Pandora Diamonds Review (2024) – Should You Buy Their Lab-Grown Diamonds?

Pandora Diamonds

USD 550
3.9

Price

4.3/5

Selection

3.0/5

Service

4.0/5

Features

3.3/5

People & Planet

5.0/5

Pros

  • Strong dedication to lab-grown diamonds
  • Market-leader on sustainability
  • Fairly good prices
  • Unique and beautiful designs

Cons

  • Very limited selection
  • Fairly good prices
  • Not possible to inspect diamonds
  • Not possible to find any diamonds

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Pandora, one of the fastest-growing jewelry brands in recent decades, has become the world’s largest jewelry manufacturer. With a rapid expansion, Pandora stores can be found in malls, shopping centers, airports, and many other locations. Additionally, individual jewelers sell their jewelry, significantly increasing their customer reach.

Recently, the company has started selling lab-grown diamonds as well. Check out our Pandora Diamonds review to learn more about Pandora’s jewelry experience and whether they have successfully incorporated lab-grown diamonds.

SALES ALERT! See the best diamond deals (terms apply):

3 diamond jewelers we like better than Pandora Diamonds

Summary of Our Pandora Diamonds Review

Pandora traditionally caters to the lower to mid-tier market and would typically not target consumers looking for diamond jewelry. Most of their pieces (especially their modular jewelry) retail for $100 or less, while some collections can be more expensive.

However, Pandora launched a diamond jewelry collection called “Brilliance” in 2021 and announced that they would exclusively use lab-grown diamonds in their diamond jewelry. While the Brilliance Collection was initially only available in the UK, the collection is now available in most countries, including the US.

Today, Pandora has dropped the Brilliance name and refers to their collection as Pandora lab-grown diamonds.

We applaud Pandora’s strategic and wise decision to use the eco-conscious and ethical diamond choice of lab-grown diamonds.

Pandora exclusively uses lab-created diamonds in its diamond collection. It goes further by aiming to achieve a completely sustainable and climate-neutral production process. However, only approximately 60% of the lab-grown diamond production uses renewables. Until it reaches its target of 100%, it will offset the remaining 40%. This is similar to the approach Brilliant Earth is taking.

In addition, they have announced another target of only using recycled gold in their jewelry by 2025—lofty targets, which puts them ahead of most of the competition.

That’s why we decided to have a closer look and review Pandora’s Lab-Grown Diamond Collection. In the following updated 2024 Pandora Diamonds review, you’ll learn if the lab diamond jewelry is for you and what you should know.

The question is: Are their diamond jewelry offerings on par with those of the leading sellers of lab-created diamonds, such as James Allen, Clean Origin, or Ritani? Or are they comparable with low-rated Zales, Helzberg, Kay Jewelers, QVC lab diamonds, and Lightbox Jewelry?

Our Bottom Line Verdict of Pandora Diamonds

Our review of Pandora’s lab-grown diamond will go into much more detail. If you just want to get to the conclusion, you can skip straight to the review verdict. To remove some of your curiosity, here’s the short of it:

While Pandora may not stack up to our favorite lab-created diamond sellers, they are heaps and bounds ahead of the competition in their field.

So, if we assess Pandora as a diamond jeweler, they are not a class leader. But suppose we review Pandora as someone who cares more about jewelry design (and sustainability) and less about finding the perfect diamond to complement it. In that case, Pandora is an excellent choice.

In the fashion jewelry category, Pandora is the clear leader and choice for anyone valuing design over diamond quality.

LabGrownCarats.com

Pandora Diamonds Verdict:

Keep reading our Pandoradiamonds review to learn why we think Pandora is currently the leading fashion jewelry lab-grown diamond seller.

Pandora’s Diamond History

Pandora Jewelry has existed for decades, but their successful modular jewelry took off in the 2000s and 2010s. Pandora’s charms are ubiquitous today, and their stores are in every mall.

Pandora’s jewelry strategy and focus on mid-tier jewelry and a middle-class audience have proved highly successful.

Their charms and modular jewelry, as well as partnerships with Disney, Harry Potter, and other franchises, have compelled consumers to return and extend the lives of their jewelry.

Second, Pandora set up production in Thailand and, through vertical integration, closely controlled their costs, supply chains, and logistics.

Lastly, excluding their lab-created diamonds, Pandora has focused on gemstones and synthetic stones that are cheap to produce and source. This way, they have mass-marketed their products, keeping costs low and margins high. Which, as we’ll see later, they spend on marketing.

