As the science of Gemmology has progressed, so unfortunately, did the development of synthetic gemstones and the use of simulants (“fakes”). Widespread treatments to enhance the appearance of gemstones also occur.

In upcoming articles the most prevalent pitfalls to be aware of will be highlighted.

The identification of gemstones and distinguishing it from simulants and synthetics has also become more complicated.

Synthetic Gemstones:

The chemical compositions and often also the physical parameters of synthetic diamonds and gemstones are the same as those of natural gemstones. However, the synthetics are created in a laboratory and manufactured in a “factory.”


A simulant can be any synthetic or natural gemstone or non-gemstone used as a substitute for a natural, “real” gemstone (e.g. glass, rock crystal or cubic zirconia used to simulate a diamond).

Treated Gemstones:

Gemstones can be treated through processes like heating, irradiation and filling of cracks to improve its appearance

The implications of the purchase of an inferior quality gemstone or a fake can be:
Poor durability – it can crack or scratch.
Poor colour stability with subsequent fading of colour.
Low value with monetary loss when selling.

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Fake, Synthetic or real? Not so easy

Part 1 : Diamond Buying Pitfalls.

The following topics will be addressed:

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