De Beers’ Lightbox lab-grown diamond brand is trialing sales of engagement rings — a major shift for the company, which previously insisted synthetic stones were not a product for important milestones.
The retailer is publicizing lab-grown diamond engagement rings on its home page, promising a “stress-free and risk-free” shopping experience. “Our cutting-edge technology ensures each of our lab-grown diamonds are quality guaranteed,” the site reads, with the marketing line: “Because great chemistry deserves great chemistry.”
A link takes viewers to a page listing 16 items featuring regular Lightbox lab-grown diamonds, or stones from the brand’s Finest line, which have higher color and clarity. The standard collection usually sells for $800 per carat plus the cost of the setting, while Finest retails at $1,500 per carat. The selection includes white, pink and blue stones, with prices ranging from $500 for a three-stone ring to $5,000 for 2 carats.
Lightbox was unavailable for comment on Sunday, but told Women’s Wear Daily (WWD) and JCK it was running “a small in-market test of consumer preferences in the lab-grown diamond engagement ring segment.”
When De Beers launched Lightbox in 2018, Bruce Cleaver, the miner’s CEO at the time, presented lab-grown as a product that “may not be forever, but is perfect for right now,” claimed there was “no real emotional value in lab-grown diamonds, because they’re not unique,” and said the stones did not warrant grading. It later debuted the Finest line, introduced stones larger than 1 carat, and started declaring the cut quality, color and clarity of its stones.
Image: An engagement ring featuring a round brilliant, 2-carat, colorless, VVS+ lab-grown diamond from Lightbox’s Finest collection, priced at $5,000. (Lightboxjewelry.com)