Why Is Moissanite the New Trend in Engagement Rings?

If you are planning to propose, a stunning engagement ring could be the difference between a reluctant nod and a resounding yes. Although diamonds are the conventional choice for engagement rings, synthetic diamond alternatives are becoming increasingly popular for a variety of reasons. A lab-grown gem that is making waves in the jewelry industry is moissanite.

The History of Moissanite

The story of moissanite began with a meteorite crashing into the Canyon Diablo region of Coconino County, Arizona. The impact created a massive pit almost 600 feet deep and 4,000 feet in diameter. Although the crater was only discovered by American settlers in the 19th century, it is estimated to have been formed as long as 50,000 years ago.

In 1893, Nobel Prize-winning French chemist Ferdinand Frédéric Henri Moissan began to study fragments that were found in the crater. His objective was to find substances that were suitable for efficient electrical conductivity. During his extensive research, Moissan uncovered a remarkable new mineral—silicon carbide. The mineral was named after him and became known as moissanite.

Due to the extreme rarity of moissanite, there was little development in its study or use. Over a century later, researchers in North Carolina patented a process to create pure synthetic silicon carbide for use in semiconductors. This invention caught the eye of jewelry maker Charles & Colvard, who introduced the first lab-created moissanite gem in 1998.

Moissanite vs. Diamond

Since the launch of moissanites in fine jewelry, the rare mineral has been gaining popularity as an alternative to diamonds. The two stones are so similar that jewelry experts need professional equipment to tell them apart. From one precious gem to another, what is the difference between diamond and moissanite, and how does moissanite compare with other diamond substitutes?

Brilliance and Fire

When you admire a gem, you will notice that it reacts to light in two ways. Brilliance is when the gem reflects white light and fire is when the gem displays a spectrum of colors. Moissanites have a different faceting pattern and a higher refractive index than diamonds. Therefore, they react to light differently and produce an intense brilliance with greater flashes of fire. The larger the moissanite, the more noticeable the distinction.

Color and Clarity

Classic moissanites traditionally come with a yellow hue that works brilliantly with vintage settings and yellow or rose gold. However, many buyers prefer colorless gems to symbolize purity and perfection. With the precision of the creation process, moissanites can match the colorless diamond D-grade that is the gold standard of diamond jewelry.

Quality, natural diamonds are rare. And natural D-grade diamonds are one in a million. Meanwhile, lab-manufactured moissanites can be produced at will. While buyers can expect to pay upwards of ten thousand dollars for a 1.0-carat natural D-grade diamond, a moissanite of the same carat weight and absence of color will cost but a fraction of the price.

Similarly, trying to source a diamond with superior clarity can be difficult without an immense budget. Diamonds naturally come with visible imperfections that affect the beauty of the stone. Moissanites are grown in high-tech laboratories under a strictly controlled process. Therefore, they are always free of imperfections and completely eye-clean.


Diamonds are used for engagement rings because they are known to last ‘forever’. As the toughest naturally-occurring material, diamonds are resistant to scratches and abrasions. The good news is that moissanite is not far behind. Diamond is rated 10 on the Mohs hardness scale while moissanite is rated 9.25-9.5, making it the second hardest material used as a gemstone. Zirconia, another common alternative, comes in at 8.5.

With such strength, the only thing that can scratch moissanite jewelry is a diamond. Since it is unlikely that you would store your fine jewelry haphazardly, a moissanite ring will probably look perfect for life. That said, certain gem cuts are more vulnerable to chips. For example, princess cuts are known to chip more easily than round cuts. So, choose your cuts wisely.

Another thing to consider is that moissanite does not lose its brilliance or clarity over time. Some synthetic diamond alternatives such as cubic zirconia can develop a cloudy or milky appearance. Many people want to pass their engagement rings down to future generations and you can rest assured that a moissanite gem will shine just as bright in a hundred years.


