Over time your plated items will need to be re-plated. Contact your local jeweler for information on plating services.
On the Mohs Scale, which measures the hardness of minerals, simulated diamonds are an 8.0 to 8.5. Ruby, sapphire and diamond are all harder substances, but simulated stones are still very durable. It is important to understand that hardness is not necessarily related to durability. Even though diamond is the hardest mineral (10.0 on the Mohs Scale), it can still be chipped or broken.
The only ways to tell the difference between simulated diamonds and diamonds are by use of a thermal probe, by weighing the loose stone or by microscopic examination of surface features and inclusions. Simulated diamonds weigh approximately 65% more than diamonds. Therefore, while a 6.25 mm round diamond weighs about 1.00 carat, the same size simulated diamond weighs about 1.65 carats. If you know the weight of a simulated diamond, you can figure out the diamond weight equivalent by multiplying its weight by 0.6, or 60%.
Brilliance: The white light leaving a jewel, traveling upward, which is visible to the eye. Brilliance is sometimes referred to as “sparkle.”
Dispersion: Flashes of rainbow colors. Also called “fire.”
Hardness: Resistance to scratching. The higher the number, the more resistant.
Luster: The shininess of a jewel.
Toughness: Resistance to breakage.
Chrome diopside, also called Russian diopside, offers an intense forest green color. Because it is the most affordable gemstone with a pure, rich green color, many jewelry designers predict chrome diopside will be the world’s leading emerald substitute by the end of the decade. It is mostly available in smaller sizes, with the rare larger sizes becoming much more expensive and too dark. A 26.17ct oval cut chrome diopside may be the largest known example of the faceted stone, but there is also a 25.33ct stone that is brighter and more intense in color.
Chrome diopside is relatively soft, with a hardness of 5.5 on the Mohs Scale. Mostly mined in Yakutia and Siberia, the liberalization of the economy of the former Soviet Union has made chrome diopside more available, and more popular, than ever before.