Everything You Need To Know About Cubic Zirconia Gemstones And Jewelry
Women love their diamonds; they are a girl’s BFF for a reason. However, cubic zirconia is a close friend as well. In fact, after you read this, CZ might just become your go-to for everyday jewelry.
What Is Cubic Zirconia?
Although properties that would lead CZ to become one of the world’s most popular gemstones were discovered in 1937 by two German mineralogists, it would be decades before it was given much thought. Both in its natural state and a melted state, zirconium oxide created cube-shaped crystals.
In the ’60s, scientists started looking for cheaper gemstones than diamonds to use in their lasers and other equipment. That’s when they first started looking to creating synthetic, or artificial, diamonds. That’s when cubic zirconia began to grow in popularity.
Around 1977, processes were finally in place to make the synthetic gems in larger and cheaper quantities. By the 1980s, CZ became popular in jewelry making. Simply speaking, cubic zirconia is a “fake” diamond that looks incredibly realistic but is less costly.
Metaphysical Properties Even With Synthetic Diamonds (CZ)
If you’re into metaphysics, cubic zirconia exhibits some of the same properties as zirconium. It is resistant to corrosion and used in artificial joint replacement. Some people believe that it can improve your focus, release the ego, and gives your intuition clarity. While not everyone believes in the healing properties of metals and natural materials, it’s fun to study. In astrology, it is linked to the month of April and the zodiac signs of Aries and Taurus.
How Cubic Zirconia and Diamonds Compare
Cubic zirconia can be found in nature, but it’s scarce. It can, however, be made easily in a lab. Just because it’s synthetic doesn’t mean it’s of bad quality. A good CZ gem can be nearly indistinguishable from natural diamonds.
Diamonds are an unbelievably hard element; CZ is hard but not quite a match for diamonds. They can cut glass and do make suitable components in lasers and other scientific equipment. CZ also tends to weigh a little more than diamonds do.
What about the sparkly quality everyone loves with diamonds? As it turns out, in smaller stones, CZ is actually even more reflective and shiny than diamonds. The larger the stones are, though, the more the difference in the two shows. Cubic zirconia rates higher on the dispersion and refractive index than diamonds do, so they sparkle quite a bit but not quite as brilliantly as diamonds.
Because they are man-made in a lab, cubic zirconia gems are always flawless. Flawless diamonds, on the other hand, are extremely rare and very expensive. If you’re looking to flaunt perfect jewels, CZ might be your best bet.
While most CZ gems are made clear to look like diamonds, since they are synthetic, they can be made in a whole rainbow of colors. This can make for some fun and unique jewelry options.
Finally, cubic zirconia gems are a lot cheaper than diamonds. A 1K CZ ring can be less than $100, while a diamond version of the same ring could be as much as ten times more expensive.
What Are The Benefits of Cubic Zirconia Jewelry?
Cubic zirconia charms, rings, necklaces, bracelets, and earrings are trendy in the US and have allowed women to expand their jewelry collections without tremendous cost. While they are synthetic rather than a precious natural stone, they still have a very high quality to them. Here are some of the benefits of buying jewelry made with CZ gems.
#1. Substitute Your Authentic Diamonds With CZ For Insurance Protection
Did you know that the sparkly jewels we see celebrities wearing at events are often CZ replicas of more expensive diamond pieces? Using cubic zirconia to sub for diamonds is safer in the event of theft or other accidents. This goes for everyday people. You might feel more comfortable wearing cubic zirconia for daily casual wear and only bring out your authentic diamonds for special events or occasions. The differences between diamonds and synthetics are so slight; no one will be able to tell the difference anyway.
#2. Save Money And Grow Your Collection
Precious gems like diamonds and rubies are not cheap. They can cost hundreds, thousands, and even more, depending on the size and quality of the gem. While you can still drop some cash on larger pieces, CZ jewelry is considerably cheaper than diamond jewelry. Switching to synthetic diamonds will allow you to own a lot more jewelry because of the cost savings. Since CZ comes in many colors, you can also have diamond-like stones in unique colors bringing fun to your jewelry stash.
#3. CZ Is Less Conflicted Than The Diamond Trade
Diamonds are often mined in war zones and sold to help finance wars, insurgencies, and other conflicts. While the jewelry industry tries only to sell gems certified conflict-free, it is nearly impossible to make sure you never accidentally buy a conflicted diamond. If you want to make sure your purchases are conflict-free, then go for the cubic zirconia since you will always know exactly where it came from and that it was not illegally obtained or have a sorted history.
How To Care For Your Cubic Zirconia Jewelry
While it is a very durable material, CZ can get dirty and dull quite quickly. You can use a soft brush and hot water to clean your gems. Soap is not a necessity; just polish with the brush using hot water and rinse. Finally, pat it dry with a clean cloth. If you want to get fancy, you can use a sonic or steam device to clean your CZ jewelry.