When it comes to synthetic or man-made diamonds, usually first reaction is sort of - Oh it's a synthetic diamond! It's a cheap diamond duplicate!
Why so much frowning-upon and cynical perception against synthetic diamonds (more precisely it should be termed man-made, lab-grown diamond, cultured diamond or cultivated diamond)! After all, it's same as natural (or for that matter real) diamond with identical chemical and physical properties.
Why people forget that these man-made diamonds are also "real" with nothing synthetic about. These are not like diamond imitations (CZ and moissanite) which are chemically different from diamonds. Only thing is that it takes few days to weeks to grow a man-made diamond, while natural diamonds are hundreds of millions of years old, formed beneath the earth's surface under extremely high temperature and pressure conditions.
So, what makes a lab-grown diamond so socially unacceptable? Just because it is created in laboratories in human-controlled environment, should it be degraded in front of natural diamonds? Being low-priced compared to gem-quality mined is what threatening the business of traditional mined-diamond producers?
Natural Diamonds are the "True Symbol of Love" - Why this blind following!
Diamond is just a stone, so how does it matter whether it is natural or not. One school of thought - mostly prevalent among industry veterans - is that real diamonds have emotional value, so it should be the gift choice. But simply said, I not at all second this view. No one can deny that diamond has financial value, but when it comes to emotional quotient it's the matter of subjectivity.
It's the feeling of giver and recipient that add emotion to a gift. In my opinion, being created in few weeks compared to millions of years of creation time for natural diamonds, shouldn't make a man-made diamond any less romantic. Why this notion that only natural diamonds can be the meaningful symbol of love!
It's just the marketing gimmick of traditional and powerful players of diamond industry that have seeded the thought that real diamonds have "emotional value". It's the human element that adds emotion to any object and not vice-versa. Frankly speaking, it's the depth of relationship that determines the emotive value.
Why to influence buyers' choice! Let them take their decision. Why so much sulking upon the presence of man-made diamonds! Why to restrict flow of lab-diamonds in the diamond supply chain! It should also get the equal opportunity to be picked by buyers.
Having said that, man-made equivalents should not be sold in the garb of natural diamonds - that will be unfair for buyers. Recently, there were some reports of instances when lab-grown diamonds were found mixed in parcel of natural diamonds. Just because man-made stones are difficult to be distinguished from natural ones, shouldn't pave way for illegal trade.
What about social downsides of real diamonds - conflict diamonds and child-labor in diamond mines. Although, industry stakeholders have taken lot of steps to control the flow of conflict diamonds in supply chain, still these diamonds have found their way in trading channel across the world - courtesy few unethical and selfish trade elements.
And let me tell you, it's not at all easy to tell the exact source of each diamond with so many in circulation across the world. So, there can and will always be a possibility that your beloved engagement ring may have diamond sourced from a war-torn country with stains of blood on it.
If that is the case then for me, preference will always be a diamond from a reactor over a diamond mined from beneath the earth. Sporting a lab-grown diamond will always be my choice than wearing a diamond associated with human killings.
Effect on Environment
If you are still not satisfied with my argument and still believe mined-diamond are the true symbol of love compared to its lab-grown equivalent, then think about how much impact that so-called symbol-of-love earth-extracted diamonds cause on environment.
When people nowadays are so much concerned about saving environment and planet earth, and when there is so much talk about ecological balance, how can we overlook this topic when discussing about natural diamonds. By some estimates, CO2 equivalent emissions from mined-diamonds can be 4-5 times more than diamonds made in lab.
So, if you are not someone with obsession with only natural diamonds and doesn't mind the origin of man-made diamonds, then these man-made cousins of mined diamonds can be a great option for you. Don't just run behind what others are doing. Get out of peer-pressure, and choose your own path without worrying about social expectation.