In the past, simulated diamonds were looked down upon by everyone in the jewelry industry. Now, these “fake” diamonds are adored by jewelry lovers across the globe. Not everyone can afford real diamonds all the time. So, when you want something cool to wear on a trip or to work, simulated diamonds offer the perfect alternative. However, did you know there are also varying types of “fake” diamonds? The popularity of synthetic diamonds and natural diamond simulants has opened up a new market in the jewelry industry. Not sure which of the “fakes” you want? Here’s a guide!

Natural Fake and Synthetic Fake

A natural “fake” diamond isn’t a diamond at all. In fact, the chemical constituents of natural diamond simulants don’t have anything to do with authentic diamonds’ chemical constituents. Natural diamonds only look like authentic diamonds. That’s the only reason jewelry enthusiasts purchase them. On the other hand, synthetic diamonds can have relatively similar chemical compositions as natural diamonds (that are mined). These synthetic simulants are created in labs to have similar chemical constituents as natural diamonds.

The Best Natural Fakes

Some of the best fake diamond rings are made of natural materials. White sapphire, for instance, is one of the hardest minerals around. Their sturdy nature makes them decent substitutes for diamonds. However, white sapphire doesn’t look half as majestic as real diamonds and ends up looking like grubby glass pieces if not cleaned properly. White zircon is another popular natural diamond simulant. White zircon isn’t as hard as a diamond, but it can be easily cut, polished, and fit inside jewelry pieces. White spinel is another good “natural fake” diamond simulant. However, unlike white sapphire or zircon, white spinel is quite expensive itself. This natural stone is also used as ruby substitutes in high-end jewelry. All three of these popular “natural” fakes have decent market value.

The Best Synthetic Fakes

Moissanite is the first synthetic material on this list. Clear, durable, and lab-produced – the moissanite stone is in high demand these days. Moissanite is a naturally occurring mineral, but it’s very hard to find. So, any moissanite jewelry you spot in the market is probably lab-manufactured. Another extremely common diamond substitute is Cubic zirconia (CZ)). With a Mohs rating of almost 8.5, CZ is pretty durable but not as resistant to scratches and tear as diamonds. Shoppers are advised to explore both natural and synthetic fakes before making purchases.

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