Zircon is not a very well-known gemstone, but it is one of the most important gemstones of today.
Zircon is not a very well-known gemstone, but it is one of the most important gemstones of today. Many people confuse zircon with the artificial diamond simulant, cubic zirconia. Of course, the two are completely different – cubic zirconia (CZ), is a lab-created synthetic material, while zircon is a naturally occurring gemstone with a very different chemical composition. However, before the introduction of diamond simulants like cubic zirconia and moissanite, white zircon was actually one of the most popular diamond substitutes, owing to its high dispersion and refractive index, and was often marketed under the misleading trade name of ‘Matura diamond’. Zircon is also remarkably dense and exhibits a very pronounced level of birefringence. Zircon has such high birefringence that it may appear fuzzy or display facet-doubling.