Laboratory-grown (created) gemstones
Laboratory-grown gemstones are stones grown and created in a science laboratory, man-made, rather than mined from the ground and from nature. They exist in two genres, laboratory-grown synthesized gemstones and laboratory-grown simulated gemstones.
A lab-grown synthesized gemstone shares identical optical and gemological qualities to naturally mined gemstones. They have the same chemical composition and structure, hardness and durability, colours and brilliance as their naturally mined counterparts. Synthesized gemstones can also have inclusions or perfect clarity.
A lab-grown simulated gemstone shares similar optical qualities, colours and brilliance but have different gemological qualities to naturally mined gemstones. They have different chemical composition and structure, hardness and durability to their naturally mined counterparts. Simulated gemstones usually have perfect clarity and colour saturations, often with improved hardness and durability, except for diamonds. A simulated gemstone is usually chosen for its balance in optical qualities, durability and affordability.
A recycled gemstone is a re-purposed natural, mined gemstone that has originated from estate or antique jewellery and private, personal collections. The natural gemstones are often recut and repolished, to be reset into brand new creations breathing new life into lost and forgotten jewels.
A natural gemstone is naturally occurring in nature and mined from the ground around the world.
Gold purity content is categorized using the carat system. Pure gold is 24k and extremely soft, it bends, warps and scratches easily. This means it is an unlikely metal for jewellery that needs to retain its shape.
18 carat gold is made up of 75% gold and 25% alloy. This type of gold is referred to as 18 carat because 18 out of the 24 parts that make up the gold are pure gold. 18K gold is usually the purest form of gold used for rings, watches and other wearable jewellery.
14 carat gold is made up of 58.3% gold and 41.7% alloy, or 14 out of 24 parts gold. 14K gold is a popular gold for jewellery, its colour is slightly less saturated and intense than 18 carat gold, with greater durability and affordability.
18k gold vermeil
18k gold vermeil is a 2-3 microns thick coating of 18k gold on sterling silver, usually ten times the thickness of standard plating for greater durability, hardness and affordability.
Rhodium is a member of the platinum family, and rhodium vermeil is an electroplated coating of rhodium on sterling silver. Rhodium is a silvery-white, hard and corrosion-resistant precious metal that reflects 80% of light, giving one of the best sheens achievable on white gold or sterling silver jewellery.