What do we mean when we say a diamond or a gemstone is “guilt-free” or “conflict-free” or “fairly traded”? And why should we care?
These days, more and more couples do care, very deeply, that the precious gems they wear to symbolize their love come from a place of love. Studies indicate that Millennials are even more idealistic than their Baby Boomer parents, and more pragmatic: They are marrying their social consciousness and values with their wallets, and insist that the products they buy are fairly traded, ethically produced, conflict and guilt free.
What do we mean by guilt free jewelry?
The last few decades have seen a growing awareness that the business of mining diamonds and other precious gems out of the earth can come at a terrible human cost. The 2006 film, “Blood Diamond” starring Leonardo DiCaprio brought more attention to how the illicit trafficking of diamonds, including the exploitation of children forced into slavery and armed conflict, has helped finance brutal civil wars in places like Sierra Leone and Liberia.
In 2003, the United Nations issued the Kimberley Process, an agreement adopted by 81 nations, to prevent the illicitly traded diamonds used to finance war and terrorism from entering the mainstream market. Participating countries in the Kimberley Process require mining companies and other industry players to provide a detailed certificate for all rough diamond exports that guarantees the stones originated from proper mining and sales practices and are “conflict-free” – meaning they were not extracted and sold to support war, terrorism, and other human rights abuses.
So what is a socially conscious consumer to do?
For 29 years, Love & Promise Jewelers has been in the business of providing our customers with jewelry that reflects our deepest values: conflict-free, fairly traded, and guilt-free.
What do we mean by “fairly traded”? According to the World Fair Trade Organization, “Fair Trade is a trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency and respect, that seeks greater equity in international trade. It contributes to sustainable development by offering better trading conditions to, and securing the rights of, marginalized producers and workers.”
So when we say “guilt-free” we mean that all of our jewelry has been sourced, processed, and sold in an ethical manner – providing a fair price for raw materials, fair wages to the people who make them, and a commitment to business practices that are good for communities and the environment.
Top Guilt-Free Stone Options: Moissanites and Lab-Grown Gemstones
If you are looking for 100% guilt-free stones, we highly recommend either moissanites or lab-grown gemstones.
Moissanites offer a similar sparkle, hardness, and durability as a diamond, which is why they are now the diamond alternative of choice for socially conscious consumers.
Moissanite is a natural mineral, composed of silicon carbide. It is formed in nature only when a meteor hits the earth—which means it is extremely rare. The existence of Moissanite was discovered in the late 1890s at the site of a meteor strike in Arizona, by a French scientist named Henri Moissan, who would go on to win the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1906. The stone is named for Dr. Moissan, who worked tirelessly trying to recreate the mineral in his laboratory but was unsuccessful. It took scientists almost another 100 years before perfecting the process that enables the growth of silicon carbide crystals in the lab.
All moissanites on the market today are lab grown. These manmade or synthetic gemstones are in both chemical composition and aesthetic quality the same as gemstones found in nature. Synthetic gemstones are created by mimicking the similar natural environments in which they occur. Scientists are able to control the production speed and quality, which is why moissanites and other synthetic gemstones can be much less expensive than their natural counterparts.
The Forever Brilliant and Forever One Moissanites—the two premium collections of moissanite we carry from makers Charles & Colvard–are brighter and measure similar to the standard diamond colors. The Forever Brilliant Collection is a better match for those who prefer warmer tones while the Forever One DEF collection is created for those who want no “hint” of color in their moissanite. In addition, we handpick all of our moissanites.
Lab-Grown Gemstones are also a great alternative. A lab-created gemstone is identical to the natural gemstone it replicates in every way: color, hardness, composition, luster, and sparkle!
The only difference between natural gemstones and lab-grown options is the environment the stones are grown in. All our lab-grown gemstone options are through some of the best brands in the market, such as Chatham and Pure Grown Diamonds. We duo-screen all our stones for quality and consistency, both in natural and lab-grown options, prior to mounting the stones into our products. Our strict process allows us to seamlessly handcraft each unique piece with precise detail and uniformity.
Browse Our Selection
See our Rosados Box collection, featuring moissanites in more than 950 ring designs in a variation of metal colors and stone shapes.
And, the best part is that moissanites are 100% fairly traded and conflict free–no blood was ever shed, no human suffering ever endured, in their production, guaranteeing that the gems you choose to symbolize your love truly are made with–and from–love.0