Why buy moissanite over mined diamonds?
The better question? Why buy naturally mined diamonds when moissanite provides so many brilliant, long-lasting benefits at a fraction of the cost?
Highly dispersive moissanite continues to gain popularity as the gem of choice for engagement rings at about 1/10 the cost of its diamond counterpart.
The price of moissanite into practical terms:
A 1 ct diamond can range from $2,000 to $16,000 depending on cut, color and clarity.
A 1ct moissanite is approximately $300 retail.
That’s massive savings.
Moissanite - a brief history.
To understand moissanite, it’s good to know about its rich history. In 1893, the mineral moissanite was discovered by French chemist Henri Moissan while examining rock samples from a meteor crater, right here in Arizona. Initially, he thought the crystals were diamonds but years later, he identified the crystals as silicon carbide.
Since then, scientists continued to rework, recreate and perfect this miraculous stone until 1998, when it finally hit the jewelry market by storm.
Today, silicon carbide is synthetically created via thermal decomposition, since actual moissanite (the natural material) is rare, especially in gemstone quality.
Charles & Colvard was one of the first jewelry companies to create lab-grown silicon carbide gemstones. Later on, other manufacturers marketed silicon carbide gemstones under trademark names like Amora and Radiance® (more on Radiance® later).
What exactly is moissanite?
Moissanite is a diamond simulant made of silicon carbide. It has a remarkably similar appearance to a naturally mined diamond. So much so that it’s almost impossible to see the difference, even by the trained eye of a jeweler.
Why buy moissanite over mined diamonds?
Price and quality mainly. Moissanite is considered a less expensive diamond alternative with properties that actually equal or exceed those of diamonds (like the amazing sparkle power of mois).
There is also less overall risk involved in the purchase. Many fear losing a natural diamond whereas moissanite is more easily replaced, for example.
What’s the price difference between moissanite and mined diamonds?
A one-carat diamond can cost between $2,000 to $16,000 whereas moissanite of one carat can cost as little as under $300.
Simply put: moissanite makes more dreams possible!
But what about moissanite’s sparkle power?
If you love sparkle, moissanite has it in spades. Sparkle is measured by brilliance. Brilliance is relative to a stone’s refractive index.
Interestingly, moissanite has a slight edge over diamonds with a refractive index ranging from 2.65 to 2.69. Diamonds, on the other hand, have a refractive index at 2.42.
As a matter of fact, moissanite has a higher brilliance than many other gems, with its distinctive fire and rainbow of colors that grabs eyes wherever you go.
What about the color of moissanite?
It’s a myth that lab-grown moissanite is completely colorless. Jewelry-use moissanite often has a yellowish color to it. With new advances, moissanite has been created with shades of blue and green. But if you’re looking for completely colorless, moissanite also comes in bright white, with no yellow color whatsoever.
What is the difference between moissanite and lab-grown diamonds?
A lab-grown diamond is a real diamond (as confirmed by a recent FTC ruling).
The FTC based its decision in favor of scientific facts, not the mined-diamond industry lobby, giving consumers real information on which to make informed diamond purchasing decisions.
The ruling is simplicity itself. A diamond is a diamond no matter whether it is grown in a lab or comes out of the ground.
The difference between moissanite and lab-grown diamonds lies mainly in the sparkle (or what gemologists call dispersion). Not only does moissanite sparkle more than a lab-grown diamond but it also sparkles with more rainbow color.
Moissanite is eco-friendly and conflict-free.
Diamonds may be forever but so is the damage they create. There are many serious ethical concerns over the ecologically damaging mining practices in the diamond industry, including the exploitative human labor practices they employ.
In addition, consumers are wary of purchasing a “blood diamond” (aptly named because mining proceeds often fund military conflicts in some African countries).
Moissanite is created in a controlled lab with no mining or harm to the labor or environment involved. This is becoming increasingly important for millennials and others who care about an engagement ring that they can wear proudly, without feeling it caused any harm to the earth or workers.
Moissanite is infinitely durable.
Moissanite rating is 9.25 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness, second only to diamonds (which hold a rating of 10). Expect a long and brilliant life for your gem, as long as you show it basic care.
And moissanite is in it for the long haul. Over the years, moissanite continues to retain its durability and sparkle, never yellowing or looking dull.
Moissanite comes in a variety of shapes.
When it comes to cut, moissanite is available in a wide range of shapes. Round brilliant is the most popular cut which provides the most sparkle and appears the most white.
But it doesn’t end there. Moissanite can also come in a number of different cuts such as:
The long and short of it? If you have a custom design engagement ring in mind, moissanite can be easily integrated into it.