Moissanite FAQ

WHAT IS MOISSANITE? 

Moissanite is a rare, naturally occurring mineral also known as silicon carbide. Moissanite is grown using a thermal growing process that creates silicon carbide crystals. These crystals are fashioned into moissanite gemstones that rival any natural gemstone for fire and brilliance.

 

IS MOISSANITE A BRAND OF DIAMOND OR A SIMULATED DIAMOND? 

No. Moissanite is not a substitute for diamond, either scientifically, chemically or emotionally. Created moissanite is a unique gem with its own set of chemical and optical properties that exhibit more fire and brilliance than any other gemstone.

 

IS MOISSANITE AN IDEAL CUT STONE? 

Moissanite gemstones are cut according to exact angles and proportions specific to moissanite. When cutting moissanite, precision is critical to maximizing its brilliance and enhancing its incredible fire.

 

HOW IS MOISSANITE GRADED FOR CLARITY?

Like a diamond, moissanite is graded using a 10x jeweler’s loupe to identify any imperfections that may affect it’s optical performance. Typically, moissanite is grading according to the GIA (Gemological Institute of America) clarity scale, which ranges from Internally Flawless (IF) to Included (I). 

 

HOW DOES MOISSANITE COMPARE TO OTHER GEMSTONES ON KEY GEMOLOGICAL PROPERTIES?

Moissanite is comparable to other popular gemstones including diamond, ruby, sapphire and emerald on key characteristics such as hardness, fire and brilliance. Based on the Brilliance Refractive Index, moissanite is more brilliant than any other gemstone, ranging from 2.65-2.69 on the scale. Its fire dispersion is over 4x greater than any other popular gemstone. On the MOHs hardness scale, moissanite comes in second only to a diamond, measuring at 9.25. In addition, moissanite's durability is excellent, meaning it will survive daily wear and tear.

 

WHAT PROPERTY OF MOISSANITE MAKES IT SPARKLE WITH SUCH EXCEPTIONAL BRILLIANCE?

The most significant optical property affecting a gemstone’s sparkle is its refractive index or R.I. This is a measure of the gem's ability to  capture, bend and reflect light coming through the stone. The refractive index of moissanite ranges from 2.65 to 2.69, meaning it displays more brilliance than diamond (with a BRI of 2.42) or any other popular gemstone.

 

WHAT GIVES MOISSANITE ITS FIRE? 

A gemstone’s fire is determined by a gemological property called dispersion. Dispersion refers to the prism effect that occurs when pure white light enters a non-opaque object, breaks into spectral (rainbow) colors, and reflects back to the viewer. Moissanite’s dispersion is 0.104, which exceeds that of any gemstone including diamond, ruby, sapphire and emerald. 

 

DO OTHER GEMSTONES HAVE MORE FIRE THAN MOISSANITE? 

Moissanite's fire exceeds that of any popular gemstone, including diamond, ruby, sapphire and emerald. Fire can be measured scientifically; with a dispersion of 0.104, moissanite has 2.4 times the fire of diamond. 

 

WILL MOISSANITE FADE OR CHANGE COLOR OVER TIME?

No. There are no likely situations in which the color of moissanite will be permanently changed. Moissanite does undergo a temporary color change when exposed to extreme heat from a jeweler’s torch during jewelry repair, but with proper bench techniques there will be no lasting damage and the stone will return to its normal color once it cools.

 

IS MOISSANITE GRADED ON THE GIA DIAMOND COLOR GRADING SCALE?

Moissanite grading uses a color grading scale that is based upon the GIA diamond color grading scale. There are three grades of moissanite available today: colorless (D-E-F range), near-colorless (G-H-I range) and with faint hues of color (J-K range).

 

DOES MOISSANITE HAVE INCLUSIONS?

Yes. Moissanite can have needle-like inclusions that can be seen under 10x magnification. They are not visible to the naked eye and do not affect the clarity of the stone. It’s worth noting that nearly every gem has some sort of inclusion. They are unique to each gemstone and occur in the formation of the crystalline structure.

 

DO YOU OFFER JEWELRY WITH COLORED STONES?

