Zirconium dioxide, or cubic zirconia, as it is better known, is zirconium dioxide in the cubic crystalline form. It’s a naturally hard material that is usually colorless and generally produces a flawless diamond-like “gem.” It comes in many sizes, shapes and colors. It’s virtually undetectable visually from a genuine diamond, which makes it a choice as a good substitution for diamonds, first beginning about 1976. A lot of people today use cubic zirconia as a replacement for diamonds in jewelry like earrings, rings, bracelets, necklaces, or just about anything else that might normally use a diamond.
But why not go for the real thing? Why not get a real diamond bracelet instead of an “artificial” bracelet? Although there are many reasons a person might give as to why they prefer the zirconia, it normally all boils down to money. The substitute for a diamond is much more affordable. A nice sized diamond ring could cost over a thousand dollars depending on the quality of diamond where a cubic zirconia ring could cost fifty dollars or less, even when placed in real gold.
You can find zirconia in any setting you might find a diamond in, from solid yellow or solid white gold, to solid silver, plated silver or gold, and many other types of settings, too. With high-quality cubic zirconia readily available, you no longer have to spend literally thousands of dollars on a diamond, especially if you’re afraid you might have the diamond misplaced or stolen.
With just a little bit of money invested in zirconia, you probably feel better about wearing your jewelry in public, too. Let’s face it; if you’re wearing a large and expensive real diamond (or several), how safe are you going to feel wearing it out in public? That’s why many people keep it safe at home or in a safe, and only wear it for special occasions. That’s not a concern with cubic zirconia, and you can wear it anywhere you want — and even if you lose it, its replacement cost is modest.
It’s also much safer to give young people jewelry if they want something like a diamond, but aren’t yet quite responsible enough to have something like that. Let’s say you have a favorite niece, for example, that you want to buy some special diamond earrings for. However, she’s not quite ready for the responsibility, and she may lose them. Instead, why not buy her a pair of sparkly zirconia “diamond look alike” earrings, and save the real diamonds for when she’s more mature?
Today’s cubic zirconia creation and design is much more sophisticated than it was previously, and in fact most “ordinary” people can’t tell the difference between a diamond and zirconia. Of course, trained eyes can spot the difference, but that’s not important to many people. And what that also means is that if you have cubic zirconia, you don’t have to worry about being thought of as someone who wears a “fake” diamond, since only you will know the difference.
This simulated diamond can be found in many different stores. Online stores, catalogs, and even department stores will carry jewelry with cubic zirconia. The affordability and the ease of shopping for these “diamond like” jewelry make them a popular choice for many people for a variety of reasons.