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All About Diamonds: The Origins of a Girl’s Best Friend

by Kate Sauble

Good things do come to those who wait, especially if you’re a diamond merchant, a woman who likes to have a few “best friends” in her jewelry box, or a miner looking to strike it rich.

Striking a new diamond friendship could just be what a woman needs, especially if there is a diamond wedding ring in her future. If you are looking for gift ideas, such as for birthday gifts, then a diamond ring could just be what you need. 

Sure, weddings are an ideal time for diamonds, but you can always buy friend rings as a friendship promise. Yes, this is quite a common practice! Whether you want friendship rings or a wedding band, there’s nothing that comes close to a real diamond. Showing your love with matching rings for couples is a fantastic idea! 

If you think the line at the jewelry store is long during Christmas shopping season or close to Valentine’s Day, it’s nothing compared to the process that creates that sparkling, multi-faceted stone that raised prices and heartbeats.

How diamonds are formed

The evolution of a typical diamond is literally thousands, if not millions of years long. Extreme heat and pressure hundreds of miles under the earth’s surface over prolonged periods transformed hunks of pure carbon into diamond crystals.

Volcanic activity, which results in molten lava rushing like white water in rivers, brings these diamonds to or near the surface via pipes or conduits in the earth’s crust. As they rise to the surface, they cool. Exactly where and how this process occurs will determine the diamond weight, diamond size, and diamond shape. 

They were first found and mined in India well over two dozen centuries ago, but as time went on, they were also discovered in various African countries, Canada, Russia, and Australia. Currently, about two dozen countries on five continents account for most natural diamonds on Earth.

An interesting fact is that although most of us known diamonds as being clear, there are actually black diamonds out there, and yes, some people do think that these look stunning too. 

What is a diamond?

The hardest known natural substances on Earth are also the only gemstones made of just one element (carbon). While most are colorless after creation, some can take on various colors from a variety of other minerals and materials that they come into contact with during their long, gradual trip up to the Earth’s surface. Those colors can be yellow (sulfur and manganese), brown, blue, red, green, orange and pink.

Diamonds are generally indestructible and are the only natural substances that can scratch or cut other diamonds.

Man-made diamonds

Not all diamonds form deep inside the surface of the Earth. Some come from either man-made scientific laboratories or from outer space in meteorites and asteroids. Man-made diamonds have been around for about six decades, and are more prevalent than natural ones, but are also mostly used for industrial purposes.

Approximately 80 percent of the natural diamonds mined each year go toward industrial purposes, and four times as many diamonds are synthetically created to go into industrial use. For this reason, the diamond demand at this time is very high, both for personal and industrial applications. Approximately 25 million carats of natural diamonds go toward jewelry each year, another 80 million carats of natural diamonds go toward industrial use, and an additional 570 million carats of lab-manufactured synthetic diamonds are created for industrial purposes.

That doesn’t mean diamonds are any less valued these days. In fact, the average price of diamonds has increased about 44 percent over the last six years.

Whether friendship gifts, a 21st birthday gift, an 80th birthday gift, or for that special somebody, a diamond always makes for a fantastic purchase. Therefore, if you are looking for a jewelry gift for that special somebody, you might want to check out some of the online retailers as listed below. 

Recommended Jewelers

James Allen

James Allen logo

James Allen is the most competitive diamond vendor with more than 150,000 loose diamonds in inventory. They have been a leader in selling diamonds online and pioneered 3D imaging so you can see the exact diamond you're buying in exquisite detail. You'll find it hard to beat James Allen in terms of price or selection. Read our James Allen review.

Shop James Allen »


Whiteflash logo

Whiteflash is the home of "A Cut Above" diamonds which are among the best quality round- and princess-cut diamonds in the world. With superior diamond photographs and videos, Whiteflash's diamonds seem to come to life -- even online. Read our Whiteflash review.

Shop Whiteflash »

Brilliant Earth

Brilliant Earth logo

Brilliant Earth is the global leader in ethically-sourced jewelry. Brilliant Earth goes above and beyond existing standards to offer “Beyond Conflict Free Diamonds” that they select for their ethical and environmentally-responsible origins. With over 120,000 diamonds in inventory, you can be sure to find your perfect diamond and feel good knowing it was responsibly-sourced. Read our Brilliant Earth review.

Shop Brilliant Earth »

Blue Nile

Blue Nile logo

Blue Nile is the world's largest online jeweler. Their reputation for quality and customer service is unparalleled in the industry. Blue Nile offers free shipping, a 30-day return policy and satisfaction guarantee. Read our Blue Nile review.

Shop Blue Nile »

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