Yes, certain styles are offered with colored gems. These lab grown colored gemstones include lab grown blue and pink sapphires, as well as lab grown rubies. Just like moissanite, these colored gemstones are identical to those that are mined from the earth, chemically, optically and physically. The only differences are in cost and environmental impact.

 

IS MOISSANITE RESISTANT TO SCRATCHING? 

Yes. Moissanite is durable, tough and extremely resistant to scratching and abrasion. With a hardness of 9.25-9.50, moissanite is harder than all other gemstones except diamond. 

 

DOES MOISSANITE BREAK EASILY? 

No. Moissanite is one of the toughest known gemstones. 

 

IS MOISSANITE HEAT RESISTANT? 

Yes. Moissanite exhibits more heat resistance than many other gemstones, including diamond. Tests prove that at 2000ºF—higher than the equivalent intensity of a house fire—moissanite gems remain intact and as brilliant as the day they were created. This heat tolerance makes moissanite unlikely to suffer damage during jewelry repair.

 

HOW CAN MOISSANITE BE DISTINGUISHED FROM OTHER COLORLESS GEMSTONES? 

There are five (5) methods: 

1. Determine if doubling of facet junctions is visible through magnification. 

2. Use a jeweler’s loupe to examine the girdle of the stone for engraving. 

3. Examine for needle-like inclusions, typically perpendicular to the table facet, which are visible in moissanite under 10x loupe magnification. 

4. Examine for specific refractive and gravity indices. 

5. Have a trained gemologist or jeweler use a testing device specifically designed to distinguish moissanite from diamond.

 

WHY IS MOISSANITE SOLD BY MILLIMETER RATHER THAN BY CARAT WEIGHT? 

The carat is the traditional unit of measurement for a diamond’s weight. Moissanite is not measured in carats because it weighs approximately 10 percent less than diamond. For example, a 6.5mm round diamond would weigh 1.0ct, while a 6.5mm round moissanite would weigh 0.88ct. The two stones would be the same size – 6.5mm in diameter. All stones for sale are listed with their size in millimeters and the diamond equivalent weight (DEW) in carats. 

 

HOW SHOULD I CARE FOR MY MOISSANITE JEWELRY? 

You may clean moissanite the same way you would diamond or any other fine gemstone. As with any fine jewelry item, an ultrasonic cleaner can be used. However, it is best to be gentle with your valuable treasures. You can also clean your moissanite jewelry using a commercial (non-acid based) jewelry cleaner or with mild soap and water using a soft toothbrush. Typical jewelry settings designed with 14K gold can be cleaned with the typical jewelry cleaner for gold jewelry. Plated jewelry, such as Platineve or silver plated with gold or platinum, should be cared for as per the designer’s instructions. Further, plated jewelry should not be cleaned in a heated ultra-sonic cleaner, soaked in jewelry cleaner for extended amounts of time, exposed to harsh chemicals (bleach, ammonia, etc.), pools or hot tubs. 

 

THERE IS A HAZE OR FILM ON THE STONE, TRIED CLEANING IT BUT IT WON’T COME OFF, IS THIS NORMAL? 

Gemstones are exposed to many different elements when you wear them. Because of this, an organic build-up or “film” can occur on created gemstones such as moissanite. It is not harmful to the gemstone however it cannot be removed with over the counter jewelry cleaner or with a jewelry store cleaning. This film can be easily removed with a Sunshine Polishing Cloth. Another option that works well would be to use any silversmith polish that can be found in your local hardware or grocery store. Feel free to contact our Customer Service department with any specific questions related to cleaning moissanite. 

 

CAN MOISSANITE WITHSTAND REPAIRS AND SIZING? 

Yes. Moissanite is an extremely stable material. It is durable, tough and highly resistant to scratching, abrasion, breaking and chipping. Its high heat tolerance makes moissanite very unlikely to experience damage during jewelry repair. 

 

CAN MOISSANITE GEMSTONES BE RE-SET INTO NEW JEWELRY? 

Yes. Resetting your moissanite gemstone(s) into a new piece of jewelry can be done by an experienced jeweler. Jewelry designers and manufacturers create their jewelry collections featuring created moissanite using techniques very similar to those practiced by bench jewelers.