How the Greatest Marketing Scam in History Has Had a Huge Impact on the Environment

When you propose to your loved one, you think about one vital thing that is needed in order to do the act – the ring. It has to be a special one, so you are looking for one that stands out. Most likely, the diamond engagement ring pops up in your mind, because it’s said to be a way to show your love.

However, did you know that diamond engagement rings were the biggest scam in history? If not, you are going to find out information about the matter in this article. You will also discover how it impacted the environment.

How Ads Led to the Biggest Marketing Scam

You’ve probably heard, at least once, that a man should buy a diamond engagement ring if he wants to show his love. Basically, it pressures men all over the world to spend thousands of dollars on diamond rings to propose to their partners. However, there is no rule that says a diamond ring is a must when it comes to a proposal. It all started with the De Beers company and their marketing campaign that promoted diamond engagement rings.

Diamond mines were found in South Africa, and diamonds flooded the market as a result. The businessmen that operated the mines knew what to do to protect their investments. They maintained the fiction that diamonds are these valuable and very rare things. So, they did it by launching a South Africa-based cartel, De Beers Consolidated Mines, Ltd., in 1888. Over time, they extended the firm’s control over all the facets of the diamond trade in the following decades.

During the Great Depression, the company’s founder’s son recruited an ad agency to promote engagement rings. So, they started persuading young men by saying that diamonds are synonymous with romance. Apparently, they made the claim that the size and quality of the diamond was an indicator of the man’s love for the woman he proposes to. Women were, at the same time, convinced that the diamond was an important factor in the courtship.

Later, in the 1940s, a copywriter from the Ayer agency created the slogan that De Beers has been using ever since: “A Diamond Is Forever”. So, people were convinced that diamonds were an eternal thing that signified love. Despite the possibility of the diamonds to be chipped, shattered, discolored or incinerated, the eternity concept was convincing enough to make people love diamonds. In their eyes, an eternal diamond promised everlasting love and companionship.

Although people are now more aware that it was a scam, there are still some individuals that believe that a proposal without a diamond ring is not possible.

How Did It Impact the Environment?

Although big diamond companies such as De Beers are bashing lab-created diamonds for not being “authentic”, they seem to avoid mentioning how natural diamonds are affecting nature. Mining natural diamonds has a huge impact on the environment, so any claim made by them saying that the lab ones are not “being green” is just a way to save their business.

Basically, mining diamonds requires the use of a lot of energy. As a consequence, a lot of natural gas and oil resources are required for this process, polluting the environment in the process. For instance, one of the largest natural diamond producers uses about 80.3 kilowatt-hours per carat over the mining operations. This is more damaging than lab-created diamonds, as they only require around 20 kilowatt-hours per carat.

In contrast to their natural counterpart, a synthetic diamond is created into a laboratory, using high temperature and pressure that is designed to mimic the natural conditions – without adding all that mining into the mix. Plus, since the environment is controlled, the lab-created diamonds are generally cleaner – without any internal flaws that have occured during the stone’s formation.

According to Heart in Diamond, a company that creates synthetic cremation and memorial diamonds, synthetic diamonds are made from the same material as natural ones – namely, carbon composition. It’s only the creation process that has been slightly mended.

Basically, it’s like cooking food on the stove instead of cooking it at a campfire. The food is almost the same, but you have more control over the flame – which is why the stove food ends up less burned.

In addition, mining natural diamonds can change the surrounding environment. In other words, it requires excavating a lot of earth in order to reach the mine. So, if there is a mine that is about 3 miles deep, all the soil in the surrounding area needs to be eliminated. For as little as 1 carat worth of diamonds, about 1,700 tons of dirt are being moved.

Afterward, the dirt needs to be thrown somewhere. Consequently, the land is disturbed, as things such as waterways are removed to create space for diamond mining.

So, when you think about how many diamond engagement rings have been sold after the promotional ad campaign, it is obvious that the environment was affected a lot. All those diamonds must have used a lot of energy to mine, and a lot of soil must have been excavated. This is why lab-grown diamonds are a better alternative.

Final Thoughts

The diamond engagement ring is the biggest scam in history, and it still has a huge influence on the environment. Nature was polluted during the mining process, and the land was changed as well, as a result of the excavations.

For that reason, people should start considering synthetic diamonds. They are an eco-friendly alternative for a diamond ring. Moreover, some companies produce memorial diamonds from hair or cremains. Therefore, if you want to keep the memory of a loved one close to you, it is possible to do that through lab-grown diamonds.

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