Why choose created diamonds?
By purchasing created diamonds, you are taking away the conflict and all the ethical morality questions which come with the mining process without diminishing the quality of our gemstones.
Here at Creatiste, we pride ourselves on sustainability and champion lab-created gemstones of the very highest quality and durability. This is our ethos, and one of the main reasons why we think Creatiste stands out from the rest within the industry. Not only in producing beautiful, memorable and simply awe-inspiring gemstones, but doing so in a manner which protects both workers’ rights and the environment. Mining diamonds is considered unethical and hazardous and should be discouraged at all costs. A diamond created in a lab is just as real and just as effectively produced as a mined one. You can read more about our story here.
We believe in everything the lab-creation process stands for and through this, strive to create eco-friendly and conflict-free jewellery. This was our identikit from day one and it has remained dear to our hearts ever since. At Creatiste, we think lab-created diamonds and gemstones are the future.
You might be surprised to hear created diamonds are better and more beneficial than those mined naturally – when in fact the opposite is often true – but there are very good reasons for this. Here are just a few of them:
- Better appearance due to brighter quality, better light, and higher purity
- Eco friendly
- Fewer defects
- More affordable
- Better working conditions
- Creating a great mix of colours
- Highly controlled environment and fully monitored process
What are Created Diamonds?
Created diamonds and gemstones are those grown, created and manufactured in a science laboratory: man made rather than mined from the ground and from nature. There are two different types: these are synthesized gemstones and simulated gemstones. Here at Creatiste, we pride ourselves on our very own range of beautiful, unique and affordable synthesized and simulated diamonds.
Both are grown in highly controlled lab environments using advanced technology and processes which duplicate conditions under which natural diamonds develop. As a result, a synthesized gemstone’s optical and gemological qualities are exactly the same as those found in naturally mined stones, which form in the mantle beneath the Earth’s crust. A synthesized gemstone has the same composition, structure, hardness, colour and brilliance as its naturally-mined contemporaries. Synthesized gemstones can be contrasting in that some have inclusions, for example, a crystal or slight ‘feathering, anything which is a small imperfection on the diamond itself, like a birthmark.
Simulated gemstones usually have similar optical qualities, colours and brilliance to natural gemstones, but differ in terms of gemological and chemical composition. Some varieties also have improved hardness, stability and density. Simulated gemstones are often chosen for the balance of optical quality and beauty. Fancy coloured lab created diamonds sell at comparatively reasonable prices to their counterparts.
Created diamonds are a responsible and ethical choice given the fact there is no environmental impact or damage involved.
How are Created Diamonds Made?
We grow our synthesized, lab created diamonds from tiny carbonated seeds of other pre-existing diamonds. There are two methods used to create and mould lab diamonds. We use advanced technology; either extreme pressure/heat which is known as HPHT or a special deposition process called CVD (chemical vapour deposition) – to mimic the methods used in natural diamond formation. Both methods are equally as effective in creating high quality, authentic diamonds, identical to those found in nature.
Sometimes, both processes are used to re-enforce the strength, quality and purity of the stones. Some man made diamonds, created through deposition, may also undergo high pressure and high temperature (HPTHT) at the end of the process after they are grown.
From the rough stones, it is then cut, faceted, polished and set painstakingly by hand using traditional artisan techniques.
Man made, fancy coloured diamonds are formed when small amounts of specific elements are present during the initial growth stage of the process. This is the same as when the stones are grown naturally.
In a white lab created stone, the exact composition of the elements may slightly differ from those you would find in a natural diamond. A man made diamond can only be distinguished from natural diamonds using specialized equipment that can detect the minor differences in trace elements and crystal growth.
How are Lab created Diamonds Certified and Graded?
All created diamonds and gemstones are treated the same as mined diamonds. This is to ensure their appearance is the same and their qualities do not diminish. Once ready, the stones are then sent to an independent specialist gem lab to be graded and certified by an expert.
