Lab-Grown Diamonds Nearly Identical to the Real Ones

Debbie Gaudino has found love for the second time around. While shopping for a diamond, she's decided to go for one that's grown in a lab.

"There's no way anyone could look and see any difference between the lab created and the real diamond," Gaudino said.

Scientists are mimicing mother nature's designs in a lab, and it's nothing like the cubic zirconia of yesteryear.

"Whether it came out of the ground or grown in a laboratory, it's diamond all the way through" said Tanya Stafford of Robbins Brothers.

Stafford showed us the two side by side.

I couldn't tell one from the other, and neither can many jewelers.

"At the store level, there is no equipment that can tell you whether it's a mined diamond or a lab grown diamond," jeweler Jeff Malvin said.

And while Mrs. Stafford said there's protection to make sure you can spot a lab diamond from a mined one, not everyone agrees it's fool proof.

"It's potentially a huge problem," said geologist Steve Haggerty.

Haggerty said the risk for fraud is real. While all lab diamonds are laser inscribed to tell you they're man-made, Haggerty said those inscriptions can be removed.

That means you could get a diamond made in a few days, instead of a rock that took millions of years to form as a symbol of your love.

Still, he said lab diamonds are winning more people over each day.

"We can now produce them at 5 carats," Haggerty said. "I think within the next year, the next five years, they will achieve 10 carats and 15 carats or even larger."

The biggest diamonds were very hard to find colorless, but that's also changing for the better.

"This is just a beautiful compromise because it's real," Gaudino said. "It's a real diamond." 

Really the only issue with lab diamonds is their potential to be swapped for the more expensive ones.

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