require proper banner ad.We live in truly exciting times.

Advancements in technologies have enabled man to create diamonds in the labs at a tiny fraction of the time required by Mother Nature to do so.

Over decades of scientific research and continuous pushing of manufacturing boundaries, scientists are now able to create gem quality diamonds on a large scale basis to meet demands in the jewelry industry.

Now, I want to emphasize that lab grown diamonds have identical properties to traditionally mined diamonds. They are composed of the same material, require the same cutting/polishing process and exhibit similar physical/chemical properties to diamonds mined from the Earth.

Yep, that’s right and it gets even better.

Lab created diamonds can be made to the same level of clarity, color and brilliance as naturally mined stones. In fact, these man-made diamonds are almost indistinguishable unless they are subjected to specialized testing equipment like spectrometers and X-rays.

Benefits Of Buying Lab Grown Diamonds

For the consumer, there are 2 major benefits of buying lab created diamonds.

First of all, they leave minimal ecological footprints in the environment and are guaranteed to be conflict-free. This is because they are made in controlled laboratory conditions instead of being mined from the Earth with human-labor.

Secondly, you can easily save hundreds to thousands of dollars because of their significantly lower costs (about 20-30% less) compared to traditionally mined diamonds. This is good news for people with tight budgets as lab grown diamonds can help you get a better bang for your buck!

Brilliant Earth has a huge inventory of more than 800 lab grown diamonds of various carat sizes and shapes for you to select from. Click here to browse their diamond collection now!

A Review of Lab Created Diamonds From BrilliantEarth.com

In today’s post, I want to reveal what you can expect to receive when you make a purchase from BrilliantEarth.com. Together with a diamond ring, I bought a loose 0.31 carats G color SI1 clarity lab grown diamond.

brilliant earth delivery via fedex

Delivery was made securely via FedEx shipping.

teal green envelope diamond certificates

Teal colored envelope containing invoices, certificates and other paperwork.

white color box containing jewelry

Pure white colored box with Brilliant Earth’s logo embossed on the front cover.

wooden ring box cosmetics looking display

Jewelry purchase is snugly fitted and packed during shipping.

jewelry cleaner solution and diamond box

Extracting the contents and taking a closer look at them.

Taking a Peek Into The Various Components of the Parcel

jewelry cleaner concentrate in container

Complete DIY jewelry cleaning kit in a plastic container.

certificate of origin lab created diamonds

Brilliant Earth’s Certificate of Origin and information booklet.

Opening The Beautifully Handcrafted Wooden Ring Box

ring box made of wood new zealand

Brilliant Earth’s signature wooden ring box is hand-made in New Zealand.

international gemological institute certificate man-made diamond

IGI grading report and ring box with loose diamond.

loose synthetic diamond in casing

The loose man-made diamond is encapsulated in a transparent metal container.

circular metallic container showcasing man made diamond

Picking up the metal container from the ring box.

Click here to visit Brilliant Earth and get started with building your own diamond engagement ring. With more than 190 beautiful ring designs that are fully handcrafted, there’s something for everyone!

Close Up Examination Of The Lab Created Diamond

tweezers with lab made diamond

Picking up the loose diamond with a pair of tweezers.

10X magnified image of lab created diamond

Loose round brilliant cut diamond at 10X magnification.

igi laboratory grown diamond report
Full IGI report: Lab grown diamonds are clearly indicated with a laser inscription on the girdle.

Analysis of Diamond’s Cut And Optical Performance

idealscope light leakage due to diamond depth

Idealscope image indicating some light leakage under the table.

aset image pure grown diamond

ASET image indicates a diamond with decent light return.

arrows patterning lab grown synthetic diamond

Inspecting the diamond under a Hearts And Arrows viewer.

hearts patterning manmade diamond

Hearts patterning revealing some defects in optical symmetry.

Video of 0.31 Carat G Color SI1 Clarity Lab Diamond

 

 

Where From Here?

A lab grown diamond is the real thing. As you can see from the video above, it can be just as beautiful as a mined diamond when the stone is cut to correct proportions.

If you are someone who wants to purchase an engagement ring that is produced in a socially and environmentally-friendly manner, man made diamonds offer a meaningful way to help you do that.

Brilliant Earth is the one of the largest supplier of lab-grown diamonds and they are committed towards creating an ethical, transparent and sustainable jewelry industry. Check them out today!

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97 Comments

  1. Michael Wahhab-
    July 12, 2015 at 11:51 pm

    Wow Paul. I just had a look at Brilliant Earth’s prices for lab created loose diamonds. They are charging prices very close to natural diamonds. How ridiculous. Gemstones have a metaphysical property that is equal to or created than the value of it’s three dimesional beauty. You can’t experience and enjoy this value with a lab created stone.

  2. Paul Gian-
    July 13, 2015 at 1:51 pm

    Laboratory grown diamonds actually sell at approximately 20% cheaper than naturally mined stones. Due to technological limitations, I actually don’t see the prices of manmade diamonds coming down in near future. You will notice the price differences when buying large size diamonds. i.e. if a natural diamond costs $20,000, a synthetic diamond with similar specifications will cost around $16,000. If you are buying smaller diamonds, you probably don’t see such a huge absolute difference in costs.