The process when it comes to grading created diamonds is the same as it would be for traditional, natural gemstones. There are four ‘Cs’ involved in the grading of the diamonds:
- The cut is the most important aspect as it’s the measure of shape, geometry and finish of the stone
- Clarity refers to the appearance and the lack of cracks, imperfections and defects
- When referencing clear diamonds, the less colour there is, the higher the grade
- Finally, carat is the measure of the diamond’s dimensions (size and weight). The highest recorded ‘carat’ is Cullinan 1 in South Africa at 530.4 (106.8kg)
Each diamond is individually examined, tested and then given a quality rating.
Just like with their natural contemporaries, lab diamonds will exhibit variations across the ‘4Cs’ and range from poor to superlative quality. Not all lab diamonds turn out to be perfect, colourless and flawless.
Mining vs lab created gemstones
We’ve already touched on the differences (and some similarities) between created stones and their natural counterparts, but now we’ll take a closer look at how and why they differ from each other.
The differences cannot be seen with the naked eye – indeed it would require the intervention of an expert to be able to say which is which. Natural diamonds contain minute amounts of nitrogen whilst created diamonds do not have any. This is the main factor used by gemologists to indicate whether the diamond is created or not. As already mentioned, created diamonds have the same physical and chemical properties as natural ones so they will be just as beautiful and dazzling. However, a natural diamond has a rarity factor and will hold its ‘value’ better than one made in a lab because supply never runs out. The main difference is simply the way they are created. A mined diamond is formed naturally deep beneath the Earth’s crust where temperate and pressures are very high. These diamonds can only be mined when rare volcanoes erupt and bring them close to the surface. The process is imitated in a lab using various methods. What starts as a diamond seed – a minuscule slice of a diamond – blossoms into a larger gemstone as carbon atoms grow around it. Created diamonds usually cost about 30% less than their natural counterparts of similar size and quality and are becoming increasingly popular as a result.
Rory Moore, CEO of Arctic Canadian Diamond Company, runs the Ekati diamond mine in Canada’s Northwestern Territory. He explained how a new system of diamond mining could change the future of the much maligned natural diamond industry:
“Essentially, we flood the pit and then when the open pit mining is completed, we mine under water using specialist machines. This restricts the environmental impact and the beauty of doing it this way is you mine ore and not waste. In turn your costs are dramatically lower, in theory you don’t even need any workers in the mine workers and it’s a environmentally friendly alternative to the more traditional way of doing things.
We hope the future of Ekati and the industry as a whole is in methods like underwater remote mining, which has not been done in this sort of setting at all in the past.”
Simulated vs synthesised diamonds
Diamond simulants are gemstones manufactured to look like diamonds but are both visually and compositionally different from real diamonds. Simulated diamonds such as Cubic Zirconia and Moissanite look like diamonds but in fact, are not real diamonds at all. Their low cost and visual likeness to the real thing have made cubic zirconia the most gemologically and economically important simulant since the ‘YAG’ in 1976. Man made diamond simulants are common, but there are a few natural gemstones that can fall into this category because of their clear, colourless appearances. These include quartz and white sapphire. Lab diamonds rank a 10 on the Moh’s Scale of Hardness making them one of the hardest and most durable minerals on earth. Moissanite ranks 9.25 and cubic zirconia ranks 8.5 making both durable simulants suitable for everyday wear, but more susceptible to surface scratching and wear over time. Simulants do not have the same chemical and physical properties as natural diamonds and therefore sell at a lower price point. Simulants can be distinguished from natural or created diamonds using only the naked eye due to their fiery sparkle. Because of the work which goes into the production of them, they are generally as close to perfection as possible. They are made through an alchemical process in which a blend of Zirconium dioxide and other minerals produce a sparkling, crystal-clear gem.
Why you should choose created diamonds
One of the biggest pros associated with created diamonds lies in their ability to be produced in a more ethically and environmentally conscious manner. The only slight downside to created diamonds is they are not considered authentic by experts and gemstone purists.
If you’re looking for an affordable, attractive alternative to naturally grown diamonds, our beautiful created diamonds are definitely the way to go.
Any questions? Let us help you with this handy Q&A guide on everything you need to know about created diamonds.