The story of Pandora is a little rocky, and they’ve had their ups and downs, but today, Pandora is the largest jewelry brand, according to The New York Times!

The in-store lab diamond jewelry selection that we found during our Pandora review.
From our visit to one of Pandora’s many stores: The lab-grown diamond selection.

Again, Pandora’s customers are usually not looking for $1,000 diamond pieces but 1/10th of that. So this is new territory, and their diamond jewelry sales, while new, only represent a small fraction of their revenue. Nonetheless, their exclusive use of lab-grown diamonds and relentless pursuit of sustainability make them very interesting.

Pandora Lab-Grown Diamonds

We can’t hide that we’re pretty excited that the world’s largest jewelry producer has announced they will not only exclusively sell lab-created diamonds. And that they aim to grow these based on 100% renewable energy (and, in the meantime, carbon offset).

Carbon offsetting is imperfect, and using renewables could force someone else to buy dirty energy. But it’s a start. We are pleased with Pandora’s commitment to future 100% sustainability, which is only possible with lab-grown diamonds. At the same time, lab-created diamonds are the only guaranteed way to avoid negative societal impact (unlike mined diamonds).

You can learn much more in our article about the benefits of lab-grown diamonds and why you should avoid mined diamonds.

Pandora allocated a lot of real estate on their website to educate users about lab-grown diamonds. And they manage to do it very well, with short-form videos and easily digestible information explaining the benefits, the 4Cs, etc. So, while it’s not in-depth, it’s accurate and honest. Unlike, for example, Lightbox Jewelry (aka DeBeers), which gets it mostly wrong in its efforts to discredit lab-created diamonds.

Pandora has even hired celebrities to endorse their diamond selection, with several videos featuring said person and a cute story. Pamela Anderson is the latest person to join the rank as Pandora Diamonds spokesperson.

Pamela Anderson is the newest celebrity endorsing Pandora's lab-created diamonds.
Pamela Anderson is the newest celebrity endorsing Pandora’s lab-created diamonds.

So, all in all, we’re impressed with their dedication to lab-grown diamonds and drumming up support for the better diamond choice.

Pandora Diamonds Selection

Their dedication is all good and well, but do their diamond offerings stack up?

First, Pandora’s diamond collection and its approach to jewelry, in general, are fashion jewelry. They are not traditional jewelers like Zales or online diamond jewelers such as James Allen or Clean Origin.

Pandora’s diamond jewelry is very similar to that of Lightbox Jewelry. Unfortunately, that means you cannot design and create your own pieces or pick the exact diamonds you want. Instead, you must make do with their site’s designs and pre-selected options.

So, right off the bat, Pandora is not the right place to go if you are a serious diamond jewelry buyer and want to get the perfect diamond.

Therefore, we won’t compare Pandora to James Allen, Clean Origin, or Ritani. Instead, we’ll try our best to review Pandora as a fashion jeweler expanding into higher-end and, very importantly, lab-created diamonds.

Pandora Diamond Jewelry Selection

As of the time of the review, Pandora has 40 different designs to choose from. This includes carat weight and material variations, so the choices really are minimal. In addition, there are no traditional designs, such as classic martini diamond studs.

All designs are bespoke, which you would probably expect from Pandora. Lightbox is the same, but our preferences are more toward Pandora’s designs than Lightbox’s. Their designs are a little more clever and thoughtful, while Lightbox Jewelry’s are more, well, distinct.

Diamond jewelry selection in the Pandora store.
We examined lab-grown diamonds at Pandora during our secret shopping.

You cannot select anything else but design, material, and carat weight. So, forget about following our buying tips to maximize value for money. The carat weights run from 0.15 to 1.00. It’s unclear if these weights are precise. They likely include some margin of error but perhaps less than what Zales does.

Diamond jewelry selection at the Pandora store.
More lab-grown diamonds at Pandora during our secret shopping.

Next, let’s see the actual buying experience and diamond inspection options.

Our Diamond Buying Experience

There isn’t that much more to the buying experience. Once you have selected a design, you can choose a carat weight or material depending on the specific product.

The diamond and setting options when buying diamonds online at Pandora.net.

Pandora does allow you to not pay in full by using either of 3 different services. (If you don’t have the funds available now, wait.) And you can also decide to collect at a nearby store (more on shipping later). That’s it.

