Frequently Asked Questions
All things diamonds - lab diamonds - of course.
Laboratory Grown Diamonds
What is a laboratory grown diamond?
A lab grown diamond is a diamond that is created through a controlled man made process, rather than a gemmological process beneath the earth’s surface. Lab grown diamonds have the same physical, chemical and aesthetic structures as mined diamonds.
Is there a difference between lab grown diamonds and diamonds mined from the Earth?
Put simply, no - there is no chemical or aesthetic difference between lab grown diamonds and ones mined from the Earth.
Gemmological labs (e.g. GIA, IGI, or HRD) can use very advanced and expensive machinery to spot slight differences in growth structures due to the respective environments of each diamond's formation process. This is like comparing DnA of two different individuals – each will have unique characteristics but still be made up the same chemical elements.
Are there other names for lab grown diamonds?
A lab grown diamond is the most widely used term to describe diamonds that are grown with science and human intervention.
Other names include man made diamonds, lab created diamonds, above ground diamonds, cultivated and cultured diamonds.
Are there grading reports (certificates) for lab grown diamonds?
All of the globally renowned gemmological labs issue lab grown diamond reports that clearly states the "identification" or "origin" of the diamond as "laboratory-grown".
Lab diamonds above 0.30 carats can be graded for their colour, cut and clarity. To see an example of such a report - please visit the Gemmological Institute of America (GIA).
Do you offer grading reports for Fyne Jewellery items?
Currently, our ready to wear collection does not come with a grading report, but we do include a certificate of authenticity to state your item is 100% genuine.
For our bespoke bridal jewellery, we always provide a gemmological grading report by a laboratory of your choice. We typically work with GIA, IGI, HRD and Diamond Foundry graded diamonds.
What is the difference between a lab grown diamond and cubic zirconia or moissanite?
Cubic zirconia is a simulant – it is made to look like a diamond but it’s chemical, optical and physical properties are not the same as a diamond. It is less durable and has less brilliance than a mined and lab grown diamond.
Moissanite is also a simulant or imitation, and is rarely found in nature so most moissanite is man made - it is the second hardest material after diamonds. Moissanite also refracts light differently, so its sparkle can look quite colourful – almost like a rainbow effect. In terms of price, moissanite is significantly cheaper than lab grown and mined diamonds.
How is a lab grown diamond made?
There are two ways to make lab grown diamonds - HPHT and CVD. Read about each technological process below:
HPHT (High Temperature High Pressure) mimics the environment that a natural diamond undergoes beneath the Earth’s surface. Temperatures exceeding 1300 degrees Celsius and 50,000 atmospheres of pressures are required to turn a carbon source into carbon atoms that start to form into a rough diamond crystal.
CVD (Chemical Vapour Deposition) is a process whereby a hydrocarbon gas is placed into a vacuum chamber over a tiny diamond seed. Carbon gasses are heated to 800 degrees Celcius, causing them to break apart from their carbon atoms which then form on top of the diamond seed, slowly growing into a rough diamond crystal.
How long does it take to grow a lab diamond?
It can take 3-6 weeks to grow a lab grown diamond rough – sometimes longer.
Do lab grown diamonds test as real diamonds?
Yes. When using a diamond tester, lab grown diamonds test as real because their physical and chemical properties are exactly the same as a mined diamond.
Are all lab grown diamonds the same colour and clarity?
No - that is why the most reputable grading labs (ie. GIA, HRD, IGI) will also grade lab grown diamonds for their colour, clarity and cut.
Are all lab grown diamonds identical?
Not at all! Just like mined diamonds, lab grown diamonds are grown with various clarity characteristics that cannot be controlled. This makes each rough crystal unique as a result of their own growth journey.
What percentage of all diamonds are lab grown?
Lab grown diamonds only make up about 3-4% of all diamonds in the market. This means that they are still relatively rare within the industry.
Fun fact: Laboratory grown diamonds were invented by General Electric in the 1950s and have been responsible for huge industrial advancements in telecommunications, optics and health care.
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