Cubic Zirconia is Not the Same as Diamond
Are you Considering a CZ vs diamond as your “Gem” of choice for getting married?
Is cubic zirconia on your radar for your engagement ring? You’d save a lot of money…. Do I approve? No! As a passionate wedding jewelry designer I’ll tell you why in technical and emotional terms.
CZ vs. Diamond, a Poor Substitute
Cubic zirconia—commonly called CZ—is widely used as an inexpensive diamond substitute. To the untrained eye, a brand new CZ looks like a real diamond. This is why many people substitute them for the real thing.
Does this mean it’s alright to put one in your wedding ring? For a number of reasons, the answer is NO! A CZ is to diamond what brass is to gold. The two substances may look similar—especially when new and clean—but they’re not!
Unlike diamonds, CZ’s scratch and become dull and lifeless over the long term. They don’t sparkle like real diamonds either once you’ve worn them for a bit.
What is Cubic Zirconia?
Technically, cubic zirconia is zirconium dioxide. It’s a relatively hard synthetic mineral. It’s optically flawless, usually colorless, though it can be made in a variety of colors.
Don’t confuse cubic zirconia with zircon. The latter is a real gemstone. CZ’s are not. CZ’s are grown in a lab. We December babies who have zircon as a birthstone are not happy!
For a thorough explanation of CZ. go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cubic_zirconia
How Do You Tell the Difference?
Try the Huff Test:
The Huff Test
Hold the stone in question next to a diamond and “huff” on them with your hot breath. Both stones will fog up. The diamond will clear up rapidly, while a CZ will take a little longer. This is due to diamond’s greater thermal conductivity.
I found that on whiteflash.com.
The Real Cost of Cubic Zirconia
Perusing the internet the other day, I was astounded at the prices jewelers—and the regular public—were quoting for CZ’s. I saw them costing anywhere from forty dollars per carat to hundreds!
One site said that CZ’s cost about one-tenth of what a diamond does! That means that if a one carat diamond went for $6,000, a CZ of the same size would cost $600. Nothing could be farther from the truth! If you paid more than $20 or $30 for one—whatever the size—you probably paid too much.
Diamonds vs. CZ’s, What Are You Saying with Your Gem Choice?
Diamonds are the hardest natural substance on Earth. As I mentioned, they rarely scratch, they don’t cloud up, and degrade over time. Like the famous slogan says, “A diamond is forever.” A cubic zirconia? Not even close.
Diamond rings mean something. They’re a symbol of love, marriage, and eternity. Diamonds don’t degrade over time and the rings in which they’re set get passed down from generation to generation. CZ rings? Not so much. Diamond rings are valuable. CZ rings? Nope!
CZ’s are cheap. A few grande lattes at Starbucks would cost more. So would a toaster or two tickets to the movies and snacks for you and your significant other.
Diamonds are valuable. They’re important and precious. They always have been and always will be. Diamonds stand for a lasting, sparkling love. CZ’s…not so much.
Diamonds, CZ’s, and You and Getting Married
You would never buy a brass or aluminum wedding ring, right? You’d get one made out of gold or platinum. Gold and platinum are valuable. Brass and aluminum are not. Brass is for plumbing fixtures and aluminum is for cheap pots and pans. Likewise, diamonds are for weddings. CZ’s are for cocktail parties.
Last Word on Cubic Zirconia
There’s nothing wrong with CZ’s in costume and less expensive jewelry—especially the kind your teenage daughter wears to school everyday (more than likely, on more body parts than you would care to think about).
When it comes to matrimony, however, stick with the real thing. Choose a diamond.
Passionate Wedding Jewelry Designer, Calla Gold