Genuine vs. synthetic gemstones

Are these gemstones genuine – this is one of the most frequent questions we hear from customers when choosing jewellery with precious and semiprecious gemstones. This can be an essential factor in regards to the quality and value of the jewellery piece. For non-professionals however it can be difficult to get around the terminology in this sphere, so we would like to offer some more details which can help with choice and purchasing decisions.

What is the difference between natural and genuine gemstones, synthetic and fake ones?

Genuine gemstones

The term Genuine Gemstones refers to such precious and semiprecious gemstones that have originated in nature. They can be mined (diamonds) or discovered in water (corals, pearls). The value of these gemstones lies in their rarity. Before they are embedded in jewels, they are cut and polished, and often processed for color enhancement or purification. Depending on the type and the level of processing, this may influence the value of the gemstone.

Natural gemstones

Natural gemstones are such gemstones that have not undergone any additional processing for color enhancement or treatment of inclusions. This does not include cutting and polishing into the desired shape.

Synthetic gemstones

The most important thing we have to highlight here is that synthetic does not mean fake. Synthetic, cultivated and lab created gemstones are not imitations – they have the same physical properties and chemical composition as the genuine ones. The difference is that they have been created in a controlled laboratory environment. Natural conditions under which they occur are being isolated and the processing which lead to their creation are being sped up through advanced technologies.

Diamonds, rubies, sapphires and emeralds are among the most common synthetic gemstones, as well as cultivated pearls.

Telling synthetic from a genuine gemstone can be difficult for an inexperienced person. One of the features that distinguishes genuine gemstones is the presence of inclusions.

Nevertheless, it should be taken into account that both with genuine and synthetic gemstones, quality can differ – synthetic gemstones of the highest quality can be dozens of times more expensive than genuine ones of low quality.

Fake (imitation) gemstones

Imitation gemstones are what people often call “fake”. They can be made of glass, plastic, resin or other materials. Imitations try to mimic the appearance and color of the genuine gemstones, but they do not have the same physical or chemical properties. They are usually much cheaper, but also perishable and easily damaged – e.g., the coating which gives them the desired color, can be erased or scratched.

What gemstone should I choose?

For us at Elite Precious it is important to offer our customers quality products, no matter if they are luxury or lower segment. That is why you won’t find any imitation gemstones in our jewellery – we only use genuine and synthetic gemstones.

If you compare a genuine gemstone with its synthetic counterpart, it is very likely that you like the synthetic one better, because lab creation allows to avoid inclusions and get a more even and saturated color. Usually, synthetic gemstones have lower price too. On the other hand, if you consider the purchase an investment or if you value the authentic look of natural gemstones, they might be right choice for you.

Whatever you choose, when you buy jewellery, always check whether the seller has the required documents and how they guarantee the quality of the products.