Diamond Inspection

If you have read any of our other lab-grown diamond reviews or our buying guides, you’ll know that diamond inspection is critical to securing the perfect diamond and avoiding a disappointing purchase.

This, however, is not an option at Pandora. This is precisely the same as Lightbox Jewelry, which also sells fashion jewelry, and also with Zales, although they are supposedly a traditional jeweler. So, while we were very disappointed at the lack of inspection features at Zales, we were expecting it with Pandora.

Since you cannot pick a specific diamond, a diamond inspection would not make any sense. However, they do attempt to show generic images.

The diamond inspection features on Pandora's website.

Are you in the market for the perfect diamond, and is the diamond at least as important as the jewelry design? Then, you should follow our diamond buying guides and shop at one of our recommended lab-grown diamond jewelry sellers.

If, instead, you focus primarily on the jewelry design, perhaps Pandora may still be something for you. That said, you should not settle for anything.

Fortunately, Pandora does give some indication of what you are buying. Unlike Zales and Lightbox, they tell you upfront what the diamond cut grade is and only sell the highest-grade cut diamonds (more on that below). Pandora is also transparent with diamond clarity and color, the remaining 4Cs.

So, let’s dig into the grades.

Pandora Diamonds Quality

The lab-created diamonds that Pandora supplies are graded “Excellent” for cut and at least VS2 for clarity. As you can see from the below product information sheet, t

Pandora Lab-Grown Diamond Review: diamond Information.

Hopefully, you know that a diamond’s cut is by far the most important of all qualities of a diamond. If not, we urge you to dig deeper into our quick intro to lab-created diamonds. In short, you should always pick the highest grade.

However, depending on the grading institute, that grade can be either excellent or ideal. Notably, the leading lab-grown diamond grading institute, IGI, uses ideal as the best grade. Pandora claims that their excellent cut diamonds are of the highest grade. That tells us that Pandora either doesn’t have its diamonds graded by the leading lab-grown diamond institute or, worse, doesn’t carry the highest grade.

We think it’s the former. And that may be fine. There are other reliable grading laboratories than IGI. What does worry us is that Pandora does not reveal which institutes they use.

What Pandora's website says about diamond cut.

So, in short, we applaud and are encouraged by their dedication to always choosing the highest cut grade but would have liked to know who grades their homework.

Regarding clarity, the VS2 grade will often be a great choice. We recommend starting even lower. But be careful to examine the blemishes and inclusions resulting in the grade. You can do this when you shop at leading sellers such as Clean Origin or James Allen (in particular).

What the website says about Pandora diamonds clarity.

It’s thus the same story with diamond clarity as it was with the cut. Again, the VS2 grade is likely a good fit, but you can’t be 100% sure that the imperfections do not hurt the diamond’s brilliance.

Lastly, Pandora states that their lab-grown diamonds are at least graded a “J” color. Again, this is in line with our overall recommendations. You will typically save a lot by allowing a slight tint that will not harm brilliance or even be noticeable outside a laboratory microscope.

In rare cases, the tint could influence the brilliance or be noticeable, even with an acceptable J color grade. Thus, grading institutes can be trusted mostly, but variance does occur. Therefore, we recommend always conducting a thorough inspection to ensure the diamond shines bright.

Pandora includes a diamond certificate from their (undisclosed) grading laboratory. They do not make these available online like the best jewelers, but they would also not be able to since you are not buying a specific diamond. Instead, you must wait for your jewelry and certificate to arrive.

When we did our test purchases, we received diamond certificates. But as expected, these were just homemade certificates produced by Pandora and were completely generic. Below is one of the certificates we received with our purchase.

The generic diamond certificate that comes with diamond purchases at Pandora.
The generic diamond certificate that comes with diamond purchases at Pandora.

As you can see, it doesn’t even tell you the exact grades but ranges! This certificate is not even worth the paper it was printed on!

Pandora’s Diamond Prices

Now that we know that Pandora sells high-grade lab-created diamonds, at least on paper, we can start to examine their prices.

The Pandora Brilliance Lab-Grown Diamond collection finally launched in the US (before dropping the Brilliance name). Our original Pandora Brilliance review was based on the UK webshop, but we have now updated it to include the US site.

As a reference, we’re comparing a 1-carat ring and a 1-carat total-weight diamond earring set (the latter means 2 x 0.5 carat). We’re using the lower end of Pandora’s grades since that’s all you are guaranteed to receive.

