What is a Moissanite?
Moissanite was discovered by French scientist Henri Moissan in a crater caused by a fallen meteor. Moissanite is different from a traditional diamond in that it is made from silicon carbon. Natural moissanite, like the one discovered by Henri Moissan, is incredibly rare. The vast majority of moissanites sold today are produced in a lab. Because of this they can be manufactured to look even more like diamonds. But they still differ in various properties.
The Price of a Diamond vs a Moissanite
As we have discussed before, the price of a diamond is determined by its cut, clarity, color and carat. These four features are what combine together to form the beauty of a stone. That means similar sized diamonds can differ vastly in price.
Moissanites tend to cost the same amount, however. The price only changes when the size of the moissanite changes or when the type of moissanite material (unenhanced or enhanced) changes.
Naturally, because the price differs, so does the features, quality and beauty of the stone you are getting. Just because a moissanite is cheaper doesn’t mean that it is better value. Nor does a more expensive diamond mean you are getting something more beautiful.
So that you can clearly see the difference in price between a diamond and a moissanite, we have compiled the table below. It should be noted, however, that the lasting impact and beauty of a diamond compared to a moissanite is really incomparable. There are some things money can’t buy.
You should also be aware that moissanite weights around 15% less than diamonds. That means it is hard to do a like-for-like comparison as moissanites are valued based on their size. We have estimated as best as possible.
Size (in carats)
Diamond price ($)
Size (in mm)
Moissanite price ($)
Color of a Diamond vs a Moissanite
As we know, diamonds are graded on a GIS Color Scale that ranges from D to Z. Moissanites are not graded by their color, however. But that doesn’t mean they are colorless. In fact, they resemble a K grade on the diamond scale.
What’s more, yellow and green tints can be seen under certain lights in Moissanite. The bigger the moissanite, the easier it is to notice these tints. As moissanites get bigger, it’s actually easier to notice the difference between a diamond thanks to these tints.
That’s because colorless diamonds that range from a D to a J on the GIA scale will contain no hint of these tints.
The Hardness of a Diamond vs a Moissanite
We use the Mohs scale to measure a gem’s hardness or durability.
The scale ranges from a 1 which is the softest, to a 10, which is the hardest. A moissanite is a 9.25 on the Mohs scale, while a diamond is a 10.
A diamond gets the maximum score because it is the hardest natural mineral that exists. But how hard exactly is a moissanite, then? To give you a clearer idea, we compiled a table of stones and other materials below.
Understanding the Mohs Scale
The Brilliance of Diamond vs Moissanite
Diamonds sparkle because of their ability to bend and refract light. When light strikes the angled surfaces of a diamond, it bounces up and is refracted through the table to your eye. This phenomenon is called brilliance.
But Moissanites don’t do this. That’s because their facets are cut differently and cause less light refraction than a diamond. So while they do create a sparkle, it is not as vibrant as a diamond.
A moissanite can also give off vibrant color light refraction, called fire. This is often more extensive than diamonds, which some people don’t like.
As stated before, the larger the size, the more noticeable the differences in brilliance and fire between diamonds and moissanites.
Is a Moissanite a Diamond?
No. A moissanite should not be considered the same as a diamond. They are clearly two very different gems as we have discussed above.
What’s more, diamonds are naturally found, whereas moissanites are created in laboratories. An expert will clearly be able to notice the difference between the two.
Summing it up
While moissanites are very different from diamonds, they are still a good choice for people looking to purchase a gemstone at a lower price. That being said, a moissanite may not hold its value as well as a diamond or elicit the same emotional response.
The Bottom Line:
While diamonds and moissanite may look similar from a distance, up close they have a lot of differences. They differ vastly in areas such as durability, brilliance, and value. As such, it is important to know the differences between the two and to consider your purchase carefully before committing to it.