MJ's Hair Is Ready to Shine

MJ's burned hair arrives in Chicago in envelope

The bizarre story of Michael Jackson's hair being transformed into diamonds entered a new chapter.

The King of Pop's hair arrived at Chicago-based LifeGem, where it will be turned into 10  high-quality, certified half-carat diamonds. 

One of the diamonds will go to Michael Jackson's children.

"We would be more than happy to offer them a diamond as a tribute to their dad," LifeGem CEO Greg Herro said.

The hair for the Jackson diamond came from the strands left over from the filming of the infamous Pepsi commercial in 1984,  when Michael Jackson suffered second-degree burns to his scalp after pyrotechnics accidentally set his hair on fire.

Executive producer Ralph Cohen threw his Armani jacket over Jackson's head to help put out the flames. When Jackson was rushed to the hospital, Cohen scooped up the charred hair Jackson lost, which was then preserved. The jacket was also part of the purchase by Lifegem.

"Our plan is to give people an opportunity to own a diamond made from Michael Jackson's DNA," said Founder Dean VandenBiesen. "This will be a limited collection and we anticipate great interest."

The process, which takes six to nine months, isn't a new one. In 2007, LifeGem created diamonds from the hair of another musician: Ludwig van Beethoven.

"We grow an actual rough diamond just like the Earth does except that we speed it up significantly," Herro said. "It doesn't take a billion years."

LIfeGem has yet to decide on a price for the King of Pop's diamonds, but Beethoven's went for $240,000 a piece.

Matt Bartosik is the editor of Off the Rocks' next issue and a "between blogs" blogger.

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