Zircon and Cubic Zirconia - Not The Same Gemstones

by Vidya Lakshmi September 02, 2020 4 min read

Zircon and Cubic Zirconia - Not The Same Gemstones

Hey readers! Hope y’all are doing great. We are super excited about today’s post because it’s something we must definitely know!

We’ve talked about, diamonds, moissanite, and Swarovski before, but we haven’t covered this super important gemstone - Zircon. Now there’s this common misconception that zircon and cubic zirconias are one and the same gem. Until we did our research we thought so too. But in fact, they are not. Zircon is very much different from Cubic Zirconia, due to a lot of different factors. And as gemstone enthusiasts, we must know these things. So today we’re just gonna look at everything that makes Cubic Zirconia and Zircon two very different gemstones.

What They Are

Zircon is said to be one of the oldest naturally occurring gemstones. It’s believed to have been used since ancient times. It’s said that there is a mention of zircon even in the bible. That’s how old it is. It’s older than diamonds even. Plus there are no synthetic or man-made versions of Zircon. It’s mostly a naturally occurring mineral.

zircon

Cubic Zirconia is a new discovery comparatively. It was discovered in the 1930s. The biggest difference is that CZ is considered to be the best man-made diamond simulant. This means it’s lab made mostly. Although there is some naturally occurring CZ available, since it’s very rare, and most CZ stones are created artificially in labs.

Origin

Okay so let’s look at their origins first. If you have looked at our post about the differences between moissanite and CZ stones, we’ve talked a whole lot about the history and origin of cubic zirconia. But just to recap on that, we’ll just go through the origin of zircon and then quickly go through the origin of CZ too.

Zircon, as we said earlier, is one of the oldest gemstones on earth. The oldest crystal of zircon is said to be more than 4 billion years old. Zircon is made of zirconium silicate, which is why it’s got the name zircon. And again, most of the zircon is found naturally occurring, just a very limited amount is man-made.

Cubic Zirconia, on the other hand, was discovered in 1930 by two mineralogists. It was initially used in laser tech by the Russians. It was not used in jewelry till 1970. When people started noticing that it looks exactly like a diamond, it came to be called the most affordable diamond simulant. Most of CZ is man-made because the naturally occurring form is not very common. And it’s made of zirconium oxide, very different from zirconium silicate.

Color

The two gemstones look very similar to diamonds in their colorless form. But this colorless version of zircon is considered quite cheap. The colored ones are valued more, with green being the most valuable. The best thing about zircons is that they are available in a variety of colors depending on the elements present in them. This is not under our control so they can be anything. Also, it is said that some zircons have radioactive material in them as well. These are said to be treated and made safe for use in jewelry. Sometimes, a certain color of zircon may be treated to form another color too. 

cubic zirconia

Cubic Zirconia as we all know is mostly colorless and flawless because it’s manmade of course. There’s also pink, blue, orange, and green but the most common is colorless. The more they look like diamonds, the more valuable they are.

Costs

Okay now coming to costs, both gemstones are definitely much cheaper than diamonds. And everyone already knows that CZs are the most affordable diamond look-alikes. This means Zircons are obviously more expensive than Cubic Zirconia stones. And of course, naturally occurring gems are considered more valuable in the market. While you can buy zircon jewelry from a minimum of $75, you could find the same amount of Cubic Zirconia for around $20. There is just a slight difference in the prices but Zircons are still a bit more expensive than Cubic Zirconias.

Durability

Now that we’ve compared origins, values, and colors, let’s talk about durability. CZ stones are just a little softer than diamonds with an 8.5 rating on the Mohs scale. This means they are quite hard and are very much suitable for everyday use. If you just care for them a little, they can last very long. On the other hand, zircons are much softer with a rating of 6 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale. This means they are easily scratched and can even break. It is said that frequent exposure to sunlight causes zircons to change color. So if you’re wearing these stones, you might have to take some extra care. 

Some Final Thoughts

Alright guys, now if you’re confused about which stone is better, let us help you out a bit. There is no better stone actually. All gemstones are beautiful in their own way. Your choice is affected mostly by your circumstances. You really need to give it some thought and figure out why you’re buying a gemstone in the first place. If you're just trying to add more jewelry to your collection and would just be wearing them every once in a while, then it’s totally alright to choose zircons. They are naturally occurring, you get different colors, and they’re not too expensive. 

However, if you’re looking for everyday jewelry you really need something more durable. Again if you're looking for something more diamond-like then CZs are the best. They look just like diamonds and need minimal care. They are great for everyday use and are super affordable. So guys, it really depends on your needs. 

Alright, everyone, that brings us to the end of today’s post. Hope all this info helps you out. We’ll be back again soon with a brand new post. Let us know in the comments which gemstones you prefer. And have a look at some of our popular CZ jewelry if you’d like to buy some.

Luzon Necklace

Morpho Crystal Necklace

Queen Ring


Talk Soon. Bye!


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Up Your Accessorising Game

Five Spring-Summer Jewelry Trends to Look Out for This 2021
Five Spring-Summer Jewelry Trends to Look Out for This 2021

by Vidya Lakshmi March 08, 2021 3 min read

Here's another update on the jewelry trends for this year, just so you know what's in and what's out this season. 

Read More
Everything You Need to Know About Opals
Everything You Need to Know About Opals

by Vidya Lakshmi February 23, 2021 4 min read

Today's blog post is about Opals, their history, how they are formed and some of the superstition surrounding them.
Read More
5 Lifestyle Changes To Start Living Your Best Life Today
5 Lifestyle Changes To Start Living Your Best Life Today

by Vidya Lakshmi February 08, 2021 5 min read

Hey Everyone, Today's post is a little different. Just some simple changes we can make to our routines so we can live our best lives. Hope you enjoy reading it.
Read More