Last updated on April 21, 2020
We all love diamonds, but these gems are among the most expensive. And this is why sometimes you may want to consider other gemstones. Let’s see how diamonds compare with other gemstones and if differences are that critical.
Diamonds vs Gemstones: Durability
When it comes to durability, diamond is the winner over other gemstones.
Keep in mind that the softer your gemstone, the more it is prone to scratching, chipping and even cracking. Besides, if your gemstone is faceted, the softer it is, the faster its edges will become rounded over time.
This doesn’t mean you should not buy softer gemstones. Just be more careful when wearing them or consider a more secure cut, for example, cabochon cut is very popular for gemstones with hardness lower than 7 on the Mohs scale.
In general, diamond is always a good idea if you are going to wear your jewellery piece every day, while other gemstones are more suitable for occasional wear.
Diamonds vs Semi-Precious Gemstones
When we think of diamonds, we usually imagine colourless (white) or slightly tinted stones, while semi-precious gemstones such as aquamarine, tourmaline, topaz, tanzanite, etc. make us think about colour.
The main thing to focus on is whether the gemstone you are looking at has been heat treated.
Heat treatment is used to enhance the natural colour of stones. The result is usually good and permanent, however, some gemstones may fade with time. Of course, this may take years to happen and it won’t be readily noticeable, but you should keep this in mind.
As a general rule, a lot of coloured semi-precious gemstones available on the market are heat treated and this is perfectly fine. You should understand that most naturally mined gemstones don’t have rich colours and those that do are extremely rare and command high prices.
So if you are debating whether to buy a white diamond or a coloured gemstone, you should ask the jeweller if the gemstone has been colour enhanced and if the effect is permanent.
Diamonds vs Precious Gemstones
The choice is really hard when it comes to comparing diamonds with other three precious gemstones.
In case you focus on durability, you may choose a ruby or a sapphire. These two are the next hardest gems after diamond, they both have a hardness of 9 on the Mohs scale.
Emeralds are not the best option in this respect. They have a hardness of 7.5-8, so the diamond is the winner.
By the way, if you want a stone that is almost as durable as a diamond and is also colourless, you can opt for a white sapphire. It’s a natural stone that is a good diamond alternative but is not as expensive.