Lab Grown Diamond Price – Cost Comparison

Lab Grown Diamond Price – Cost Comparison

Curious about the price of lab-created diamonds?

Great! You’ve come to the perfect spot.

In this informative Twirl Weddings handbook, we’ll delve into the cost of lab-grown diamonds and discuss subjects such as:

  • What makes lab-grown diamonds more affordable?
  • The process behind creating lab-grown diamonds
  • Where to find the top-notch lab-grown diamonds

You’ll also discover detailed price comparisons for:

  • Genuine diamonds
  • Moissanite
  • White sapphire

What is a Lab-Grown Diamond?

Lab-grown diamonds are incredibly popular nowadays, and there are several compelling reasons for their popularity. The primary factor is that lab-created diamonds are authentic diamonds, yet they come with a much lower price tag compared to naturally mined diamonds of similar quality.

Another factor contributing to their appeal is the way they are produced, as many individuals believe that big players like De Beers and other prominent names in the diamond industry unjustly inflate the prices of natural diamonds.

The main distinction between a lab-grown diamond and a naturally mined diamond lies in their formation process. Both types share similar optical, physical, and chemical properties.

Natural diamonds are created deep within the Earth through intense pressure and high temperatures. Over time, they are brought to the surface by natural processes.

On the other hand, lab-grown diamonds undergo two primary processes in a laboratory environment that replicates the necessary pressure and temperatures to foster diamond growth.

How Lab Grown Diamonds are Made

For those who prefer a concise summary, here’s the scoop…

Creating a lab-grown diamond is a much faster process compared to waiting for one to naturally form. Lab diamonds can be fully developed and ready to be cut and polished in less than a month, typically taking around two weeks.

There are two main methods used to produce lab diamonds. The first method is known as high pressure high temperature (HPHT), while the second method is called chemical vapor deposition (CVD).

In the HPHT method, a small piece of diamond, known as a diamond seed, is subjected to incredibly high pressure and temperatures, simulating the conditions under which diamonds naturally grow in the ground. The diamond seed is placed within a carbon material and exposed to these conditions. As a result, the carbon melts and bonds with the diamond seed, leading to the formation of diamond crystals as it cools down.

In the CVD method, a diamond seed (often an HPHT diamond) is positioned inside a chamber. The chamber is then filled with carbon gases that transform into a plasma-like substance, breaking down bonded molecules. This allows the carbon to surround the seed and initiate the crystallization process.

RECOMMENDED: CVD vs. HPHT Diamond Creation Methods

Are Lab Grown Diamonds Relatively Cheaper?

Many of you are likely aware that lab-grown diamonds are priced lower compared to naturally mined diamonds. A brief look at some best online diamond stores would confirm this. Experts commonly state that lab diamonds are generally 20-40% more affordable than a mined diamond with the same grades.

However, it’s important to note that lab diamond prices can vary. It is not uncommon to find them 50%-70% cheaper than natural diamonds.

The cost of natural diamonds is influenced by several factors. The primary factors are the 4Cs of Diamond Quality: Cut, Color, Clarity, and Carat. Additionally, diamond certification, the retailer, specialty cuts, and diamond shape can also affect the price.

Lab diamonds also adhere to the 4Cs, but they tend to have better clarity and color since they are grown in a controlled environment. They do have some inclusions and blemishes, but they are typically thin and less noticeable compared to crystal inclusions. Lab-grown diamonds do not contain other crystals, minerals, or impurities that can occur during the formation process of natural diamonds.


When natural diamonds are cut into specific shapes, a significant portion of the rough diamond is discarded by the diamond cutters. For instance, round diamonds retain only about 40% of the original rough diamond, which contributes to their higher price compared to other diamond shapes.

However, the main reason why lab diamonds are more affordable is their availability. Natural diamonds require billions of years to form, and even then, only a fraction of them possess the necessary quality to be considered gem-grade.

Cost Comparison

Lab-Grown Diamond vs Natural Diamond 

When comparing these two diamonds from James Allen, there are slight variations, such as a difference of 0.03 carats.

However, the magnitude of this difference should not be significant when considering factors like polish, symmetry, or fluorescence.

Nevertheless, here we are, witnessing the preference for lab-grown diamonds over mined ones, and it’s not difficult to understand why people are increasingly choosing them.

RECOMMENDED: Lab Grown vs. Natural Diamonds

Lab-Grown Diamond vs Moissanite

Despite significant differences in quality factors and pricing, many individuals find themselves torn between choosing a genuine diamond engagement ring and the increasingly popular moissanite engagement ring.

