If you’re comparing the differences between a moissanite and a diamond, you probably want the glam look of a diamond but aren’t interested in either the price or the potential ethical implications. Moissanite is a great alternative to diamonds and it’s quickly becoming a popular choice for more budget-friendly and ethical engagement rings. It’s pretty common for moissanite to be compared to or confused with mined diamonds, and on the surface, these dazzling stones are very similar, even when side by side. Both stones have a high refractive index, are highly durable, have a high scale of hardness, and lots of brilliance and fire. One major difference is that nearly all moissanite is lab grown while the majority of diamonds are mined. And then there’s the major difference in cost…but we’ll get to that!

At Abby Sparks Jewelry, we love to help our clients find exactly what they want, and if you’re weighing the differences between diamond and moissanite, we’re here to shed some light on this intriguing stone that looks like a diamond.

Moissanite custom engagement ring and Canadian diamond custom engagement ring made by Abby Sparks Jewelry

(Moissanite vs diamond side by side. From left to right, The Chelsea emerald cut moissanite engagement ring and The Kimi 1.06 carat round diamond ring)

Moissanite vs Diamond

Round 1: Brilliance

(One difference between a moissanite and a diamond: Moissanite has a higher refractive index)

If you love sparkle, then consider using moissanite in your engagement ring. Sparkle is measured by brilliance, which is relative to a stone’s refractive index. This dazzling stone has a refractive index ranging from 2.65 to 2.69. For comparison, a diamond’s refractive index is only 2.42. Not only does lab-grown moissanite have a higher brilliance than most stones, it also has dazzling fire. Light refracting off moissanite creates a rainbow of colors and a fire that is higher than any other stone, at a dispersion of 0.104. Don’t believe us? Check out the video above of the sparkle on one of our lab-grown moissanites!

Winner: Moissanite

Moissanite vs Diamond

Round 2: Durability

Moissanite and platinum custom engagement ring made by Abby Sparks Jewelry

(Hard as a rock? Pretty much. The Caroline 1.53 carat lab-grown moissanite ring with 0.28 ctw diamond melee in platinum)

Engagement rings can suffer from an active or accident prone lifestyle. Thankfully, for those who are constantly on the move, we at Abby Sparks Jewelry create engagement rings that complement your lifestyle. Both diamond and moissanite are great engagement ring choices because of their extreme durability. Due to the strength of the carbon bonds in silicon carbide, lab-grown moissanite is one of the hardest known substances and has a hardness score of 9.25 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness. The one stone that’s harder? You guessed it; diamonds. Both of these tough gemstones are also highly resistant to heat, so rest assure that your engagement ring will be less likely to get damaged in a jewelry repair or a house fire.

Winner: Diamonds

Moissanite vs Diamond

Round 3: Colors

Ethical custom engagement ring made with 14k yellow gold, 2.00 carat antique cut lab-grown moissanite, and diamond halo custom made and designed by Abby Sparks Jewelry, The Laura.

(The Laura 14k yellow gold custom engagement ring featuring a 2 carat antique cut lab-grown moissanite made exclusively by Abby Sparks Jewelry)

Though lab-grown moissanite is considered a “colorless gemstone,” they are not completely without color. In certain lighting, a projection of colors can be seen. This is a fantastic characteristic that sets them apart from diamonds and we find that our clients love the rainbow of color their custom lab-grown moissanite engagement ring emits.

Winner: Moissanite

Moissanite vs Diamond

Round 4: Inclusions

Lab grown diamond ethical engagement ring made by Abby Sparks Jewelry, The Suzy.

(The Suzy oval diamond ring with 0.73 carat diamond center stone, 0.28 ctw diamond halo, 0.36 ctw diamond melee in band.)

Like every jewelry-grade gemstone, moissanite has inclusions; tiny blemishes inside its facets. Though considered imperfections, these tiny inclusions are unique for each individual stone and therefore define the stone since the inclusions allow each stone to be one-of-a-kind. The inclusions in lab-grown moissanite are usually microscopic and do not affect the clarity or brilliance of the gemstone with regards to what the eye can see. Similarly, virtually every diamond has microscopic inclusions. However, a diamond’s clarity can range from flawless to imperfect and can greatly influence cost. This is measured by the diamond clarity chart developed by the Gemology Institute of America (GIA).

