Authentic Diamonds and Their Imitators
Every diamond is like a fingerprint or a snowflake: it is completely unique. No two can be the same – where they are mined, how they are cut, and how they are set in a ring, all contribute to their distinctiveness. If I am privileged to work with you, together we will design and create a piece of jewellery, particularly an engagement ring, that not only compliments the unique diamond we choose, but also reflects your personality and fits with your lifestyle.
However, the rarity and prestige of diamonds has meant that, for many decades, people have sought to mimic them. So when considering purchasing diamond jewellery, it’s important to know the differences between a true diamond and an imitation.
Cubic zirconia or CZ is probably the best-known diamond imitator on the market. This is probably because it has been in existence since the 1970’s and has been widely embraced by lower-end jewellers across the world.
CZ is a stone that is created in a laboratory setting, meaning that it is deemed a “synthetic” gem. It is very hard, but nowhere near hard as a true diamond. Because it is “genetically engineered” it is also more cookie-cutter perfect than a true diamond, with an almost fluorescent brightness and sparkle. Many observers, and all jewellers, can immediately spot a CZ stone, as it looks fake even to the naked eye.
Since the late 90’s there has been a new imitation diamond available. Moissanite is the closest synthetic match to a true diamond that can be made in a lab. They are harder than CZ, but not quite as hard as true diamonds.
They also have a slight tint in them that makes them faintly yellow or green under light, and the tint becomes more pronounced in larger stones.
The New Hybrid
Most recently, a new hybrid diamond has become available. These are High Pressure High Temperature (HPHT) diamonds. To understand how they are made, you need to understand diamonds. True diamonds come from the depths of the Earth, where incredibly high pressure and temperature force together carbon atoms into the dense structure that produces the final stone.
If this process is interrupted or incomplete, you have a stone that is compositionally a diamond, but not quite “finished” much like a half-baked cake. HPHT diamonds are created by human intervention, by putting these half-baked diamonds back into the “oven”.
Very recently, humans have been able to artificially re-create the temperature and pressure of the core of the Earth, which means we can harness these forces to finish the process that creates these stones if we have a stone that is far enough into the process of becoming a diamond.
That means these are natural diamonds, not synthetics, and are becoming much more popular in the market.
I consider myself fortunate to be able to help couples from all over Sydney design custom made engagement rings and custom wedding rings at a very special time in their lives. The Mick the Jeweller studio doesn’t have display trays from which to choose a ready-made ring – I work one-on-one and will design a truly unique piece for you.
To arrange an appointment at my Sydney studio, I invite you to call or contact me via email so we can sit down and discuss your plans. https://www.michaelarthur.com.au/contact-us/
Sources: NOVA. “The Diamond Deception.” 2/1/2000 (10/15/2007) NOVA Transcripts: PBS. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/transcripts/2703diamond.html