Lab Grown Diamonds
Although they are made in a lab, lab grown diamonds share the same chemical, optical, and physical properties as natural diamonds. They can be cut into any shape and are just as durable. Most importantly, they look and sparkle just like natural diamonds becuase they are in fact "real diamonds." As GIA states, the only real difference lies within their origin. "Laboratory-grown diamonds are like ice from your refrigerator, while natural diamonds are like ice from a glacier. They are both ice, although their formation stories and the age of each are very different."
There are two main processes used to create lab grown diamonds.
HPHT: Labs replicate the conditions diamonds experience in the earth by using high pressure and high temperatures of 2300-2900°F.
CVD: Labs use more moderate temperatures of 1300-2300°F and less pressure while pumping carbon-containg gas into a vacum chamber. Over time the diamond seed in the chamber then crystalizes into a diamond.
Grading: Lab grown diamonds are certified just like natural diamonds. GIA and IGI are the two trusted certification companies for lab grown diamonds. Each diamond will have a laser inscription on the girdle of the stone
Identifying: It is nearly impossible for anyone to tell the difference between natural and lab grown diamonds to the naked eye. Even a trained eye using a 10x magnifying loupe would have trouble identifying the difference. Because of this jewelers rely on a testing machine that can tell its origin based on certain characteristics. A jeweler should always tell you whether a stone is natural or lab grown.
Lab grown diamonds are a fraction of the cost of natural diamonds and the price is continuing to widen. Even though the demand right now is high, the supply of these diamonds is greater because of the techological advancements in the industry.
Eco-Friendly: Many customers feel more comfortable because they are ethically sourced and eco-friendly
Price: Lab grown diamonds are a fraction of the cost of natural diamonds. This is very enticing for customers who are getting something that looks the same as a natural diamond.