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Lab Diamonds vs Mined Diamonds

The founders of Kimai take us through the most frequently asked questions about lab grown diamonds. Learn about how diamonds are made in the lab, why they are the more sustainable source over mined diamonds, and exactly how a diamond is created. Plus, we tell you more about the diamonds Kimai work with.

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Lab Diamonds
Lab diamonds are chemically and physically identical to mined diamonds.
Lab diamonds are chemically and physically identical to mined diamonds.
Lab diamonds are chemically and physically identical to mined diamonds.

Q: Why lab grown diamonds?

Jessica: As a lot of you know, we both grew up in Belgium to diamond trading families. So we’ve always been around diamonds and jewelry. But we started to realise how there’s a lack of transparency in the industry. The way they talk to their customers, the way they offer their product and innovations. We started talking to people in the industry, where things were made, where diamonds were mined etc. and we couldn’t get any simple answers. We decided we want to do things differently and find a way to talk to younger customers much more. That’s when we discovered lab diamonds.

Q: What’s the difference between lab and mined diamonds?

Sidney: The difference is only really the origin. Lab diamonds are chemically and physically the same as mined diamonds. I’m a gemologist and I can’t tell them apart. You can think of them like ice – ice in your fridge and an iceberg; the same result, but different origin.

Q: How can you tell the difference between lab and mined diamonds?

Jessica: The only way to tell lab and mined diamonds apart is using a specialized machine, because it’s impossible to tell them apart with a naked eye.

Q: How do you choose your diamonds?

Sidney: At Kimai we have certain quality standards, we always prioritise quality over quantity. We only use diamonds of a clarity above VS2 and F+ color. In terms of how the diamond will shiny, it’s always best to see a video first. Usually we send our clients a video of the diamond first, because every diamond shines differently depending on how it’s cut.

Q: Can you make colored lab grown diamonds?

Jessica: Yes it’s possible and we’ve already made a few for clients who requested these bespoke. But as a brand at Kimai, we’ve decided to only focus on colorless diamonds at the moment, as there’s alot of education to be done on lab diamonds and it’s best to start with the foundations. Overtime, we hope to introduce more colored stones.

Q:How long does it take to make a diamond in a lab?

Jessica: A diamond is made of 100% carbon. And thanks to technology we’re able to recreate the mining environment in a lab. So the mining environment is made up of high temperature, high pressure and gases, where the carbon seed is placed in a chamber at the lab under the same conditions. And the seed is able to grow into a diamond in around 6-8 weeks. When the travel restrictions get easier, we plan to show you around the labs!

Q: How do you make sure your suppliers are ethical and sustainable?

Sidney: First of all, it’s important to know that we only work with a few trusted diamond suppliers. This is because we know them and we want to have a close relationship with them, we know where the labs are, the working conditions. We want to maintain complete transparency and be in complete control of our supply chain.

Follow Kimai on Instagram to keep up to date with more Q&As and other educational content from the team.