4 Reasons Why Your Next Diamond Should Be Lab Grown

4 Reasons Why Your Next Diamond Should Be Lab Grown

Diamonds are a girl’s best friend, the saying goes. And to date, it’s still a firmly held sentiment that diamonds are the best way to show affection. They are the perfect gift. Much of the desire for diamonds comes from their rarity and high price tag. Today there’s a less expensive alternative though—lab-grown diamonds.

Lab diamonds are not fake diamonds. They are subjected to the same conditions that produce mined diamonds, only they are produced in labs. Professionals manufacture the lab-grown diamonds either through a method called High Pressure-High Temperature (HPHT) or Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD).

How Lab Diamonds are Created

There are three processes involved in HPHT diamond formation: belt press, cubic press, and split-sphere press. All processes involve putting a diamond seed in carbon. Then the diamond seed and carbon are exposed to temperatures as high as 1500 degrees Celcius and pressure up to 1.5 million pounds per square inch.

As carbon is lighter than the diamond seed, it melts, fuses with the seed, and forms a bigger diamond seed. The melted combination cools and voila, you have a carbon diamond in less time than it would take to form a mined diamond.

The CVD process uses a lab-grown diamond seed. The seed is blasted with about 800 degrees of heat in sealed containment. A collection of gases (mostly methane) is released into the containment where they are converted into plasma.

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Tight bonds hold these gases together. Turning the gases into plasma causes the pure carbon to bond with the lab-grown diamond seed. The carbonized diamond seed turns into a crystal, and just like that, you have a diamond.

Get Specific Cuts and Colors With Lab Grown

A common misconception is that lab-grown diamonds can’t attain the qualities of mined diamonds. But that’s just not true. In reality, you can get custom colors if the elements in a lab-grown diamond are exposed to different heat and temperature conditions.

Lab-Grown Diamonds Save You Money

The mining industry is labor and capital intensive. Everything from extraction to purification and classification increases the zeros at the dealer’s till. However, lab-grown diamonds have a shorter production time and less human capital.

As such, you have high-quality cut diamonds at a fraction of the cost of a mined diamond. Lab-grown diamonds can cost between 10 and 30% less than mined diamonds. Still, the pricing basics apply with lab-grown diamonds. Higher cut diamonds with more clarity and lighter color command premium prices.

Lab-Grown Diamonds Use Less Land

Think of the earth 3 billion years ago. It was hotter, and the earth’s mantle had the proper crushing pressure to produce the mined diamonds we wear today. As more layers form on top of each other, it takes more extraction to get diamonds out of the mines. And that extraction has a lasting effect on the mining areas.

Diamond mining is a long process that takes years between exploration, discovery, evaluation, and actual mining. The impact on the earth is already visible by the time mining begins. And once it does begin, it can take approximately 250 tonnes of rock to get just 1 carat of diamond.

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Companies are taking an active interest to reduce the damage on the ground as demand continues to rise among younger buyers. A great example is the famous De Beers Group launching of a lab-grown fashion jewelry retailer called Lightbox Jewelry in 2018.

Lab-Grown Diamonds are More Ethical

The diamond mining industry has had its share of controversy in some areas. For example, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Sierra Leone have shared media spotlights about conflict and questionable practices in some mining territories.

Lab-grown diamonds are an ethical solution to a problem that would otherwise continue to bring more conflict to all the parties involves. Given that the quality of lab-grown diamonds is just as good, more ethical practices is just one more reason to opt for lab-grown diamonds.

Technology is quickly developing so we can get precious resources in less time and with less damage to the earth. Lab-grown diamonds are a great step in the right direction for the luxury fashion industry.

A rose by any other name would smell just as nice. And diamonds grown in a lab shine just as bright.

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