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LGD Man Made diamonds are going to change natural diamonds for the better

Discussion in 'RockyTalky' started by Garry H (Cut Nut), Jun 2, 2019.

  1. diagem
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    by diagem » Jun 6, 2019
    I hope I am mistaken..., but you are giving the dinosaurs quite a lot of credit.
    Until today, the dinosaurs still live in their pre-Historical environment, business wise off course.
     
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  2. CheeSauce
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    by CheeSauce » Jun 6, 2019
    I will also note that the guys I know that have been buying MMD are those techie engineer types. Also, it’s not like they aren’t spending money. Most of them have spent more on the MMD than the cost of my CBI diamond. Brilliant Earth has done some great marketing. I think they just see it as a better value and also so their girlfriends can have a massive rock. At least for the people I know, I don’t think they are particularly concern about the ethics.

    But yeah, I don’t know if their girlfriends would have preferred a natural diamond.
     
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  3. Pimberly
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    by Pimberly » Jun 6, 2019
    I would guess most people buy them because they’re cheaper, but say they bought them for ethical reasons because it sounds better. Which, hey, I don’t judge anyone who wants a good value for their buck. I wanted the real deal, but went pre-owned to save. And I’m sure the ethical angle does feel good as well, but I doubt it’s the primary reason for most.
     
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  4. bmfang
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    by bmfang » Jun 6, 2019
    That was alluded to by Mr Rapaport in his recent live stream from Vegas (was a very good talk by him IMHO).
     
    


    


  5. Garry H (Cut Nut)
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    by Garry H (Cut Nut) » Jun 6, 2019
    Far better talk than 2017 and 2018 BMF!
    He wants the mined natural diamond biz to collectively spend $1B in telling stories and marketing. De Beers forced Sight Holder companies to do something like that 20 years ago and 80% of the money and activity was pure waste.
     
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  6. hobbitfancier55
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    by hobbitfancier55 » Jun 6, 2019
    Piggybacking off of this. Idk if I technically need to change my user to say “trade”, but i have been working for a couple weeks now (front desk only) for a jeweler who sells MMD.

    The store has been open for around six months now, and 90% of engagement ring sales have been man made diamonds. This was surprising to me at first. I’m 30 (well within millennial age range), and personally prefer mined diamonds. Perhaps this is because i majored in geology and appreciate the time and effort the earth took to make the stone.

    That being said, i CAN see why some like MMD. I myself have even opened my eyes and can see some of the benefits. I’d still prefer a mined diamond overall, but i think MMD will become increasingly popular.

    1. No ethical worries when it comes to child labor
    2. Less environmental damage because mining equipment, water for mining’s, etc. is not necessary
    3. One doesn’t have to worry about “blood diamonds” because they know the chain of custody
    4. Looks. The stones are essentially identical to mined diamonds in every way, minus origins
    5. Bang per buck. Nobody else will know it’s a lab diamond vs mined. Only the buyer’s wallets.

    Like Bron said, millennials are being more discerning with their $$, partly because they have to be with the extra burden of loans, cost of living, etc.

    Production costs may go down as technology advances. I don’t know that demand will. Only time will tell!
     
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  7. OoohShiny
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    by OoohShiny » Jun 7, 2019
    On a kind of related note, I have sort of been pondering if now is a good time to set up a small shop dealing only in MMDs - I have no capital and am terrible at Sales :???: :lol: but it seems like now is the beginning of a shift in consumer attitudes, so one should get in at the start of these things???

    Anyone fancy investing? ;-) :lol: lol
     
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  8. PreRaphaelite
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    by PreRaphaelite » Jun 7, 2019
    I’m not a millennial but I work with them. Recently I overheard a newly engaged young lady discussing her MMD with the assertion, “the best way to devalue any currency is to stop believing in it.”

    o_O
     
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  9. Texas Leaguer
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    by Texas Leaguer » Jun 7, 2019
    I agree with Garry’s general premise that the challenge from synthetic diamonds will force the natural diamond industry to do a better job of representing our value proposition. And I believe we will. It is a very strong value proposition and once there is a concerted, coordinated effort to message it to the public, the market impact of synthetics will be mitigated and lab grown diamonds will end up taking their rightful place BESIDE natural mined diamonds.

    Yes, it is true that social attitudes and millennial tastes and buying patterns are different today, so the predictive comparison of historical evidence may be slightly imperfect. But diamond is not the first gemstone to have been synthesized in the laboratory. Not by any means! Most notably, synthetic corundum was first synthesized well over a century ago and beautiful man made rubies and sapphires quickly became ever-present in the jewelry trade due to their attractiveness and affordability. We can expect synthetic diamonds to follow a similar course (they already are) as the price falls rapidly toward base production cost.

    Did the advent of beautiful lab grown rubies and sapphires so long ago derail the market for natural mined rubies and sapphires? Is there any reason to believe that synthetic diamonds will not follow a similar pattern? I personally think that man made diamonds are on a similar path.

