Aboveground diamonds are real diamonds, with the only difference being their origin is from above the ground on Earth rather than underground. Aboveground diamonds are grown from a seed that traces back to an Earth mined diamond. The technologies involved in creating aboveground diamonds are not capable of synthesizing diamonds; they can only grow more diamond on top of an existing diamond.

Like synthetic fiber simulates natural fiber in strength via a different material, synthetic diamonds simulate diamonds through other materials such as cubic zirconia but are not real diamonds.