Spinel is a beautiful gemstone, which is close in chemical composition to corundums (rubies and sapphires) but varies from them in isotropic structure. Stones of red shade used to be mistaken for rubies, and only at the start of the 20th century did the truth become clear when the features of the stone began to be distinguished from the characteristics of the ruby by gemological techniques.
Description of spinel gemstones:
A spinel is a self-contained group of minerals. It includes both vivid and nondescript shiny stones in various shades. It is colorless, blue, gray, deep, pink, green, violet, yellow, black, red, and orange. The red stone is of the greatest value for jewelers since it is very similar to the ruby.
The cost of a carat of natural noble spinel lies in a wide range, increasing markedly every year. It greatly depends on its color.
Location of mining:
On the Gem Lovers website, samples from the deposits of Burma, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Vietnam, Sri Lanka are presented for sale. Also, a gem-quality mineral is found in Afghanistan, Cambodia, Thailand.
There are several versions of the origin of the name spinel. According to one of them, the name is associated with the shape of the stone and comes from the word "spinell", which means "thorn" in Latin. According to another, the stone got this name due to its unusual brilliance. It is mentioned in the records of Marco Polo in the 13th century. Documents dating from the 9th century AD also contain information about the mining of this stone in the Pamirs. It is also known that a small scattering of this gem is an adornment of the coats of arms of the noble families of Spain, England, and France.
The chemical formula of spinel is MgAl2O4. The mineral changes color depending on which ions are incorporated into its crystal lattice. The most common impurities are the following:
If you are interested in this gem, then you can find a suitable one using our website. Even if you did not find the spinel you need in the catalog, you could communicate your wishes and our employees will start looking for a stone that will surely suit your taste.
How to distinguish real spinel gems from fake ones?
Due to the fact that it is very difficult to find synthetic and natural spinel, many imitations of a noble gem appear on the market. These are, first of all, glass, citalls, cubic zirconias. Also, scammers can sell cheaper natural stones as artificial spinels, such as garnets (almandine, pyrope, rhodolite), tourmaline rubellite, zircon. When choosing a stone, you need to pay attention to the following factors:
If a spinel costs less than $30, then it is fake - a real stone cannot be so cheap. The average cost of a stone per carat starts at about $200.
Spinel imitations are distinguished by impeccable purity and transparency, often resembling glass - such minerals look very attractive, as they playfully sparkle and shine in the sun. Real spinel gems have a cloudy texture and rich color.
The uneven color and the presence of small inclusions indicate the natural origin of the stone.
It is best to purchase a spinel gem from a jewelry company that is ready to vouch for the reliability of the transaction. The company's gemologists carefully study all lots presented in the Gem Lovers catalog. The buyer can also order the production of a certificate or expert opinion in a reputable certification center at the company's expense.