Diamond vs Moissanite: 5 Key Differences | Diamonds Factory (2024)

Diamond vs Moissanite: 5 Key Differences | Diamonds Factory (1)

What is the difference between diamond and moissanite?

What is the difference between diamond and moissanite? To some people, without close inspection, they may appear similar, but there are many differences between them, such as colour, brilliance, fire and value. In this article, we discuss diamond and moissanite and why diamonds are worth the extra expense.

What is moissanite?

Moissanite is a near-colourless stone that, at first glance, looks similar to a diamond. However, it is not the same. Moissanite is made from pure silicon carbide (a rare naturally-occurring mineral), whereas diamond is made from carbon. Natural moissanite is so rare that it is practically impossible to use it within jewellery. It was first discovered in 1893 by a French scientist called Henri Moissan while examining rock samples taken from a meteor crater in Arizona. Because of its rarity, moissanite used within jewellery today is created in a laboratory.

How is moissanite different to a diamond?

Diamond vs Moissanite: 5 Key Differences | Diamonds Factory (2)

Moissanite is different from a diamond in many ways such as colour, fire, brilliance and price. It is only at first glance that the gemstones look similar.


Moissanite and diamonds differ in colour. Moissanite is not colourless and, unlike diamond, is not assessed and graded on colour. Diamond colour is assessed on a scale between D-Z with D being completely colourless. Typical moissanite is similar in colour to a GIA-certified K-colour diamond, meaning that it would fall in the faint colour scale rather than colourless or near colourless. Just like diamonds, the smaller the moissanite, the more colourless it will appear. Some moissanite stones have a yellow, grey or green tint depending on the lighting, so it is easy to tell the difference between a diamond and moissanite.


The hardness of a diamond differs to that of moissanite. It is a known fact that diamonds are the hardest naturally occurring substance on Earth and scored 10 on the Mohs scale of hardness. Moissanite is scored 9.25 on the scale, which is lower than diamonds but higher than any other gemstone used in jewellery.


Brilliance refers to how much light reflects from a gemstone to create sparkle. A diamond with an ideal cut will have the highest level of brilliance, as it is cut in a way to reflect as much light as possible. Moissanite is faceted differently to a diamond, which causes less white light to refract. Although they do sparkle, it is not as vibrant and clear as the sparkle seen on a diamond. Moissanite usually has more fire than a diamond. When placed next to one another a moissanite will produce stronger, more colourful flashes of light than a diamond, that most people tend not to favour.


Diamond clarity refers to the assessment of imperfections internally and externally of a given stone. Moissanite generally has a higher clarity than a diamond because it is created in a lab whereas a diamond is formed naturally. It is common for diamonds to have inclusions and blemishes as they are natural products, whereas moissanite has very few.


Moissanite is a lot cheaper than a diamond. Although this means you can buy a larger stone for your money, it also means that moissanite is far less valuable and ultimately you are buying something worth very little in the long term. If you are looking for value, diamonds, although more expensive, are great value as they can be passed down for generations and still retain their value.

Can moissanite be considered a diamond?

No, moissanite cannot be considered a diamond. Both gemstones are different - from the way they are formed, to what they look like. Moissanite possesses an artificial brilliance and lacks the value that a diamond has. It is also created in a lab as opposed to naturally like a diamond.

Why choose moissanite?

Some people choose moissanite as it has a similar appearance to a diamond for a fraction of the cost. If you are looking for a special piece of jewellery, such as an engagement ring, a diamond is preferred due to its value and meaning.

Why are diamonds preferred over moissanites?

Diamond vs Moissanite: 5 Key Differences | Diamonds Factory (3)

Diamonds are preferred to moissanite as they are a rare, naturally occurring gemstone prized for their beauty. As they take millions of years to develop within the Earth’s mantle, and each one is unique, it makes diamonds feel extra-special. Diamonds have become a symbol of everlasting love and are given in an engagement ring.

If you would love to learn more about diamonds, head to our diamond education guide to find out everything you need to know.

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Diamond vs Moissanite: 5 Key Differences | Diamonds Factory (2024)


What is the difference between moissanite and factory made diamond? ›

Both lab-grown diamonds and Moissanite have a high refractive index, which means they both have a lot of sparkle and fire. However, lab-grown diamonds have a higher refractive index than Moissanite, which means that lab-grown diamonds will have more sparkle and fire.