The natural diamond mining industry has been involved in many controversial human rights and environmental issues. To completely avoid these ethical and ecological concerns, many jewelry buyers are now turning to lab-created gemstones. Moissanites provide a hundred percent of the good looks with none of the conflict and guilt.

If you want to impress the love of your life, your engagement ring must feature at least one gorgeous, sparkling stone. While diamonds are highly-variable, gem-grade moissanites are always clear, colorless, durable, and absolutely brilliant. Best of all, you can impress your future husband or wife and still have a fair sum to spare for your wedding and honeymoon.

Why Parents Should Get Basic Life Support Training

Parents are responsible for many things when it comes to their children’s care. At the top of the list is safety.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the leading cause of death for children of all ages is an unintentional injury caused by accidents. Incidents of choking, nearly drowning, falls, poisoning, sports injuries, and other traumatic accidents frequently occur with children. All of these can lead to cardiac arrest (loss of heart functioning, breathing, and consciousness), which requires immediate intervention to save the child’s life.

Unfortunately, many parents don't know what to do in the event of an emergency or how to help their child while they wait for emergency medical services (EMS) to arrive on the scene. But when a child is in cardiac arrest, every minute counts. Parents who are certified in Basic Life Support (BLS) know how to intervene immediately to increase their child’s chances of survival and a full recovery.

BLS training can give parents the knowledge and skills necessary to help their children in the event of an emergency. If you have a child, getting your BLS certification may save a child’s life someday, maybe even your own child’s life.

What Is BLS Training?

BLS is a type of emergency care that is typically administered by first responders (e.g., EMTs) and healthcare providers to a person who is experiencing an obstructed airway, trouble breathing, or cardiac arrest. The primary purpose of BLS is to open the airways and keep blood circulating throughout the body to ensure that oxygen reaches the body’s vital organs.

The skills you learn in BLS training as a parent will help you to:

Recognize the signs of cardiac arrest

Respond confidently and quickly to an emergency

Open an obstructed airway

Perform CPR when needed

If you are facing an emergency with a child, having basic life support certification will ensure that you know exactly how to respond in the event of an emergency until healthcare professionals arrive on the scene.

Reasons Why Parents Should Get Basic Life Support Training

While BLS is often associated with healthcare providers, anyone can learn the lifesaving skills taught in a BLS course. Parents, in particular, can benefit from this knowledge to ensure their child’s survival in the event of an emergency.

Reduce Parental Anxiety

Feeling confident in your parenting skills and knowing what to do in an emergency can do wonders for your mental health and assurance that you can help your child in any type of scenario. Parents who are trained in BLS know how to recognize the signs of a medical emergency and have the skills required to take action. In a recent study, parents whose children had experienced an apparent life-threatening event (ALTE) were given BLS training after their child was discharged from the hospital. Every parent described their experience as “helpful" and reported a reduction in anxiety following their BLS certification.

Most Accidents Occur in the Home

Children are generally curious, adventurous, and brave. They’re not always aware of the potential dangers of exploring their world. Statistics show that most children’s accidents occur in the home and are a leading cause of serious injury, long-term disability, and preventable deaths.

While some accidents are preventable, many aren’t. Knowing what to do when an accident occurs can mean the difference between life and death for a child. As a parent, you’ll do anything you can to ensure your child’s safety and wellness. Having your BLS certification is one way you can help keep your child safe and healthy for many years to come, even in the event of an accident or emergency.

Teach Lifesaving Skills to Your Children

Children are eager to learn and receptive to learning new skills, particularly when they know they can use this newfound knowledge to potentially save a person’s life. When your child is old enough (between 5 and 8 years old), you can transfer the knowledge you have about basic life support to your child to help boost their confidence and teach them what to do if they are faced with a medical emergency at school or home, when playing outside with friends, and other settings. By sharing this important knowledge, you can feel assured that your child will know how to recognize and exit a potentially dangerous situation, how to treat wounds, how to call for help, and how to safely approach emergencies. Your child will also learn important fire prevention techniques and water safety skills.

What Is Taught in BLS Training?

