Difference Between Cubic Zirconia and Diamond

Cubic Zirconia vs Diamond

Cubic zirconia and diamond are two of the most popular gemstones used in different kinds of jewelry. Cubic zirconia and diamond strongly resemble each other in terms of visual appearance. They are oftentimes thought to be the same by people with an untrained eye.

Cubic zirconia

Cubic zirconia is a cubic crystalline made of zirconium dioxide that was first discovered in 1892. In 1937, it was discovered again by two German mineralogists named M. V. Stackelberg and K. Chudoba and was made into a synthetic gemstone by melting zirconium dioxide and yttrium or calcium oxide together. Since 1976, cubic zirconia has been the diamond’s most significant and cost-effective competition.


Diamond is a natural substance made out of carbon which is formed at conditions with high temperature and high pressure in the Earth’s mantle. Diamond is the hardest substance which can be found in nature. Although diamonds are known to be naturally made, there are also diamonds that are produced synthetically through a high-pressure high-temperature process. Diamonds are often called a woman’s best friend in popular culture.

Difference between Cubic Zirconia and Diamond

Diamonds are among the most durable substance in nature while cubic zirconias are less than durable than diamonds. A colorless diamond is rare while a colorless cubic zirconia is not uncommon. Diamonds are good thermal conductors. On the other hand, cubic zirconias are thermal insulators which make it easy for people, who have the right instrument, to tell the two gemstones apart. Cubic zirconias are heavy while diamonds are not, with each cubic zirconia weighing about 1.7 times more than a diamond of the same size. Plus, cubic zirconias are very lustrous while diamonds are not. Cubic zirconias are cheap, too. On the other hand, diamonds are really expensive.

Because of cubic zirconias’ and diamonds’ beautiful and lustrous appearance and extreme durability, they are both loved by people and are among the best selling gemstones in the market. And even though cubic zirconias are just considered as synthetic copies of diamonds, they are still valuable and are treated highly by consumers.

In brief:

• Cubic zirconias are synthetically made while diamonds are normally made naturally in nature.

• Cubic zirconias tend to be more lustrous than diamonds when light shines on them.