This floors me.
I’m in shock!
DeBeers, the largest diamond mining company in the world, is going to start selling synthetic diamonds?
I don’t get it. It goes against everything DeBeers has stood for in their entire existence (1888).
They promote “REAL” over “FAKE” everyday of the week. They run campaigns like “A Diamond is Forever“, and “Real is Rare“.
But now they’ve gone and produced their own synthetic (man-made in a laboratory) diamonds called “Lightbox“.
Sure they’ll be about 10 times cheaper than genuine diamonds, but still…
Their whole company is based upon digging diamonds out of the earth and promoting them.
So what gives?
DeBeers says that they created these stones because of consumer demand (WHAT?)… I’ve never once in 30 years ever had a customer come into the jewelry store and ask for a synthetic diamond. EVER!
Synthetic diamonds are created in a lab and grown just like real diamonds in nature (using intense pressure and heat). Their DNA is identical to a genuine diamond, and without the proper tools (diamond testers), it would pass as a real stone (which is why Lightbox diamonds will all be etched with a Lightbox logo to tell them apart and identify them easier).
Synthetic or fake diamonds are not uncommon.
The most popular created stone is Moissanite, which Helzberg is selling here.
And of course, the most popular “fake” diamond is Cubic Zirconia (CZ). All those are all made to look similar, resemble a diamond…
Whereas Lightbox is physically a real diamond, just created like a test-tube baby.
But if it’s not “Natural”, is it really “Real”?
No matter how you look at it, it’s sure to make an impact on the industry.
Will it confuse people?
Will it hurt their business or reputation?
I’d think so!
Even if they spend millions on promoting them (and they will be the only ones selling them), I still think it’s silly and senseless.
And the prices…
$800 per carat? It’s insane! A normal diamond runs around $8,000 a carat (depending on quality).
But starting in September (2018), Lightbox diamonds will hit the shelves in colors of white, pink and blue.
Would you buy a man-made diamond that wouldn’t last forever?
It seems like an odd way of saying it, but that’s exactly what DeBeers is quoted as saying:
Lightbox will transform the lab-grown diamond sector by offering consumers a lab-grown product they have told us they want but aren’t getting: affordable fashion jewelry that may not be forever, but is perfect for right now.
(De Beers CEO Bruce Cleaver)
DeBeers is also quoted as saying:
De Beers’ focus is on natural diamonds. We would not do anything that would cannibalize that industry.
(Simon Lawson, head of research and development)
So which is it?
I believe they created them to just drive the price of man-made diamonds down. This would widen the gap between genuine diamonds and synthetic even more (right now synthetics sell for about 50-60% the price of genuine diamonds). Making them cheaper would keep the prices of real diamonds justified and strong.
But will they catch on?
Will customers buy them and not buy real diamonds?
Or will they fail?
Only time will tell.
Personally I’ll just stick to the diamonds that nature creates:
Because diamonds should be forever, and if I spend good money on one, I’d certainly like it to last forever.
It sounds better than saying “Here Honey, I bought you a diamond knock-off instead!“
Would you buy a Lightbox diamond?
Let us know in the comments below.
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About the Author
Author Richard Scott. Certified Diamontologist and Gemologist. 30 years of experience.
Let Richard help you choose the best diamond, the most dazzling engagement ring, and save as much money as possible. Read more about the author here. Follow Richard on social media; Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest. Contact Richard Scott here.