David Nelson, Owner of Nelson Estate Jewelers, on AZTV Channel 7’s Daily Mix with Pat McMahon discusses the difference between lab made diamonds and natural diamonds, and why it should matter to consumers.
Lab made diamonds seem to be increasing in popularity as another alternative to natural diamonds, right alongside moissanite. While lab made diamonds are one way to get a bigger look with a smaller price tag, they don’t retain much secondary value, and their overall value continues to steadily decline.
Diamond Buyers Beware
Standard diamond testers cannot determine the difference between a lab made diamond and a natural diamond. Your jeweler must use a specific tool, such as the DiaTrue CS Screener, to differentiate between lab made and natural diamonds. Always make sure that your diamonds have been authenticated before you purchase, and also be wary of buying anything online, especially if it’s from a private seller.
If you are buying a diamond online, unless it includes a GIA Certificate, there’s no guarantee that you’re getting what you paid for. Even so, when purchasing a diamond, it’s best to visually inspect the stone in person and educate yourself on how to choose a diamond beforehand. Your eyes are the first tool you use in determining the quality of a diamond. Two different diamonds can have the exact same grading report, but one could be much prettier than the other; no two diamonds are identical!
Need Some Help? Check Out This Diamond Buying Guide:
What’s Wrong With Buying Lab Made Diamonds?
The short answer is: Nothing. If you’re specifically in the market for a lab made diamond and this has been disclosed to you then purchasing a lab made diamond over a natural diamond is personal preference. However, just know that with the declining value of lab made diamonds, this will not be a future investment.
Historically, natural diamonds have retained their value due to the rarity factor. The mass production of lab made diamonds means that they are flooding the market, and therefore they are not at all rare, even though based on their physical properties they are in fact diamonds. The difference between a lab made diamond and a natural diamond is not visible to the naked eye. Only a special tool, like the DiaTrue CS Screener can identify these properties. Responsible jewelers and manufacturers do everything in their power to ensure their customer’s safety. Buying a lab made diamond that you believe to be a natural diamond can be devastating down the road.
If you’re looking for an alternative stone, a great option is a moissanite. Even though, like lab diamonds, moissanites do not retain much secondary value, the cost of a moissanite up front is much more approachable, and therefore it makes for an affordable option.
How Can I Authenticate Diamonds I Already Purchased?
Originally, the only way to differentiate between lab diamonds and natural diamonds was by sending them to a lab for testing. Now the technology is available for jewelers to test lab made diamonds in-house!
Nelson Estate Jewelers uses the DiaTrue system and tests every diamond that comes through their doors. Stop by any time and ask them to test your diamonds at no charge and also enjoy free cleanings and inspections on all jewelry pieces.