What is the difference between lab-grown diamonds and natural diamonds?

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Lab-grown diamonds are real diamonds. They are chemically, physically, and optically the same as mined diamonds. And they are cut, polished, and graded with the exact same tools and processes as mined diamonds. Even professional gemologists are unable to distinguish between the two without highly sophisticated devices as those developed by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).

The only difference between lab-grown and mined diamonds is their origin. Lab-grown diamonds are created in a laboratory that relies on the same process as Mother Earth. Using advanced technology, diamond laboratories can shorten production time dramatically. More importantly, the process eliminates the need for mining.

The rising trend of lab-created diamonds

More consumers have become aware of lab-created diamonds and the benefits over their mined counterparts in recent years. Especially the millennials are keenly aware of their carbon footprint and the potential ethical implications of mined diamonds.

Actor and environmentalist, Leonardo Dicaprio, who starred in the movie “Blood Diamond,” which depicts the conflicts in war-torn mining industry regions of Africa, became so horrified that he has since invested in one of the largest diamond laboratories.

The movie itself raised awareness about so-called blood diamonds, and many consumers have discovered how lab-grown diamonds are a more ethical and environmentally responsible alternative.

Unsurprisingly, Hollywood A-list celebrities have embraced the ethical jewelry choice. Among many, the Duchess of Sussex, Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Penelope Cruz, Jeniffer Lopez, and Emma Watson have chosen to wear lab-created diamond jewelry on and off the red carpet.

The trend, and rising awareness, have led to more jewelry brands using lab-grown diamonds because they understand both the benefits and the consumer demand. For example, the world’s biggest jeweler, Pandora, announced in 2021 that they are shifting from mined diamonds to lab-created diamonds.

Even the world’s largest diamond producer, DeBeers, which once had a near-monopoly on global diamond production and long fought hard against lab-grown diamonds, finally jumped on the bandwagon and founded their own lab-grown jewelry brand 

The established diamond industry is a billion-dollar industry with powerful lobby groups. Throughout time, consumers have been led to believe that there is something romantic about “natural” diamonds dug up from the earth and that lab-created diamonds aren’t the real deal.

That couldn’t be further from the truth. Lab-grown diamonds are real diamonds and are entirely identical to mined diamonds. But in contrast to minded diamonds, lab-grown diamonds are guaranteed conflict-free, and you can be sure that there haven’t been any unethical work practices or harmful deforestation involved in the process.

In contrast, many lab-grown diamonds are created using renewable energy and are produced in zero-emission foundries, making them significantly more environmentally friendly than mined diamonds.

Best of all, due to the more efficient and cleaner process of creating diamonds in the laboratory, they are also cheaper to buy than mined diamonds.