What is Moissanite?
Moissanite is a rare and naturally occurring mineral. Also referred to as silicon carbide, this stone, was originally discovered at the site of a meteorite strike. Originally taken for a natural diamond, it was determined that moissanite is a distinctly different stone.
Now primarily grown in a controlled environment over a course of months, each unique moissanite is carefully graded for quality. This intense consideration for quality ensures that you receive a high-quality stone that will maintain its shine and beauty.
These stones have exceptional brilliance and durability. The visual impact and durable nature of moissanite make it such a valuable alternative to natural and lab diamonds. Not to be confused with man-made, or synthetic diamonds, moissanite is made from silicon carbide rather than carbon. Moreover, this stone compares with diamonds, rubies, emeralds, and sapphires in terms of brilliance, fire, and hardness.
Along with its visual impact, moissanite is highly resistant to scratching. Moreover, this stone is harder than all gemstones, except for natural and synthetic diamonds. The hardness and durable nature of this gem allow brilliance to be consistent over-time. Additionally, these types of stones hold their shape whereas other softer gemstones can show quicker wear-and-tear.
Simulated Diamonds vs Synthetic Diamonds
Many customers are aware of the difference between natural mined diamonds and lab diamonds. However, many shoppers are unaware of moissanite. This gemstone, unlike a lab diamond, is a considered a simulated diamond. This means that moissanite is distinctly different in make-up and physical characteristics.
Although created to mimic diamonds, Moissanite is a distinct gem. Created from crystalized silicon carbide, this stone has its own characteristics that distinguish it from a diamond. The unique faceted pattern of moissanite creates a rainbow effect. This unique effect intensifies as the size of your stone increases. Thus giving moissanite engagement rings a brilliance and fire many buyers could adore.
Characteristics of Moissanite
Moissanite is an extremely hard stone. This means that the stone can be cut into shapes that some softer gemstones cannot. Resistant to breakage and scratches, a simulated diamond is more likely to prolong its initial beauty.
More this gemstone has characteristics that make it visually appealing to customers. On the Brilliance Refractive Index, moissanite rates as more brilliant than other popular gemstones. A simulated diamond will range from 2.65 to 2.69 on the brilliance scale. Furthermore, it also provides more fire dispersion than many gemstones.
What Gives Moissanite its Worth?
Just like shopping for diamonds, you will want to be aware of the “four C’s” when shopping for moissanite gems and jewelry. The value of your moissanite gem will depend largely upon the:
Carat or size:
The size of your gemstone will always have an impact on its overall value. This is true for simulated diamonds as well as natural diamonds.
Although carat is the traditional way to measure a diamond’s weight, moissanite is measured in millimeters. This is done because moissanite weighs approximately 10-15% less than diamond.
When shopping for simulated diamonds, you will find both the size of the gemstone in millimeters and the stone’s diamond carat weight.
Moissanite should be cut to maximize the fire, sparkle, and brilliance of the stone. A well-cut stone will allow for more light to dance in the stone and improve the value of the gem. However, a good cut grade is also delightful for that sparkle.
Graded on a scale similar to the GIA diamond color grading scale, moissanite comes in three grades.
You can find the aforementioned gems as colorless (D-E-F range), nearly colorless (G-H-I range), and with faint color hues (J-K range).
Unlike diamonds, simulated diamonds over a carat in size are more likely to appear slightly yellow or green (depending on certain lighting). Therefore some people prefer to keep their simulated stones under a carat in size.
Just like natural diamonds, the value of a moissanite stone will be impacted by its clarity. Moissanite, like most gems, will have inclusions. However, these common needle-like inclusions, caused by the crystalline structure of moissanite, can only be seen under close observation, and will not impact the clarity of the stone.
Moissanite can range in clarity from FL to I3. Inclusions up to a certain clarity range can only be seen under 10x magnification. However, moissanite with a grade of I3 can have inclusions that can be seen by the naked eye.
Moissanite Stone Value:
If you are looking for a less expensive choice than diamonds, but want a similar visual effect, you want to consider moissanite. Moissanite is an economical gemstone choice when shopping for a dazzling option to natural and lab diamonds. Although considerably more affordable than natural diamonds, a simulated diamond (moissanite) does have a sparkle that can hold the eye of any jewelry lover. Not only does moissanite engage the eye, but this lovely stone, second in hardness only to diamond, will retain its sparkle, resist wear, and maintain color.