  3. Ryan-
    October 30, 2015 at 12:07 am

    I bought a diamond from brilliant earth. The dimensions and weight match, but there is no igi number inscribed and Shane company tested it with a handheld diamond tester which read mossanite. What would you recommend to do?

  4. Paul Gian-
    October 30, 2015 at 2:13 am

    Get the diamond tested at another independent appraiser who has no interest in selling you diamonds. You could also bring it to another jeweler for a review. If it still comes back as a stimulant, bring this concern up with Brilliant Earth.

  5. Anto-
    November 11, 2015 at 7:29 am

    Hi Paul, you mentioned Igi and egs being not as reliable as GIA and AGS…is there a reason Brilliant Earth doesn’t use GIA or AGS for their lab ratings? Thanks for your explanations- so much to learn.

  6. Paul Gian-
    November 11, 2015 at 9:08 am

    It’s a business decision by their suppliers to use IGI instead of GIA. In the current market, all commercial lab made diamonds have non-GIA reports.

  7. Lucy-
    December 14, 2015 at 1:17 am

    Hey Paul, I have a question and I wanted to thank you because I’ve been learning alot about diamonds! I went to a showroom of Brilliant Earth and my girlfriend loved a setting there and now I have to make the hard choice of getting a diamond. For sure, I’m getting a lab-grown diamond from them. The diamonds I have in mind are in the 900-1k dollar range with IGI certs.

    My question is about specific diamonds I want to purchase. I got the picture for 2 and they told me more pictures were coming. I LOVE that you put the video up on youtube because it really gives perspective. Anyways, here are my options.

    1714493Y .56 Carat, Round, Very Good Cut, F, SI2
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/v0xy72nenjmmvrl/1714493Y%20Pic.JPG?dl=0

    1746704Y .54 Carat, Round, Ideal, H, SI2
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/v4au76kxoa990hc/1746704Y%20Pic.JPG?dl=0

    1714682Y .48 Carat, Round, Very Good, H, VVS2 (no pic yet)

    1748890Y .51 Carat, Round, Super Ideal, F, SI2 (no pic yet)

    Is the SI2 rating risky? Do the diamonds look bad?

  8. Paul Gian-
    December 14, 2015 at 3:33 am

    Both diamonds aren’t cut well enough for me to recommend them. You can easily see this in the wonky contrast patterning displayed by both stones in the static images. Keep looking! Get ASET images as well because those will readily reveal cut issues in the diamonds.

  9. Ivan-
    January 7, 2016 at 6:55 pm

    Quisiera saber si el diamond tester 3 reconoce como simulación de diamante (moissanite) o lo reconoce como diamante natural

  10. Paul Gian-
    January 8, 2016 at 8:13 am

    It will test as a natural diamond. Lab made diamonds have identical properties to naturally mined stones.

  11. Kathryn-
    January 24, 2016 at 5:27 am

    Hello Paul,

    My boyfriend and I have been together for a few years. We’re ready for that next big step, but limited budget wise. I’ve had my heart set on an emerald cut engagement ring, but have tried to prepare myself if he simply can’t afford it. He wouldn’t get one that didn’t have a decent color and high clarity. I would love to have the ring of my dreams, but know that the man of my dreams really doesn’t have the means.
    Now after some research, I am open to the idea of him giving me a lab grown diamond. You’re one of the few resources that seems to be knowledgeable and honest.

    I came across this item on eBay claiming to be a lab created diamond ring. I was hoping you could clarify if this listing is crap or not. :)

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/5-00-Emerald-Cut-Solitaire-Engagement-Wedding-Ring-14k-Real-White-Gold-/262090773372?hash=item3d05d3d37c:g:E1cAAOSwstxVCvAG

    I would also appreciate the names of other trustworthy suppliers of lab-grown diamonds.

    Thank you,
    Kat

  12. Paul Gian-
    January 24, 2016 at 1:41 pm

    Hi Kat,

    That’s not a diamond. It’s a stimulant or commonly known as cubic zirconium (CZ).

    https://beyond4cs.com/faq/how-to-spot-a-fake-diamond/

    Lab grown diamonds are cheaper than naturally mined diamonds by about 20%-30%.

    https://beyond4cs.com/2015/05/lab-created-diamonds/

  13. jorge-
    February 23, 2016 at 1:51 am

    Hi Paul,

    Do you have any idea how diamond nexus and brilliant earth’s diamonds compare against each other? Some articles on man made diamond reviews would be helpful.

    thanks.

  14. Paul Gian-
    February 23, 2016 at 10:21 am

    One sells real diamonds even though they are lab made (Brilliant Earth), the other doesn’t.

  15. Cham-
    March 3, 2016 at 1:33 am

    Hi Paul,

    Does the lab grown diamond hold value over time as the real diamond would given that both are certified (lab by IGI, real by GIA or similar)?

  16. Paul Gian-
    March 6, 2016 at 12:47 pm

    No.

