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Can You Easily Identify if a Diamond is Mined or Lab-Grown?

Can You Easily Identify if a Diamond is Mined or Lab-Grown?

With the rising demand for jewelry crafted with lab-grown diamonds, many people have questions about the difference between mined diamonds and lab-grown diamonds. As diamonds are the most prized gems in the world, gemstone enthusiasts also want to know the difference, and how to identify them.

This topic is currently a heated discussion between mined and lab-grown diamonds, and New World Diamonds (your favorite lab grown diamond company), is going to provide clarity.

In this blog, we are not going to explain how mined diamonds are formed in the earth’s crust, or the different methods used to create diamonds in a lab. We will point out lab-grown diamonds are the same as mined diamonds, as they both have the same chemical, physical, and optical properties. Now, let’s get to the matter at hand…

What can you tell by looking at a mined diamond or lab-grown diamond?

Just like no two people are alike, no two diamonds are the same. This is true of any mined, and also any lab-grown diamond.

Many people feel they can identify the “color” or “sparkle” of a diamond. However, these would be the same whether looking at a mined or a lab-grown diamond. Only expert gemologists can tell the subtle differences between both types of diamonds by viewing them under a microscope.

Here are some facts to consider…

  1. Structure of mined diamonds vs. lab-grown diamonds

Most all diamonds (whether mined or lab-grown) have inclusions, the diamond industry word meaning flaws. Since mined diamonds that were formed millions of years ago deep in the earth grew differently than diamonds now created in a laboratory in just a few weeks, these inclusions are different:

  • Mined diamonds have inclusions that appear more as feathers, pinpoints, or clouds.
  • Lab-grown diamonds have small metallic or flux-like inclusions.

These inclusions affect both mined and lab-grown diamond clarity in the same way. Clarity is one of the famous 4Cs of Diamond Quality. Mined or lab-grown diamonds that are certified receive clarity grades from an independent laboratory. These clarity grades tell you the size of the inclusions, and how noticeable they are.

  1. What about color?

There are both colored mined and lab-grown diamonds.

In mined diamonds, color comes from chemicals (such as nitrogen) that were trapped inside the diamond as it grew. Different chemicals resulted in different colors. The most common colored mined diamonds are yellow, pink, and blue. Because they are rare and not renewable, colored mined diamonds tend to be very expensive.

Lab-grown diamonds are not only available in the most common colors of yellow, pink, and blue, but in addition due to modern processes, you can select from; oranges, greens, purple, smoky browns, and black. The common colors of yellow, pink, and blue are also available in lab-grown, plus in many wonderful shades. Since they are created in a lab, there is a greater supply of colored lab-grown diamonds, and they are less expensive.

What do colors tell us about mined vs. lab-grown diamonds? Since there are common colors, if you want a colored diamond, you will have a much better selection and a better price with lab-grown diamonds. Other than making a judgement based on availability and price, a diamond certificate from an independent laboratory is the best way to know. The certification includes whether a diamond is mined or lab-grown.

  1. Time to develop mined diamonds vs. lab-grown diamonds

Mined diamonds were formed 1 billion to 3.3 billion years ago deep in the earth’s crust. Today, it takes around 6 to 10 weeks to create a diamond in a lab. Is there anything we can tell from there? As with color, the best way to know if your diamond was from a mine or lab-grown, is to purchase one with a certificate from an independent laboratory.


It is not easy to tell just by looking if a diamond is mined or lab-grown. Although there are clues, the best way is to purchase mined or lab-grown diamonds certified by an independent laboratory.

At New World Diamonds, our lab-grown diamonds are certified by world-renowned, independent laboratories. Our .25 carat and larger stones are all certified. When browsing our diamonds, you’ll see in the product descriptions which laboratory certified the diamond. We also offer certification upon request for any other lab-grown diamond styles you purchase.

So, explore our beautiful collection of lab-grown diamond jewelry at and select the best stone and style for you.

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