Courtesy of Edgar Soto via Unsplash

Lab-grown diamonds are becoming increasingly popular in the engagement ring industry.

Robbins Brothers: The Engagement Ring Store recently hosted a virtual media event to educate and shed light on the realities of these lab-grown gems as well as showcase their newest collection, Eternalle.

Because of the growing popularity of lab-grown alternatives for reasons that vary among buyers, this segment of the market has swelled by 15 to 20 percent annually. Not only are they more affordable, but they are an environmentally friendly and sustainable alternative to mined diamonds.

In spite of the alternative’s popularity, misinformation and misunderstandings surrounding these diamonds are widespread, usually pertaining to how they are grown and what makes them unique.

The reason why we want to share our knowledge is because clearly we want to educate people on the realness of what these lab-grown diamonds are, while dispelling the myth in the assumptions about them,” said Tanya Waymire, director of special events for Robbins Brothers, said at the event. 

The only difference between mined diamonds and lab-grown diamonds, according to the business, is how they were created. The naked eye cannot detect the difference between the two. While a common misconception is that lab-grown diamonds are not actually diamonds, by definition from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and the Federal Trade Commission a lab-grown diamond has the same crystal structure and chemical, optical, and physical properties as mined diamonds. At a molecular level, a lab-grown diamond and diamonds formed in the earth are exactly the same, too. 

“Many years ago, we used the sliver of an ethically sourced mined diamond, and now all seeds are created through our own growing process in a sustainable loop,” said Brittany Lewis, chief marketing officer for WD Lab Grown Diamonds when explaining the creation process. “Once we have the batch of seeds selected, we measure, clean, and assemble them on what is called a ‘seed plate,’ and this is put in our proprietary growth chamber.”

“We replicate the growing process of a mined diamond but much faster,” she continued. “First we add a recipe of gasses like hydrogen and methane into the chamber, which is then ignited by microwaves creating a plasma ball. Carbon is then released, and we remove the diamonds where they are then cut by precision lasers.”

Depending on desired growth heights, the diamond-making process usually takes several weeks; the planning and cutting processes are identical to what mined diamonds go through.

To learn more about lab-grown diamonds, and to view the new Eternalle collection, visit the Robbins Brothers website.