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Engagement Ring How to Buy a Moissanite Synthetic Ring for Your Wedding

Updated on April 14, 2015

Your clothing, your jewelry speaks volumes about your personality. Researchers have found that we make instant decisions about people - we judge people very quickly by appearance only. Engagement rings should be about our values, not about a fashion statement or simply for appearance. Buying an engagement ring should be a balance between your budget and beauty not a fashion statement. Buying an engagement ring that you love and within your budget has many more options today. Weddings are one of life's most expensive moments. Being frugal will set a strong foundation for your life together. So if you are considering a faux diamond engagement ring and you are exploring the options, an important option to consider in your decision process is a synthetic mineral called moissanite. A moissanite stone is a big step beyond the CZ, a faux mineral which is said to have 2.4 times more fire and brilliance than a diamond. Moissanite is harder than CZ, a different in brilliance and refraction. Journey with us as we review the pros and cons of a moissanite stone for your engagement ring.

Hardness of the Simulant - Faux Gem Engagement Ring

A simulant is a replica with different characteristics but similar in appearance to the diamond and the CZ. The CZ has a hardness typically of 8.5 compared to the diamonds 10. The moissanite has a hardness of 9.25, it is a synthetic - gemstone - has the exact same characteristics of a real moissanite.

A synthetic on the other hand is a created replica with the exact same properties. I like to refer to a synthetic diamond as a cultured diamond only because I can envision a cultured pearl - it is real in every way except a diver did not find the pearl, the cultured pearl was replicated in a laboratory.

Mosissanite is a mineral - a different classification of gems. Moissanite can replace a diamond very readily. But is is not a synthetic diamond, it is a synthetic mineral.

Appearance is Everything for Your Engagement Ring

Some say a moissanite does not look like a diamond. Some feel it actually looks better. The only judge is you. Historically, the moissanite might have originally been more yellow. It has been stated that the first production runs were very yellow in nature. Over time, it appears, the color attributes of a moissanite have been refined. Yet, moissanite, because it is composed of silicon carbide has different characteristics from other precious stones. On a visual basis, moissanite has significantly more fire and brilliance than a diamond - a charming change for some - again only you can be the judge.

Keep in mind that moissanite, real moissanite, the mineral is very rare, typically what we are considering is a synthetic mouissanite not a "mined moissanite".


The most common diamond simulants are high-leaded glass (i.e., rhinestones) and cubic zirconia (CZ), both artificial materials.

Moissanite Engagement Ring on Amazon

A Negative Viewpoint of Moisannite

A Positive Viewpoint of Moisannite


Moissanite Moissanite (pronounced moy-sun-ite) is an alternative simulated diamond, is named after its discoverer, Henri Moussan. A mineral found in Canyon Diablo in Arizona. A man-made version of moissanite is a synthetic gem. Often said to have more fire and brilliance than a diamond but with more color. This mineral is actually extremely rare in nature. Since there are almost no supplies of this mineral on earth, scientists set out to create synthetic moissanite in a lab. Moissanite is a trade name name given to silicon carbide (chemical formula SiC).



Moissanite is composed of silicon carbide (SiC). It is actually a mineral that is of "gem quality". Similar to gems and diamond stimulants, moissanite is a thermal conductor. Diamonds are known for their thermal conductivity, and it is that characteristic that is used as a test for authenticity. So, moissanite, which looks like a fake diamond but passes the thermal conductivity test, continues to confuses jewelers around the world. Keep in mind, the added brilliance of the moissanite is readily detectable.

Moissanite was discovered in 1893, by Nobel Prize winner Dr. Ferdinand Henri Moissan in Arizona - in Diablo Canyon to be precise. It is the site of a crater formed by a huge meteorite that struck the earth forty thousand years ago - yes, 40,000 years ago! Dr. Moissan discovered what appeared to be tiny bits of gems that appeared to be t what looked like tiny diamonds. In 1905, the “tiny diamonds” were categorized as a mineral and composed of silicon carbide. This new mineral was named "moissanite" in honor of the Nobel Prize winner and founder - Dr. Moissan.

