Swarovski is an originally Austrian company famed for over a century for making some of the best lead crystal items in the world. Back in the late 1800s, company founder Daniel Swarovski found a process which forms glass that’s made at high temperatures by melting silicon oxide powders with lead to form what is known as lead crystal by giving the surface a rainbow like appearance to simulate dispersion from a diamond.
The exact process is one that’s patented by Swarovski but it has approximately 32% lead content to increase the crystals refraction index to resemble that of a diamond.
So therefore Swarovski Crystal isn’t a gemstone or even a crystal it’s a form of glass.
To produce a diamond like effect the crystal glass is precision cut and then polished again by a Swarovski patented process that gives the crystal a high quality finish.
The crystals are often further enhanced by coating the glass with an Aurora Borealis or AB coating that gives the surface a rainbow like appearance to simulate dispersion from a diamond.
Swarovski crystal has a Mohs hardness of between 6-7 so its susceptible to scratches and chipping from wear and tear but at the same time it’s harder than standard glass.
The lead content in the crystal increases the refraction index of the glass from 1.5 to 1.7 to give the faceted faced a more sparkly appearance.
Swarovski is definately a brand name and a patent of process and still the market leaders worldwide in this field.
Nevertheless the expression Swarovski Crystals is mainly used for this form of glass nowadays.
It's likeTempo is used synonymous for paper tissues.
Today in jewelry we will find Swarovski Crystal, Diamonds and Cubic Zirconia side by side and it is not easy for the "normal eye" to see the diffrences.