  17. Mike-
    March 9, 2016 at 8:14 pm

    Which is better on Brilliant Earth’s lab created diamonds, IGI or GCAL?

  18. Paul Gian-
    March 23, 2016 at 1:01 pm

    IGI

  19. Seth-
    March 30, 2016 at 1:16 pm

    Hi Paul, In several of your comment replies, you use the term “stimulant”. Do you mean “simulant”? Thanks.

  20. Paul Gian-
    March 30, 2016 at 3:45 pm

    Yes. I’m sorry for the typo errors.

  21. Sam Thomas-
    April 5, 2016 at 6:33 pm

    Hi Paul

    Great job on your website.

    My girlfriend has found a ring she likes it’s super cheap but she kind of has her heart set on it.

    What do you think?

    Thanks in advance

  22. Paul Gian-
    April 6, 2016 at 3:22 am

    Super cheap + questionable eBay listing = Surefire way to get ripped off.

    No way a 0.70 carat lab grown diamond gets sold at $140 (inclusive of setting).

    Don’t be foolish.

  23. P T-
    April 28, 2016 at 1:43 am

    Hi Paul,

    I’ve heard that IGI grades are typically inflated compared to other grading labs. E.g. an IGI VVS1 might only be a VS1, an IGI F might actually be a G or H, etc. Is that a concern with Brilliant Earth’s lab grown diamonds?

  24. Paul Gian-
    April 28, 2016 at 3:37 am

    If you are talking about IGI appraisal documents or IGI reports where the loose diamond isn’t unmounted, what you say may hold true. Apart from that, IGI’s grading doesn’t vary so wildly as you mention (VVS1 to VS1 is a big difference) but they tend to be looser in the grading standards compared to GIA/AGS.

    An IGI SI2 may in fact be a I1 by GIA standards. I’ve seen this many times and this is one of the reasons why I don’t like buying diamonds with IGI reports.

    Unfortunately for consumers, at the moment most commercial lab grown diamonds are only graded by IGI. If you are fixated on a lab created diamond, consumers will just have to live with buying one with an IGI report.

    That said, GIA does grade synthetic diamonds but it isn’t meant for the market at large at the moment.

  25. Emily-
    May 3, 2016 at 9:36 pm

    Hi Paul!

    Great article! I stumbled across this as I was doing some research on lab created diamonds, and I noticed there are a number of different companies offering these stones online. You had noted Brilliant Earth was the largest online retailer for lab created diamonds, but companies like MiaDonna, Pure Grown, and Diamond Foundry seem to have just as much if not more selection on their websites (though it appears Pure Grown has recently transitioned to selling just in stores). Are these websites just as reputable as Brilliant Earth? Or would you recommend sticking with Brilliant Earth and not risking another site?

    Thanks!

  26. Paul Gian-
    May 4, 2016 at 1:35 am

    Emily, the companies you mentioned like MiaDonna and Pure Grown are pretty decent businesses. I have no experience with Diamond Foundry and can’t say much about them. It depends on what you want and what you are looking for. Work with the vendor who can offer you sufficient details to size up a diamond and one that you are comfortable with.

  27. JK-
    May 9, 2016 at 6:39 pm

    Hi Paul,

    I only recently learned about Lab created diamonds and have been doing some general, online research (mostly curiosity).

    I just wanted to say “Thanks” for donating your time to educating people.

  28. William-
    May 14, 2016 at 3:25 pm

    Hi Paul

    Fake is fake. Fake Rolex, fake cartier, whats next. A discount of 20% or so is a joke, should be sold at 20% of real stones. Resale value of next to zero. Opens more doors for some unscrupulous to sell as real. With your knowledge and education I am surprised you would endorse this.

    William

  29. Paul Gian-
    May 15, 2016 at 6:41 am

    Nothing wrong with technology and man made diamonds. Unethical jewelers can rip you off with real/natural diamonds using misrepresented quality and dubious certificates. There’s nothing wrong with lab grown technology, it’s the selling process that the crooks use to scam consumers and this can happen regardless of the kind of products sold.

  30. WINNIE-
    May 23, 2016 at 10:35 pm

    Paul,

    I visited Brilliant Earth and requested to look at both lab made and mined diamonds. After reading your articles regarding GIA vs other certification reporting companies, I became a little skeptical when the sales associated advised that the mined diamond was GIA certified while the lab one was IGI certified. You mentioned that it’s a business decision – but what is the business decision exactly? I feel that it’s somewhat deceptive. Why won’t GIA certify lab made diamonds? And can I really trust the IGI certification because in another article you advised buying a diamond that is IGI certified because they are more lenient. Ultimately, I’m not sure how much money I’m saving if I’m getting a lower rated diamond because of the IGI leniency in rating. Your thoughts are appreciated! Thank you.

  31. Paul Gian-
    May 24, 2016 at 12:46 am

    As far as I know, GIA may not have the capacity to deal with large volumes of synthetic diamond grading (and maybe because of some other political issues with their current business of grading natural diamonds). It is how it is at the moment because IGI is the only company doing large scale grading of commercial lab grown diamonds. If you aren’t comfortable with them, stick with natural diamonds with GIA/AGS reports.

