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Diamonds have forever been a symbol of love, luxury, and beauty. They have stood the test of time in the way they were created and in their long-lasting symbolism in jewelry. In recent years, however, man-made diamonds have entered the scene and created quite a stir in the fine jewelry community. Because of this trend, people have begun to ask themselves why they want a particular type of diamond and what truly matters about the diamonds they’re purchasing.
Here at Roman Malakov, we sell only natural, made-from-the-earth diamonds. While we recognize the reasons lab-created diamonds exist, we strongly believe in the significance and importance of natural diamonds, both in terms of what they mean to people and how they positively impact the world. We want everyone to understand the magnitude of choosing naturally formed diamonds over alternative options.
If you’re exploring the difference between natural and lab-created stones, you may have asked yourself, “What is a natural diamond?” A natural diamond is one that was created by the earth, with no human intervention, between 1 and 3 billion years ago. They form about 100 miles below the earth’s surface under extremely high temperatures and intense pressure.
Diamonds are made entirely of carbon, making them the only gemstone made of one single element. They are the hardest substance on earth and can only be scratched with another diamond. These naturally formed diamonds can be cut into a variety of shapes to create the most stunning jewelry pieces for you or a loved one.
If you’re asking yourself, “How are diamonds formed?” or “What are diamonds made of?” We’ve got you covered.
Natural diamonds are created when extreme pressure and very high temperatures cause carbon to crystallize. Within the diamonds themselves, there is a unique crystal cubic lattice structure in which each carbon atom is bonded to four other carbon atoms.
After they’re formed over the course of billions of years, the diamonds must make their way to the earth’s surface. This generally occurs when part of the earth melts in magma and then enters the earth’s surface through an eruption. Most commonly, diamonds are found in vertical rock structures called kimberlite pipes.
Of all the kimberlite pipes around the world, only around 15% of them have diamonds within them, and of that 15%, only around 1% have diamonds that are economically viable, emphasizing just how rare and special diamonds are.
After diamonds are formed and move to the surface of the earth, they are mined. At this point, they’re then cut into specific shapes, polished, graded, and set into jewelry, where they become part of the beautiful pieces we see everyday.
While fancy colored diamonds do exist, they are extremely rare, and natural colored diamonds are far more popular and accessible. Natural colored diamonds are those you usually picture when you think of a diamond. It’s a variation of white, which is often called colorless when discussing the intricacies of the stones.
Generally speaking, the more colorless a stone, the more valuable it is. However, many people opt for a more middle-of-the-road grade when it comes to diamond color to balance out the 4Cs of diamond quality. Most commonly, the natural colored diamond is the stone you see in engagement rings, but it also adorns tennis bracelets, earrings, and pendant necklaces due to its beauty and exclusivity.
This discussion about why natural diamonds are better has gotten quite intense in recent years, particularly as consumers have made their opinions widely known. From claims of ethics to eco-friendly options to beauty and value, the debate has intensified as jewelers and designers have weighed in as well, adding a new level of interest to the conversation.
The first and most important factor in our decision to only offer natural diamonds is the positive socio economic impact they have on millions of people. While some claim that lab-created diamonds are a more ethical choice, they’re overlooking the incredible significance that diamond mining has on local communities.
Diamond mines are located on five of the seven continents and offer various jobs to people in those areas, including mining, cutting, polishing, grading, and retail. These jobs provide livable wages, quality healthcare, and cultural survival, often contributing to the growth of communities that would otherwise be implausible. For example, hospitals and schools have been built with diamond-mining money, and communities, families, and individuals have thrived due to the mining industry. The economic value and familial stability created in these diamond communities span generations and have impacted millions of people—and we believe in supporting this.
A diamond’s value will shift over time as the market changes, but due to the way natural diamonds were created, they maintain their value far better than any lab-created diamond ever could. They are special and hold a great deal of significance, and that is reflected in their value.
When you ask yourself, “What makes a diamond?” A lot of it comes down to the stone’s intrinsic value. The dollar sign may matter, but at the end of the day, it’s more about the personal value and importance of a stone. It’s also about how it makes you feel connected to the earth and your loved ones and how it helps you contribute to society and provide lasting benefits for others as well.
When it comes down to it, we can all admit that there is nothing quite like a diamond that was formed beneath the earth’s surface billions of years ago. They are simply special. The rarity of these stones and their emotional significance cannot be overlooked or undervalued.
Just like snowflakes, each naturally formed diamond is unique and individual, and each one is like its own glorious gift from the earth. What’s more, they can’t be replicated or reproduced, so their uniqueness is unrivaled. Particularly when placed into a beautiful setting and worn to symbolize something or someone, naturally formed diamonds are breathtaking and special in the most perfect way.
The only guaranteed way to know if a diamond is natural or man-made is to have it examined by a certified gemologist. They have advanced machinery and equipment to determine how a diamond was created, and they are the only ones who can tell you with certainty if your diamond is natural or synthetic.
Diamonds are made of carbon that is compressed under high heat and pressure. This makes them the hardest substance known to man, and their lengthy creation process contributes to their breathtaking sparkle and rarity.
While colored diamonds are formed the same way that naturally colorless diamonds are, they become a different color when elements other than carbon are introduced during the formation process. For earth-created diamonds, this involves trace elements integrating into the carbon during the high-pressure, high-temperature formation. Boron creates blue diamonds, hydrogen contributes to purple diamonds, and nitrogen creates yellow and orange diamonds.
If you’re ready to make a difference in a diamond community and contribute to the greater good for many generations, come to Roman Malakov and shop our wide selection of natural diamonds. We can help you select the perfect diamond shape for a new ring, design a glamorous necklace for a special someone, or pair some earrings with a bracelet for a luxurious look.
Shop in-store at our Diamond District location or book an appointment for an in-person or online consultation. The experience you’ll have shopping with us is unbeatable, and we’re confident you’ll walk away thrilled with your new jewelry.