Moissanites are graded using a distinct system and are available in regular, premium, and super premium qualities.

These gemstones emit a vibrant rainbow light effect, reminiscent of a disco ball, which can be more pronounced than the brilliance of a diamond. While some people prefer this unique characteristic, others may perceive it as resembling costume jewelry.

Now, let’s delve into a cost comparison between an ideal cut lab diamond and a super premium loose moissanite sourced from Brilliant Earth.

The price difference between a lab-grown diamond and moissanite is quite significant.

Unlike diamonds, moissanites are not typically measured in carat weights. A round moissanite with a diameter of 6.5 mm is usually considered equivalent in size to a 1-carat round diamond.

Moreover, moissanites are not graded using the traditional 4Cs like diamonds. Instead, they are categorized as standard, premium, and super premium, with the latter representing the highest quality.

Generally, moissanites tend to be colorless and almost always appear clean to the naked eye. In my case, I opted for a lab-grown diamond that is both colorless and eye-clean. It’s important to note that lab-grown diamonds are pricier than diamond simulants.

Lab-Grown Diamond vs White Sapphire

The quality characteristics of these two gemstones vary significantly, including their sparkle. They have a distinct difference in the type of light they emit. Instead of the white and rainbow light commonly associated with diamonds and moissanite, they tend to give off a silvery light.

White sapphire is typically available as lab-created because natural white sapphire is rarer and more expensive.

If you’re looking for lab-created white sapphire rings, places like Kay offer a variety of options. Larger sizes are readily available and can be obtained for under $150 when set in sterling silver.

The white sapphire mentioned above is a natural white sapphire sourced from Brilliant Earth. Although they are pricier than lab-created versions, they are still considerably more affordable compared to our lab-grown diamond.

White Sapphire Stones at Brilliant Earth

Shop at Brilliant Earth

RECOMMENDED: Lab Created White Sapphire vs. Diamond

Lab-Grown Diamond Pros and Cons


Let’s explore some of the advantages of buying lab-grown diamonds instead of mined diamonds.

1. Lab diamonds offer better value for your money: Lab diamonds are often available in larger carat sizes than natural diamonds, giving you more options to choose from.

2. Lab diamonds are conflict-free: We recommend retailers like Brilliant Earth, who sell conflict-free diamonds or traceable and recycled natural diamonds. However, some individuals still prefer lab diamonds to ensure complete peace of mind.

3. Lab diamonds are more environmentally friendly: Unlike the energy-intensive mining process for natural diamonds, lab diamonds require less energy and are considered a better option for the environment. However, it’s important to note that they are not entirely green or sustainable.

4. Lab diamonds have superior clarity and color: Lab-grown diamonds tend to have better clarity and color compared to their natural counterparts.

5. Lab diamonds are more affordable: As you already know, lab diamonds are significantly cheaper than mined diamonds. This affordability is one of the primary reasons many people choose lab-grown diamonds over natural ones.


Now, let’s consider a few downsides associated with lab-grown diamonds. Please note that these may or may not be applicable to your specific situation.

1. Lab diamonds have limited resale value: To be honest, even natural diamonds generally have limited resale value. While retailers like James Allen and Blue Nile offer lifetime diamond upgrades for natural diamonds, this option is not available for lab-grown diamonds. If you wish to sell your lab-grown diamond, you may have to explore local online marketplaces. However, keep in mind that you might find lab diamonds online at lower prices than what you would receive for selling yours, unless you significantly reduce the price.

2. Lab diamonds have been misrepresented by the diamond industry: There are various claims circulating on the internet regarding the lab-grown diamond market. It’s important to address and be aware of the major misconceptions associated with lab-grown diamonds.

Lab-grown diamonds are known by different names, but they are commonly referred to as either lab-grown or lab-created diamonds.

In the past, they were often called synthetic diamonds, which created the misconception that lab-grown diamonds are not real diamonds. However, the term “synthetic” simply means they are created in a lab. Similarly, synthetic rubies, emeralds, and sapphires are lab-grown gemstones that are genuine versions of their natural counterparts.

I believe the natural diamond industry labeled lab-grown diamonds with a negative connotation to make them seem less desirable and reduce their sales.

A diamond imitation is a gemstone designed to resemble the appearance of a real diamond. They may also be referred to as diamond alternatives or diamond simulants.

In some cases, these imitations are intended to deceive buyers, especially on platforms like Etsy or Amazon. You might come across listings with the name of the gemstone you’re searching for, only to discover that it’s an imitation stone like cubic zirconia, zircon, or even glass in the worst scenarios.

