Natural Diamonds vs Lab grown diamonds vs Moissanites Best choice.

What kind of center stone should I choose for my engagement ring? Traditional earth-mined diamond, lab grown diamond or moissanite?

Important engagement ring considerations before popping the big question:

Shopping for a wedding ring is among one of the most memorable of life time events, there are so many factors to consider when buying your engagement ring such as; The ring style, type of gold, the size and shape of the center stone, solitaire or a halo setting, vintage inspired or classic style and don't forget, should you Include accent stones on the ring or leave it clean? These are some of the common questions many people in the market for an engagement ring should consider, but the most important is, what type of center stone should i pick for my engagement ring?

The center stone is often the most expensive part and possibly the most difficult to choose, it is important to take a time and consider whether to go with a natural earth mined diamond, a lab grown diamond (real but cultured, man made), or a Moissanite. If you aren’t sure don’t feel bad, you are not alone. Many people aren’t fully clear on the differences between these center options but i hope I can help to resolve some of your questions.

As a jeweler and designer, I’m proud and happy to offer the best quality in each of these options without any personal preference, what matters the most is what is important to you, your beloved and a stone that fits your budget without breaking your finances. My job is to be neutral and to create a unique engagement ring for the center of your choice. 
 

Are traditional earth-mined diamonds better?

Due to a variety of reasons, many traditional retail diamond stores will tell you that a natural earth-mined diamond is better because of the resale values compared to lab grown diamonds or Moissanites perhaps in part due to larger retail values sometimes translating to higher sales commissions. I would like to think all of my customers get engaged with the intention of it being a lifelong commitment, so the resale value should not be a big factor in my opinion. But if resale value matters to you, than a natural, GIA certified diamond would be a good choice. Know that when you try to sell your diamond you will lose about a high percentage of the retail value you paid. Natural diamonds are still the best choice for engagement rings but is is slowly changing. New buyers are looking for more affordable alternatives in order to save money. If budget is not an issue for you thank I would recommend you to go with a Natural GIA certified diamond. They hold the uniqueness that it was created in a natural environment by the earth. 

Are lab grown diamonds better? 

The lab grown diamond (man made diamond) has become the second choice of preference for center stones. For those who size matters but want to keep a low budget, lab diamonds will fill all their needs. It is a trend that is growing since it has the same look, feel and even atomic structure than earth mined diamonds, in fact they are real diamonds and test as diamonds with a diamond tester, they come with certificates of authenticity from IGI, the only difference is that instead of digging it out of the earth it is created in a lab with special machines that simulate the process of diamond creation. 
New generations are looking for a more ethical and affordable stones and the Industry will tell you that their diamonds are more ecological than natural earth diamonds and that they are prettier than Moissanites. These are all valid points for you to consider in your decision but also understand that to produce lab diamonds a vast amount of energy is consumed and the resale value is much less than a natural value. 
Lab Grown Diamonds make gorgeous rings at affordable prices. 

Are Moissanites better? 

Moissanites on the other hand tend to be very affordable than diamonds and almost no resale values. Moissanites are stimulants made in labs with the chemicals composition found in a meteor silicon carbide. They have a brighter reflection than natural or lab diamonds and they are as strong as sapphires making them very resistant to scratches and wear and tear. 
The Moissanites are NOT diamonds but look like diamonds and they are very popular among youngsters who want an engagement ring that fits their budget and look pretty on an engagement ring. 
The best moissanites are the ones made by Charles & Colvard in the USA

 

My Suggestion?

The three primary industries/options above each have valid pros and cons. I personally don’t think one stone is better than the other because of their retail value. Each one of the three stones will make a beautiful ring. I’ve use them in my vintage inspired engagement rings and they all look gorgeous. They made couples equally happy.

What I recommend to my customers is to do a little research on each type of stone. Find out their attributes, pros and cons and than set a budget and see which of the three choices might best fit your pocket, criteria and values. 

Price Comparison Natural diamond, Lab diamond or Mossanite.

For example, let’s take a solitaire engagement ring wiht a 1 carat center stone to compare the prices of each stone. In this case, let’s assume a medium high quality G color SI1 quality using early to mid 2020 market value estimates.

  • With a GIA Certified diamond G-SI1
Approximate Market Value $7,000
      • With a CVD IGI Lab Grown (man made) Certified Diamond G-SI1
        Approximate Market Value $3,500
          • With a Moissanite Forever One C&C Certified DEF
            Approximate Market Value $1,100

              The rings would look similar to the naked eye with slight differences in sparkle with Moissanites but at the end the customer has to decide what fits his/her values and budget. After you learn some of the fundamentals, I am happy to help you with your decision.

              Another option for engagement ring not previously mentioned are colored gemstones. For more information on growing trends to break from tradition and add color to engagement rings, please click here to read my article on colored gemstones. For the topic on this page though, let's focus on the most common options for engagement ring center stones: earth mined diamonds, lab grown diamonds and moissanites.
               

              In conclusion, whatever product you choose and wherever you make your purchase, I hope this information helps with your selection. If I can be of any help, please do not hesitate to ask me any questions.

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              TIP: If budget is a significant concern for you, some couples agree to go with a modest, affordable option at engagement with the goal of upgrading in the future when financial situations improve. If this is your situation, there is no shame at all and please be open and honest and I will do my best to help you! 

              No credit card? High interest rate credit card? Some of my price-conscious clients have shared that they do not have a credit card or that their credit card charges high interest rates for carried balances that can add up on large purchases such as an engagement ring. For such clients, I can offer a sort of lay away plan. Click here to inquire for details.

               

               

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