Unlike cubic zirconium and moissanite, lab grown diamonds are real diamonds. They are just created in labs using a sophisticated process that mimics the conditions for diamond formation in nature. These synthetic, or cultured, diamonds have the same brilliance and reflective qualities as natural diamonds and are often nearly flawless. Laboratory grown diamonds come in a variety of sizes, colors and styles and are generally less expensive than mined diamonds. In 2007 the Gemological Institute of America began grading lab grown diamonds for color, cut, clarity and cut giving validity to the diamonds and the labs that grow them.
Originally founded in 1990, Apollo Diamond began creating diamonds for the semiconductor industry. Their success led to growing diamonds for jewelry as well. Apollo Diamond specializes in quality white or colorless cultured diamonds. Stone sizes range from .20 carats to .60 carats, and white diamond colors include colorless, near colorless and faint. Apollo also produces fancy colors such as blue, pink, mocha and yellow. Stones over .25 carats are laser inscribed with a serial number. Gemologist Antoinette Matlin told ABC News, "The new Apollo process has taken the art, if you will, of growing a diamond in a laboratory to a whole new level."
Apollo Diamond, Incorporated P.O. Box 670 Framingham, MA 01704 508-881-4827 Apollodiamond.com
D.NEA is the first company to bring synthetic diamonds to the high-end designer jewelry market. Designers who use D.NEA diamonds are Jane Taylor, Steven Kretchmer and Ritani. D.NEA labs produce yellow, blue, white, pink, purple, and green gems. All D.NEA diamonds over .30 carats are graded by the Gemological Institute of America or one of the international grading organizations.
D.NEA Diamonds 70 W. Michigan Ave., Suite 212 Battle Creek, MI 49017 888-522-3426 d.neadiamonds.com
Creating special order heirloom diamonds from the hair or ashes of a loved one is the specialty of DNA2Diamonds. These diamonds celebrate special occasions or commemorate departed loved ones. The lab can also use animal hair to memorialize a special pet. Diamonds are ready 70 days from the receipt of the carbon. DNA2Diamonds are certified by the Gemological Institute of America.
DNA2Diamonds, LLC 416 S. Bethlehem Pike Fort Washington, PA 17034 888-336-3630 dna2diamonds.com
- MSN Money:Man-made diamonds: a girl's new best friend?
- Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: How a new generation of lab-grown diamonds is shaking up the jewelry world.
- Gemological Institute of America: Summer 2010 Reports
- ABC News: Manmade diamonds look the same, cost less
- CNET News: Synthetic diamonds still a rough cut
- diamonds 2 image by Renato Francia from Fotolia.com