Differences between Lab, Synthetic and Simulated Gemstones

What the Difference between Lab Created , Synthetic and Simulated Gemstones?

Lab created (Lab grown) and Synthetic are synonymous terms. Only difference being is that they are not from the earth, like natural gemstones are.

Just about any type of natural stone can be simulated or lab created. Real stones are a miracle of nature!

Simulated stones, “Imitate the appearance or character of” real gemstones. Simulated stones are often created in laboratories, but they may be created of materials such as glass or plastic, or may be created with much cheaper minerals and then dyed to appear identical to a natural gemstone. Simulated stones are much less expensive than even lab created stones, and, as such, they are typically found in the least expensive jewelry.

Lab created stones, are created in a laboratory using the same types of minerals that would be found in a natural stone. They are created by the use of machines that simulate the pressure and heat effects that would have influenced these minerals in the natural world over the passage of time. The stones that are created are typically identical to natural stones, except they usually have less flaws, since the stones are specifically created to be as perfect as possible, which would not happen in the natural world. A lab created gemstone will have all of the properties of a natural stone, such as hardness, color, and the like, but without any of the imperfections that are found in nature. They are made in an attempt to capture the natural aspects of real stones and many companies are really good at this. Some of the manufacturing processes are so good, it’s difficult to tell them apart from the real thing!

Sapphires and Rubies are fairly easily created in the laboratory, and are very common. Emeralds and Aquamarines are not easily made in the laboratory. Lab created Emeralds are very expensive to make, and not commonly found in jewelry. Lab created Aquamarines are not as expensive to make as Emeralds, so it’s pretty common to find them made into jewelry.

Colors can be predetermined in lab or simulated stones. This is not possible with natural stones, though many natural stones are treated to enhance colors.

[Source: Lab and Simulated Gemstones - Differences between Lab and Simulated Stones]

Blog post by ~ Jelene

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