Natural moissanite is very rare. The man-made process to replicate moissanite is to combine silica sand and carbon at between 1,600 and 2,500 degrees centigrade. In 1893, Edward Goodrich Acheson developed the electric batch furnace, in which SiC is still made today, to produce the silicon carbide.

Moissanite lives and grows in laboratories of scientists working with silicon carbide. The SiC crystals formed closer to the heat source produce a clear, pale yellow and green mineral of such high quality, many have started using moissanite as a replica gem of choice.

Why Moissanite?

Many times, moissanite is preferred due to cost. For example, 1-carat (200 mg) moissanite gem sells for about $500. A diamond of comparable size and color could sell for over $4000.

The Marketing and Production of Moissanite

In 1998, Charles & Colvard introduced gem-quality moissanite. While they started targeting women, in these days of the frugal economy, value-conscious consumers are now viewing this high quality mineral as alternative for the diamond engagement ring.

Cost and Durability Together

Cost is not the only factor, the added briliance combined with the higher degree of durability in comparison to sapphire and CZs. Moissanite is extremely hard, rating a 9.25 on the Mohr’s hardness scale (diamond is 10.0). "Its refractive index (brilliance) is slightly higher than diamond and it possesses twice as much fire (flashes of rainbow colors). Plus, unlike cubic zirconia, moissanite doesn’t cloud over time."

Natural Facets

Moissanite is composed of "hexagonal crystals". Diamonds are composed of "isometric (cubic)". The difference in this natural structure gives the stone more brilliance. Additionally, moissanite has no cracks and fissures or natural impurities called in the jewelry trade "inclusions". Moissanite might have "tiny, white, ribbon-like structures" which is apart of the natural moissanite growing process.

Colorless Quality - Diamond Wins

In the realm of the 4Cs remember, color is a major attribute of a diamond. The color of a moissanite cannot compete with the colorless quality of the diamond. A pure white mossanite is said not to exist. Many prefer the higher refraction of the stone over the added color - a matter simply of taste. Interesting, the round cut and the cushion cut are said to have a whiter appearance than the cuts of the marquis or pear cut.

Moissanite - One Source

Due to the lack of competition and the sole supplier of this man-made gem, moissanite is much pricier than other man-made gems. Still priced very competitively, keep in mind the price will be much higher than the other man-made alternatives to diamonds - the CZ.

Creation by Charles and Colvard

"All Moissanite stones are manufactured in the same laboratory at Charles & Colvard and, contrary to some advertising on the internet, a jeweler cannot purchase either Moissanite rejects or Moissanite jewels that are said to be superior to other Moissanite jewels. Moissanite is a synthetic gemstone."

A synthetic gemstone is made in a lab. To be called "Synthetic" a gemstone must have the same appearance, chemical composition and crystal structure as the natural gemstone. It basically IS the gemstone, only grown in a lab instead of a natural setting.

Identification fo Moissanite

"Moissanite gemstones are such a close match to diamonds that even skilled jewelers cannot tell the two apart. Like diamonds, moissanite gemstones have inclusions and color differences. Charles & Colvard's patented Tester Model 590 is the only recommended instrument that has been developed to distinguish moissanite from diamonds."

Comaprison Moissanite Vs Diamond Vs CZ at a Glance


Hardness Comparison



Synthetic Moissanite...................9.25

(NOTE:  NOT a simulant - an exact replica)


(NOTE:  simulant diamond - a similar replica)

GIA Rating/Certification



Synthetic Moissanite................No



Synthetic Not Simulant Gemstone

"A synthetic gemstone is made in a lab. To be called "Synthetic" a gemstone must have the same appearance, chemical composition and crystal structure as the natural gemstone."

A synthetic gemstone IS essentially the same gemstone in chemical composition - only grown in a lab instead of a natural setting.