Basic life-saving skills are taught in BLS training, including:

  • How to open the airways
  • How to perform mouth-to-mouth resuscitation
  • How to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)
  • How to use medical equipment in the event of an emergency (e.g., defibrillator)
  • How to administer CPR solo (alone) and as a team
  • How to administer chest compressions to infants, children, and adults

Once you’ve completed your BLS training program, you will know how to assess and act in emergencies both on your own and as part of a team.

The American Academy of CPR and First Aid provides comprehensive, online training to give you the knowledge and skills you need to handle any emergency event your family may face now and in the future. Our online courses are created by board-certified instructors with years of experience in the healthcare field. Take BLS training online and access the course material at your own pace, at your convenience, day or night.

The Science of Insomnia: What Causes It and How to Solve It

Do you have trouble falling asleep at night? Do you wake up frequently throughout the night? If so, you may be suffering from insomnia. Insomnia is a condition that affects millions of people around the world, and can cause a lot of problems for those who suffer from it. Here's a little more about the science of insomnia, what causes it, and how you might be able to solve it to get a good night's sleep.

Insomnia is a sleep disorder that can make it hard to fall asleep. However, insomnia can also appear in other forms. For example, you might be able to get to sleep ok, but find it difficult to stay asleep for as long as you need to. Insomnia can cause you to wake up early too, or make you unable to get back to sleep whenever you happen to wake up in the night.

Scientists have found there are two types of insomnia: primary and secondary. Primary insomnia is when sleeplessness is not caused by another health condition or problem. It's a standalone condition. Secondary insomnia, on the other hand, is due to another medical problem (like anxiety or depression), medications, or substances (like alcohol or caffeine).

What Causes Primary Insomnia?

The exact cause of primary insomnia isn't known, but there are some factors that may contribute to it. These include stress, changes in your environment or daily routine, jet lag, and other factors.

According to scientific research, primary insomnia is most often caused by stress. When you're stressed, your body goes into "fight or flight" mode. This is an evolutionary response that helped us survive when we were being chased by wild animals. In "fight or flight" mode, your body releases hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. These hormones make it hard to relax and fall asleep.

Although primary insomnia is not caused by a diagnosed medical issue, research shows that it may be possible to develop depression as a result of primary insomnia.

What Causes Secondary Insomnia?

There are many different things that can cause secondary insomnia. It can be caused by another health condition that may or may not have been diagnosed. This can include an overactive thyroid, anxiety disorders and depression. It can also be caused by chronic pain or hormonal changes, such as the menopause. Medication and substances such as alcohol can also have a direct impact on the ability to sleep.

How to Solve Insomnia

There are a number of things you can do to try and solve your insomnia.

Supplements are helpful to many people, and supplements that are known to help with sleep include things such as valerian root and Full Spectrum CBD Oil. It's worth giving a supplement a try if you are consistently struggling with your sleep.

Keeping a regular sleep schedule is important for solving insomnia. This means going to bed and getting up at the same time every day, even on weekends. This may be hard to do at first, but it will help your body get into a regular sleep rhythm.

Creating a relaxing bedtime routine can also help you fall asleep and stay asleep. This can include taking a warm bath, reading a book, or doing some gentle stretching. Also avoiding screen time for a couple of hours before bed can really help. This is because the blue light from screens can interfere with your body's natural sleep rhythm, called the circadian rhythm.

Avoiding substances such as caffeine and alcohol before bed is also important. Both of these substances can impact your ability to sleep, so it's best to avoid them in the evening. Some people are more impacted by these substances than others. For example, some individuals find that if they stop drinking caffeine after midday, their sleep improves. Do some experimenting to see what works for you.

Getting regular exercise is another important part of solving insomnia. Exercise can help to reduce stress and improve your overall sleep quality. Scientifically speaking, this is because exercise helps to reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol. It also helps to ensure you are physically tired enough to enjoy a full night of sleep.

