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Hey Guys, I'm glad I found your forum. Everyone on here seems to know what their talking about without trying to push a product. With that said...


My Fiance and I have been engaged over a year now, and due to having a Baby we put off buying the ring. Now's time to spend a bit on ourselves, so I've been looking at options.

Yes we could drop $7-$10,000 on a ring but why if theres other options out there.

Looks like Moissonite turns green, and CZ isn't hard enough. I do hair so my hands are constantly in chemicals/water and heat. But I found some sites that say they're a diamond Hybrid.


Mia Donna Jewelers claim they take a seed of a diamond and grow it bigger. Is this a bunch of B.S?


What about Eco Diamondz that claim they are CZ but reinforced to last longer.


How long am I looking at with a quality CZ/moissonite before it starts to go down hill? And are the settings in most of these pieces of good quality?


Are there any diamond alternative sites you would recommend? I don't mind buying a diamond alternative as long as I know what I'm getting and I'm not getting ripped off.


Please help!!


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1. Moissanite does not "turn green". It is greenish to start with, though there are rumours that recent stones are whiter but I haven't seen them. The green tint may be noticeable, especially in larger stones, but it's stable and won't change over time.


2. CZ may or may not be "too soft". It's actually quite hard - harder than garnet, tourmaline, topaz, emerald, ... which are used in jewellery including rings quite regularly (though they do tend to get battered in engagement rings). CZ also has the supreme virtue of being cheap: you can get a CZ replaced with less than $50 - most of which is labour - and unless you really destroy jewellery a good quality CZ should last you at least 1.5-2 years.


3. Both CZ and Moissanite are highly stable compounds, and heat bearable by human skin or hair, constant immersion in water or dyes/chemicals meant for human cosmetic use will not alter them: at worst, you may have a rather dirty stone (conditioners in particular leave residue that is not easily removed). There may be more danger for some gold alloys and platings - though if you stick to 18k yellow gold, palladium or platinum (or stainless steel, silicon carbide, tungsten and tungsten carbide) you should have no problems.


4. Coated CZ is in my personal opinion poor value. It doesn't look different from ordinary, good quality CZ, but it costs 20, or even 100 times more. When compared to the cost of replacing a CZ every couple of years, I'm not sure it makes sense, particularly because all the claims on durability are still untested.


5. There are synthetic diamonds - in some cases grown from a seed crystal. MiaDonna is selling these as well as coated CZ (which they call "Diamond Hybrid"). In general, white synthetic diamonds are not considerably cheaper than their natural equivalent, but coloured synthetics (esp. blue) are a fraction of the cost of a natural colour diamond.


6. Setting quality: varies hugely - so do prices, and generally one gets what one pays for. You shouldn't feel restricted to buying only what is available through a dealer of CZ... there's plenty of people that will happily sell you a ring and set a CZ in it with the same care as if it were a diamond.


7. Rough guide to cost: "normal" good quality CZ: $1-$20/stone (round below 5 ct largely independent of size). Moissanite: $150-200/carat equivalent. Coated CZ: $50-200/carat. Synthetic diamond: white as natural diamond; coloured as white.


Hope this helps!

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Thanks a bunch David,

I think talking to my soon to be Husband we have decided to go with a great quality setting of 18k gold or higher. Is 18k white gold OK in chems? Or is platinum my best option?

Then we'll look at a diamond alternative for the center stones that we can replace in a few years. Are there any sites you recommend for settings? We don't mind paying for a natural diamond setting for the accent stones. Any sites you recommend for a white diamond alternative?

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If you have the budget, I'd stick to platinum. Most white gold is rhodium plated, and the plating tends to wear through electrolysis if it is constantly in acid or alkaline solutions (even weak ones, like some people's sweat!). Platinum is also more wear resistant and feels nicer - to me. It does cost a fair amount more. The other option would be a "high white" white gold alloy - they do exist, but they aren't all that easy to find, since they have other problems (cost, brittleness) that normal "pale yellow" alloys manage to decrease or avoid.


If you have decided that you will go with a "normal" CZ, I would honestly recommend that you focus on choosing the setting and ask the jeweler you are working with to supply and set the CZ - they are easy to source, and cost very little. Alternatively, look for Swarovski/Signity CZ on eBay. If you want moissanite then you are constrained to a Charles & Colvard distributor/dealer for the stone. BTW - I just checked moissanite prices in a few places - boy have they increased: it's now around $300+ per carat.


Recommendation for setting: it does rather depend on what you want. There's plenty of very good "standard"/made to stock rings - literally thousand of suppliers. If you like a stock design, then you are done - find a good jeweller that is prepared to work with you, get a CZ and have it set. The other option is to go for a hand/custom-made ring, which will (or should) have a higher quality - even if the design is very similar from an aesthetic point of view. With that choice, there are somewhat fewer people that can take the job, and they tend to be more specialised (gold vs. platinum vs. palladium; solitaires vs. pavé setting; work to template vs. totally unique).

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How obvious is the 'green' in Moissanite?


Not very.

More than a diamond.

More than a CZ.

Is there a jewelry store in your town where you can go look at one? Most people don't see it unless they're looking for it and a casual observer looking at a peice of jewelery will never know it's not a diamond.


I have less trouble with white gold. I agree that platinum is more durable but, if price is driving the bus, there's usually a considerable savings for going with WG. Part of this is because the material is cheaper, part of it is because it's easier to work with, and part of it is because there are more manufacturers making stock items out of WG so it's easier to find a competitive price on a 'generic' sort of item. I second the notion of buying both the CZ and the setting labor from the same place you get the mounting. Nearly every jeweler who is prepared to set it can sell you one.

Edited by denverappraiser
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By coincidence, here are some recently posted photos of moissanite - which to me show the tint more than it would normally be seen. http://www.diamondre...dpost__p__35553 (the photos of the rings with the twin strands, not the yellow gold one). However, Neil is right - the best way of figuring it out is by seeing it in person.


What makes a good quality stone is easy: it is you liking it. Short of poorly stabilised CZ that has a tendency to turn opaque white over time and is generally found in really cheap pre-set jewellery, quality is not an issue with CZ or moissanite.


How long should it last - moissanite or CZ? In either case, it really depends on how you treat it. However, I'll give you two family anecdotes:


My children (aged 5 and 7) have been playing for about two years with a parcel of coloured CZ. Fair enough, they don't play with them all of the time, but the stones have been kicked, scrunched on the floor by tiny feet, trodden over by the dogs, "found", "traded", "stolen" and dropped on the floor tiles many times. They all still look brand new.


My mother in law has a sapphire ring dating back to ~1890. The sapphire is visibly worn on the facet edges when looked at with a loupe, but still holds its own at a casual glance and has no visible scratches. Moissanite is quite a bit harder than sapphire.

Edited by davidelevi
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