Imitation Diamonds & Simulated Diamond Engagement Rings

Imitation diamonds aren’t diamonds. They aren’t fake diamonds either and actually quite beautiful in their own right. They’re legitimate stones that happen to look like  a diamond which, through clever marketing by the DeBeers Co., has become the yardstick by which all other stones are measured.

Imitation Diamonds, Cubic Zirconia, Moissanite, Simulated diamonds,

Imitation diamonds, simulated diamonds, and synthetic diamonds are all lab-grown stones. They all look like diamonds but only synthetic diamonds share any of the chemical properties of a natural diamond.  That said, they’re all wonderful, and often just as beautiful as the real thing.

Let’s face it, when we talk about imitation diamonds it usually has something to do with engagement rings and wedding sets. Nobody just wants to buy the stone.

With engagement rings we hate using the word imitation. It makes it sound like our engagement rings are less than in some way by imitating something else… The fact is that the rings are real, they’re just not real diamond rings.

Instead, they’re real Cubic Zirconia rings, real cut glass rings, real Moissanite rings, real diamonique rings…

And there’s nothing wrong with any of those rings, many of them are fabulous. There’s only a problem if someone wants you to believe that they’re diamond rings, especially if it’s your fiancé or the jeweler that you’re buying the ring from.

So for the guys out there, you need to know what you’re buying and what you’re not. For the girls, you need to know what you’ve been given if for no other reason, insurance purposes.

Simulated Diamonds:

Also called diamond simulants, these are lab-grown stones that do NOT share any of the same physical, chemical, or optical properties as a diamond. They are made up of different chemicals and compounds.


Synthetic Diamonds:

These are also lab-grown stones but DO share the same chemical, physical and optical properties as natural diamonds. With synthetic diamonds, they synthesize the process only as opposed to the materials.

Cubic Zirconia A.K.A CZ

Cubic Zirconia, also referred to as CZ, is the most well known diamond simulant (substitute). To the untrained eye CZ can look identical to a diamond and has been grown in laboratories since the 1970’s.  By adding different minerals to the mix, gemologists are able to grow a virtual rainbow of colors. The colorless or ‘white’ Cubic Zirconia however, is by far the most common and desired.

It’s flawless, heavier and slightly softer than a real diamond. Diamonds are a 10 on the Mohs hardness scale, CZ is 8.5 which is still very good. All that means is that it will scratch a little more easily than a real diamond.

Like all stones, it needs regular cleaning to remove oils from the skin which can dull it’s brilliance over time.

Cubic Zirconia [CZ] Engagement & Wedding Rings

Cubic Zirconia engagement rings and wedding sets are a great choice for those with limited budgets. They’re also great for people who view an engagement ring as a symbol of commitment and understand that love isn’t measured by cost. Or, practical folks who’d rather put the money towards a down payment on a house.

A Cubic Zirconia engagement ring has slightly less brilliance and sparkle than a diamond ring but more fire (the flashes of color you see when the stone catches light). They’re absolutely beautiful and will keep their sparkle and polish very well.

Various Cubic Zirconia designer engagement rings

The average CZ ring set in white or yellow gold will run around under $500. But, if you have a little more room in your budget check out these impressive Top Quality Cubic Zirconia Rings from Birkat Elyon who produce the world’s finest quality CZ jewelry.


Moissanite is actually a natural and rare mineral that was discovered by a man named Moissan in the late 1800s.  As a stone, it’s quite desirable and has many similar characteristics to a diamond.  Natural moissanite is extremely rare so 99%, if not all moissanite on the market, is not natural but instead lab-grown synthetic moissanite.

Both can actually have more fire than a real diamond and should never dull or cloud. It’s almost as hard as a diamond which rates 10 on the Mohs’ hardness scale while a high quality moissanite can reach up to 9.25.  This means that it’s the second hardest stone, much harder than rubies and sapphires and it won’t scratch.

Moissanite Engagement Rings

Moissanite engagement rings and wedding sets started appearing on the scene about twenty years ago and are a good alternative to  diamonds.

Moissanite rings also have a ton of brilliance and fire due to the way that light refracts within the stone. So…. you get way more bling! for your engagement ring buck.

Speaking of bucks, the cost of moissanite is around an 1/8th of what a diamond costs. However, that still makes it more expensive than a Cubic Zirconia engagement ring which is the most common diamond simulant.

In terms of color, moissanite is nearly colorless. It can sometimes have a very slight greenish tendency, and depending on the quality, reflect some different colors than a diamond. Both would never be noticed by the naked eye. In fact, moissanite is so close to a diamond that the average person could very easily be fooled into believing that it’s a real diamond.


Diamonique® is a synthetic diamond, or diamond simulate much like Cubic Zirconia and a registered trademark of QVC.

In 1988 QVC acquired the manufacturing facilities, proprietary technology and trade name rights for Diamonique and developed an exquisite line of simulated gemstone jewelry, which accounted for $18 million in sales in the first year.

The Diamonique stone itself is quite desirable because it is so perfect. It also has many similar characteristics to diamond and other precious gemstones. They  come in every diamond shape imaginable from Asscher to Emerald-cut, Princess, Trillion, Baguettes, and everything in between.

Because the stones are created in a lab they’re available in all colors. They can simulate the characteristics of a white diamond, pink diamond, yellow diamond or any other gemstone—which means that anyone can have a celebrity look-alike engagement ring at a mere fraction of the cost.

Diamonique Engagement Rings & Wedding Sets

Diamonique engagement rings and wedding sets are offered exclusively through QVC.

QVC has done a wonderful job of putting together a collection of Diamonique engagement rings. Including pieces by well known high-end engagement ring designers.

Now just because most of the rings cost anywhere from $35 and up into the hundreds of dollars, don’t start thinking about a 4 or 5 carat ring. Remember, an engagement ring is worn every day and a huge rock on your ring finger (Diamond or Diamonique) will get in the way of most daily tasks.

Acouple of things we’d like you to keep in mind when looking at imitation diamonds and engagement rings. First, and this is especially for the guys… Never try to pass of an imitation as a real diamond. It’s still a real ring, it’s just not a diamond ring and there is nothing wrong with that. Secondly, enjoy the ring and the beautiful  stone for what it is, and don’t think about what it’s not!

Many couples today believe that the extra dollars they would be spend on a real diamond engagement ring is better put towards a down payment on a home or education. We couldn’t agree more, depending on your situation.