If you’re looking for a beautiful new pair of diamond stud earrings, you have options. Lab-grown diamonds have become much more accessible in recent years, so you’ll see a mixture of lab-grown and mined diamonds when you shop for diamond studs. But what’s the difference between lab-made and mined diamonds, and which is right for you? Find out as we compare lab-created and natural diamond studs.
Are Lab Diamonds Real Diamonds?
Lab-grown diamonds and earth-mined diamonds are more similar than they are different. Both are real diamonds with the same carbon crystal structure, giving them the same physical, chemical, and optical properties. They’re equally as hard, durable, and beautiful, so both are excellent choices for diamond jewelry.
How Are Lab Diamonds Made?
The core difference between lab-made diamonds and mined diamonds is how they’re made. Mined diamonds form in the earth over billions of years, while laboratory-grown diamonds are made by scientists in a lab.
Lab diamonds can be made using two methods: high pressure high temperature (HPHT) and chemical vapor deposition (CVD). Both methods begin with the use of a diamond seed, a tiny piece of rough diamond. In the HPHT process, the diamond seed is put into pure carbon, then exposed to extreme pressure and intense heat. In the CVD process, the diamond seed is placed in a chamber with carbon-rich gas, which is vaporized. Both processes cause carbon to bond to the diamond seed, forming a larger diamond around it.
Are Lab Diamonds More Affordable Than Mined Diamonds?
Another notable difference between lab diamonds and natural diamonds is their price. Lab-grown diamonds cost up to 60% less than natural diamonds of the same quality and carat weight.
This substantial price difference makes lab-grown diamonds very appealing for diamond studs, diamond engagement rings, and other types of diamond jewelry. Lab-grown diamond prices allow people to get more brilliance and impact within their budget.
Are Lab-Grown Diamonds Higher Quality?
If laboratory-grown diamonds are made under controlled conditions, are they always higher quality than natural diamonds? Not necessarily.
Scientists can control a lab diamond’s growing environment, but they can’t always make carbon molecules form into flawless, colorless diamonds. There is still an element of nature involved in a lab diamond’s creation. Different scientists may also use different types of technology, or use the same specialized equipment in a different way, leading to different results.
So, just like with natural diamonds, the quality of man-made diamonds can vary depending on the unique gemstone in question. To assess quality characteristics of any diamond, whether its lab-made or mined, check its grading report or inspect it in person.
Are Lab-Created Diamonds Ethical and Sustainable?
Many people consider lab-created diamonds a more ethical and sustainable option compared to earth-mined diamonds. Lab diamonds don’t involve mining, so they don’t have the same environmental impact and ethical considerations. And while the earth’s natural diamond supply is finite, lab-grown diamonds can be made on demand.
Should You Choose Lab-Grown or Mined Diamond Stud Earrings?
Lab-grown diamonds have the same optical, chemical, and physical properties as mined diamonds, yet are significantly more affordable. However, lab diamonds aren’t right for everyone. Some consumers have their heart set on natural diamonds, a rarer option with a long history.
Ultimately, whether you should choose lab-grown or natural diamond studs is a matter of personal preference. Lab-grown diamond studs offer more bang for your buck, while natural diamond studs are a beautiful and traditional choice.
Browse both options in our online store or stop by our Los Angeles showroom to see how lab-grown and natural diamond studs compare in person.