Aquamarine – Your Complete Guide
The usage of aquamarine can be traced back to the earliest recordings of human history. Ancient artifacts containing aquamarine, date back as far as 500 B.C. Its striking yet calming blue tone and high affordability make it a very desirable gemstone for those seeking a less-pricier alternative to a more expensive gemstone.
Throughout history, aquamarine has believed to possess various mystical qualities. The Romans believed that the stone could be used to treat problems associated with a patient’s throat, liver and stomach, while in medieval Europe, various practitioners used it to alleviate stress and nullify poisons.
Facts about Aquamarine
- The name is derived from Latin ‘aqua marina’, which translates to ‘sea water’. A reference to its captivating, crystal clear blue colour
- It’s the birthstone of March and connected with the star sign, Pisces
- It’s part of the beryl group of minerals, whose most famous and valuable gemstone is Emerald
- It has a hardness rating of 7.8 on the Mohs scale
- It comes in a variety of different shades, from light green to a darker teal
- Although it’s quite acceptable to have aquamarine in any colour, sky blue is the most heavily sought after and therefore, most valuable colour. Gems that don’t possess this colour are often heated in an effort to achieve the desired blue tone. Such treatment processes are unnoticeable to the naked eye and increase the value of the stone
- Although it’s mined from many parts of the world, including Africa, The Middle East, Asia, Europe and North America, the most prized samples of Aquamarine are found in Brazil
How Best to Wear Aquamarine Jewellery
The mesmerising natural beauty of aquamarine makes it an ideal companion for diamonds and looks particularly marvellous with either yellow gold, white gold or platinum. It’s also one of the few gemstones that looks fabulous with any skin tone.
Evaluating Aquamarine Gemstones
The overall quality of individual aquamarine stones is determined by three factors; their colour, their clarity and their cut. A superior quality aquamarine will possess crystal clear clarity, a wonderfully rich sky blue colour and a cut that strengthens the other two qualities.
Colour - whilst aquamarine is available in a beautiful array of green-blue hues, stones that most closely match the perfect sky blue colour are heavily favoured by jewellers. That said, aquamarine is renowned for its aqua colour, making it the most popular colour among buyers.
Clarity - jewellery-grade aquamarine are crystal clear. While some cuts may contain what appear to be microscopic bubbles, these are typically not noticeable to the naked eye. Aquamarine stones that contain a decidedly murky appearance do meet the strict standards of the jewellery industry and should never be sold in jewellery stores.
Cut – owing to its splendid colour and appearance, aquamarine is a versatile gemstone that looks incredible in many different cuts, including more bold and imaginative bespoke designs. Despite this, the emerald cut is still widely favoured by artisans, as it tends to expose the gem’s true splendour. Like amethyst, large, voluminous quantities of aquamarine are in relative abundance, making it highly treasured among specialist designers, who use it to carve and create extraordinary artworks.
Looking After Your Aquamarine Jewellery
As mentioned in the facts section, aquamarine possesses a hardness rating of 7.8, which means that whilst it is suitable for jewellery purposes, it can become scratched if it brushes up against harder stones, such as diamond. For this reason, owners of aquamarine pieces are strongly advised to store them in separate compartments. Never allow the gem to be exposed to excessive amounts of sunlight or heat. Always remove the jewellery if you intend to sunbake or before having a shower. Aquamarine can be adequately cleaned using warm and soapy water.
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