Can you tell the difference between a real diamond and moissanite? ›

Brilliance and Fire

Moissanite is slightly more brilliant than diamonds, and it also features almost twice as much fire, meaning that it has a higher refractive index. Natural diamonds are marginally less brilliant than moissanite and have two times less fire.

How can you tell the difference between diamond and moissanite under light? ›

Moissanite is actually more brilliant than a diamond!

Moissanite's brilliance is higher than diamond's due to its higher “refractive index” (Diamond's is 2.42, whereas Moissanite's is 2.65). This is a technical term for how much a gemstone bends light.

How to tell the difference between a diamond and moissanite and cubic zirconia? ›

Both moissanite and cubic zirconia do not have the same brilliance and sparkle as real diamonds. Diamond refract white light. Cubic zirconia has a lower refractive index than diamonds, 2.22 versus 2.42, and reflects more colored light. Moissanite, however, has a higher refractive index (2.65 – 2.69).

How much is a 1 carat diamond vs 1 carat moissanite? ›

Let's explore the cost of 1-carat moissanite in comparison to that of a 1-carat diamond. As a guide, you can expect to pay around $5000 for a nearly colorless 1-carat diamond, but completely colorless moissanite will cost you significantly less at around $600.

What is the downside of moissanite? ›

Cons of Moissanite

Durability: Although moissanite is still a durable gemstone, it may be more prone to scratches and damage over time due to its lower hardness than diamonds. Color: Whereas diamonds have an almost colorless look that some people like, moissanite has a little yellow or greenish hue.

How to spot a fake moissanite? ›

Thermal testers probe conductivity to identify real moissanite, which conducts heat better than diamond. Fakes that are CZ or glass will fail this test. Lab identification, like GIS chemical/elemental analysis, can conclusively authenticate moissanite from fakes.

Can a diamond tester mistake a diamond for moissanite? ›

Unlike faux diamonds and other gemstones, moissanite is also an effective conductor of heat. For this reason, when using a diamond tester that detects thermal conductivity, moissanite will pass as a diamond.

How can you tell a moissanite from a lab diamond? ›

On the Mohs hardness scale for gemstones, moissanite scores a 9.25, while lab diamonds boast a perfect 10. While 9.25 is a relatively high score, scratches can cause moissanite gems to lose some of their sparkle, while lab diamonds have the exact same durability as natural diamonds found deep within the Earth.

Can most people tell a moissanite from a diamond? ›

Most people cannot tell the difference between moissanite and diamonds. The GIA has even stated that moissanite is “much closer to diamond in overall appearance and heft than any previous diamond imitation.” One way to tell apart moissanite from diamond is to examine the stone's brilliance and fire.

Which is better, moissanite or diamonique? ›

There's no denying that moissanites are durable. On the Mohs scale of hardness, moissanite stone is rated at 9.25, which is higher than any gemstone used in jewellery other than diamonds. Diamonds, which are the hardest known material, score a 10.

How do you identify moissanite in a diamond? ›

Use a diamond tester to determine whether the stone is moissanite or not since moissanite has a different electrical conductivity than diamonds. This approach may not always be accurate, so take in mind that some diamond testers may not be able to tell moissanite from diamonds.

Do lab-grown diamonds test as moissanite? ›

These compounds are incorporated into the reaction cell where diamonds grow, resulting in boron becoming embedded within the forming crystals. As a result, HPHT lab-grown diamonds containing boron can exhibit a blue tint and are prone to being mistaken as moissanite on electrical probes and diamond multitesters.

Is moissanite a fake diamond? ›

The truth is that moissanite is not a synthetic diamond or the often dreaded cubic zirconia, it's a totally separate gemstone that is naturally occurring, though extremely rare and found in meteorites. Because of its beauty and durability, it's one of the few gemstones that's incredibly well suited to fine jewelry.

Will moissanite pass a diamond tester? ›

Yes, some diamond simulants can pass a diamond tester.

For example, moissanite, a man made gem, may pass as a diamond on a standard tester pen. This is because moissanite also has very high thermal conductivity! Other diamond simulants, such as CZ, will not pass the tester.

Are factory diamonds better? ›

The only difference is their origin. Since lab-grown diamonds are essentially the same as natural diamonds, they have the same properties, such as hardness.

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