What is the difference between Synthetic & Artificial stones?

5 Jan 2014

 

Synthetic and artificial gemstones are the alternatives to natural diamonds or gemstones. Your preference between natural or manmade is a personal choice. Synthetic and artificial stones are considerably cheaper, so if budget is a factor, yet you still want a large stone; this may be a reason to select this option.  To some, the perfect nature of a synthetic stone can be a deterrent. There is unidentifiable beauty in the little flaws that are found in a natural stone. It is these flaws that are the evidence of the wonder of nature. 
 
You may wonder what experts mean when they discuss ‘artificial’ versus ‘synthetic’ stones? In basic terms, an artificial gemstone is made in a laboratory and is made to look like a natural gemstone, but does not have the same chemical, physical or optical properties. A synthetic stone on the other hand, is made in a laboratory using the same chemical composition as naturally occurring stones. However, as their formation is accelerated under artificial conditions they do not always have the same optical properties as their natural counterparts. Cubic Zirconia and Moissanite are two examples of artificial diamonds.
 
When choosing a synthetic or artifical gemstone, it is important to consider the fragile nature of these stones, especially if your stone will be subjected to everyday wear. Even though to the untrained eye synthetic and artifical stones can look remarkably similar to their natural counter partners, it is important to remember that you can’t compare the hardness to a diamond. A diamond is the hardest natural mineral, which is why they  will always be the most desirable choice for an engagement ring.
 
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