Cover Lab-grown diamonds are becoming more and more popular, says New York–based designer Shahla Karimi (Photo: Shahla Karimi)

Lab-grown diamonds are becoming more and more popular, says New York–based designer Shahla Karimi

Many of us are moving away from conventional diamonds and are, instead, considering buying lab-grown or cultivated alternatives. Rather than being mined in the earth, lab-grown diamonds are created using advanced technology, and jewellers everywhere are adding these gemstones into their delicate designs.

Here, New York–based jeweller Shahla Karimi shares five facts about lab-grown diamonds we all should know...

Read more: Tatler House Stories: Experts Weigh In On The Future Of Lab-Grown Diamonds

1. Lab-grown diamonds aren’t the same as cubic zirconia

A common misconception of cultivated diamonds is that they are fake or similar to cubic zirconia. This absolutely is not the case. Cultivated diamonds are atomically the same as natural ones. Their chemical make-up is identical, and the only difference between the two is their origin.

2. It’s all about the price tag

Lab-grown diamonds are atomically the same as mined diamonds, and come in all different kinds of shapes and sizes. However, when they weigh between one and three carats, cultivated diamonds cost 50 to 75% less than natural diamonds. For example, a one-carat brilliant-cut diamond in F-G colour with VS clarity that's mined typically retails somewhere between US$3,000 to 5,000. If you want to get the most out of your budget, choose a cultivated stone instead!

3. Lab-grown diamonds are more sustainable

One of the best reasons to opt for a cultivated diamond is that it’s arguably the more sustainable choice. Most of the labs I choose to work with are certified carbon neutral. Some vendors even power their processes with solar power, like Diamond Foundry in California.

4. Lab-grown diamonds come in more colours

A lot of lab-grown diamonds can be made to emit a brown or pink tint, which makes cultivated coloured stones a really beautiful option if you prefer a rose- or yellow-gold setting.

5. It’s easier to design jewellery using lab-grown diamonds

Lab-grown diamonds can be made to measure, which isn't always the case when it comes to natural diamonds. As a designer, when you want to create pieces that incorporate more unique-shaped stones, it’s much easier to find the right kind of cultivated diamonds when compared to mined diamonds.

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