Weddings and celebrations across the world were cancelled last year. However, romance survived, and engagement ring sales are continuing to soar into the summer of 2021.
Diamonds are the traditional engagement stone and often referred to as the symbol of eternal love. The younger generation of fiancés is particularly interested in the environmental impact of their engagement ring.
Lab-grown diamonds look identical to Earth-grown stones – but they are far less damaging to the environment. A lab-grown diamond takes only a couple of weeks to make, and it has a negative carbon impact on the atmosphere. Natural diamonds are made in the Earth’s mantle under intense pressure and are brought closer to the surface through deep-set volcanic eruptions. Diamond mining has a detrimental impact on the planet and humankind.
In a recent survey, F.Hinds found there was an average of 14,800 searches for ‘diamond’ engagement rings every month in 2020. The white gold band was the most popular choice for the UK, with 9,900 online searches every month. However, rose gold was more popular in the USA and Australia. Although the diamond engagement ring still remains the most popular in the UK, younger generations are more concerned with the ethics behind the diamond in their engagement ring and are doing their research before buying. The younger generation is known for being more environmentally and ethically conscious and in turn are leaning towards lab-grown diamonds. However, those that prefer a natural diamond can research creditable jewellers, ones that are members of the Responsible Jewellery Council.
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Lab-grown diamonds are forecasted to be more popular with the next generation of soon-to-be weds, with and increasing amount of people buying engagement rings online to find better prices and deals.
Alexander Weindling, the co-founder of Clean Origin, moved out of the natural diamond business to sell lab-grown diamonds online. According to Weindling, individuals over 50 are far less likely to buy a lab-grown diamond than the younger generation. Despite being unable to tell the difference aesthetically, older individuals are known for calling lab diamonds ‘fake’.
Diamond mining has been connected to water pollution, public health problems and deforestation. This particular branch of mining is known to be both environmentally and politically corrupt. Nearly 70% of Millennials would consider investing in a lab-grown diamond for their engagement ring over a natural one. The market for lab-grown diamonds is increasing by 15 to 20%.
As lab-grown diamonds increase in popularity, there is likely to be less demand for naturally grown ones, with vintage jewelry also rising in popularity, the future of the engagement ring looks set to be sustainable.