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Moissanite VS Diamonds - Your Moissanite Diamonds Comparison Information

Updated on September 11, 2010

Comparison Of Moissanite VS Diamonds

Moissanite VS Diamonds - both are precious gemstones used in jewelries and both are quite comparable in terms of looks, characteristics as well as brilliance. Hence there is no doubt that moissanite diamond comparison has often become a debatable subject.

Diamond is the hardest mineral substance ever known that occurs naturally on Earth. As most natural diamonds are formed through a very long period of time (at least 1 billion years) in the high pressure and high temperature environment of the Earth's mantle about 100 miles below the planet's surface, diamonds are brought close to Earth's surface gradually through periodical volcanic eruptions by magma.

Moissanite on the other hand, is a mineral that does not naturally occur on Earth. It is a mineral substance that belongs to the outer space and is constantly brought to Earth through meteorites and asteroids that has been bombarding the Earth's surface through billions of years. Moissanite's hardness ranks only second to diamond and it's availablilty on Earth is scarce and very limited. However, scientists have found a cost-effective way to synthetically create moissanite in the lab thereby being able to lower the cost significantly. Although moissanite has constantly been publicized as "fake diamonds", it is in actual no way that fake. It is just a different type of minerals that is rather similar to a diamond in many ways.

In moissanite vs diamonds comparison, 3 main characteristics comparisons are made, they are the hardness comparison, brilliance comparison and dispersion comparison. The contrasts of Moissanite VS Diamonds are highlighted as below:

Mossanite VS Diamonds
Mossanite VS Diamonds

Hardness Comparison

As diamond is the hardest natural material known to date, it has a hardness of 10 on the Mohs hardness scale. Mohs scale defines mineral according to a grade from 1 to 10 whereby 1 being the softest while 10 being the hardest. Moissanite on the other hand, has a hardness of 9.25 effectively making it the second hardest mineral known. To further compare, a Topaz and Cubic zirconia both have a hardness value of 8 and Quartz has 7. Hence in moissanite vs diamonds, diamond is the real winner of all as it is the hardest of all mineral substances.

Brilliance Comparison

To compare moissanite diamonds in brilliance or sparkle, a refractive index is employed. A refractive index or simply index of refraction, measures how much the speed of light is reduced when passing through the mineral substance. Also, when the light crosses from vacuum into the mineral substance, some lights are reflected off partially from the surface of the mineral substance with a refractive index. So, the higher the refractive index, the more lights are reflected from the surface. A diamond has a refractive index of 2.42 on the measurement while moissanite has 2.68. Just for further comparison purposes, a typical crown glass has a refractive index of 1.52, sapphire gemstone has 1.77 while Cubic zirconia has 2.16. As such, Moissanite is clearly the winner in this brilliance category.

Dispersion Comparison

For the last moissanite vs diamonds comparison, we will compare the dispersion value for each of them. Dispersion is measured with a value known as fire or dispersion value. Put simply, dispersion is the ability of the mineral substance in separating white light into a range of colors (also known as the colors of the rainbow). It works exactly like the light experiment in the school where a prism separate the light into the full rainbow spectrum of colors. Thus, the greater the dispersion value of the mineral substance, the greater the effect of fire it shows as more lights tend to separate.

A diamond has a moderate-to-high dispersion value of 0.044 while a moissanite has an even higher 0.104 dispersion value. As a comparison, Quartz has a dispersion value of 0.013 and Benitoite has a value of 0.046. As can be seen, Benitoite has a higher dispersion value compared to a diamond despite diamond shows more fire compared to Benitoite. This is because Benitoite is a colored mineral substance and colored mineral substance greatly reduces the effect of fires even though the dispersion value is high.

Both diamond and moissanite are colorless mineral substance and because moissanite has a very high dispersion value compared to diamond, moissanite is no doubt the winner. Moissanite has more fire!

A beautiful ring with moissanite stone
A beautiful ring with moissanite stone

Mossanite VS Diamonds Conclusion

In summary, diamond has been known for long to be the prefered jewelry to go for whether as a diamond engagement ring, for wedding or even for casual wear. However, diamond does not come cheap. It is in fact, one of the most costly gems available today. Moissanite on the other hand, could be a great alternative to diamond as it has many similar characteristics of a diamond and that it only costs a fraction of the price of a diamond.

As has been observed in the moissanite vs diamonds comparison above, moissanite is in fact more appealing to buyers as it shows more luster and beauty compared to a diamond due to its greater brilliance, dispersion and fire properties. For the same price, one could get a bigger moissanite ring than if one would buy a diamond ring. The only disadvantage however, is due to the prevailing bad publicity of moissanite as "fake diamonds" and that many people are shunning it and is regarded as cheap or fake.

Nevertheless, considering that moissanite is just as tough and beautiful as a diamond if not more, and due to the gradual and growing acceptance among people nowadays, there is no doubt that moissanite could be the next shiny star for years to come. In additions, as the moissanite diamonds comparison above has already proven, moissanite could even be the prefered gemstone for jewelry in times to come. No one really knows for sure.

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    • profile image

      Moissanite 6 years ago

      One cool thing about moissanite is that it originally comes form outer space, that's one conversation starter you'd have.

    • profile image

      Kelly 6 years ago

      A Diamond is an overpriced hunk of high pressure treated carbon. It is not nearly as rare as its price implies. The value it has is due to high regulation of the supply by the monopoly De Beers, not due to its rarity.

      Ricky, I don't think you understand how hard 9.4 Mohs is... It is incredibly hard to scratch something of that hardness, but it is possible you're correct there. But you are also wrong saying a diamond cannot be scratched, if it can be cut it can be scratched.

      Otherwise: Love the article, very informative. As a person who dislikes diamonds due to their artificial value, I love seeing people starting to educate the public of other gemstones. "Fake diamonds" is an advertising gimmick that De Beers launched to reduce the demand of stones such as these.

    • profile image

      ricky 6 years ago

      a diamond is a diamond...better to get a less perfect diamond with some inclusions in it that to get the moissanite..you cant scratch diamonds but u can scratch moissanite...also the brilliance is different specially because the moissanite gives you a rainbow effect...which gives it away that is not a diamond....

    • profile image

      Bonnie McConnell 6 years ago

      I have a 1 carat moissanite ring set in 14k gold and I love it. Wouldn't trade it for a diamond, Much more sparkle. My husband bought it for our 52nd anniversary.

    • GmaGoldie profile image

      Kelly Kline Burnett 7 years ago from Madison, Wisconsin

      Great Hub! I will link back to you for my CZ article. Thank you!

    • Patti Ann profile image

      Patti Ann 8 years ago from Florida

      Really good information - I have heard about moissanite but have never purchased any moissanite jewelry.

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