Diamond Jewelry Prices

A set of 1-carat total-weight earrings costs $1,350 (£1,290 in the UK). In the UK, the 1-carat ring (surprisingly) costs precisely the same £1,290. That’s surprising because bigger stones are more expensive per carat than smaller ones since they are rarer – even if created in a laboratory. In the US, the 1-carat ring is more costly, coming in at $1,950.

That increase to $1,950 is pretty steep, and as you can read below, Pandora diamonds are significantly more expensive than you can find elsewhere.

Pandora Diamond Price Comparison

While we can’t compare 1:1 since Pandora’s designs are arguably worth more than the standard ones that others sell, it’s still a decent proxy comparison.

The cost at Clean Origin for a similar 1-carat diamond ring with the same diamond grades is between $1,050 and $1.250. At Pandora Diamonds, the current price is $1,775. And that’s a bit of a jump. Ritani, another price leader, similarly comes in around $1,050 for a pair of earrings and an even lower $1,200 for the 1-carat ring.

At the time of our review, James Allen did not have any comparable lab-grown diamonds since their color grades typically start higher. However, with higher color grades and the same cut, clarity, and carat, their prices are around $2-300 lower than Pandora’s. Prices will come closer if we add a premium to Pandora’s unique design. Note that it’s not exactly apples-to-apples, as James Allen offers industry-leading features, support, and service).

So, compared to the other mall favorites, Zales and Kay Jewelers, Pandora’s prices are very reasonable. They don’t drop to the attention-seeking levels of Lightbox Jewelry (with their uncertain diamond quality). Still, they are not nearly as attractive as those of our favorite lab-grown diamond sellers.

However, if you value Pandora’s design, their prices are not that much higher, and we’re actually a little surprised that they are relatively close to those of James Allen.

Diamond Shipping and Returns

Pandora’s lab-grown diamonds are finally sold in the US and other countries after initially only being available in the UK.

First, Pandora lab diamond jewelry ships free of charge using a “special delivery” option. In the US, that’s free next-day shipping on diamond orders. That’s a nice touch and something Zales could learn from, but it should also be expected. Pandora ships with USPS and UPS. Their next-day delivery usually is with UPS.

Returns are allowed up to 30 days, which is pretty standard and expected in the US. It’s far from Clean Origin’s 100 days but decent and free. So, no complaints there.

Where Pandora does stand out a little is in its packaging. They use 100% recycled boxes and materials and even further ensure that the materials used are biodegradable and do not use excessive colors and other potential pollutants. Well done, Pandora.

Pandora diamonds review - pandora packaging

Pandora Diamonds Review Verdict

If we review Pandora as a lab-grown diamond jeweler and compare it to Clean Origin, Ritani, or James Allen, then Pandora and the lab-created diamond collection do not come out on top. Pandora does not offer the ability to carry out diamond inspections or even tell you precisely what diamond you are buying.

However, Pandora should probably not be compared to a diamond jeweler but instead assessed as the creator and seller of fashion jewelry that Pandora is, similar to Lightbox (who, however, tried to be both).

Lab-created diamond earrings disappoint in our Pandora Diamonds Review.
Lab-created diamond earrings disappoint in our Pandora Diamonds Review.

Pandora’s diamond prices also run a little higher than those of the market leaders, but not by as much as we might have feared. They are far from Zales’s exorbitant prices, the overpriced Kay Jewelers, or the overly expensive Helzberg Diamonds. Surprisingly, they are closer to those of QVC’s Fire and Light lab diamonds.

So, as a design-first fashion jeweler venturing into the lab-grown diamond space, we think Pandora does a pretty decent job.

Let’s consider their strong commitment to sustainability, where they arguably are among the very best, and their dedication to lab diamonds. Our final verdict of Pandora’s lab-grown diamonds is actually reasonably favorable. However, consider the sustainably graded lab-grown diamonds from Brilliant Earth.

Our Bottom Line Pandora Diamonds Review Recommendation

Ultimately, our Pandora Diamonds review concluded with a score of 3.9 out of 5 stars. While that may not seem impressive, it is an excellent score in a field of formidable competitors.

In the fashion jewelry category, Pandora is the clear leader and choice for anyone valuing design over diamond quality but won’t settle with the sub-par and semi-undisclosed quality of Lightbox or the absurd prices you find at Zales.

