takes 6-10 weeks to grow depending on its size. 

Lab-grown diamonds can be up to 20% - 40% less expensive than natural diamonds. This competitive pricing makes them appealing to many couples. 

Are lab-grown diamonds graded differently?

The GIA grades lab-grown diamonds with a more general description of color and clarity. For example, a report will not assign a diamond a specific color grade; instead, it will indicate if the diamond is colorless, near colorless, or faint yellow. Clarity grades are also assigned more loosely - for example, a diamond will receive a Very Slightly Included grade rather than VS1 or VS2.

At Ritani, our lab-grown diamonds are graded by the IGI, GCAL, and HRD. They receive grading based on their 4 Cs, so you will know the exact color and clarity grade of your diamond.

Can you insure a lab-grown diamond?

Yes, lab-grown diamonds can be insured. Lab-grown diamonds will generally cost less to insure than an earth-grown diamond as they are less valuable. We recommend insuring your valuable and sentimental pieces of jewelry in case of loss or theft. You can read more about jewelry insurance here.


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