Conflict-Free Diamond Guarantee
As part of our comprehensive commitment to environmental responsibility, Moissanite Bridal uses recycled precious metals in all of our fine jewelry, guaranteeing our customers an eco-friendly jewelry product of the highest quality. All of our diamonds are guaranteed to be conflict-free from responsible sources. Our conflict-free diamonds are free from violence and other human rights abuses and are produced with minimal environmental impact.
What is a conflict diamond?
Conflict diamonds have funded devastating civil wars in Africa, ending millions of lives. These conflict diamonds, also known as "blood diamonds", are associated with human rights abuses including violence and worker exploitation, as well as environmental damage.
Our conflict-free diamond guarantee
We guarantee that all diamonds sold at Moissanite Bridal are certified conflict-free under the United Nations (UN) Kimberley Process. These diamonds are carefully tracked to ensure they originate from ethical and environmentally responsible sources.
The Kimberley Process
After much media attention and public outcry, the Kimberley Process was created in 2003 to address the problem of conflict diamonds. A voluntary and self-policing international certification system, the Kimberley Process established standards for certifying the origin of rough diamonds, with member countries pledging not to import or export rough diamonds tainted by conflict.
Recycled Precious Metals
Unfortunately, the Kimberley Process doesn't oversee other human rights abuses, including child labor, government-sponsored violence and worker exploitation. Currently, it only addresses the narrow UN definition of conflict diamonds as "diamonds used to fund conflicts against recognized governments," despite the fact that some recognized governments—in Zimbabwe, Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, for instance—have shown little regard for the human rights of their citizenry.
To date, the Kimberley Process also ignores cutting and polishing centers as an entry point for conflict diamonds to enter general circulation. Global Witness documents how inadequate government regulation over cutting and polishing factories can allow conflict or illicit diamonds to enter legitimate channels of trade. Because the Kimberley Process only oversees diamond mines and has no oversight over cutting and polishing facilities, child labor and other documented human rights violations in manufacturing centers remain unregulated.
It remains to be seen whether the Kimberley Process will strengthen its system of oversight. Meanwhile, violent groups across the world continue to exploit the loose controls of the Kimberley Process to traffic illicit diamonds for profit. In its October 2007 report, Global Witness estimates that an illegal trade in rough diamonds worth $10.2 million may be taking place between Kimberley Process participant and non-participant countries.
Metal mining - and gold mining in particular - is one of the most environmentally destructive types of mining, with 20 tons of ore required to produce enough gold for a single ring. Many gold mines also release cyanide and mercury into nearby water sources and are associated with poor safety standards, inhumane labor practices, and disregard for the rights and interests of indigenous peoples.
By using recycled metals, we decrease the global demand for newly mined gold and diminish the environmentally and socially destructive effects of dirty gold and other metal mining practices. Because precious metals can be recycled repeatedly with no degradation in quality, they are a naturally renewable resource.
Moissanite Bridal's reclaimed metals come from numerous post-consumer sources, including existing jewelry, industrial-use metals, and electronics components. Every piece we cast is made with 100% recycled and re-refined precious metals. Because our reclaimed gold, silver, and platinum are re-refined back into their pure elements, they are of identical quality to newly mined metals. Whenever possible, we select findings (pre-fabricated sub-components found in certain pieces of jewelry) made of 100% recycled metals or we cast findings ourselves with recycled precious metals.
Moissanite Bridal is also offering a limited edition gold pendant made from one of the first sources of independently certified fair trade gold. For this pendant, we have partnered with Oro Verde, which specializes in gold responsibly harvested from cooperatives in the Choco region in Colombia, South America. In addition to paying a fair wage, the fair trade gold cooperatives ensure the use of environmentally responsible practices. The cooperatives do not use harmful chemicals, they restore ecosystems damaged by other mining companies, and they work to promote the well-being of local communities.
Responsible Jewelry Production
Renewed (Recycled) precious metals are an important component of our commitment to the environment, but we also practice environmental responsibility throughout the jewelry production process. For example, we employ a vapor emissions cleaning system and a rigorous process of cleaning liquid emissions to prevent contaminants from being released into the environment.
Additionally, we are committed to responsible labor practices. Many jewelers outsource their production to countries where labor and environmental standards are weak or poorly enforced. While this may reduce cost, it often comes at the expense of product quality as well as worker health and safety. All Moissanite Bridal jewelry is crafted in the United States with the strictest labor and safety practices.
About Our Eco-friendly Jewelry
Moissanite Bridal's recycled gold, silver, and platinum are re-refined back into pure elements before being remixed into alloys and cast into our own unique pieces.
A pure metal that has been combined with another metal for structural or aesthetic purposes is called an "alloy." 18K and 14K gold are alloys of pure 24K gold and other metals, such as silver, copper or nickel. Alloyed gold is stronger and less susceptible to scratching or denting than pure gold. 24K gold would make a poor setting for a precious engagement diamond, for example, since it is relatively soft and flexible.
All Moissanite Bridal recycled yellow and white gold jewelry is made from 18K gold, which is composed of 75% pure gold and 25% other metals. Standard white gold typically contains nickel, to which some people have allergies.
Whenever possible, Moissanite Bridal uses 14K gold die-struck heads for setting center gemstones in our 18K gold rings. The added toughness that is achieved by alloying gold to 14K is ideal for setting precious gemstones safely and securely. Upon request, we offer a platinum head for 18K gold settings for a small price premium.
Moissanite Bridal's recycled platinum is naturally hypoallergenic. Our platinum alloy has been carefully selected to balance hardness and durability with workability for repair and maintenance. All platinum rings are set with platinum heads and prongs.
For a beautiful pure-white finish, it is general industry practice to plate white gold with rhodium. While white gold combines yellow gold with other metals to make it appear white, it still tends to retain a slight yellow cast before rhodium plating. Rhodium is a member of the platinum family of metals and has a bright-white appearance that gives Moissanite Bridal's recycled white gold jewelry a beautiful white shine. Rhodium plating does wear off over time through contact with other surfaces and the effects of the body's natural oils and therefore does require some easy maintenance. White gold pieces that have lost their outer coating may be re-plated with rhodium for a nominal fee to restore the original bright-white luster.
Alternative Precious Metals
Upon request, Moissanite Bridal's eco-friendly jewelry is also available in alternative metals such as 14K yellow, 14K white gold, 14K rose gold, and 950 palladium. Rose gold is a beautiful choice, composed of yellow gold with the addition of copper for a rose-pink tone. It is only available in 14K to ensure its strength and prevent brittleness. Another precious metal option is 950 palladium. 950 palladium contains 95% pure palladium, which is a member of the platinum family of metals. It has platinum's pure-white color and is less expensive, though somewhat softer and less durable than platinum.