There are also some herbs that can help to induce a feeling of sleepiness. These herbs include chamomile, lemon balm, and lavender. You can drink a cup of herbal tea before bed or use these herbs in an essential oil diffuser. Some people put lavender oil on a cloth next to their bed at nighttime as a gentle aid to help sleep.

If you've tried a lot of different things for insomnia but nothing is working, you could try something like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I). CBT-I is a type of therapy that can help you change the way you think about sleep. It can also help you change your behaviors and habits that are keeping you from sleeping.

There is no one "right" way to solve insomnia. The best way to figure out how to solve your sleeplessness is to talk to your doctor and try different things until you find something that works for you.

How to Create a Collectible NFT

The world of NFTs has allowed many unknown artists to propel themselves into fame and fortune. While NFT success stories are striking, they are one in 69.3 million. With thousands of collections languishing on OpenSea with floor prices that barely touch the hundredth decimal points, how can you create an NFT that people want to collect and trade?

The Eye of the Beholder

While some of the top collections are truly beautiful, it is no secret that a lot of the others could be mistaken for your teenage nephew’s doodles. We have had webcam selfies, pixelated punks, and vaguely-human silhouettes with wavy overlays trading in the thousands, so the good news is that the lack of conventional artistic skill is not a stumbling block when it comes to NFTs.

Art is a hard concept to define. So, how does one create art that speaks to the crypto crowd? The answer is to connect with their personalities. If sold, your NFT will likely become the new avatar on someone’s Discord, so you need items that will appeal to the mass audience. At the same time, details that make each item unique will ensure their collectability.

When we talk about mass appeal, note that digital aesthetics are rather far removed from what we used to consider fine art. Flaws are cool and pixels are classic. Whether you are into photography, pen and paper, or pure digital art, do something different and edgy. One does not simply add a Shiba Inu illustration to your NFT and assume that it will automatically sell.

More Than Just a Pretty Face

The strength of your collection on the whole will determine your NFT sales. Remember that NFTs hinge largely on collectability so the larger the number of owners, the higher the volume traded, and the more valuable the items. Keeping to a lower number of mints will ensure rarity but can affect your trade volume at the same time, so consider wisely.

Collectors are more likely to buy from collections that offer peripheral benefits or utilities. Access to member Discord servers and websites are some of the normal benefits that are often accorded to NFT owners. There can be exclusive merchandise or events as well. In this form, a collectible NFT is essentially a membership card to a sought-after digital community.

That said, many buyers prefer tangible benefits over love and community. This is why many collectible NFTs come with stats and double up as avatars for online games. You can also give your NFT owners perks such as whitelist access to future mints or airdrops of limited edition items. By increasing the implied value of your collection, you can appeal to a greater audience.

Expose Yourself

By now you may have gathered that the design of an NFT collection is sometimes less important than its inherent collectability. If you happen to know Elon Musk or Justin Bieber and can get them to Tweet about your NFT, then you are well on the way to success. Otherwise, you will have to undertake some good old-fashioned marketing for your collection.

Having a website for your NFT collection is a must. It may seem pretty basic but this is where you are going to land most of your leads. Search engine optimization (SEO) is a highly relevant and effective strategy to get more traffic from Google Search. With 8.5 billion searches being made every day, even a tiny percentage of that will increase your sales potential.

The great thing about investing in SEO is that you can pinpoint the keywords that you want to work with. If you are optimizing your site for ‘buy new NFT’, then you know that the people who are directed to your site are already reaching for their crypto wallets. Having other sites with good reputations link back to yours will boost your search engine rankings too.

Working with crypto influencers and legit crypto news sites is one way to get some eyeballs on your project. It is best to connect with these platforms before you start minting, but never too late to start introducing their audience to your collection. Negotiate to pay them by airdrops, this way they may feel more invested in supporting your project.

Marketing in existing Discord NFT chatrooms or on Twitter NFT hashtags is another way to connect directly with crypto enthusiasts. You know that they already own NFTs so they are more likely to be interested in your project. Most Discord chats have special chatrooms for advertising or promotions and you can explain your project in detail to anyone who asks.

