Eight Reasons You Shouldn’t Buy a Lab Created Diamond
Lab created diamonds are rapidly gaining traction as an ethical, wallet-friendly alternative to their mined counterpart. But if it sounds to good to be true, it probably is. In no particular order, these are eight of the reasons we hear not to buy a lab grown diamond.
1. The Price is Going to Zero
It’s no secret that the price/carat of lab diamonds has been dropping steadily over the past five or so years as the technology has improved and more growers have entered the market. While lab created diamonds once around 20% under the price of natural diamonds, today they sell for 40-50% less. We expect this trend to continue a bit further before pricing stabilizes.
Does that mean they’re a terrible investment? Are you planning to get divorced? But seriously, as we discuss in a separate post, while the diamond market is relatively stable, unless you’re buying investment grade fancy color diamonds, no diamond is an investment. You’re purchasing a symbol of your love, not stock.
2. You Can’t Get Them Appraised
Diamond appraisers appraise lab-grown diamonds as they would natural diamonds in line with their current market value. Mined and lab grown diamond values fluctuate. Consider getting your diamond reappraised from time to time to make sure you’re not overpaying on your insurance.
3. They’re Bad for the Environment
Lab created diamonds are made with electricity. Electricity is bad for the environment. Mined diamonds use 538.5 million joules per carat, while lab-grown ones use 250 million. So good, not great. Some lab diamonds, like Diamond Foundry’s, are grown with 100% renewable energy. If that’s important to you, just ask!
Beyond electricity, lab created diamonds consume significantly less water/carat than their mined brothers-in-law — 18 gallons vs. 126 gallons — and have startling lower carbon emissions.
Bottom line, if you believe in global warming, there’s no better way to flaunt your support than with a big, shiny, lab created rock.
4. Lab Created Diamonds Aren’t Real Diamonds
Is ice real if it’s made in your freezer? Lab grown diamonds are atomically, physically and optically identical to natural diamonds. If that weren’t enough, in 2018 the FTC ruled, “a diamond is a diamond no matter whether it is grown in a lab or comes out of the ground.” Click here to learn more about how lab diamonds are grown.
5. Lab Created Diamonds Are All The Same
This one is just plain wrong. First things first, there are two types of lab created diamonds — CVD diamonds and HPHT diamonds. In both processes, the diamond is grown from individual seed like a plant. These seeds pass on their characteristics to the newly formed diamond.
Lab created diamonds possess the same inclusions as natural diamonds and can even emit fluorescence. You should purchase them with the same care and attention to detail as a natural diamond, as their price fluctuates based on the four C’s in precisely the same way a natural diamond does.
7. You Can Only Get Small Lab Diamonds
While it used to be true that only smaller diamonds could be lab-grown, this has been rapidly changing. In 2017 the team at Ausburg University grew a 155 carat diamond in disc form, putting an end to this rumor once and for all.
8. Lab Created Diamonds are Expensive
While lab-grown diamonds are still expensive compared to an iPhone, they sell for ~50% less than a comparable mined diamond. A 2-carat lab-grown diamond might cost around $10,000 vs. $22,000 for a mined diamond. The savings is more than enough to put towards a wedding or your Instagram-worthy honeymoon.
Still Considering a Lab Created Diamond?
Check out our diamond search where you can view 360-degree images of more than 10,000 diamonds and don’t forget to zoom out (because size can be deceiving), or book a virtual or offline appointment at our New York salon to view certified lab-grown and natural diamonds in person.
Not finding what you’re looking for? Email us with what you’re looking for at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll curate a list of 5-7 exclusive stones that are just right for you.