A moissanite gemstone is a great alternative to a diamond. For one, moissanite is much more affordable than a diamond. However, in Moissanite vs Diamond, the biggest difference between the two besides their cost is that Moissanite has a higher refractive index. Therefore, moissanite has much brilliance and sparkle similar to a diamond.
In 1893, Dr. Henri Moissan discovered moissanite for the first time. Moissan was a French chemist who won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work with the discovery of fluorine, tungsten, and silicon elements. The gemstone is available naturally, occurring in very small quantities within some types of meteorites that fall to Earth. However, most moissanite found in jewelry is lab-grown.
Moissanite vs Diamond in the Market
Due to the search for affordable jewelry matching diamond qualities, moissanite was found. However, its rare occurrence could not meet the growing demand. For that reason, lab-grown moissanite became a solution.
Most of the moissanite you see today is a lab-created gemstone that perfectly resembles a diamond. However, it is less expensive. Moissanite is an alternative to diamonds for years. It is a perfect choice for those working on a budget.
Moissanite is composed of very few impurities. Therefore, it does not suffer from the same inclusions that diamonds can have in them. While inclusions in diamonds are typically invisible to the naked eye, inclusions in moissanite can be visible under magnification.
It is clear that moissanite and diamond are not the same despite their close resemblance. Here are 9 differences to know between Moissanite and Diamond
MOISSANITE IS CLEARER
Since diamonds are a mineral mined from the ground, they may have many inclusions that give them a clouded appearance. On the other hand, moissanite is lab-grown with the use of pure silicon carbide crystals. Therefore, it does not have those same impurities as diamonds do. The result is an extra-clear moissanite stone or gemstone.
MOISSANITE IS HARDER
Moissanite is harder than a diamond (9.25 on the Mohs scale vs. 10 for diamonds). Due to its hardness, moissanite makes a good alternative to diamond for many types of fine jewelry. This is especially for those with sensitive skin or who are particularly rough with their jewelry.
MOISSANITE IS STRONGER AND DURABLE
Moissanite is more durable than diamonds. Lab-grown moissanite is durable and scratch-resistant. Therefore, you will not have to worry about it losing its sparkle with normal wear. When cared for properly, a moissanite gemstone will last forever.
MOISSANITE IS CHEAPER
You can buy a moissanite gemstone for about 20% of the cost of a diamond. The good thing is that it has almost similar qualities to the diamond used for jewelry. Therefore, moissanite makes a good jewelry option despite the low prices.
Naturally, moissanite is rare. However, it has increased in the market due to the possibility of manufacturing them in the lab. With an increased supply, the price of moissanite is relatively low compared to diamonds.
THERMAL AND ELECTRICAL CONDUCTIVITY
Moissanite’s technical name is silicon carbide, and it has a high thermal and electrical conductivity. Diamonds, on the other hand, do not conduct heat or electricity well at all because they purely contain carbon.
GEMSTONE CREATION PROCESS
Diamond can be either natural or lab-built. However, most of the moissanite available in the market is always lab-created. Scientists use a process called “chemical vapor deposition” to create it. This usually happens under intense heat and pressure.
Since moissanite is lab-grown, you can easily get custom sizes and shapes with it. For diamonds, it becomes difficult because the mining process cannot afford large pieces of the gemstone.
MOISSANITE HAS MORE FIRE AND BRILLIANCE
Moissanite has a higher refractive index than diamonds. In other words, it has more “fire” and brilliance when light hits the stone. Therefore, it shines more than diamond making it a perfect gem for jewelry.
The 4 Cs of diamond grading include cut, clarity, carat weight, and color. The best diamonds are completely transparent white while yellowish stones exist only to please the eye with their impressive sparkle but do not offer much else on a quality level.
Some people do not like the idea of getting their stone graded. Unlike diamonds, moissanite is available in colors other than white or yellow-green. Some even have brownish undertones that give them a different appearance when light reflects off them at different angles.
If you are looking for pure transparent color and do not mind paying more, try diamond. However, you may need to explore these stones further before making your final decision.
ETHICAL GROUNDS CONSIDERATIONS
The mining of diamonds creates a negative impact on the earth. However, moissanite used in the jewelry industry is lab-grown. This makes it 100 percent eco-friendly.
There could be more differences between moissanite and diamond based on the creation process. However, the differences highlighted here are the main ones to help you know moissanite from a diamond.
Buying Moissanite vs Diamond Jewelry
Though very similar in appearance to diamonds, moissanite does have some differences as highlighted here. So, how do you get to confirm these differences?
- When buying moissanite, you have to keep in mind that it comes in many colors, including colorless. So when shopping, pay attention so you do not confuse it with a diamond.
- Moissanite is a very hard gemstone and has a double refractive index. You can differentiate it from diamond under a microscope. Here, you will see that moissanite’s refractive index is actually double that of a diamond. Again, you can find more about moissanite by exposing it to light. It will shine more, giving you great fire and brilliance. These qualities make it beautiful for jewelry.
- Diamonds also have a higher density, which means they will be heavier than moissanite.
Moissanite and diamonds have the same metallic luster. That makes it difficult for anyone to differentiate them unless they know their composition. These highlighted differences will help you differentiate moissanite from a diamond. After all, they are not the same despite their closeness.