NFTs are an exciting new frontier for artists and collectors. Anyone with inspiration and innovation could make it big. However, there is a lot more to collectible success than just fun images. You need a strong concept for your collection and a metaverse that supports it. Increase its visibility and hype by marketing your collection on a variety of channels. Good luck!

How to Make the Most of Your Teaching Placement

As a teacher-in-training, a teaching placement can be exciting and intimidating at the same time. Having a clear idea of what you hope to achieve during your teaching placement can help you to focus on what is important and perform better. Here are some tips to enable you to make the most of your teaching placement.

Get To Know The School

Be sure to visit the school before your placement. This will help you to answer a lot of pertinent questions from the dress code to where you should park. It is best to get a lay of the land before your first day so you know exactly where your classroom and other important places—such as the school nurse's office and the staffroom—are. You never know if you will need to visit them in a hurry.

Visiting the school beforehand will allow you to meet your new colleagues, especially your class teacher and your mentor teacher. These could be one person or two separate people. Talk to them to understand their expectations and the requirements of your class and school. If they are willing, you may want to exchange personal contact details so you can ask any last-minute questions.

Although it is ideal to visit the school early, it may not be practical for all training teachers. If you are unable to visit in person, be sure to communicate with your future mentor teacher and school by email to clear up any questions before the first day. You will appear more passionate and conscientious to your school and mentor and also feel more confident and comfortable during your placement.

Build A Relationship With The Students

Part of the preparation for your placement is to ask for the class timetable and teaching topics of your class. Ask your class teacher about the children in your class. Things that you might want to inquire about include their interests, personalities, attainment levels, and individual learning styles. This shows the class teacher that you are interested in the students and invested in their needs and study outcomes.

During your placement, try to build a relationship with your students. Understanding your students is essential to communicating with them. Effective communication ensures that you will be able to connect with them and teach them successfully. Pay attention to your students as individuals and talk about their interests.

Learning how to walk the fine line between love and respect is a big lesson for trainee teachers. It is easier for you to be the ‘good guy’ but there may be times when you have to be tough with the students. Ask the class teacher about student and classroom management policies in the school and keep them in mind. When in doubt, ask your mentor teacher for suggestions.

Remember You Are There To Learn

It can be tempting to rush into your teaching placement with ideas to reinvent the wheel. Curb your enthusiasm and remember that you are a guest in another person’s domain. Therefore, you should try to remain respectful of their process and take your cues from them. Start by observing how they teach and interact with the students.

At the beginning of your practice, try to keep to the teaching strategies already in use in the classroom. A sudden change in teaching techniques and interaction approaches can be disruptive, particularly for younger students. As you build a rapport with the students, you can incorporate some of your ideas and teaching methods.

Class teachers will appreciate it if you are proactive and helpful. Having a trainee teacher in their class can add to the workload of a teacher so offer your support as a teaching assistant when you can. This will also help you to gain insight into how they plan and get ready for classes. Be prepared to receive feedback, positive or negative, and try not to take it personally.

Cherish The Highlights

The long hours of teaching in a classroom and the hard work of preparation can make the teaching placement experience less dreamy than you imagined. However, there is much reward to be found as well. The relationships that you build with your students and the sense of achievement you get when they succeed are irreplaceable.

Commemorate this special connection and experience with a yearbook. Online high school yearbook companies can help you to create stunning yearbooks that feature the best moments of your teaching placement. Some of them offer bulk discounts so you can give a copy to all the students and teaching staff that made your experience unforgettable.

Your mentor teachers are imparting a lifetime of their experience and knowledge to you. Be sure to say ‘thank you’ for their time and effort. Aside from creating a customized yearbook album, you can consider buying morning tea or bringing some homemade treats for everyone in the staffroom to show your appreciation.

A teaching placement is a priceless classroom experience for aspiring teachers. Through diligent preparation and a learning mindset, you can enjoy the opportunity and better your skills as an educator. Cherish the highlights and you will always find reward in a teaching career.