Ethical gemstones: what are the advantages and disadvantages of synthetic diamonds?
Over the past couple of years, the topic of laboratory-grown diamonds has been especially worrying for society – after all, there are more and more such stones, and they differ only slightly from natural ones. What are their advantages and disadvantages compared to natural diamonds?
Initially, the stones grown in the laboratory received an unsuccessful starting reputation – they were considered a fake for natural and simple fraud. But over time, everything changed, because their essence is the same as that of ordinary stones extracted from the bowels of the Earth.
In nature, carbon, compressed by millions of years of geological processes, forms diamonds, and in the laboratory the same stone is created by vapor deposition in special machines. According to the chemical and crystalline structure, the stones are absolutely identical, except that at the heart of every synthetic diamond there is a particle around which a crystal grows (by the principle of pearls). Most often, a tiny piece of carbon (coal) becomes such a particle, but it can also be organic matter like hair, nail, or dust.
It is difficult to distinguish a synthetic diamond from a natural one even with a 15-fold increase, but experts say that the cutter easily recognizes the peculiarity of the origin of the stone.
Dozens of laboratories create diamonds all over the world, and most industries have an environmentally friendly approach to growing stones using renewable energy and sophisticated technology. For the most part, products are positioned as natural stones, which, of course, does not affect the reputation of synthetic diamonds too well.
However, there are socially responsible brands that advocate more for the environment than for trying to pass off artificial stones as natural. Many stars of show business do not disdain to invest in such technologies, as well as represent them on the red carpet. It is ethics that become the main advantage of synthetic stones over natural ones, which are sometimes extracted under inhuman conditions. True, there are less and less diamonds mined in the market (about 4%), and top brands are introducing stone tracing, which allows you to track all the information up to the name of the miner and his shift.
Of course, the main advantage of stones grown in the laboratory is that they appear in a peaceful and ethical way, are not too expensive and are almost indistinguishable from natural stones. On the other hand, the question of reputation is still acute – the stones are good enough to buy, but not valuable enough to be proud of.
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