  32. Autumn Courtney-
    June 5, 2016 at 9:35 pm

    Love your article. I have never heard of “real” man made diamonds. I have done a lot of research and have some questions…
    There are so many sites online that clame to be “real” man made diamonds but really are polished CZ- Asha, nexus, betterthandisminds, Agape… I know you mentioned brilliant earth…. Besides them what are other companies that provide the real deal?? Pure grown diamonds? Any information is appreciated?
    If they have IGI certified is that all you need to look for? It’s just horrible how fraudulent this business is… I do not want a CZ with a silver costed ring for 1000’s…
    Any advice is appreciated!!

  33. Paul Gian-
    June 6, 2016 at 6:08 am

    I understand your frustration and admittedly, there’s an issue with how retailers are marketing their goods. Price is a good guideline for figuring out who’s selling what. In general, stick with an IGI report when it comes to buying a synthetic diamond. If there’s no grading report, you can be assured you are either buying a misrepresented product or a fake stone. Either way, it’s going to get you ripped off.

    And yes, pure grown diamonds sells synthetic diamonds.

  34. Man Made Diamonds Review - Can You Help?-
    June 21, 2016 at 2:10 pm

    I need help in reviewing a man made diamond ring that I purchased from eBay. Do you offer consultation services or know of someone with the expertise to review my ring?

  35. Paul Gian-
    June 21, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    Take it to an neutral 3rd party gemologist for a review. They should be able to tell you more.

  36. Suzy-
    July 10, 2016 at 4:49 pm

    I found a beautiful ring at Agape Diamonds LLC. Can you tell me anything about this company’s products?

  37. Paul Gian-
    July 11, 2016 at 3:23 am

    I’ve never used their services. You need to be extremely careful about the differences in simulated diamonds and synthetic diamonds. They aren’t the same.

  38. Pavel-
    July 12, 2016 at 5:19 am

    Hi Paul, thanks for your comments.
    I was trying to buy from DiamondEarth and Diamond Foundry – both has poor customer service – if you try chating with them they are lost for days (Diamond Earth will not answer at all sometimes, just disappear). Finally I’ve chosen my favorit stones but ASET/idealscope images refused to be provided as well as marking of inclusions (Diamond Foundry). So I can not buy from them online without any idea on stone face up! Do you know one lab created company who can provide ASET and Idealscope?

  39. Paul Gian-
    July 12, 2016 at 5:55 am
  40. Nathan-
    July 13, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    Hi Paul – thanks so much for your review here. I am looking at purchasing the following lab-made diamond: http://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/2252717/ I requested the preview report which they have provided and following up with high-res photos for me to review next 2-3 days.

    Given the clarity, I think this lab diamond price seems to be discounted relative to peers to account for H Color, but cut proportions are excellent according to your spec. What I am concerned about is whether or not an IGI “H” could fall into an I or J with GIA, and would this be a noticeable flag for you? Will be set in a white gold setting. Your thoughts on this stone are appreciated, thanks!

  41. Paul Gian-
    July 14, 2016 at 12:37 am

    Proportions wise, the diamond looks OK. Beyond that, I can’t tell you much without concrete information like images.

  42. Maha-
    July 21, 2016 at 1:43 am

    Hi Paul

    Ive heard some reports that brilliant earth lab created diamonds and other lab created diamonds, whilst still maintaining sparkle, have less “fire” or none at all. Would you say that was your experience?
    Also, you mentioned that the lab grown do not retain value like the real deal, but can you elaborate? for instance would it lose all value once sold? or would it retain some value albeit much less than real diamonds?

    Any help appreciated!

  43. Paul Gian-
    July 21, 2016 at 3:11 am

    That largely has to do with cut quality and nothing of material issues. In this particular lab grown diamond, I would say it isn’t as bright another identical diamond with the best possible cut quality. In terms of fire, I think it does pretty well.

    Diamonds don’t retain value well regardless of being natural or synthetic. The problem with lab created gemstones is that nobody wants to pay a sum of money to buy them back due to supply and demand. That’s why offers to buyback are often low balled that it doesn’t make sense to sell them. If you want to purchase jewelry with the mindset of having them retain some value, I would recommend only buying gold (or pure metal) jewelry.

  44. Sara-
    August 17, 2016 at 12:13 am

    Have you heard of Diamond Foundry before? I am looking for man made diamonds and came across this site. Interestingly, after choosing a setting, some diamonds appear to be included in the price of the setting – it seems to resonance to be true.

  45. Paul Gian-
    August 17, 2016 at 1:39 pm

    Nope. Never heard of them before but I did check out their website on your behalf. The in-house grading report is definitely a red flag because of potential conflict of interest. Reliable jewelers don’t usually perform their own grading but instead, send the diamonds out to 3rd party neutral grading laboratories so that the rating of the diamond is impartial.

  46. Allison-
    September 21, 2016 at 7:30 pm

    Thank you so much for all your detailed blogs and information – especially on the lab created diamonds as this is what my boyfriend and I are looking into lately. There aren’t any stores where we live in Canada that sell them so we have been looking at Brilliant Earth since they seem to have the biggest online inventory.

