Curious about the superior choice between lab-grown diamonds and white zircon stones? Look no further!
Within this Twirl Weddings comprehensive guide, I’ll provide you with clear and concise responses to commonly asked questions regarding these two gemstones, such as:
- Are lab-grown diamonds authentic diamonds?
- Is white zircon prone to scratching?
- Which stone is more suitable for an engagement ring?
Differences Between Lab Grown Diamonds vs White Zircons
- Lab-grown diamonds possess identical characteristics to natural diamonds, unlike white zircon which differs in properties.
- Lab-grown diamonds are exclusively created by humans, while white zircon can either be found in nature or artificially produced.
- White zircon is commonly employed as a replacement for diamonds, whereas lab-grown diamonds are genuine diamonds themselves.
- When it comes to appearance, white zircon exhibits a glossy sheen, whereas lab-grown diamonds showcase a brilliant combination of white light and enchanting rainbow glimmers.
Origin – Lab-Grown Diamond vs White Zircon
Both of these stones may appear colorless, their production processes differ significantly. Let’s delve into the fascinating journey of how each of these gems is created and how it influences their unique characteristics.
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At first glance, some might assume that lab-grown diamonds are mere replicas of colorless diamonds. However, this couldn’t be further from reality. Lab-grown diamonds are, in fact, authentic diamonds that are crafted by humans, not counterfeit imitations.
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In terms of their physical properties, chemical composition, and optical attributes, lab-grown diamonds are indistinguishable from diamonds that are naturally mined from the Earth’s crust. While they may be referred to as man-made or synthetic diamonds, it is crucial to understand that these terms do not undermine their authenticity or quality.
These diamonds are indeed genuine. However, unlike mined diamonds that take millions of years to form within the Earth, lab-created diamonds can be grown in as little as three weeks, although larger diamond structures may require around two months.
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The first method is known as the HPHT (High Pressure High Temperature) process. In this technique, a portion of a natural diamond is exposed to conditions akin to those experienced by diamonds formed naturally underground. However, instead of occurring in the earth, this process takes place within a controlled laboratory environment. Within an enclosed chamber, extreme heat and pressure are applied to the diamond seed, causing it to crystallize and grow.
In the CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition) process, a chamber is filled with gases that contain a lot of carbon. The chamber is heated up really hot. When this happens, the gas changes into a plasma state, and only pure carbon is left behind. This carbon then forms crystals and solidifies.
Similar to lab-grown diamonds, white zircon stones are often associated with certain misconceptions. People often confuse this colorless gem with cubic zirconia, which is an artificially created stone and not naturally occurring. Cubic zirconia is commonly referred to as a fake diamond.
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However, it’s important to understand that white zircon is a genuine gemstone in its own right, and it serves as a substitute for diamonds. Zircon gems have a long history and have been used in jewelry for centuries, making them one of the oldest known gemstones. In the past, zircon was commonly chosen as an alternative to diamonds until more durable options like white topaz or white sapphire became available.
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White zircon gemstones can be found in various countries around the world, with Thailand being particularly renowned for its production. Other notable sources of zircon include Myanmar and Sri Lanka.
Appearance – Lab-Grown Diamond vs White Zircon
When it comes to how they sparkle, lab-grown diamonds and white zircon have more similarities compared to lab diamonds and cubic zirconia. Diamonds and cubic zirconia have distinct differences in how they bend light, called refractive indexes. However, white zircon and lab-grown diamonds share a similar sparkle and light performance.
Lab Grown Diamonds
Lab-grown diamonds shine and sparkle just like diamonds mined from the earth. They are evaluated based on the same factors like color and clarity to ensure their quality matches that of natural diamonds.
When comparing lab diamonds to other diamond imitations like cubic zirconia or white topaz, only lab-grown diamonds can truly replicate the sparkle of a natural diamond engagement ring. Cubic zirconia, for example, doesn’t reflect light in the same way as diamonds. It mostly gives off rainbow flashes, while lab-grown and natural diamonds have a mix of white and rainbow light that creates a balanced and beautiful sparkle.
When choosing a lab-grown diamond for your engagement ring, it’s important to consider its cut. A poorly cut diamond, whether lab-grown or natural, won’t shine as brightly. For round diamonds, I recommend going for an Excellent or Ideal cut grade.
However, if you’re looking to save money without compromising too much on appearance, a Very Good cut grade is a great alternative. Most people won’t notice the difference, and it allows you to make the most of your budget.
Imitations and Synthetics
Lab-created diamonds are the man-made equivalent of natural diamonds. Some people mistakenly associate the term “synthetic” with something fake, but it simply means that these diamonds are created in a laboratory rather than being formed naturally. Just like a lab-created sapphire, a synthetic diamond has the same chemical composition, physical properties, and optical properties as a diamond that comes from the earth.
