A simulated diamond is manufactured through an unnatural process using natural or unnatural components. While simulated diamonds are fabricated to closely resemble diamonds, they are manufactured using materials, such as zirconium oxide, silicon carbide and aluminum oxide.
Common types of diamond simulants include quartz, white sapphire, cubic zirconia, zircon, rhinestones, rutile and moissanite. Simulated diamonds are cut like diamonds and have similar luster and brilliance. However, there are distinct differences between the two. Diamonds have a hardness of 10, according to the Moh's scale of mineral hardness. The hardness of simulated diamonds varies by the material from which they are made, but no simulated diamond has a hardness of 10.