    That said, I do agree that the natural diamond industry needs to step up its messaging game. It is not just synthetics that compete for the diamond buying dollar. It is, as others have noted, travel and entertainment (experiences) and other consumer products that millennials tend to favor which compete with diamond purchases today.
     
  10. MakingTheGrade
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    by MakingTheGrade » Jun 7, 2019
    I’m an older millennial, I make enough to have a healthy amount for fun purchases and I do a mix of natural diamond, moissanite, and eventually MMD. I get moissy currently so I can have a greater variety of rings and shinies without sinking too much money into it. But I also have natural diamonds for all my staple pieces (pendant, bracelets, erings, rhr Etc). I have the budget to do larger diamonds but usually opt not to due to the opportunity cost. 30k represents a lot of options, especially when I can get “the look” of the diamond for 2k.
     
    


    


  11. MakingTheGrade
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    by MakingTheGrade » Jun 7, 2019
    I think a slight imperfection of the synthetic corundum analogy is that I don’t think of many 1-2ct diamonds as actually rare in the same sense that an unheated precision cut cornflower round blue sapphire is. I have hundreds of options when shopping for a natural D-F colorless 1ct diamond, even when imposing ideal cut standards. So I don’t think of natural diamonds the same way I do natural colored gems because I have a much stronger “one of a kind” feel about a rare ruby or sapphire that will motivate me to buy it in the moment since I might not ever see it’s like again. Whereas if I buy a 2ct ideal cut moissy or mmd rather than natural diamond, I’m not that worried I won’t ever have the change again to own the natural version if I decide to later.

    I recently bought a FCD marquise diamond because I didn’t feel I’d get the chance again.
     
  12. Texas Leaguer
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    by Texas Leaguer » Jun 7, 2019
    @MakingTheGrade ,
    You might be a 'crossover millenial' ;-)

    Seriously though, your point is well taken and I actually think this is the logical way that the synthetic diamond market will go. Once it gets cheap enough for mainstream commercial markets, consumers will be buying it for it's fashion aspects.

    Serious gem enthusiasists will buy natural diamonds because they are from the Earth, have rarity, and have stored value. In particular, engagement rings will be overwhelmingly set natural diamond center stones because of the sentimental aspects of an Earth born treasure.
     
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  13. Texas Leaguer
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    by Texas Leaguer » Jun 7, 2019
    Good points.

    It's important to realize that there is also a robust market in heat treated mined rubies and sapphires and they are commonly thousands of $ per carat whereas synthetics are available for pennies. The difference is in their Earth mined nature. (This would be analogous to the 1-2ct natural diamonds.)

    Certainly the really elite stones (e.g. unheated cornflower blue, pidgeon blood red) have no trouble finding buyers for even bigger money.
     
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  14. arkieb1
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    by arkieb1 » Jun 9, 2019

    There will always be a market for natural diamonds just like people/your customers turn up here wanting an E or a D and a IF stone because they think there is some magical about high colour high clarity stones like they are "pure" or somehow the "best" - there is an even larger section of the general public that are purists at heart that want the real not a man made thing. The Chinese for example don't want heated sapphires they want them as they come out of the ground, and for the wealthy growing middle class in Asia, there is almost a stigma attached to buying heated or any treated coloured stones. Diamonds will be no different.

    And there will be a huge market for much cheaper similar looking lab grown stones with some people particularly those on tight budgets, people that want something more sustainable and those that honestly just don't care.

    And, finally, there will lots of people that want a mix of both.

    I see lab grown diamonds smashing the market for things like earrings, pendants and right hand rings, because with things like earrings you can get more bang for your buck, they don't have the emotional or sentimental associations that E-rings have, and lets face it no one is going to know the difference.
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2019
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  15. AV_
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    by AV_ » Jun 10, 2019
    & pearls ...
     
    


    


  16. JT123
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    by JT123 » Jun 10, 2019
    +1. My DH works as an engineer at one of the tech giants here and his younger co-workers do seem to purchase big, MMD for sure. It's quite common now to see 2+ in my area. . Back in the day when I worked in tech at a telecom company in the early 2000s ,a co-worker was engaged to high-up at Oracle and we all thought her ring was TOO big.It was almost 3 carats.I think today that is almost normal here in the bay area to see over 2 -3 carats now.Curious if most I see are MMD? We live in close proximity to Brilliant Earth HQ.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2019
  17. Tekate
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    by Tekate » Jun 10, 2019
    For me I think it will become more like man made rubies, emeralds and sapphires. I would love a MMD for earrings because I don't hold earrings in that high a regard compared to a ring or pendant. There is certainly a market for these stones. I have dreamed of a IIa emerald cut diamond, but I would still know it came from a lab not earth. But I'm in.
     
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