    I read in some of the comments here that the IGI system used by Brilliant Earth to grade their lab created diamonds is slightly “off” from the typical GIA system for mined diamonds. Since we are buying it online, should narrow the search results to one level higher than normal then? i.e. if we wanted a G color, VVS2 (based on GIA standards), should be only search for F color, VVS1 lab created diamonds on the Brilliant Earth website to make sure to account for any differences in grading?

  47. Paul Gian-
    September 22, 2016 at 3:37 am

    The problem with IGI is that they are not consistent (they can sometimes go severely off or be on par with GIA’s grading standards). I won’t worry too much about clarity gradings as long as the diamond doesn’t have inclusions that can be seen by the naked eye. Make sure you get detailed images and cut information on the diamonds you shortlisted and you should be fine.

  48. Kevin-
    September 23, 2016 at 6:17 am

    Hi Paul, and everyone,

    Are you familiar with Blue Diamond? bluediamond.com
    They seem to have some impressive reviews, and claim to have ones that are both “grown” and “natural”. Appears as though they predominately deal with pear shaped though.

    :)

  49. Paul Gian-
    September 24, 2016 at 1:08 am

    Nope, never heard of them. The link isn’t correct anyways.

  50. Kevin-
    September 27, 2016 at 7:15 am

    Or, is it? :)

    Sorry, I have a nutty sense of humor.

  51. Jack-
    October 2, 2016 at 4:41 am

    Thanks for all the valuable info and personal insights on lab created diamonds. I’ve been trying to find as much information as possible regarding these diamonds.
    Do you know where I can find more information on companies selling lab created diamonds regarding reputation? Are you familiar with E3 lab created diamonds? Do you advise these are as reputable as Brilliant earth?

  52. Paul Gian-
    October 3, 2016 at 4:12 am

    I have no experience with E3 lab grown diamonds. Brilliant Earth was a vendor I personally tested because they are one of the largest retailers in the world for manmade stones.

  53. Daniel-
    November 8, 2016 at 8:37 pm

    Hey Paul-

    Thanks for putting together this great site! I’d like to get your opinion on this lab grown diamond from brilliant earth. Actual, ASET, and Idealscope images are in the link below:
    https://www.dropbox.com/sh/6qyy80rsab2wbub/AAA2arXVp9pMxNry5LHvIdz9a?dl=0
    The proportions are:
    Total Depth Percentage 61.9 %
    Table Diameter Percentage 55.5 %
    Crown Height – Angle 15.5 % – 35.0 º
    Pavilion Depth – Angle 43.0 % – 40.9 º
    Culet Size NONE
    Girdle Thickness MEDIUM

    Seems like there might be some leakage under the crown and around the girdle, but the proportions also seem spot on. It’s .92c and selling for $3330. Thoughts? (It’s for an engagement ring).

    Thanks for your help!

  54. Paul Gian-
    November 9, 2016 at 3:39 am

    I’ve reviewed the diamond here and don’t see any issues with it. It’s extremely well cut for light performance and displays almost the best cut optics I had seen in a lab grown stone.

  55. Alby-
    November 13, 2016 at 1:53 pm

    First, great article and website. I am looking to purchase a lab made diamond @ https://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/3145131/

    My biggest question mark is why does it seem much cheaper relative to the others. One of the other stone i am looking at is this – http://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/3018883/

  56. Paul Gian-
    November 14, 2016 at 2:55 am

    Cut quality is likely the reason why. Based on the video in this listing, I can tell you that that this diamond is well cut for light performance.

  57. Sugarland h-
    November 15, 2016 at 3:18 am

    Can you tell me what the difference between a stimulated diamond is to synthetic diamond?

    And are either of those considered a lab grown diamond?

    Have you ever heard of growndiamondscorp.com?

  58. Paul Gian-
    November 15, 2016 at 6:07 am

    A “stimulated diamond” is not diamond. They don’t have the same chemical compositions are generally much softer on the Moh’s scale. Examples of these include Cubic Zirconium (CZ) which are typically found in costumer jewelry.

    A synthetic diamond is basically a lab grown diamond.

  59. Alice-
    November 15, 2016 at 1:04 pm

    Hi Paul,

    Like the others on here, I’ve really appreciated reading through all your comments; the diamond world seems quite a tricky one from a non-expert’s point of view!

    We’ve been looking in to lab grown diamonds after having them suggested to us by a jeweler. Although they may not be considered as special as natural diamonds (and although they may not hold their value), we love the fact that they are completely ethical (and cheaper!).

    We’ve been recommended a diamond and I would love to get your thoughts on it…..

    The report is here:
    http://www.igiworldwide.com/verify.php?r=LG10273901

    And hopefully you can see a photo here:
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/zk13ylsfkfmlfc6/LG10273901.pdf?dl=0

    Thanks!

  60. Paul Gian-
    November 15, 2016 at 3:42 pm

    From the image itself, it looks like a well cut marquise.

  61. David-
    November 15, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    Hi Paul,

    While it’s no longer available, I had been looking at this lab-grown diamond at Brilliant Earth: http://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/3019586/. The listing includes a IGI report and video of the diamond. It was listed at $2320 and has a HCA of 0.9, although it seemed to have some symmetry issues based on the video.

