Thank you “mined diamonds.” Without you, I wouldn’t be writing this blog post today. Similar to how where you’re from influences who you are and where you’re going, there would be no such thing as a lab-grown diamond without mined diamonds. It’s an amazing feat of humans to have been able to replicate the growth process of mined diamonds.
Yes, there is a difference between the two. It’s in where the diamond comes from and how long it took to grow, which brings me to this question; how much value should we place on provenance? That depends on your priorities and how deep you’re willing to look.
Will provenance impact how your jewelry looks and how it will wear over time? Not at all. There is nothing inferior about lab-grown diamonds, they are just grown above ground, compared to below (mined), in a matter of a few months.
Apart from their provenance, lab-grown diamonds are so similar to mined diamonds, being that they are chemically, physically, and optically the same, that it is extremely hard to differentiate one from the other. Therefore, be wary about anyone, even a jeweler or industry expert, who comes to a conclusion about your diamond’s origin on their own.
While there are tools that can help with testing, the only way to know conclusively is to get it tested by a 3rd party, non-biased diamond grading institute or laboratories, like the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), the International Gemological Institute (IGI), or the Gem Certification & Assurance Lab (GCAL).
Now that you know the difference (and similarities) between these diamonds, you can make a better informed decision before you decide between purchasing one over the other.