The Big Conundrum : Natural vs Lab-Diamonds

Unveiling the Sparkle:

In the world of fine jewelry, diamonds have always been the crown jewel, coveted for their dazzling brilliance and timeless elegance. However, as the jewelry industry evolves, so too do the choices available to consumers. Today, when it comes to purchasing diamonds, you're faced with a fascinating choice: natural diamonds or lab-grown diamonds? Let's explore the differences, how to make an informed choice, and what's new in the industry.

Let me first start by saying that I respect everyone’s choices when it comes to choosing your dream stone. Choosing a stone is a personal experience that involves a number of different factors; budget, rarity, style, symbolism and lifestyle to name a few. Our job is to provide you with honest information so that you can make a confident and educated decision. 


Natural Diamonds: Earth's Treasures

Formation: Natural diamonds are created deep within the Earth's mantle under intense heat and pressure over millions of years. They're unearthed through mining, where each diamond is a unique masterpiece formed by nature's forces.

Characteristics: Natural diamonds are celebrated for their rarity and individuality. They come in a vast array of colors and clarities, with each one telling its own geological story. Unlike lab-diamonds, natural diamonds will have naturally occurring inclusions that can help distinguish them from their synthetic counterpart. 

Purchasing: When buying natural diamonds, it's crucial to consider the "Four Cs": cut, color, clarity, and carat weight. These factors influence the diamond's value and overall appearance. Purchasing from reputable jewelers who provide certifications from trusted organizations ensures authenticity and transparency. Our suppliers source their Diamonds from Kimberley Process compliant and United Nations approved distribution channels. And while there are still problems within these systems and so much work to be done we are moving in a positive direction and putting pressure on our suppliers to meet these standards.

Thankfully, the natural diamond industry has seen a growing demand for ethically sourced diamonds. Consumers are increasingly interested in diamonds that are conflict-free and mined with environmentally responsible practices. More and more our vendors are responding by sourcing from ethical mines and embracing sustainable initiatives but it isn’t without your help. Ethical mining initiatives move to provide door to door traceability of their stones and it isn’t without its costs. Recognizing that sustainable options are more expensive is part of the growing pains of this industry. 


Lab-Grown Diamonds: Innovation Meets Beauty

Creation: Lab-grown diamonds, as the name suggests, are created in controlled laboratory environments using advanced technological processes. These diamonds replicate the natural formation process, resulting in gem-quality stones.

Characteristics: Lab-grown diamonds share the same physical, chemical, and optical properties as natural diamonds. They're available in various sizes and qualities and are virtually indistinguishable from natural diamonds to the naked eye. As a certified Gemmologist, it isn’t without my lab equipment that I can tell the difference between the two. Lab-grown diamonds, while grown with the intention of perfection, still have inclusions and flaws like natural diamonds however these inclusions will differ from the natural kind. 

Purchasing: When purchasing lab-grown diamonds, the same "Four Cs" apply. Whether you are purchasing a Diamond directly from us or shopping around it's important to familiarize yourself with these categories when looking at your options. Bear in mind, some characteristics of a lab-diamond may not show on a grading report and require a knowledgeable and trained eye to spot.  

The lab-grown diamond industry is rapidly expanding. As technology advances, production becomes more efficient, making lab-grown diamonds more accessible to consumers. This trend aligns with the growing desire for sustainable and ethical choices in jewelry. This also means that the value of lab grown diamonds is on a downward trend. While I will never tell my clients that purchasing a diamond is an “investment” it is still important to know that the market for lab grown diamonds is very volatile right now. A diamond you may purchase tomorrow may be significantly less expensive six months from now. Until there is more stability in the market it is impossible to know the future value of lab grown diamonds. One thing remains true, lab-diamonds are here to stay. 


Making the Choice

When choosing between natural and lab-grown diamonds, it ultimately boils down to personal preference and values. Here are a few factors to consider:

  1. Budget: Lab-grown diamonds cost less than their natural counterparts, making them an attractive option for budget-conscious shoppers.
  2. Environmental Impact: If you're environmentally conscious, lab-grown diamonds have a smaller carbon footprint compared to mined diamonds.
  3. Ethical Considerations: Some consumers prefer lab-grown diamonds due to concerns about the social and environmental impacts of traditional diamond mining.
  4. Sentimental Value: Natural diamonds may hold sentimental value for those who appreciate the rarity and history behind each stone.

Some of our clients opt to have a combination of natural and lab diamonds in their jewellery pieces, often choosing a natural Center stone while choosing lab grown accents. This is a great way to have a Center stone that is natural and one of a kind while also saving money and adding more sparkle to the rest of the design. In the end, both natural and lab-grown diamonds have their charm and advantages, and your choice should reflect your values and preferences.

The world of diamonds has never been more diverse and exciting. Whether you choose a natural diamond steeped in Earth's history or a lab-grown diamond born of human innovation, the important thing is to make an informed decision that aligns with your values. As the jewelry industry continues to evolve, you can expect more options, greater transparency, and sustainable practices to shape the future of diamond purchasing. So, go ahead, find the diamond that speaks to your heart and style, and let its timeless brilliance illuminate your life.

Click here for a word from one of our favourite suppliers.