Lab-produced diamonds (that have also been known as artificial diamonds, lab-grown diamonds, cultivated diamonds, synthetic diamonds or cultured diamonds) are artificial diamonds that look like natural diamonds. As they instead are made up of carbon atoms structures, lab-grown diamonds show similar optical and chemical characteristics of a natural diamond crystal produced through the geological processes of Mother Nature. Synthetic diamond prices are generally lower than raw diamonds, and the cost of lab-created diamonds continues to drop (as much as 30% in a year). It is due to lab-grown diamonds not having any resale value, and the demand for them continues to decrease.
Important things to know about Lab-grown Diamonds
HOW ARE LAB-GROWN DIAMONDS MADE?
Lab-created diamonds are made by duplicating the processes that lead to the creation of natural diamonds. Natural diamonds grow under extreme heat and pressure, which changes carbon atoms into elegant and alluring gemstones we refer to as diamonds over many years. Lab-grown Diamonds
Lab-produced diamonds grow just like any other, only via an artificial process that takes many weeks rather than millions of years. Synthetic diamonds are set with a small piece of diamond, referred to as a diamond seed. This seed is set sealed within a special chamber made to simulate conditions within the Earth’s surface. Source coated in pure carbon will later change into a synthetic diamond, chemically similar to a natural diamond. Lab-grown Diamonds
There are two different methods employed to make lab-created diamonds: High Pressure-High Temperature (HPHT) & Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD).HPHT subjects extreme heat (about 1,500 degrees Celsius, or 2,700 Fahrenheit) and pressure (1.5 million pounds per square inch) on the diamond seed and the carbon atoms coating it. Meanwhile, CVD employs minute heat and pressure instead, introduces a combination of chemical gases that disintegrate and form into crystallized carbon atoms.
Chemical Vapor Deposition Diamonds
The initial process is known as Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD). A “seed crystal,” a very minute diamond seed, is set into a tiny chamber. The chamber is then laden with gases that are subjected to heat. As soon as the gases attain the right temperature, layers of carbon start to appear on the seed crystal. It results in the seed sprout and produces a square-shaped diamond crystal.
HPHT (High-Pressure High Temperature) Diamonds
The following process is known as High-Pressure High Temperature (HPHT). It is designed to simulate the Earth’s process of creating Natural Diamonds. Natural graphite is set in a large device that crushes it with high pressure and temperatures during this process. With these extreme conditions, the graphite changes into a diamond. Lab-grown Diamonds
The outcome is the same; an artificial diamond made from scratch within a few weeks.
Are lab-created diamonds that valuable as natural diamonds?
Every diamond, lab-created or mined, is sold at wholesale and retail according to an internationally accepted pricing system called the Rapaport pricing method. This system valued diamonds according to their 4Cs; either they are lab-created or mined. Retail, resale and wholesale prices are known based on a discount % of the Rapaport price, irrespective of the birthplace of the diamonds. With that said, you would likely still receive more return for a natural diamond as you’ll probably pay an estimated 30% more for it beforehand.
Lab Diamonds vs “Real” Diamonds – What are the Differences?
The variation between Natural Diamonds and Lab Grown Diamonds cannot be observed with our ordinary eye. Natural Diamonds have small quantities of nitrogen, while Lab-Grown Diamonds don’t have nitrogen. It is truly one of the signifiers gemologists watch out for to identify whether a diamond is lab-created or natural.
Natural diamonds are formed beneath the pressure of Earth’s crust for millions of years, and then they are mined, cut and polished. A Lab-Grown Diamond is set in a similar circumstance only in a lab setting. In reality, the process employed in the making a Lab Grown Diamond cuts down the growth time considerably, from millions of years to just a few months. Then, the Lab Diamond is cut and polished as well.
Pros of Choosing a Lab-mined Diamond
Better purity and enhanced quality
Lab-created diamonds have a pure nature than the stones gotten naturally because, unlike mined stones, artificial diamonds have no impurities or dirt within them. They also have fewer defects and displays fewer signs of strain in their crystal structure as they are formed under well-controlled conditions. Enhanced purity ensures that the diamond is set to be better, brighter, and whiter. A vast proportion of lab-created diamonds usually have higher purity ratings than natural ones.
Cost-effective than a mined diamond
Lab-created Diamonds are about 30-50% smaller than a Natural Diamond, which indicates that you can buy a significantly larger diamond and then claim it was a diamond. The difference cannot be seen with the naked eye when evaluating a Lab Grown Diamond and a Natural Diamond of similar characteristics of the 4 C’s. Lab-created Diamonds have similar and chemical characteristics as Natural Diamonds, so they look just as elegant. Environmentally-friendly and sustainable Lab-grown Diamonds
Diamond mining can destroy the Earth a lot. Mining natural diamonds employ vast amounts of fossil fuel: but synthetic diamonds don’t require such material. As the demand for diamonds continues to increase and the supply of mined diamonds is expected to drop, it is a truly more reliable choice to grow diamonds rather than mining them. Synthetic diamonds are the solution to the increasing gap between the demand and supply of this brilliant gemstone.
Cons of Choosing a Lab-grown Diamond
While the legal and budget-friendly benefits of lab-created diamonds are substantial, it’s just to state that they don’t meet everyone’s expectations. A few couples enjoy the history of mined diamonds and the reality that each stone is the same thing. The power makes natural diamonds of nature for millions of years. Lab-grown Diamonds
A Natural Diamond is often rare. Generally speaking, a natural diamond will retain its value far from a lab-grown diamond as it has a limited supply. The basic laws of supply and demand state that value increases as demand increases, particularly with limited supply. Lab-created Diamonds can be formed, and they may not hold their value over the years, which means the resale prices can keep on reducing as the market is flooded.