Whenever I visit a jewelry show, there is a very good chance that I will witness conflicting discussions between people regarding diamonds. With the arrival of lab-grown diamonds in the jewelry arena, things changed. This blog discusses the pros and cons, what I would choose and what you as end consumers need to know.

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Discussions in the jewelry industry

A few years ago, I joined a group of experts in a friendly but heated discussion during the Vicenza Oro. The room was full, indicating the notorious popularity of the subject.

Just as easily predicted, we are all driven by our own interests and agenda. Mine was definitely not from the diamond industry, nor the lab grown diamond industry, but from the customer. We must inform them openly, transparently and honestly, always keeping their interest and wishes in mind, and our values ​​in our hearts.

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Accepting that a lab-made diamond is here to stay

As an industry, we need to consider that lab-grown diamonds are here to stay.

They are formed in a laboratory and are therefore man-made. The end result has the same composition as naturally created diamonds. The ones that were developed by the cosmos, mother earth and tons of pressure and heat a very long time ago.

We're recreating this in a lab, and that is, of course, a fantastic thing. But not everyone is as excited. Obvious.

The two stones may be similar in composition, but their story and how they were born, recovered and handled certainly isn't.

One of the key things to understand is that there is a significant price difference between a natural and a lab-grown diamond. Lab-grown diamonds are much cheaper than their natural counterparts.

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Fraud

The problem arises when communication with customers in B2B and B2C areas is changed. To put it bluntly: when people commit fraud by selling lab-grown natural diamonds as natural diamonds.

While visiting a manufacturer in Valenza, I could understand on the spot what it was all about. They purchased a machine to check all the diamonds they received. They were filtering lab-grown diamonds from purchased lots. The surprises were countless.

The end consumer, the one I care deeply about and want to protect, needs the option to verify our honesty. If a consumer wants to buy lab-grown diamonds, and we as an industry have provided insight into what a lab-grown product entails, the choice is theirs. And vice versa: when the consumer chooses a natural diamond, we should answer all the questions that may arise.

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Greenwashing

(“Greenwashing” is a form of misinformation often used to attract a would-be green consumer. Companies that promise to be sustainable, biodegradable, or environmentally conscious sometimes fail to deliver on their promises to consumers)

The lab diamond industry has been accused of greenwashing its product, as has the natural diamond industry. Blood diamonds, the exploitation of people and the planet, but also the history of the exploitation of natural diamonds are not all shiny and full of glory. Today, the natural diamond industry is making amends by pushing the interests of locals and the planet much higher on the agenda by funding initiatives that help the natural environment and local communities.

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My choice between a natural diamond and a lab-made one would be:

What would I personally choose? Haha, well that question has been asked so many times! I live in Europe and lab grown diamonds haven't taken over the scene yet. I wonder if this has anything to do with the engagement ring industry... In my country (Romania), engagement rings hardly mean anything. But in the US, for example, they are a huge business.

In some popular online discussions, people in the industry even argue about what it says about the LOVE one feels for another when they buy a lab-grown diamond. This is the most ridiculous thing! Don't let anyone tell you that the size or provenance of your diamond represents the quantity or quality of your LOVE for someone.

Constantly remember that diamonds are bought - when we propose to someone - because of a very clever marketing ploy. ("A Diamond is Forever" campaign launched by De Beers).. I like how they have installed this idea so firmly in the world, but in the end, I always side with the consumer and their budget. (When you marry someone at a young age, you should always think about spending your money wisely. Never go into debt for a piece of jewelry)

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I didn't answer the question, did I? ;-) What would I choose? Ok, ok....keep in mind that my answer consists of personal preferences and a long experience looking at jewelry! No one, not me, not you, needs jewelry. It is not vital for survival; we can live happy and meaningful lives without them. It is a beautiful thing to observe, create, buy or own jewelry. So, when we buy it, we should, in my opinion, be very careful. So I would go for a traceable diamond, only when buying a certain size. I want to know his complete journey from birth to my finger. With smaller diamonds, this is virtually impossible for manufacturers. But, for a single larger diamond, I would go for a natural one. As for the rest of my jewelry, I definitely opt for laboratory diamonds.

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This is why it is a good choice when we prefer a diamond made in the laboratory

You may be wondering whether to choose a lab-grown diamond or a natural diamond. Both types of diamonds have unique benefits and it is essential to weigh the pros and cons before deciding. Here are 5 reasons why you might choose lab-grown diamonds, as well as some points to consider that may cast doubt on these benefits:

  1. They are more environmentally friendly. Lab-grown diamonds are created in a lab using advanced technology, meaning they do not require the mining and extraction processes that natural diamonds require. This makes them a greener choice. However, it's important to note that the energy required to create lab-grown diamonds can have a carbon footprint of its own. In addition, the production of lab-grown diamonds involves the use of hazardous chemicals that could have a negative impact on the environment.
  2. They are more affordable. Lab-grown diamonds are usually much cheaper than natural diamonds of the same quality and size. This is because they have different costs associated with mining and extraction and can be produced on a larger scale
  3. They are ethically responsible. Natural diamond mining often takes place in countries with questionable labor practices and pending human rights lawsuits. On the other hand, lab-grown diamonds are created in a controlled environment, ensuring that ethical labor practices are followed. While this may be true, it is important to note that the production of lab grown diamonds is also labor intensive and it is vital to ensure that ethical labor practices are followed within the lab as well.
  4. They are chemically and physically identical to natural diamonds. Lab-grown diamonds are made from the same material as natural diamonds and have the same physical and chemical properties. This means they are as hard and durable as natural diamonds and have the same brilliance. However, some might argue that natural diamonds have a certain "aura" or "energy" that lab-grown diamonds do not possess.
  5. It offers various customization possibilities. Because lab-grown diamonds can be created in a controlled setting, it is possible to customize the size, shape and color of the diamond. This means you can get what you want without settling for a natural diamond that may not meet your specifications. However, it is important to note that it is possible to find a natural diamond that meets your specific criteria.

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Ultimately, the decision to choose a lab-grown or natural diamond is a personal one, and it's essential to consider all the factors involved. Lab-grown diamonds offer many benefits, including being greener, more affordable, and more ethically responsible. However, it is also essential to consider the potential downsides and carefully research the available options before making a decision.

The claim that such a diamond is a poor investment might be more relevant to the consumer buying a ring because of the value of the diamond in it.

The jewelry industry must NEVER forget that what people see in a ring is not the precious value of a stone. They see a treasure with deep emotional value, love and memories.