Simulated Diamond vs Lab Diamond

Simulated Diamond vs Lab Diamond

What is Simulated diamond vs lab diamond? It is a common question that many people ask. The answer to this question depends on what you are looking for in a diamond. If you are looking for a high-quality, flawless diamond, the best option is a lab grown diamond. However, if you want something more affordable and less expensive than a lab-grown stone, simulated stones might be your best bet. 

In this article, we’ll discuss the main difference between simulated diamond vs lab diamond.

What are simulated diamonds?

Simulated Diamond vs Lab Diamond

Simulated diamonds are artificial diamonds created by heating an alloy of metals such as nickel or cobalt with carbon at very high temperatures. These diamonds can look similar to natural diamonds, but they have some differences. For example, they may not possess the same durability, colour, or clarity as natural diamonds. They also tend to be less expensive as compared with natural diamonds.

The most common diamond imitations are cubic zirconia, crystal, and moissanite.

Cubic Zirconia: Cubic zirconia (CZ) is one of the most popular imitation stones because it has a beautiful appearance and it is relatively inexpensive. CZ is made from a mixture of ceramic materials, including zirconium oxide, aluminium oxide, magnesium oxide, silicon dioxide, and yttrium oxide. This material is heated to extremely high temperatures, which cause it to transform into its crystalline form.

Crystal: Crystal is another type of fake diamond. It is mainly used for jewellery purposes. Its price is much lower than other types of simulated diamonds. It is usually sold in small pieces like beads, pendants, rings, earrings types of diamond jewelry.

Moissanite: Moissanite is a synthetic diamonds that looks like a diamond. It is mainly used for engagement rings and wedding bands. It is also known as “white gold”. It is composed of silicon carbide and oxygen. It is highly durable and scratch-resistant.

Pros of Diamond Simulants

There are several advantages of using simulated diamonds over natural ones. Here are some of them.

  • 90% less expensive
  • Readily available at any local store
  • Easy to cut and polish

Cons of Diamond Simulants

While there are pros to using these diamonds, there are also cons. Let’s take a look at them.

  • Less durable
  • Faded over time 
  • Not suitable for everyday jewellery

Appearance : Diamond simulants do not always match the appearance of natural or lab diamonds. Some of them are opaque, while others are transparent. Also, their colour tends to change when exposed to heat, light, and moisture. 

Durability : Lab diamonds are generally considered to be more durable than simulated diamonds. Simulated diamonds will wear down faster than lab diamonds. In addition, they may also be resistant to scratches, chips, and breakage.

Cost : A simulated diamond costs 90% less expensive than a lab-grown diamond. For example, if a lab-grown diamond costs about $100 per carat. On the other hand, a simulated diamond costs only around $20-$30 per carat. 

Ethics : Diamond simulated stones are often produced ethically as they are made in a laboratory. These diamonds are eco-friendly and ethically sourced as they do not require any mining process. 

When to choose a Diamond Simulant?

If you want to save money, you should go for a simulated diamond. However, if you want your diamond to appear more authentic, you should opt for a lab diamond. It would be best to consider all the factors before making this decision.

What are lab-created diamonds?

lab grown diamonds

Lab-created diamonds are diamonds that are grown in a laboratory. They are grown under controlled conditions and without harming the environment. The process involves increasing seed inside a special chamber where a chemical reaction occurs. Afterwards, the diamond grows slowly until it reaches its final size.

There are two processes of growing lab-grown diamonds; the CVD diamond method and the HPHT diamond method. 

CVD Diamonds: The CVD diamond method uses plasma technology to grow diamonds. This method can produce large quantities of diamonds of high quality. It is also speedy and efficient. 

HPHT Diamonds: The HPHT diamond method is similar to the natural diamond method, which uses higher temperatures and pressures. It produces diamonds but with better qualities compared to natural diamonds. 

Pros of Lab Created Diamonds

There are many advantages of using lab-created diamonds. Here are some of the benefits include;

  • Highly affordable than natural diamond
  • High quality and last forever
  • Eco-friendly
  • Durable
  • Real diamond deal

Cons of Lab Created Diamonds

  • More expensive than simulated diamond
  • Not naturally mined diamond
  • Are not rare as natural diamonds

Appearance : The appearance of a lab-created diamond is more like natural diamonds instead of diamond simulation. A lab-created diamond has a uniform colour and clarity. If you compare it to natural diamonds, you will notice that the colours vary from one another. 

