Whether it be buying a more fuel-efficient car, getting your clothing second-hand, or ensuring your purchases are fair trade, people are becoming more conscious about what they’re consuming. It’s no surprise that this shift is also affecting one of the most important purchases in someone’s life— their engagement ring.
Most people view diamonds as the standard stone for engagement rings. If sustainability is your top priority, there are options regarding the type of diamond you choose and its origin to consider. Here are some things to know before choosing a diamond as the centre stone on your engagement ring.
Earth Mined Diamonds vs. LabGrown Diamonds
You may be wondering, what are lab grown diamonds? Well, they’re exactly what they sound like!
Molecularly and chemically, they are identical to mined diamonds— they even look the same. The only difference is that lab grown diamonds are, as the name suggests, made in a lab setting instead of being mined from the earth.
Environmental Implications of Mining
Not only does diamond mining involve intense physical labour, but it can also have a significant adverse environmental impact. Mining uses a massive amount of fossil fuels and produces a lot of waste. If controls aren’t in place, it can also pollute the water and disrupt the habitats of the species that live in the mining area.
All this isn’t to say that lab grown diamonds have no environmental implications. Still, the environmental impact of their production is considerably less extreme than mined diamonds. Additionally, in some labs, most of the resources used to create lab grown diamonds are renewable.
Other Stones to Consider
If diamonds aren’t your thing, there are many other gemstones out there that will look just as stunning in an engagement ring and are ethical and sustainable. If you love the sparkle and shine of a diamond, consider using moissanite instead. This stone is just as sparkly as a diamond but costs significantly less and has a similar environmental impact to lab grown diamonds.
If you want to add some color to your ring, consider using a sapphire. You can opt for an ethically sourced mined sapphire or a lab grown one. If you go with lab grown, you won’t have to compromise on that highly desirable piercing blue color which will draw great admiration.
Always Remember the Four C’s
Whatever stone you choose to go with for your ring, always keep in mind the four C’s— color, carat, clarity, and cut. Even if you’re choosing a lab grown diamond, not every stone is going to be perfect. It’s important to look at the stone with your jeweler before purchasing to make sure it looks exactly how you want.
Your engagement ring is a significant investment and is something that will be worn every day. It’s also an opportunity to make a purchase based on your morals and values. Do your research and select materials you feel comfortable with so that you can feel empowered about the impact your purchase is making on the earth.