Is Moissanite the Best Diamond Alternative?

Is Moissanite the best diamond alternative or is Moissanite even better than a diamond?! We think it’s better no matter which way you look at it. When shopping for a diamond, let’s be honest – you are mostly looking at whether it first fits in your budget and then size and quality factor in after that. For many there is going to have to be some give – either go in to debt or sacrifice the size or quality or both. Moissanite however, is top notch in all of these areas – quality, budget friendly and it’s extremely strong (diamond measures a 10 on the Moh’s scale with Moissanite coming in just under at 9.25). A Moissanite competes head to head for strength with a diamond, therefore, can withstand the test of time and be passed down from generation to generation.

We have heard from many of our clients that their Moissanite engagement rings are by far the prettiest in their group of friends, co-workers etc. Unfortunately, it seems most don’t share that it’s a Moissanite. It’s a true testament to Moissanite, that no one suspects it isn’t a diamond so doesn’t ask.

My husband and I were chatting the other day that it would be interesting to have a Moissanite section or kiosk in a conventional jewelry store. For some, they would still need a diamond for superficial reasons but the majority would see that Moissanite is prettier than the average diamond (don’t believe the rubbish you read on diamond websites that it’s green or whatever other crazy things they say – diamonds and Moissanite are graded side by side on the same color scale so Colorless means exactly that – no color – no green). The average diamond in a jewelry store is a J color while Moissanite comes in DEF Colorless or GHI Near Colorless. Both the Colorless and Near Colorless Moissanite are a fraction of the cost of their equal diamond counterpart and I do mean a fraction. If purchasing an equal 1 ct flawless colorless diamond you would be spending approximately $20,000 USD compared to $500 USD. There is the added bonus that a Moissanite has 10% more sparkle than a diamond – nothing flashy, it just makes it look like it is the better quality stone when next to a diamond.

Back to our jewelry store scenario. For sure, most people would not see the value in a diamond when side by side with a quality Moissanite (we prefer the NEO and Charles and Colvard brands – high quality control and superior manufacturing). The reason you don’t see this section (a large Moissanite section in the local jewelry store) is the jeweler makes much more profit with a diamond sale than with Moissanite.  In fact, we have found many jewelers who have one token Moissanite ring in their store (to bring anyone in who might be calling around to locate a Moissanite engagement ring) and it seems they actually use it to dissuade people from buying a Moissanite (there are also many websites out there that advertise Moissanite, they know it’s popular so they use it as click bait but when you get to their website, it is void of Moissanite or they talk it down). In a physical jewelry store our experience is they either put the price of the Moissanite up to almost equal the diamond price or they try to shame you out of purchasing it or they have an older version that is not up to today’s quality. I wrote a prior blog post on our first experience with Moissanite shopping which has happened a few more times or the jeweler just acts disinterested in us. It’s amazing how unscrupulous some people are. It’s your money, don’t let anyone tell you how to spend it or make you feel inferior! In fact, you should feel quite superior for being financially and ethically responsible!

A customer called the other day to purchase his fiancé’s wedding band after purchasing her engagement ring with us last year. I shared the chat my husband and I had after he mentioned that his fiancé’s girlfriends all covet her Moissanite ring. He totally agreed and said we should rent a corner in jewelry store but when I told him we would take the business away from the diamond jeweler’s, he totally got it and agreed. Our hypothetical conversation was fun and it made both of us feel good about our Moissanite choice. So to say Moissanite is the best diamond alternative is actually quite an understatement. Moissanite is better than a diamond!

Health & Safety Risks associated with Contemporary Alternative Metal Wedding Bands

We have been asked several times if we carry alternative metal wedding bands ie: tungsten, stainless steel, titanium and cobalt. Or, if we can custom make rings out of these metals. While we can appreciate the look of this trend, it is not one we believe to be suitable for wedding bands for several reasons. For us at Laraci Ethical Jewelers our first and foremost concern is always the ecology of our our planet but in this case we are also deeply concerned about the safety issues of these alternative metal bands as well.

If you were to go into you local Emergency room with an injury to your hand or finger and your ring needed to be removed, these alternative metals can prove very problematic. The majority of modern urban hospitals will have a diamond tipped saw to remove the more standard silver, gold or platinum rings in about 10 seconds and around 1 minute for titanium and stainless steel. Unfortunately, these saws are rendered virtually useless with tungsten, taking 10 minutes to cut through the strongest metal on the planet (5 minutes of cutting with 5 minutes of cooling the saw intermittently). If you are in the ER you know that time is of the essence and the 10 minutes it would take to remove a tungsten band may not be an option. The cobalt ring cannot be cut, it needs to be shattered off with vice grips which could cause even further damage if the ring implodes causing possible nerve damage to your finger.

You may not think you would ever be in this situation, you don’t work with power tools etc but sometimes accidents happen. If you were to sustain major injuries and your finger was the least of your injuries and they had to spend more than 10 seconds cutting your ring off… we shudder to think. We don’t want to get to graphic here. we just want to give you pause for serious thought – life happens. It could be something as simple as a bee or wasp sting causing swelling to the hand and your ring is cutting off circulation so It needs to be removed in a timely manner (in 10 minutes without circulation you could start to sustain serious nerve damage to your finger).

We don’t ever think that these things are going to happen to us but they happen to people all of the time and for us, the risk is just not worth the trend.

There are a few other concerns we have with these alternative metal wedding bands. These metals are intended for a more industrial purpose and not necessarily suitable for wear. Cobalt is a known carcinogen and we worry about it’s properties leaching into the wearer’s bloodstream through the skin. We have the same concerns for titanium which is a heavy metal and could lead to heavy metal toxicity over time. Heavy metal toxicity is linked to many of today’s health issues, too many for us to accept these wedding rings as a viable option.

One more thought, statistics tell us that the average person has their wedding rings resized at least once in their lifetime. For most, the wedding band is sacred, signifying the bond, the promise you have made to each other and that particular ring is “the ring” and is not a throw away ring. However, in the case of all of these alternative metal wedding bands they are not resizable so would need to be replaced. Just one more negative in the long list.

*Worth noting: Some women’s eternity bands also pose similar problems if entirely encrusted with back to back gems