Lab Created Diamonds VS Real Diamonds: Should I Propose To My Partner With A Synthetic Diamond Ring?
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Lab Created Diamonds VS Real Diamonds: Should I Propose To My Partner With A Synthetic Diamond Ring?

Rachel Yeo
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Would you propose to your partner with a lab-grown diamond?

While lab-grown (also known as synthetic) diamonds have their fair share of detractors, more and more people are turning to different alternatives to diamond rings

So what are synthetic diamond rings? Are they considered ‘real’, and can they replace naturally mined diamonds?

Here’s a quick look at different types of diamonds you can get for your engagement rings: real, fake, man-made or otherwise.

TL;DR: Synthetic VS Stimulants VS Real Diamond Rings

synthetic diamond rings

 1 carat, round shape, solitaire. (Cost)Is there resale value?
Real Diamond $5,000 - $22,000 (depending on the colour and clarity)Yes, though how much you will get back for your diamond depends on multiple factors.
Diamond Stimulant ~$100 - $250 No
Lab Created (Synthetic) Diamonds ~$1,150 - $4,958 Minimal

Synthetic Diamonds VS Stimulants – What’s The Difference?

Confused Nick Young
Source: Giphy

Diamond Stimulants are stones that look like real diamonds but have different chemical compositions and physical properties.  They do not have the same physical and chemical properties of a diamond and do not perform in the same way. They’re also not as durable as diamonds.

Common diamond stimulants include cubic zirconia, synthetic garnet, and white sapphire.

Lab-created diamonds are not diamond stimulants, as they are cultivated under a controlled environment.

Under such an environment, the result is a diamond that has the same chemical and physical properties as a natural diamond but with different and distinguishable crystal patterns.

Cost Comparison: Lab Created (Synthetic) Diamonds VS Stimulants VS Real Diamonds

seth meyers comparing using hands as scale
Source: giphy

Assuming that you are looking for the following conditions for your diamond ring:

  • 1-carat engagement rings
  • Round cut, solitaire rings

Here’s a quick cross-comparison of the prices, should you opt for a real diamond ring vs a synthetic one.

 1 carat, round shape, solitaire. (Cost)Is there resale value?
Real Diamond $5,000 - $22,000 (depending on the colour and clarity)Yes, though how much you will get back for your diamond depends on multiple factors.
Diamond Stimulant ~$100 - $250 No
Lab Created (Synthetic) Diamonds ~$1,150 - $4,958 Minimal

Are Synthetic Diamonds ‘Real’ Diamonds?

diamond ring
Source: Diamond Nexus

Not surprisingly, diamond manufacturing companies like De Beers, Rio Tinto, and others slammed lab diamonds as inauthentic. On the flip side, companies manufacturing synthetic diamonds will concur that their diamonds promote environmental benefits and are cost-efficient.

That said, buyers of synthetic diamonds have to keep in mind that manufactured diamonds have a much lower resale value as compared to natural-occurring diamonds, as diamond traders usually will not deal in them.

While it is true that gemstones and natural diamonds are a store of wealth, this usually holds true for large and rare gems. Smaller diamonds, like those in engagement rings, are too easily available to appreciate in value.

It is unlikely that you will be able to sell your engagement ring at a value that is above its retail price.

Can I Propose With A Lab-Grown Diamond Ring? 

Of course, the biggest question most men have would be: is it appropriate to propose with a lab-grown diamond ring?

There is, after all, a stigma to lab-grown diamond rings being ‘unnatural’ and ‘fake’. Is there really a difference between naturally mined and lab-grown diamonds?

It really depends on the person you are marrying. Talk to your partner and ask for her thoughts on the topic. More often than not, they would already have an idea of what they would like.

Pros & Cons of Proposing with a Lab Grown Diamond Ring

Cons Pros
Your partner may want naturally mined diamonds. This may stem from not fully understanding what lab diamonds are. Environmentally friendly. One carat of diamond takes ~ 200 tons of earth to be mined. Growing it in labs is much better for the environment.
Diamonds may not seem as 'special' as they are being mass produced in a labSynthetic diamonds are more ethical. Mined diamonds pose ethical issues as they are usually sourced from conflicted areas that pose human rights issues.

Synthetic diamonds are made in safe environments with fair wages for workers.
Little to no resale value as it lacks rare-ness and has no historical value. Lab grown diamonds cost 40% less than a diamond that's mined. With the same budget, you can probably get a bigger diamond at same price.

Why are Real Diamonds so Expensive anyway?

Up marriage huge gif
Source: Giphy

It’s long been known that diamonds are a symbolism of power, wealth and status, especially when they are such a rare find.

Yet, the rarity of diamonds changes in the 1800s, where a diamond trove was unearthed in South Africa, making the gem much more common than it was.

To prevent the diamonds from flooding the markets, De Beers bought the mine and held tight control over the global diamond supply, releasing just enough diamonds to meet demand. At the same time, aggressive marketing campaigns were pushed out to promote diamond as an engagement ring, owning the slogan “diamonds are forever”.

With high demand coupled with an artificially low supply, the price of diamonds skyrocketed, making it the expensive gem that it is today.

Proposing with Synthetic Diamond Rings

Whether or not you propose with a natural, or man-made diamond ring, it all depends on what you and your partner are comfortable with. Personally, I believe that a ring is just a symbolism of love and commitment, and it shouldn’t entail a hefty price tag.

For couples open to trying out different alternatives to diamond rings, you can check out these alternatives to a diamond engagement ring. Let us know which is your favourite!

About Rachel Yeo
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