If you care about finding the perfect diamond, read our other lab-grown diamond reviews. Then, start by seeing who we recommend as the four best places to shop for lab-created diamonds.

How We Have Reviewed Pandora Diamonds

Our lab diamond experts have spent weeks conducting a thorough analysis and study of Pandora diamonds, including their jewelry. We compared Pandora with its competitors and evaluated their pros and cons against diamond industry standards.

As part of our Pandora Diamonds review, we have conducted secret shopping, studied the diamond and jewelry quality, analyzed and compared prices, and spent hours testing Pandora’s customer service. We have visited Pandora stores and shopped Pandora’s lab diamond jewelry both online and offline. We have gone through every aspect of the consumer journey to ensure you can trust our Pandora lab-created diamonds review and recommendations.

Why you should trust us

Our review of Pandora Diamonds is based on our extensive experience and knowledge in diamonds and jewelry, accumulated over decades with a combined experience of more than 75 years. We update our reviews multiple times a year to ensure that they reflect the current market trends. Our top diamond expert, Rolf Hartmann, led the Pandora review with input from several of our expert contributors.

Ranking criteria

We have evaluated and ranked Pandora lab-grown diamonds using these criteria:

  • Price
  • Diamond inventory
  • Jewelry selection
  • Quality
  • Shopping experience (in-store and online)
  • Customer service
  • Sustainability
  • Shipping and return policies
Pandora Diamonds Review by Rolf Hartmann

Rolf Hartmann

Rolf Hartmann has decades of experience in the jewelry industry. He knows everything you need to know to find the perfect diamond. He’s an expert in lab-grown diamonds and has followed their exciting development from industrial usage to the incredible gemstone quality they are today. Rolf guides you in finding the right diamond at the best possible price and expertly and transparently reviews all lab-grown diamond sellers.

Rolf Hartmann

Your lab-grown diamond expert

Rolf Hartmann, your lab-grown diamond expert

Our Editorial Review Process

At LabGrownCarats, we strive to help our readers find the perfect lab-grown diamond at the best possible price. We provide valuable resources such as educational guides, price analyses, product recommendations, and candid and thorough reviews of lab-grown diamond jewelers.

Our reviews are unbiased and not influenced by monetary or commercial considerations. We do not accept money for editorial content. We do not accept payment for editorial content and decline most requests for partnerships and paid content proposals. We only collaborate with a select few lab diamond jewelers that we wholeheartedly endorse.

Our stringent review process adheres to strict guidelines and evaluates all lab diamond jewelers under the same rigorous criteria. As a result, all of our reviews cover critical aspects, even those of the highest-rated jewelers. We recommend several lab diamond jewelers, but each for specific reasons. In our expert reviews and when suggesting the best places to buy lab-grown diamonds, we explain why we suggest a particular jeweler and what you should think about before making a purchase. This way, you can find the lab-grown diamond jeweler that is right for you. But make sure to shop around and compare lab diamond prices.

Can you buy diamonds at Pandora Jewelry?

Pandora Jewelry has sold diamond jewelry since 2021. They used to call their diamond collection Pandora Brilliance, and they exclusively use lab-grown diamonds in their diamond collection. They are also committed to sustainability and aim to use only sustainably-produced lab-grown diamonds, which you can learn more about in our Pandora lab diamonds review.

Are Pandora diamonds legit?

Pandora Brilliance is Pandora Jewelry’s lab-grown diamond collection. Pandora is a legitimate and trustworthy business that has been selling jewelry for decades. In fact, Pandora Jew,lry is now the world’s largest jeweler. The Pandora diamond collection is similarly legit, and you can be confident shopping for their diamonds.

Are Pandora Jewelry diamonds lab-grown?

All Pandora Jewelry diamonds are lab-grown, and they are real diamonds. In addition, Pandora strives to make its lab-grown diamond collection as sustainable as possible.

Are Pandora diamonds sustainable?

Pandora aims to make their diamond production as sustainable as possible, including using renewable energy or offsetting carbon emissions. Read more about Pandora lab-grown diamonds in our review and learn about their take on diamond sustainability.

Other Pandora Diamonds Reviews

Interestingly, we landed close to the rating found at Trustpilot for Pandora (UK). However, those reviews are not specifically for the Pandora diamond collection.

Pandora Trustpilot rating (UK).
3 diamond jewelers we like better than Pandora Diamonds
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