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Lab Grown or Mined Diamonds, Make an informed decision

Rayna LonzanoLast updated December 10, 2023, 1:47 PM

If you’re in the market for an engagement ring, perhaps you’ve heard about lab grown diamonds as an eco-friendly, affordable option for the center stone. But what are they and what makes them appealing?

They are REAL Diamonds

The first and the foremost concern that you might have: is a lab grown-diamond is a real diamond or not? The answer is YES because what makes a diamond a “diamond” is a unique atomic arrangement of pure carbon.

In diamonds, each carbon atom is attached to four other carbon atoms, forming a rigid three-dimensional structure. It is this particular atomic arrangement that accounts for diamond’s exceptional hardness, durability, and optical properties. If the aforesaid atomic arrangement is present, it is a diamond and cannot be anything else.

"Synthetic diamonds have essentially the same chemical composition, crystal structure, optical, and physical properties of diamonds found in nature."  — Gemological Institute of America (GIA)
Side view of the ring
The Diamond Lattice Image courtesy: [http://www.xtal.iqfr.csic.es]

Diamond Chemistry

A diamond is a crystal made entirely from carbon atoms. The carbon atom in a diamond is arranged tetrahedrally forming a very compact 3D network. Lab-grown diamonds are identical to mined diamonds in their chemical composition and physical, optical properties.

In an effort to replicate a marvel of mother nature, companies initially began making these stones for other applications including industrial purposes and tools. Over the years these methods and technologies have improved, now producing gem quality stones that often rival their natural counterparts. The image below shows a synthetic diamond on the left, and a natural diamond on the right (image from GIA website):

A lab-created diamond and an earth-mined diamond
A lab-created diamond (left) and an earth-mined diamond (right).
Laboratory created diamonds before cutting
Laboratory created diamonds before cutting
Rayna Lonzano

Rayna Lonzano , has been a passionate jewelry consultant for 17 years. She has helped over 1500 couples to bring their dream bridal jewelry to reality. She has an accounting degree from the University of Maryland and an MBA from AVT Business School Denmark.