Fortunately, lab-grown diamonds are not fake diamonds. To ensure authenticity, it is advisable to purchase from trusted retailers rather than personal sale sites for added security.

FAQs About Lab-Grown Diamond Price

Here are some answers to commonly asked questions about lab-grown diamonds and their pricing.

Who offers the most affordable lab-grown diamond prices?

When it comes to competitive prices for lab-grown diamonds and natural diamonds online, James Allen is known for having some of the lowest prices. They even offer price matching for comparable diamonds. Additionally, they provide a free lifetime repair warranty on their ring settings.

Brilliant Earth specializes in ethical diamonds, including lab-grown and natural diamonds. They have a strong focus on giving back to the community and supporting various causes. Moreover, they offer a stunning collection of ring settings for engagement rings.

Do lab-grown diamonds require a grading report?

You might already be aware that we always recommend purchasing natural diamonds with a GIA or AGS grading report or diamond certification.

But what about lab-grown diamonds?

In the past, the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) didn’t extensively involve themselves in grading lab-grown diamonds. Consequently, their grading reports for lab diamonds were not as detailed as those for natural diamonds. However, in recent years, the GIA has improved its lab-grown diamond reports, bringing them up to standard. Some retailers now offer GIA-certified lab-grown diamonds.

Apart from GIA, other reputable lab-grown diamond certifications we recommend include IGI and GCAL.

When making a significant purchase, such as a diamond, it’s always beneficial to have legitimate paperwork, and I believe that diamond grading reports are worth the cost.

If you’re not a knowledgeable jeweler, it can be challenging to distinguish a lab-grown diamond from a natural diamond.

Do lab-grown diamonds need to have high diamond grades?

Many people believe that the best diamonds require having the largest carat weight, the highest clarity, and the highest color grades. While both lab-grown and natural diamonds are rare in high grades and carat weights, it’s not necessary to have them, especially with lab-grown diamonds.

If you’re purchasing a lab-grown diamond with a round cut, the cut grade should ideally be either “ideal cut” or “excellent cut.”

For princess cut and other diamond shapes like pear shape, you should aim for a grade of “very good” or higher, if the retailer provides such sorting. Officially, diamonds other than the round cut don’t have an actual cut grade. However, some retailers offer “ideal” princess cut and cushion cut diamonds that meet the best parameters for those specific shapes.

The cut grade directly affects the brilliance and durability of your diamond. I would recommend staying away from super ideal cuts unless you have a strong preference for them.

Here’s an example:

You don’t necessarily need a VVS2 lab-grown diamond. The VVS clarity tier is the second highest before reaching internally flawless. Instead, you simply need an eye-clean diamond, which means a diamond without visible inclusions or blemishes to the naked eye.

By the way, if you find the acronym VVS confusing, we have an informative article that explains what a VVS diamond actually means. It’s always helpful to understand the terms and qualities associated with diamonds before making a purchase decision.

diamond clarity grades

When it comes to clarity grades, the ones you should focus on are VS, VVS, IF, and F. Interestingly, if you were to line up one diamond from each of these grades in front of you, it would be nearly impossible to spot any differences without using magnification of 10x or more.

Since lab-grown diamonds naturally have superior clarity compared to mined diamonds, there’s no real need to go for the highest clarity grade. However, if you do choose to go that route, you’ll be getting an excellent deal compared to the price of a VVS or IF diamond with the same grades.

As for color, you don’t have to aim for a D color grade to have a colorless diamond. In fact, it’s challenging to find lab diamonds with lower clarity and color grades because the better grades are easily affordable and more commonly available.

You’ll also notice that many lab diamond dealers don’t even offer I clarity diamonds, as SI and VS2 clarities are quite common for lab diamonds.

If you’re considering a simple white gold solitaire engagement ring, I would recommend opting for a lab diamond with at least an H color grade and a minimum of VS2 clarity. And if you happen to find an SI lab diamond that is eye-clean, that would be even better!

Final Thoughts – Lab Grown Diamond Price

So, we’ve covered all the important factors that affect the price of lab diamonds. However, if you’re planning to buy one, remember that price shouldn’t be the sole factor guiding your decision.

It’s crucial to purchase a genuine lab-grown diamond from a reputable retailer you can rely on. To assist you in making the right choice, you can check out our comprehensive review of the best lab diamonds. This review has been instrumental in helping numerous individuals select the perfect lab-grown diamond for their rings.

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