If you’re looking for a more affordable option for your next gemstone ring, but you love the intense blues and pretty purples of sapphire, you should consider tanzanite rings and jewelry. Tanzanite is a fairly new gemstone in the gemstone world, and was discovered only in the late 1960s in Tanzania, Africa. Despite being one of the newest gemstones to be added to the official list of stones recognized by the American Gem Trade Association, tanzanite is extremely popular and actually quite rare.
This is because tanzanite is only found in one place in the world – Tanzania, Africa – and the mines where tanzanite is found have – by some estimations – only 30 more years’ worth of tanzanite mining left in them before only the current tanzanite reserves are available.
Yet despite this, tanzanite – because of its young age as compared to other precious stones – is still more affordable than many diamonds, rubies, and sapphires. And if you love the color of sapphire, then tanzanite can be the perfect alterative to your next choice in ring, as the colors are incredibly similar.
In fact, tanzanite—before it was too far into the public eye—was often secretly switched in for sapphire by some irreputable jewelers looking to make some money on gullible and ill-informed customers. Rest assured that if you purchase your tanzanite ring at an online site like Tanzanite Rings HQ, you will not have to worry about such practices.
But before you buy, you should do your research on what constitutes as high-quality tanzanite—including what to look for when examining a gemstone or talking with a jeweler. Here are our top tips for judging high-quality tanzanite.
The 4 C’s – Color, Cut, Clarity & Carat
The 3 C’s in tanzanite jewelry (and all gemstone jewelry) are Color, Cut, Clarity & Carat, and these are all important considerations when judging high-quality tanzanite. Briefly, color is the most important factor, as the most intense blues and indigos are the most highly-prized stones. Cut is also an important factor as the cut is what assists the stone’s tri-color properties in shining and sparkling when worn. Clarity and Carat are the final C’s, and both are important. Clarity has its own grading scale, from A to AAA quality, with AAA-quality tanzanite being the most sought-after and also rarest. Carat is, of course, the size of stone – and in tanzanite, the larger stones often exhibit the finest and deepest colors.
The Jeweler’s Promise
Another aspect to consider when judging high-quality tanzanite is the jeweler’s promise. You want to make sure your jeweler understands the ethical concerns of jewelry mining, and has a promise to provide conflict-free, environmentally aware gemstones. Like diamonds, many gemstones arriving from Africa could have been involved in aiding civil war, and you want to do everything you can to make sure that your gemstone has not funded conflict.
If you consider these top tips when purchasing your next tanzanite piece, you will better be able to judge high-quality tanzanite from the rest.