Moissanite is the best-known diamond alternative, and for good reason. An untrained eye cannot tell moissanite and diamond apart, but there are differences between both stones that can influence your choice. This diamond vs moissanite comparison post will help to choose the best stone for your money.

Durability

The Mohs Scale of Mineral Hardness looks at how well a gemstone can resist scratches. The Mohs Scale runs from one to ten. A diamond is the toughest mineral, with a perfect 10 out of 10 rating on the scale. Thanks to that incredible score, it is extremely durable and perfect for daily wear. This helps to make it a popular option for engagement ring centerpiece stones.

That said, moissanite is also apt for everyday use because the gemstone has a score of 9.25 on that scale. It is the hardest gemstone after a diamond. Both stones are not easy to break or scratch.

Keep reading our diamond vs moissanite blog for more information on how these stones compare.

Brilliance

The term ‘brilliance’ means the return of light from inside a gemstone. A different sort of brilliance helps to differentiate moissanite and diamond. The light bounces back from the latter stone in three ways. The daylight bouncing back from it is called brilliance, whereas the spectrum of colors that are refracted through it is dispersion. The colored light flashes and the white light visible on the surface of a moving diamond is scintillation, the third form of light return. A mixture of the three gives a diamond its sparkle.

Moissanite displays a different form of brilliance compared to a diamond because the faceting structure of it differs. Some people love the fiery flashes of rainbow colors that moissanite emits, and others think that its enhanced brilliance can make a mirror ball effect under daylight. With increasing size, the possibility of the difference being visible goes up. Moissanite’s refractive index is 2.65, whereas a diamond’s is 2.42, which means it is more brilliant compared to the latter. So, a moissanite engagement ring will be flashier than a diamond ring.

Color

A gemstone may be colorless or it may have naturally-occurring, noticeable color. The Gemological Institute of America grades a diamond’s color on a D to Z scale. A ‘D’ color-graded diamond is colorless, whereas the ‘Z’ grade denotes the presence of a secondary hue of brown or yellow in the stone. The ‘colorless’ stone has no tints of brown, yellow or gray, which makes it look stunningly white.

Moissanite gems come in three grades: colorless, near-colorless, and containing slight hues. A ‘colorless’ moissanite can give off a grayish or yellowish hue under some lighting conditions. The bigger the stone, the more visible will be the color.

Criteria Diamond Moissanite
Durability More Durable Less Durable
Brilliance Less More
‘Bow-Tie’ Shadow No Yes (In Most Diamonds)
Availability Abundant Relatively Rare

Cost

Moissanite is cheaper than a diamond of the same carat weight. It comes at a fraction of the diamond’s cost.

The prices of a diamond differ by the four characteristics namely cut, clarity, color, and carat weight. These are collectively known as the 4Cs of a diamond. Besides these characteristics, many other things play a role in diamond pricing.

Moissanite gemstone prices usually vary by its size and depending on whether or not it is treated for better color. When it comes to the price, there is a clear winner between the gemstones, but it is worth noting that it should not be the deciding factor. There are many other things besides price to consider before you settle on one stone.

Clarity

Every diamond contains imperfections, but the majority of the flaws are not visible to the naked eye. In other words, you will have to look at the stone through a magnification scope to spot the inclusions. When you are unable to spot the internal flaws with the unaided eye, it is ‘eye-clean’. There are diamonds with inclusions visible to the eye. Moissanite gems are sold only if these have ‘VS’ clarity grade at the least.

The ‘VS’ grade means that moissanite has no visible imperfections in it. So you can find moissanite with good clarity, but whether or not a diamond has this feature depends on its formation. You should be more careful of clarity grade when buying a diamond. You can find one with a higher clarity grade than moissanite, but you should look at the grade.

Availability

There are mined diamonds and lab-grown diamonds. The lab-made stones have the same properties as the naturally formed ones. Some diamonds are mined in conflict areas and traded illicitly for use to fund criminal activities. These are known as mined diamonds. The stones not traded thus, and not used to finance fighting, are classified as ‘conflict-free’.

Natural moissanite gems are rare to find in the market, so most of these stones are lab-made counterparts. So you are likelier to find conflict-free moissanite gems than conflict-free diamonds.

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