Your engagement ring is one of the most important purchases you make in your life. Not only is it an investment, but there are a lot of factors you need to decide between. What shape and cut of diamond do you want? How many carats fit into your budget? What setting suits your style the most?

One question that we’ve settled on is that of choosing between a lab-grown and earth-grown diamond. Not only are lab-grown diamonds ethically sourced, but they’re better for your budget too and yes, they are still real diamonds.

What are lab-grown diamonds? Are lab-grown diamonds considered “real” diamonds?

Lab-grown diamonds are chemically, physically, and optically identical to mined diamonds, and they are a 10 on the Mohs hardness scale — the only difference is their origin. 

If you compared a lab-grown diamond to one grown in the earth, would you be able to see a difference? Would a professional be able to see a difference?

Visually, lab-grown diamonds and mined diamonds are identical; even to a professional, they would be indistinguishable. In order to differentiate a lab-grown diamond from a mined diamond, the stones would need to be tested using a highly specialised machine.  That being said, lab-grown diamonds that are certified by a large lab and will have a laser inscription on the girdle of the stone. The laser inscription will indicate “ Lab-Grown,” along with the diamond’s certification number. 

How do the prices between a lab-grown diamond and mined diamond compare?

 Lab-grown diamonds tend to be at least 20-30 percent less than mined diamonds with the same specifications.  In fact, a savings of 50-70 percent is not uncommon, particularly when purchasing larger size stones.

How are lab-grown diamonds grown? How long does the process take?

Lab-grown diamonds are formed through two processes: HPHT, High-Pressure High Temperature, and CVD, Chemical Vapor Deposition. HPHT diamonds start as a small diamond seed which is placed into carbon and exposed to extreme temperatures and high pressure — conditions similar to those beneath the earth’s surface.

A CVD diamond starts as a thin slice of the diamond seed, which is placed in a highly heated chamber, and filled with carbon-rich gases.  Through the magic of technology, carbon bonds with the diamond seed, and it crystallizes. 

Lab-grown diamonds can be grown in 6-12 weeks’ time.

Does choosing a lab-grown diamond over a mined diamond compromise anything?

Purchasing a lab-grown diamond over a mined diamond does not compromise anything at all. In fact, with a lab-grown diamond, you get a beautiful, ethically sourced stone for a fraction of the price of a mined diamond.  It’s a win-win. 

Are lab-grown diamonds certified and graded on the same scale that mined ones are?

Yes,  lab-grown diamonds are graded using the same standards that are used for mined diamonds. They are graded based on the diamond’s four Cs — color, cut, clarity, and carat. 

Each diamond is graded by several gemologists at the lab, and the grades are compiled to ascertain a final grade.

Lab-grown diamonds are graded using the same standards that are used for mined diamonds.

Lab grown diamonds are real diamonds.. They are physically, chemically, and optically identical to mined diamonds, and they are offered at much lower prices.