|GemSelect's Best Selling Gemstones of 2011
Here are our top 10 best selling Gemstones for 2011.
These top 10 gemstones are consistently our most popular selling stones. For example, if I look at the best sellers for right now, and take a snap-shot for November 2011, the top 5 remains the same.
GemSelect have more than 130 gemstone types to choose from so we offer a huge choice and these figures represent an accurate picture of what is being purchased. We sell to jewelers small and large and private customers so it seems these gemstones are the ones most in demand.
So, why these specific gemstones?
Many people, not connected with the world of fabulous colored gemstones, will not even have heard of Tourmaline.
Tourmaline comes in a large range of different colors; green, blue, yellow, pink, watermelon, bi-color, reds, purple and even black. It is available in a greater variety of color, and shades of colors, than any other gemstone. It is also found as "color change" tourmaline whereby the color changes from green in daylight, to red in incandescent light.
The bi-color Tourmalines, in particular those called "watermelon" named for its distinctive pink/red and green bands, are highly desired.
The clarity of the stones ranges from IF, meaning "internally flawless" through to transparent or opaque.
It is also reasonably hard, with 7-7.5 on Mohs scale and therefore suitable for all kinds of jewelry.
Value for money is also good for Tourmaline, particularly in larger sizes since the carat price for tourmaline doesn't increase hugely for the bigger stones. So you can get a lot of stone for your money.
Our second biggest seller this year is Sapphire, but Sapphires have always been a favorite gemstone for buyers. Most people have heard of Sapphire gemstones and we often read about the rich and famous wearing them.
You maybe surprised to hear that Sapphires are available in a great variety of colors; blues, orange, yellow, pink, white, green, purple, black and bi-color.
The rarest color is called Padparadscha which is a pink-orange color. So these sell very quickly.
Blue sapphires are the biggest sellers and there is a large range of blues on offer from the lightest to the darkest shades of blue. Cornflower blue sapphires are particularly attractive.
The clarity of sapphire ranges from IF to opaque as well. Opaque sapphires are usually cut as cabochons. They are second in hardness to Diamonds, being rated at 9 on Mohs scale. So, ideal for rings or jewelry that is intended to be worn every single day!
Interestingly, for those new to the world of gemstones, Ruby and Sapphire are the same material, the mineral corundum. Red corundum is known as Ruby, while all other colors are referred to as Sapphire.
We also sell Star Sapphires that contain unusual tiny needle-like inclusions that intersect each other at varying angles to produce a star effect on the gemstone (called an asterism.). Star Sapphire stones are often used in men's rings.
Number 3 on the list, and selling significantly more than fourth placed (Amethyst) and fifth placed (Spinel) is Topaz. The majority of the Topaz we sell is blue, albeit in a vast range of blues.
Blue Topaz is the top selling jewelry gemstone in the USA. This is due to its excellent brilliance, luster and clarity and the fact that it is very reasonably priced and available in big sizes.
Our biggest sellers are London Blue and Swiss Blue Topaz. However, blue topaz occurs very rarely in nature, and then only in a very pale blue. The shades of blue topaz you'll find in the market are the result of widely-used enhancement techniques, usually involving irradiation and heating. These techniques produce a deep blue with a slight green - inky tone, known as London Blue; a saturated medium blue known as Swiss Blue; and a bright light blue known as Sky Blue.
Topaz also comes in white, yellow, orange, pink-red, light-green and even blue.
The most valuable topaz color is an orange to pink color known as Imperial Topaz.
There is a large choice of types of Topaz to choose from. 2 new types of Topaz have even been introduced to the market the last couple of years! Azotic Topaz and Mystic Topaz is a clear topaz with a thin layer at the back of the stone (pavilion), creating all kind of colors and effects. So, if you like very colorful stones, you should check out Mystic and Azotic Topaz. You will find a rainbow of colors in a in a kaleidoscopic pattern.
Finally, we also offer Rutilated Topaz which is clear quartz with rutile inclusions.
Topaz is a hard stone at 8 on Mohs scale so it can be used in all jewelry without too much cause for concern.
Our fourth biggest seller for 2011 is Amethyst. The color of the stones ranges from violet to all shades of purple. These colors are extremely popular as they are associated with Royalty and also the Church. Siberian deep purple attracts the highest prices.
The clarity of amethyst gemstones is excellent and you will be able to select a beautiful stone in big sizes as well.
Amethyst has a hardness of 7 on Mohs scale so it is relatively durable for use in most jewelry.
The final gemstone in our Top 5 Best Selling Gems of 2011 is Spinel. Fine Spinel compares very well with Sapphire for its brilliance and luster and often buyers purchase a Spinel instead of a Sapphire or Ruby. Fine red Spinel is actually rarer than Ruby, although the Spinel is never treated in any way.
Interestingly, until the beginning of the 19th Century Spinel were thought to be Rubies. Many were fooled and the British Crown Jewels even holds a Spinel called "The Black Princes Ruby", which since the 14th Century was always believed to be a Ruby.
We sell Spinel in a vast array of colors, red, pinky-red, black, blue, violet, pinky-violet, rose-orange, purplish-pink, violet, and many more. If you are having trouble finding a particular shade of color it maybe worth having a look at this gem. It can be found in a range of beautiful pastel shades. These outstanding shades of pink, purple, orange, blue, plus every combination in between make Spinels some of the most desirable stones in the world.
These gems range in clarity from IF to Opaque and are hard gemstones, having a rating of 8 on Mohs scale, so you can use this gemstone in jewelry that you wear every day.
But what makes natural Spinel special is that it is never heated or treated in any way. In fact there is no known treatment that can improve the color or clarity of natural Spinel. By contrast, nearly all the sapphire and ruby in today's market has been enhanced by heat treatment. It is surprising then that untreated Spinel still sells for less than 50% of the price of heated sapphire or ruby.
So if you're looking for a good gemstone to invest in, Spinel could be the one.
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Happy gem hunting,
Your friends at GemSelect