Moissanite Frequently Asked Questions

Charles & Colvard created moissanite.  It is confusing - but only at first.  Let's walk through the most common questions:

Q: What is moissanite?

A: Created moissanite is silicon carbide formed as a single crystal. Moissanite is a naturally occurring mineral found in limited quantities in the earth.

Q:  Where did the name moissanite come from?

Discovered in 1893 by Dr. Henri Moissan, the jewel was later named in his honor. Charles and Colvard report that the natural quantities of moissanite are too small to create jewelry. The jewel like mineral was created through a combination of science and advanced engineering.

Q: How can they claim that moissanite is "rare"when silicon carbide is a very common abrasive?

A: Abrasives formed of silicon carbide powder are inexpensive to manufacture. Large single-crystal silicon carbide is extremely difficult to produce. Charles & Colvard have U.S. and international patents for moissanite jewels.

Q: Why should I consider moissanite rather than CZ or a real mined diamond?
A: Moissanite has great brilliance, a high degree of hardness 9.25 out of 10, and the light dispersion is stunning.  All the qualities of a fine gem - only in a synthetic mineral.  Moissanite  is a unique lab-created jewel and work exceptionally well with real diamonds and precious metals but drive the cost of the jewelry done while providing a larger stone with more fire and brilliance.

Q: Why is the price so much higher than CZ?

A: Moissanite is a different product with greater hardness, less cloudiness often attributed to the CZ.

Q: Is moissanite a synthetic diamond?

A: No. Moissanite is a lab-created replica stone.  Moissanite is hand cut and gracefully takes  advantage of the properties of reflection of light and fire that we enjoy in a real gem stone.  Only for moissinate, the cost is more reasonable than a mined gem stone.

Q: Whate colors are available for moissanite?

A: As near colorless options as well as a limited number of green and yellow tints.

Q: How is moissanite made?

A: According to the owner of the patent, "single-crystal moissanite is manufactured through a patented thermal growing process, the specifics of which are proprietary." The process is very advanced in the equipment and the engineering behind the process.  Moissanite is created by only one company in the world.

Q: Is moissanite graded on the GIA diamond color grading scale?

A: Moissanite is not graded on the GIA color scale. Moissanite is available in a "near-colorless form" that is brilliant.

Q: How hard is moissanite?

A: "Charles & Colvard created moissanite is measured at 9.25 on the Mohs scale-harder than all other materials used as gemstones, except diamond."

20 / 20 News Video On Moissanite


Charles and Colvard Created - Moissanite
Charles and Colvard Created - Moissanite | Source

Charles and Colvard Created Moissanite Jewels

Charles & Colvard is the exclusive worldwide marketer and distributor of created moissanite jewels.  They hold the proprietary patents for the manufacturing process.   Since 1995 Charles and Colvard has provided the manufacturing with old-world artisan skills to create beautiful jewelry in a variety of precious metals.  They are located:

Corporate Headquarters
300 Perimeter Park Drive, Suite A
Morrisville, North Carolina 27560

Their products can be found at:  Kohl's and JC Penney and now Helzberg Diamonds in addition to Amazon and eBay.

A public traded stock under the symbol: CTHR.


In 2007, Charles and Colvard announced the launch of a new cut of stone - called the "imperial" cut.  Developed for the most popular lab-created gemstone shape the round brilliant cut, named the "Imperial Moissanite™."  This new diamond like cut offer 89 facets which is 32 more cuts than the standard round brilliant cut.  The extra facets allow for even more light reflection.

  • Moissanite Created by Charles and Colvard, Ltd.

    The official website for Moissanite information. Moissanite is used in fine jewelry applications and sold through retail wholesale jewelry destinations. Moissanite jewels create an amazing brilliance and fire. Moissanite has over 2 times the fire of

Diamond from the Stars

Moissanite Diamond form the Stars
Moissanite Diamond form the Stars | Source

Would you consider a mineral such as moisannite as your center stone for your engagement ring?

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© 2010 Kelly Kline Burnett


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