Fair Fashion

Top 3 Alternatives to Mined Diamonds

Not every great piece of jewelry starts with a mined diamond stone. In fact, not
everyone favors the look of mined diamonds. That said, there are tons of different
options out there that will cater to the needs of anyone looking for a distinct piece of
jewelry offset with a gorgeous stone.

This guide will give you a breakdown of the three most popular mined diamond alternatives and why you should consider them for your next jewelry purchase. Let’s dive in!

1. Birthstones

One of the most common mined diamond alternatives on the market is birthstones.
These gemstones are used to represent a specific month in the calendar year and are
said to have origins that can be traced back to biblical times. The practice of using
birthstones to commemorate or celebrate an individual’s birth month was cemented by
the National Association of Jewelers in 1912.

Each month has at least one gemstone that represents it, however, most months have
an alternative stone. For example, the month of March is represented by the gemstones
aquamarine and a bloodstone.

● Birthstones offer a personalized touch, as each stone represents a person’s
month of birth.
● Wide variety of stones.
● Many, not all, birthstones are more affordable than mined diamonds.

● Limited options, each month may only have a single stone option.
● Birthstones don’t always match the style of the person they are given to.

2. Lab-Grown Diamonds

Whether it’s cost, environmental impact, or ethical concerns — there are many reasons
why someone wouldn’t want to purchase a mined diamond. However, lab-grown diamonds offer the perfect solution to all the common reasons not to buy a mined diamond.

Lab-grown diamonds are a recent technological development. By using cutting edge
equipment, scientists are able to mimic the natural conditions, extreme heat, and
pressure, that create diamonds. These lab-grown diamonds are virtually identical to
mined diamonds both in appearance and molecularly.

● More bang for your buck. Buy a larger diamond at a fraction of the price.
● Lab-grown diamonds are ethically sourced — there’s no need to worry about the
implications of purchasing a so-called “blood diamond.”
● Lab-grown diamonds are graded using the same 4 C’s as mined diamonds, so
there is a diamond and price point for everyone.

● A lot of individuals have incorrect or misinformed opinions about lab-created
diamonds. If you go with this diamond alternative, you’ll likely be explaining that it
is, in fact, a real diamond for often than not.

3. Moissanite

This stone, discovered in 1893, is extremely rare. Moissanite was initially thought to
only occur naturally in space, as it was discovered in a crater left by a meteor. However,
later on, it was discovered that moissanite can be found in extremely low quantities on
Earth. As it’s so rare, all moissanite on the market is lab-grown.

Moissanite is similar to diamonds in appearance. However, moissanite refracts much
more colored-light than diamonds. This stone is known for its colorful brilliance.

● Diamond-like brilliance with more color.
● Moissanite is a significantly more affordable stone option than any other stone on
this list.
● Moissanite is an eco-friendly option, as it is lab-grown

● Many people dislike the brilliance of moissanite and it’s “disco-ball” effect.
● Moissanite can be colored and can appear more grey or yellow in certain light.

Final Thoughts

Shopping for unique jewelry pieces can be like trying to find a needle in a haystack. Not
only are jewelry choices dominated by mined diamond options, but they can also make
it difficult to source mined diamond alternatives. Difficult, but not impossible. As a buyer,
you have the ultimate power to research alternatives. Just make sure that you choose a
stone that you absolutely love!

This post sponsored by Clean Origins.

Starre Vartan is founder and editor-in-chief of Eco-Chick.com and the author of the Eco-Chick Guide to Life. She's also a freelance science and environment writer who has published in National Geographic, CNN, Scientific American, Mental Floss, Pacific Standard, the NRDC, and many more. She lives on an island in Puget Sound with her partner and black cat. She was a geologist in her first career, and still picks up rocks wherever she goes.