    Should I have pulled the trigger earlier? Or am I lucky to have missed out?

    Your blog has been incredibly helpful in my search for an engagement ring, thanks!

  62. Paul Gian-
    November 16, 2016 at 3:44 am

    You are lucky to miss out. There are better options out there.

  63. alby-
    November 18, 2016 at 11:09 am

    Hi Paul,

    Why do you say that David was lucky to have missed out? Which property did you look at? Or was it concluded just by looking at the clip?

  64. Paul Gian-
    November 18, 2016 at 1:45 pm

    From the video, the cut quality is sub-par; with some experience in viewing diamonds live and correlating to the videos, you can do the same as well.

  65. George-
    December 10, 2016 at 10:35 am

    “I ordered a lab diamond from Brilliant Earth, recently. I know they say lab grown diamonds are the same as mined, but it had NO fire. It was sparkly, but all white light return. No scintilation, no fire.”

    What are your comments on this Paul? I was about to purchase a lab created diamond but came across this

  66. Paul Gian-
    December 12, 2016 at 4:26 pm

    You are viewing the diamond in the wrong lighting conditions.

  67. Michael S.-
    December 21, 2016 at 2:53 pm

    Apart from Brilliant Earth can you please recommend other vendors. I usually like to compare companies, but in the case of man made diamonds its hard to find legit companies.

  68. Paul Gian-
    December 23, 2016 at 7:50 am

    If you are looking for lab grown diamond retailers, Brilliant Earth is as good as it gets for good selections and service standards.

  69. Stephanie-
    January 20, 2017 at 4:33 am

    Hi Paul,

    Thanks for taking the time to answer all the inquiries from fellow diamond novices. I have been in the market for a 2CT diamond for a few months now in the 10K price point (So with that I understand come sacrifices)

    We recently purchased a GSI graded 2.17 CT round brilliant.

    It has one large inclusion on the edge and one slightly smaller one just outside the table, but is otherwise a very clear diamond. The description is as follows:

    Depth: 63.8%
    Table: 58%
    Crown: 16.4%
    Pavilion: 42%
    Girdle: med to slightly thick, faceted
    Culet: none

    Clarity, I2
    Color, E
    Fluorescence: Strong, Blue
    Symmetry: Good
    Polish: Good
    Cut: Very Good

    The biggest thing I’ve notice is the BRIGHT blue hue my diamond takes on in direct sunlight. So while still in my return window, I started looking at manmade diamonds and stumbled upon this from Brilliant Earth. I have requested photos and a 360 view of the actual diamond.

    https://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/3379612/

    My question is this: Do you think this manmade diamond would give me more “bang for my buck”?

  70. Paul Gian-
    January 20, 2017 at 9:22 am

    The GSI diamond is a terrible option. It is cut poorly (from its proportions) and the grading lab report isn’t reliable. You definitely overpaid for that stone. As for the Brilliant Earth diamond, the proportions look OK but that really means nothing without tangible images.

  71. James Sutton-
    February 25, 2017 at 3:22 pm

    I’m wanting a mans gypsy-type setting with a yellow lab created diamond (at least .75)

    I can’t find a dealer in my area that carries lab created diamonds & it’s difficult to imagine buying such a item online.

    I live in Silver Spring MD USA which is a suburb of Washington, DC.

    Any suggestions?

  72. Paul Gian-
    February 26, 2017 at 2:42 am

    Your best bet with lab created diamonds is to look for a well cut diamond at Brilliant Earth.

  73. Patrick-
    February 28, 2017 at 3:57 am

    Paul, so glad to see you are still answering questions! Truly a great gesture to people you don’t even know! I have two quick questions:

    1) What is the #1 vendor that you would recommend for naturally mined diamonds?

    2) Regarding value / maintaining value, how big of a factor for you is it that Brilliant Earth offers the Free Lifetime Diamond Upgrade for its real/natural diamonds but not its lab created diamonds? Neither are a great investment in terms of holding value, but in a way doesn’t the natural diamond hold its value if you can exchange it for 100% credit at any point in the future? And doesn’t this also kind of speak to Brilliant Earth’s lack of confidence in lab created diamonds’ value in the long term?

  74. Paul Gian-
    February 28, 2017 at 4:52 am

    1) https://beyond4cs.com/best-place-to-buy-engagement-ring/

    2) Diamonds are just bad value for investments. Don’t think of them as such. If you want to invest, head to the stock market. The diamond industry isn’t the place for the average investor to make money from. The diamond upgrade is only applicable to buying another diamond. In that sense, it isn’t a 100% credit since you don’t get your money back. Anyway, such policies are common place and many vendors offer something identical.

  75. Jax-
    March 5, 2017 at 12:26 am

    Are Nexus Diamonds synthetic or simulated? They say they’re the same as real diamonds. I’m so confused…

  76. Paul Gian-
    March 5, 2017 at 2:12 am

    Simulated = FAKE DIAMONDS.