Durability : Lab-created diamonds have more extended durability than simulated ones. They have the same properties as natural diamonds; they are much harder than simulated diamonds. So they can withstand heat, pressure, and friction. 

Cost : The cost of lab-created diamonds is almost half of the price of natural diamonds. They are cheaper because they are created in laboratories rather than mines. But they are more expensive than simulated diamonds.

Ethics : It is ethical to use lab-created diamonds because they are grown in labs. Also, they are environmentally friendly. There are no miners involved, so there is no harm to the environment.

When to choose a Lab Created Diamond?

You should buy lab-created diamonds when you want to look natural or unique. Lab-created diamonds are perfect for those who want a natural diamond without spending thousand of dollars on genuine diamonds. If you want to save money, you should go for lab-created diamonds. Currently, many jewellers and women wear lab grown diamonds based engagement ring

What’s the difference between simulant diamonds and lab-created diamonds?

There is a lot of difference between lab diamonds and diamond simulated, including moissanite, cubic zirconia, and crystal.

The main difference between lab diamonds and simulated diamonds is that man made diamond is made up of pure carbon. In contrast, simulated diamonds are made of synthetic materials such as silicon or beryllium. Some people prefer lab diamonds because of their high price. And if you want to save money, you should go for simulated diamonds.

Here are some of the distinctions between their chemical, optical, and physical qualities, as well as their hardness and refractive index:

 HardnessRefractive Index
Lab Diamond102.4
Moissanite9.252.65 – 2.69
Cubic Zirconia8.52.15 – 2.18
Crystal< 71.54
 Physical propertiesChemical propertiesOptical properties
Lab-created diamondsSame as diamondSame as  diamondSame as diamond
Simulated diamondsSimilar to diamondDifferent from diamondDifferent from diamond


Lab-created diamonds are grown under controlled environments. In contrast, moissanite and cubic zirconia are used to imitate the appearance of lab diamonds. There is a big difference in their physical, visual, and other properties.

Physically : Moissanite and cubic zircons are made up of silicon carbide. Both of them are hard materials; however, lab diamonds are made up of carbon atoms, so they are harder than simulated diamonds. Moissanite and cubic zirconia are softer than lab diamonds. 

Visually : Both moissanite and cubic zirconia are very similar to lab diamonds in visual appearance. However, they do not have the same shine and sparkle. This is because both of them are made up of different types of minerals. Therefore, they lack the same impurities that make lab diamonds shiny.

Colour Grade : Moissanite and Cubic zirconia is available in different grades according to their quality. The higher the rate, the better the colour and clarity. On the contrary, lab diamonds are graded based on the percentage of imperfections.

Clarity Grade : Moissanite is clear, while cubic zirconia may slightly cloudy. And lab diamonds are graded based on their clarity. A flawless diamond has 100% clarity. 

Cut Grade : The cut is the shape of the stone. It can be round, square, pear, emerald, heart-shaped, marquise, oval, princess, radiant, cushion, etc. Both moissanite, CZ and lab diamonds are available in all shapes and cut. 

Carat Weight : Carat refers to the weight and size of diamonds. Carats are measured by using a micrometre. The bigger the carat, the heavier it will be. Lab diamonds and simulated diamonds are available in various sizes.

Which Diamond Should You Buy?

If you want to buy a diamond that looks like a real one, you should consider buying lab diamonds. They are more expensive, but they are worth every penny. In addition, they are also durable since they are made up of high-quality materials. It is also solid and stable. If you want to get a diamond that lasts longer, you should choose a lab diamond over simulated diamonds.


Do simulated diamonds have any value?

Yes! Simulated diamonds also have value if you want to look like a millionaire for some while. But they are not as valuable as lab diamonds.

Are they good-quality diamonds?

They are generally fake diamonds. But there are some similarities between them and natural diamonds. For example, they are usually white or yellowish same as other diamonds.

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