Diamond Engagement rings in their current form are around for less than 100 years. In Ireland (based on conversations with older family members), they weren’t even that popular until the 80s. I’ve been designing and making engagement rings since the year 2000. In all that time, styles have changed slowly. There have been fads based on that year’s big celebrity weddings, but nothing comes close to the upheaval caused by the emergence of Lab-Grown Diamonds. Everyone wants to know about them!
The emergence of Lab-Grown diamonds
When I was starting out, Lab-Grown diamonds were no more than a rumour. It was while I was on a diamond course a few years back that I heard that they were finally becoming a serious alternative to mined diamonds. And I think it is safe to say that since 2018, they have finally arrived.
Interestingly, according to Google Trends, Ireland is fourth in the list of countries that searches for Lab-Grown Diamonds.
How do Lab-Grown diamonds compare with mined diamonds?
There are thousands of articles on the web that will tell you the same thing: Lab-grown diamonds are indistinguishable from traditionally mined diamonds.
To my eye, with 23 years experience of designing and making engagement rings for people all over Cork and Munster, there is no difference between Lab-Grown Diamonds and traditional Diamonds.Eileen Moylan
They are chemically & physically identical – At least, I can’t tell the difference. Lately, when I am working with a client to design an Engagement Ring, I will order a number of diamonds, both traditional and lab, to see what works best with the intended design. Once the diamonds are in my hands, any distinction on their origin is irrelevant.
Apparently, under a microscope, it is possible to tell the difference. I recommend avoiding microscopes.
Lab-Grown Diamonds V “Real” Diamonds
This is a BS distinction that some mining companies are trying to push. Lab-Grown Diamonds ARE REAL DIAMONDS!
Lab-Grown Diamonds and Price
Lab-Grown Diamonds are A LOT CHEAPER than traditional diamonds. It very much depends on the design of the ring and the diamonds used, but savings of 50% are not uncommon.
Lab-gown Diamonds as an investment
An engagement ring should never be looked at as an investment, as something that might potentially gain value over time. In my opinion, to think along such lines is to miss the point of an Engagement Ring.
Certification of Lab-Grown Diamonds
If you are spending a lot of money on a Diamond Engagement ring – Please please make sure to only purchase certified diamonds! This is the most fundamental guarantee of quality. The same goes for Lab-Grown Diamonds – Only use Certified stones. The Cert will specify that the stone originated in a Lab.
Are Lab-grown Diamonds better for the Environment?
Mining is a dirty business. But so is manufacturing. There is a ton of information out there (example) which pushes one side or the other but on balance, it appears that Lab-Grown Diamonds cause significantly less damage to the environment than mined diamonds.
Should I tell people that my Engagement Ring has a Lab Grown Diamond?
You may if you want to.
If an acquaintance of yours comes straight out and asks “Is that a Lab-Grown Diamond or a Real Diamond?” First off – The cheek!
Second, you may honestly answer that Yes, it is a real diamond. A real diamond that was grown in a lab. A diamond you selected for environmental reasons, or cost reasons. It is completely up to you.
The thing is, No one can tell. If they don’t have the cert or a microscope – They will never know. So it is completely up to the wearer.
“I still want a traditionally mined diamond”
Good. The thing is an Engagement Ring will be one of the most personal purchases you make in your life. You should do what is right for you. I am here to help you through this process. To navigate all the ins and outs of stone selection as well as all the other stuff. If you think I can be of use to you, email me at:
– Just follow this link to see more of my work on Engagement Rings.