  77. Christie-
    March 13, 2017 at 6:16 pm

    I’m looking to upgrade. My original company gives me entire purchase price of middle stone or I can use as trade up in another store or I can buy online and be stock w my other ring. Have you ever heard of Adiamor.com? Seems reasonable prices. But again if I use online to buy ring I cannot trade my old ring (paid $5k for old ring)

  78. Sunny-
    April 18, 2017 at 1:43 pm

    Hi Paul,

    Thanks for the great website with very useful content.

    I’m looking to buy a lab diamond from BrilliantEarth. Can you comment on these 2 diamonds? From your prespective…would you consider them ‘great’ given their specifications? I’m leaning towards the bigger one because its bigger and thinking to the human eye there would be no other difference between the two except the size.

    Thank you!

    https://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/3598043

    https://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/3902097

  79. Paul Gian-
    April 20, 2017 at 6:09 am

    Sunny, this is the better cut diamond.

  80. Robert-
    April 27, 2017 at 2:53 am

    Hi Paul,

    Thank you for all the helpful content and feedback.Typing this as i’m watching the blood diamonds documentary.

    I’m in a dilemma between man-made and mined diamond. But siding closer to a mined diamond.

    Conflict free is quite important for my girlfriend as she is quite emotional about such things.

    Is the kimberly process still reliable today? has it ever been?

    Is it true that the origins of diamonds are not tracked at all besides certain Canadian diamonds that have laser inscriptions. It casts a large shadow of doubt that such a lucrative industry doesn’t have a stable way of insuring the origin of their diamonds when almost every other industry out there does.

    Also this whole GIA not participating in grading lab created diamonds makes my decision even harder as i’m looking a diamond along the lines of 1 to 1.3 carats, round, D, VS1-VVS1, and no fluorescence. With IGI having looser grading standards, I don’t want to buy a lab diamond that isn’t really D color or at least VS1.

    GIA probably knows if they started grading lab diamonds that their influence would be huge on the diamond industry.

    But the pro of a lab diamond, I’d know for sure they are conflict free and i’m not buying some mined diamond that claims to be conflict free but really isn’t because of some under the table dealings

    Sorry for the long post, I hope you can ease my mind on which direction to buy.

    Thanks,
    Robert

  81. Paul Gian-
    April 27, 2017 at 9:11 am

    I would say that the Kimberly Process is somewhat reliable (at least I believe in it). Tracking a diamond’s origins with documentation incurs quite a substantial amount of fees with high volume. It’s doable but most upstream businesses will tend to choose the most basic and cheapest method to get things done.

    Canadian diamonds are a good example of more detailed tracking and a well known conflict-free zone where diamonds are mined. For commercial lab grown diamonds, you nailed it on the head about the comments about GIA. I personally think it is a more political move by them not mass grading synthetic diamonds. Unfortunately with manmade diamonds, you just have to trust IGI on the quality of their grading standards.

    If your concern is conflict free, you may want to consider stones with Canadian origins:
    https://beyond4cs.com/go/brilliantearth/
    https://beyond4cs.com/go/bn-canadian/

  82. Jason-
    June 6, 2017 at 4:58 pm

    Hello Paul,

    Thank you so much for this article. It brought both insight as well as a sense of comfort knowing that I am buying from a reputable source.

    I was eyeing the two diamonds linked below:
    https://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/3305657/
    https://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/4050869/

    I have requested for an ASET/idealscope image and they replied that it might be difficult to get it if the diamond already has a 10x/20x image. Nevertheless, I’m going on the assumption that these images will eventually come.

    What would you recommend as the next steps? Could you comment on the two diamonds attached? I’ve gone through many of your articles but the entire process is still extremely daunting for me.

    Kindest regards,
    Jason

  83. Paul Gian-
    June 7, 2017 at 4:08 am

    Jason, for a lab grown diamond, both are well cut diamond options. I would have preference for the first stone because of its contrast patterning.

  84. Maria Castilano-
    June 15, 2017 at 1:04 am

    Hi Paul,

    I want to replace my current diamond with this one

    https://www.brilliantearth.com/lab-diamonds-search/view_detail/4148846/

    and was wondering what you think of it? I have asked them for more photos before going ahead with the purchase.

  85. Paul Gian-
    June 15, 2017 at 7:21 am

    Yep. Get the images first. This looks like a potentially good diamond.

  86. Mac-
    June 16, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    Wow Paul thanks you have been a wealth of information.

    I’m still on the fence about lab grown vs. mined but a little worried im going to get a fake. Could you check this diamond out?

    https://www.brilliantearth.com/rings/cyorings/view_diamond/4239519/

    Thanks,

    Mac

  87. Paul Gian-
    June 18, 2017 at 12:59 pm

    The proportions on this diamond are horrendous. Dump the stone. It’s a terrible choice!

  88. JJ-
    June 23, 2017 at 6:05 pm

    Hi Paul,
    Why did Brilliant Earth send two wooden boxes for one lab diamond? Was the extra box available upon request, and was there a fee? Thanks!

  89. Paul Gian-
    June 24, 2017 at 12:52 am

    2 boxes for 2 different items.