Winner: Draw! It depends on the stone.

Moissanite vs Diamond

Round 5: Ethics and Sustainability

Lab grown diamond engagement ring, Canadian diamond engagement ring, moissanite engagement ring made by Abby Sparks Jewelry.(The Lindsay lab-grown diamond ring, The Kimi Canadian diamond engagement ring, and The Chelsea moissanite engagement ring)

If you lose sleep over the social, political, and environmental effects of gemstone extraction, rest assured that a lab-grown moissanite engagement ring is ethical, eco-friendly, and sustainable. Because these gemstones are created in a lab using silicon and carbon, lab-grown moissanite engagement rings like The Chelsea (shown above) have no risk of unsustainable gem mining, exploitation of human labor, and indirectly supporting conflict. At Abby Sparks Jewelry, we strive to source the most ethical and conflict free diamonds on the market. We implement the requirement of the Kimberley Process which works to reduce the flow of blood diamonds [read more information on diamonds we use]. Though this is the standard for conflict free diamonds, there can be loopholes in the system. For a conflict free mined diamond, Canada is one of the few regions that goes above and beyond these guidelines. Creating a Canadian diamond engagement ring like The Kimi (above) is your best bet for an ethical mined diamond. If you still want a diamond but need to go a step further to ensure 100% conflict free stone, a lab-grown diamond like the gorgeous 1.15 carat lab-grown diamond used in The Lindsay (above) is the way to go, or you can explore other options for ethical engagement rings.

Winner: Moissanite or lab created diamonds are both big winners

Moissanite vs Diamond

Round 6: Cost

diamond engagement ring, moissanite engagement ring, canadian diamond engagement ring, and lab grown diamond engagement ring, custom made by Abby Sparks Jewelry.(Similar look, different price tag. The Jess 14k rose gold and .052 carat diamond engagement ring, The Chelsea 14k white gold and 1.70 carat lab-grown moissanite engagement ring, The Kimi 14k rose gold and 1.06 carat diamond engagement ring, The Lindsay 14k white gold and 1.15 carat lab-grown diamond engagement ring)

Lab-grown moissanite costs significantly less than many other stones, diamonds included. Used popularly as an alternative to diamonds, lab-grown moissanite engagement rings at Abby Sparks Jewelry typically costs about 30-50% of the price of diamond engagement rings, making moissanite a more budget-friendly option for popping the question. Since we make one-of-a-kind, true custom engagement rings, the exact savings using a lab-grown moissanite center stone varies depending on engagement ring metals, accent stones, and other design options. How much should you spend on an engagement ring? Book an appointment and we can work with you to design an engagement ring that makes sense with your budget. Our custom engagement ring gallery showcases a wide range of price points and designs options to get give you some ideas.

Winner: Moissanite

The Final Verdict

rough diamond custom engagement ring made by Abby Sparks Jewelry.

(Moissanite v diamond? Find your perfect match. The Hannah 14k white gold and 2.02 carat rose cut rough diamond ring)

The popularity of lab-grown moissanite is skyrocketing as consumers are becoming more conscious of value and origin of the stones in their jewelry. Diamonds have been the most common stone for engagement rings and wedding jewelry for decades but this may very well change in the future. The jewelry industry, particularly with bridal, has seen a steady increase in lab-grown moissanite sales each year, convincing those in the industry that lab-grown moissanite is a smart investment for your engagement ring and also a market option that is here to stay. We love that this sparkling gemstone is getting more recognition and look forward to making more lab-grown moissanite engagement rings, but of course, diamond engagement rings will always have a special place in our hearts, and we have plenty to say about the beloved stone in the complete guide to diamonds for your engagement ring.

Ready to make a make it official with moissanite?

book an appointment to work with Abby Sparks Jewelry, custom jewelry designer in Denver, CO