All that you need to know about lab-grown diamonds versus mined diamonds
Sustainable Lab Diamonds
There has been a lot of debate in the jewellery fraternity regarding what a lab-grown (also known as lab-created) diamond is and if it’s a “real” diamond.
I have read many blogs and articles on the difference between a factory-manufactured, lab-grown diamond versus a naturally mined diamond. So let me dive into what sets these stones apart or doesn’t.
A lab-grown diamond shares the same physical and chemical properties as a natural diamond. It is a real diamond with a traditional diamond certificate that will last forever.
The traditional diamond 4C’s carat, cut, colour, and clarity apply to lab-grown diamonds, and most importantly, they have the same sparkle. It would be virtually impossible to tell the difference if you had a lab and a natural diamond placed in front of you. They even have almost identical chemical structures. Even a trained gemologist would need specialised equipment to see the difference.
Should you consider a Lab-Grown Diamond?
Choosing lab-grown diamonds is a bit of a contentious one. Lab diamonds have drawn a lot of positive and negative hype in recent years. Whether to buy lab-created or natural is a question you should, at the very least, consider when deciding on the diamond for your bespoke engagement ring.
Lab-created diamonds are growing in popularity, are here for the long haul, and can no longer be treated as a fad. The diamond producer association has noted the increased popularity of manufactured diamonds and is concerned even though they expect sales in 2022 to only account for 7.5% of all diamond sales.
Sustainable Sourced Lab And Canadian Diamonds
Before lab diamonds, The Canadian Marked Diamonds were the best way to purchase a traceable diamond from mine to the ring on your finger as they come with a certificate telling you the mine and the original rough stone your diamond came from. Still, you would pay a little more for this service.
In the early days of sales, lab-grown diamonds ticked all the right boxes if you were looking for a sustainable and traceable diamond. Today at the start of a cost-of-living crisis, it also makes economic sense to at least consider a lab diamond as the savings will be considerable over a mined diamond, typically 30 to 40%.
Buying a Lab Diamond
Even with the growth in Lab-created diamonds, you would find it hard to find jewellery made from them in your local jewellery store. It would almost certainly damage their inventory of natural diamond jewellery, and that currently is not a road they can afford to go down. Online jewellers are starting to offer the choice of the two types of diamonds but typically not in all sizes.
Currently, the best way to consider all your options is to seek out a bespoke jeweller who will be able to show you an array of diamonds.
Will a lab diamond increase in value like a mined diamond?
A traditional diamond engagement ring will increase in value at a greater rate than a lab diamond engagement ring. But if you tried to sell either diamond engagement ring, you would not get your money back.
But ask yourself, if you buy a diamond engagement ring are you buying it to sell for a profit in later years, or are you buying it to propose to the love of your life, hoping they will wear it for the rest of their lives?
Even if you were buying a mined diamond to invest in, you would not purchase it in a piece of jewellery and would look to buy it in rough form and have it cut into many stones.
Millennials are More Conscious
The most recent survey in the US found that 70% of 1,000 consumers in the 21 to 40 age bracket across all income ranges said they would consider a lab-grown diamond for the centre stone in an engagement ring, an increase of 13 percentage points in only one year when 57% said the same.
Interestingly De Beers in the US have a range of lab-grown diamonds but have no plans to introduce it in the UK.
If you have any questions on lab-grown or natural diamonds, please call Artisan and Master Jeweller David on Tel: 0800 024 8940