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all about moissanite

An increasingly popular option for engagement rings thanks to its beautiful rainbow flashes and jaw-dropping fire and brilliance, moissanite may look similar to diamonds at first glance. But upon closer inspection you'll find that moissanite is a completely different stone with entirely different chemical and physical properties. What's so special about moissanite, exactly? Let's dive in and discover what this gorgeous gem is all about!

what is moissanite?

Made from silicon carbide, moissanite is a lab created gem that is often used as a diamond alternative because of its durability, sparkling appearance and affordable price tag.

where does moissanite come from?

Moissanite was first discovered in a meteor crater in 1893 by a scientist named Henri Moissan. Today, naturally-occurring moissanite is incredibly rare. That's why almost all moissanite used in jewelry has been lab created.

moissanite vs. lab grown diamonds

Moissanite and lab grown diamonds are both popular among budget-conscious shoppers who want something similar to a natural diamond. While both gems are beautiful options, there are some key differences every jewelry shopper should know about. Namely, lab grown diamonds are real diamonds. Moissanite is not

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moissanite vs. natural diamonds

Comparable to diamonds in brilliance and durability, moissanites are popular for their affordable pricing which is typically only a fraction of the cost of a natural diamond. While the two gemstones share some similarities, they differ in many key ways. It’s important to understand these differences before you choose a stone for your jewelry.

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moissanite vs. cubic zirconia

Cubic zirconia contains a mix of oxygen and zirconium, whereas moissanite is made of carbon and silicon. In this regard, moissanite is much more similar to a diamond, which is composed of pure carbon. While CZ and moissanite are both lab created, moissanite is a much tougher gemstone. Moissanite also has a higher level of brilliance and light performance. It’s also a lot more valuable and more expensive than CZ.

elements of moissanite

Moissanite has unique qualities that makes it similar to natural diamonds, but different in uniquely compelling ways.

moissanite fire

Moissanite often gives off a striking, fiery flash of colors, which can be especially noticeable under sunlight. These rainbow flashes are very appealing to those who love a big, bold look for their engagement ring or other piece of fine jewelry. Personal preference plays a big role in determining whether moissanite is right for you.

moissanite brilliance

Since their faceting pattern is different, moissanite gems exhibit a different type of brilliance than diamonds. Moissanite has a refractive index of 2.65-2.69, which is higher than a diamond. However, a diamond reflects light in more complex ways, via brilliance, dispersion and scintillation, which give the stone its legendary sparkle.

moissanite hardness

On the Mohs scale of hardness, moissanite scores a 9.25 (diamonds score a 10). This means that moissanite is exceptionally durable and will hold up well against scratches and abrasions. Like diamonds, it's a great stone for everyday wear!

moissanite toughness

Moissanite is an impressively tough stone that's ideal for engagement rings and other jewelry you know you'll wear regularly. It has a high heat tolerance and is also resistant to breaking and chipping.

frequently asked questions

While moissanite is graded on the same color scale as diamonds, they are not given a single letter grade. They are typically graded according to a range of color: D-E-F (colorless), G-H-I (near-colorless) and J-K (faint color).

Natural moissanite originally comes from space—created by a meteorite that fell to Earth. This makes it one of the rarest natural minerals found in nature. This scarcity makes moissanite an especially precious stone, even though it can now be made in a laboratory.

With proper care, moissanite will not lose its sparkle over time. The color and clarity of the stone won't change through the years unless the gem is damaged in some way. Marring the surface of moissanite can damage the sparkle, as it would for virtually any gemstone.

One of the most efficient and safest ways to clean a moissanite ring is to use a mild dish soap, warm water and a soft toothbrush.

While not a diamond at all, when using diamond testers that detect thermal conductivity, a moissanite gemstone will pass as an authentic diamond. This is because, in comparison to faux diamonds and most other gemstones, moissanite is an effective heat conductor.

While many people prefer clear to colorless moissanite, the gem is available in almost any color you can think of. You can typically find moissanite in varying shades of green, gray, gold, blue, brown, purple, yellow and pink.

Moissanite ranks 9.25-9.5 on the Mohs scale for hardness, making it the second-hardest gemstone behind only diamonds which have a ranking of 10.

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Schedule an appointment online or in person to discuss more about moissanite stones and see Helzberg's selection of moissanite rings and jewelry today!

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