While most people are familiar with diamonds, many don’t realize that they aren’t the only option available when it comes to precious gemstones. White sapphire and moissanite are also underrated gems known to sparkle in ways that other stones can’t, making them appealing as engagement rings or other jewelry pieces.
White sapphire and moissanite are both great alternatives to diamonds but have considerable differences that make them different from each other in almost every way imaginable. If you’re stuck in a dilemma to choose between white sapphire vs moissanite, consider the following comparison between these two gemstones to make an ideal decision.
1. Cutting Style
Both are cut in a brilliant style, meaning their brilliance is maximized as much as possible. However, as you may already know, white sapphire has an additional surface layer of rutile and corundum called luster, whereas moissanite’s luster is created by its coating. In moissanite’s case, it’s a crystal-like structure called zirconium oxide. Regardless of which you choose to go with, both require special care to maintain their sparkle.
2. Visual Appearance
The visual appearance of white sapphire is quite different from that of moissanite. While moissanite has a crisp, clean look, white sapphire’s color is not as bright or as clear. These stones differ in transparency; while white sapphire ranges from opaque to translucent, moissanite is more transparent, allowing more light to pass through. As for luster, one can say that these two stones have very different appearances in terms of their shine.
Hardness is one of the most commonly cited differences between white sapphire and moissanite. When it comes to gemstones, hardness measures how well a stone resists scratching; in other words, it refers to how easily you can chafe a particular gem with another object. A hard material has a high Mohs Hardness Scale rating; an example of a highly-hard material is diamond. Both gemstones are ranked highly on the Mohs Stone Hardness Scale, with sapphire rated 9.0 and moissanite at 9.5.
While both materials are more than capable of lasting a lifetime, moissanite is significantly stronger. Its toughness is on par with titanium, while white sapphire is only slightly harder than calcite, meaning it’s probably not going to stand up to everyday wear and tear. Go with moissanite if you want a gem that can weather even toddler-level clumsiness. The durability of any jewelry depends on the care and maintenance you provide.
Since there are few sources of genuine, natural white sapphires in existence, their availability is quite limited. Natural white sapphires have been mined for many centuries, but few have been found. This exclusivity makes natural white sapphire a luxury item for many jewelers.
However, when it comes to synthetic gems, moissanite is more accessible to consumers than sapphire, making it a battle of equal footing. Unfortunately for moissanite, many white sapphires are mined in remote locations, increasing their perceived value.
While white sapphire is still hard to find, it is a popular choice among brides. This can make finding it difficult, which means that many jewelers may charge higher prices due to low supply and high demand. Since moissanite is more readily available than white sapphire, jewelry-store owners will likely charge less for these gemstones.
White sapphire and moissanite are both very attractive options if you’re looking to buy engagement rings or other jewelry pieces, but it may be difficult to know what’s right for you. Learn about the key differences between white sapphire and moissanite yourself. You’ll find all the information you need to make an informed decision.
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