It’s important to note that other colorless gemstones can try to imitate lab diamonds. If you search for lab-grown diamonds on platforms like Etsy and Amazon, you might come across listings or descriptions that also mention cubic zirconia or white sapphire stones. However, it’s crucial to exercise caution and be discerning about whom you trust when browsing the internet for these gemstones.
White zircon is one of the clear gemstones that people use as a substitute or copy of diamonds. However, a well-cut white zircon can shine just as brightly as a natural or lab-grown diamond. When light passes through a high-quality zircon, it behaves in a similar way to how it would in a diamond. But in a ring with cubic zirconia, the light behaves differently.
White zircon is usually colorless, although it can be treated to look that way. However, there are plenty of untreated white zircons available. The value and interest in zircon come from its different colors, not just the colorless variety. It’s important to know that if you have a treated white zircon, it might change back to its original color when exposed to light. Over time, treated zircons can turn light yellow or brown.
Imitations and Synthetics
There are also synthetic and imitation gemstones out there. White zircon can be made in a lab, but it’s still zircon. Lab-created white zircons are not the same as cubic zirconia stones, even though both are made in a lab. They have completely different properties. A lab-created diamond is a synthetic version of a real diamond, just like a lab-created white zircon is a synthetic version of a real white zircon. A lab-created diamond is a genuine diamond, and a lab-created white zircon is a genuine zircon.
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It’s important to be cautious when buying white zircon, especially if you’re in an unfamiliar market or purchasing a larger size. Sometimes, less expensive materials like white topaz, cubic zirconia, or even faceted glass can be passed off as white zircon or more expensive clear gemstones. So, it’s good to be aware and careful when making your purchase.
Price and Value
When comparing the prices of white zircon and lab-grown diamonds, it’s not surprising to find that white zircon is generally cheaper. We all know that natural diamonds can be quite expensive. If lab-grown diamonds have all the same qualities as natural ones, it’s safe to assume they will be similarly priced.
The good news is that lab-grown diamonds can cost anywhere from 20% to over 50% less than natural diamonds of the same size, clarity, color, and cut. This is because they are made in a lab instead of being mined from the ground. So, choosing a lab-grown diamond allows you to get a bigger diamond for less money compared to a natural one.
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However, there is a downside to lab-grown diamonds. When it comes to selling them to jewelers or pawn shops, they don’t have much value in the market. Most stores that sell lab-grown diamond jewelry don’t offer programs where you can trade up your diamond like they do for natural diamonds.
But don’t worry. You can still insure your lab-grown diamond jewelry and return it if needed. You can also sell your lab-grown diamond engagement ring on platforms like Mercari and Facebook Marketplace and get money for it. Although lab-grown diamonds are relatively cheaper than their natural counterparts, they may still be too expensive for some people looking for a ring.
In contrast, natural white zircon is a different story. Let me clarify, while larger white zircons with excellent cutting and clear appearance can be pricier than a small white zircon used as an accent stone, they are generally harder to come by.
Gemstone Durability and Wearability
White zircon engagement ring is quite affordable albeit unpopular for a specific reason—its not durable. On the Mohs scale, which measures how well a mineral can resist scratches, white zircon has a hardness level of 7.5 which means its more susceptible to scratching. Any substance with a higher hardness level beyond 7.5 has the potential to leave scratches on this type of ring.
It’s important to consider that white zircon still surpasses quartz and dust in terms of everyday wearability. Over time, the friction caused by air particles rubbing against your gemstone can result in scratches. The hardness of the stone plays a crucial role, as higher hardness levels lead to quicker damage.
In comparison, white sapphires, despite having a hardness rating of 9, can lose their clarity and become cloudy if they are not cleaned well or worn over a long period. On the other hand, lab-grown diamonds have the highest hardness level of 10. It’s interesting to note that only a diamond has the ability to scratch another diamond, making it the toughest mineral on our planet.
However, it’s important to remember that both diamonds and white zircon are not indestructible and can still break under certain circumstances.
It’s easy to see that different colorless gemstones have different origins. Some are naturally formed underground, while others are made by scientists. And surprisingly, some don’t even exist naturally.
A lab-created diamond is produced in a laboratory, but it has the same characteristics as diamonds that are mined from the earth. Likewise, you can find white zircon stones occurring naturally and also created in a lab.
Discovering white zircon engagement rings can present a significantly greater difficulty compared to finding lab-grown diamonds, you know? The interest and popularity in lab-created diamonds have soared, while the opposite holds true for white zircon. It’s not as readily available in upscale jewelry stores anymore, as they tend to prioritize more resilient transparent gemstones like white sapphire.
However, as someone who truly appreciates collecting gems, I would highly recommend obtaining both of these gemstones to enrich your collection. I completely understand that not everyone can afford lab-grown diamonds, despite their considerably lower price than their natural counterparts.
I hope this detailed Twirl Weddings guide has helped you grasp the difference between white zircon and lab grown diamonds. Maybe you can help restore the reputation of white zircon, shedding light on its true value and dispelling any misconceptions. Let’s work together to enlighten and inspire jewelry enthusiasts worldwide!