  90. Liz-
    August 14, 2017 at 1:05 am

    Hi Paul,

    Great posts! Even if the 4 C’s are top notch in ratings… what makes it a poor diamond dimension wise? What proportion of dimensions would make it better?

    Thanks!
    Liz

  91. Paul Gian-
    August 14, 2017 at 1:36 am

    The proportions of the angles and facets play a role in determining light performance:
    https://beyond4cs.com/shapes/round/ideal-proportions/
    https://beyond4cs.com/truth-about-gia-triple-excellent-diamonds/

    At the end of the day, a D internally flawless diamond with triple excellent ratings mean nothing and can look worse than what a well cut diamond would.

  92. Buddy-
    August 14, 2017 at 4:24 pm

    Hi Paul, thanks for your post and comments. I was curious as to why you mentioned IGI being better than GCAL. Everywhere else I checked, people are saying GCAL is a better way to go. Thanks!

  93. Paul Gian-
    August 15, 2017 at 1:18 pm

    For lab created diamonds, IGI reports are currently the only commercially viable ones. GCAL is best used in conjunction with another report e.g. (GIA) as it provides some insights to diamond performance.

  94. Rom-
    September 17, 2017 at 2:10 pm

    Hi. Thank you for the incredible website and information. You are a godsend for the thorough insight on lab-created diamonds. I decided to go this direction instead of natural ones.

    Any thoughts on the ‘Very Good’ polish that is shown on the cert? I would like to stick to ‘Excellent’ but not really sure how that affects the optics. Thanks again!

  95. Paul Gian-
    September 18, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    The differences between a Very Good and an Excellent polish is very minor. To the naked eyes, you will not see any differences assuming all else being equal. (which is highly unlikely). If you are looking at a round diamond and it has a Very Good polish, it tells me one thing about the stone. The polisher didn’t bother to cut it to high standards and that’s a huge red flag to me.

  96. X-
    September 29, 2017 at 3:34 pm

    Paul,

    First of all, thank you for this incredible resource and shedding some light on this intransparent industry.

    I am narrowing down on an engagement ring by Vrai & Oro which has an exclusive partnership with Diamond Foundry and we prefer a synthetic diamond for ethical reasons anyways.

    The diamonds I am considering are:
    – Round, 1.63ct, H, SI1, Sig. Ideal – $6,027 http://certificate.diamondfoundry.com/download/44809.pdf
    HCA: 1.9
    Gemologist notes: ‘There is a small inclusion on the outer edge, which could be covered by the prong. There is also one slight inclusion closer to culet (point of the diamond).’
    – Round, 1.65ct, H, SI1, Sig. Ideal – $6,101 http://certificate.diamondfoundry.com/download/71059.pdf
    HCA: 2.4
    Gemologist notes: ‘All inclusions are near the edges, and can easily be covered by prongs. Light is reflecting in the middle, and there is nothing under the table.’

    Stretch goal:
    – Round, 2.30ct, H, SI2, Sig. Ideal – $8,740 http://certificate.diamondfoundry.com/download/60922.pdf
    HCA: 1.8
    Gemologist notes: (not received yet)

    I checked HCA and they seem within range (1.9, 2.4, and 1.8). Unfortunately, they couldn’t provide me with ideal scope images nor images under magnfication so far, but I am still working on it. As for color, I plan to get a 18k yellow gold setting so my understanding is that a high color grade is not as critical.

    Their gemologist says their stones have inclusions that are favorable to being covered by prongs, but I can’t judge myself without macro photos. The 2.30ct seems like a good deal (especially compared to natural stones) but it’s hard to tell without seeing the inclusions, especially since I read that inclusions can be more visible in larger diamonds.

    Additionally, they charge $165 for IGI certificate and $375 for GIA. IGI is in the same city as them so they don’t have to ship and insure (which I confirmed). Do you even recommend getting a certificate for a synthetic diamond if we don’t see it as an investment, and if so, is it worth the extra money for GIA (given that their reports for synthetic diamonds are more generic for color and clarity)?

    They stand by their product with the ‘Forever Guarantee’ (refund/replacement if any lab rates it lower): https://www.diamondfoundry.com/pages/forever-guarantee

    How would approach choosing a synthetic diamond based on the data above and what’s your take on the guarantee? I am sure other readers would be interested as well.

    Thanks,
    X

  97. Paul Gian-
    October 1, 2017 at 11:25 am

    The diamonds themselves look OK by their numbers but that alone doesn’t confirm performance. I would try to get my hands on tangible data like idealscope or ASET images if possible. Photographs and videos would help too.

    As for the grading report, if I were personally buying this diamond, I would get the stone sent to GIA for grading on the condition that the diamond must ATTAIN equivalent or better cut/color/clarity grading compared to what they stated in their in house report. Failure to which, you WILL NOT have to pay the $375 made for the GIA grading and that you have a 100% money back guarantee on the stone. And of course, if it checks out, you pay the $375 fees as that is only fair.

    If the company says otherwise or refuses to agree to these conditions, it tells you one thing. They don’t stand behind their products nor do they believe their grading standards are on par with GIA’s.

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