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Apatite is a beautiful gemstone but it is virtually unknown to the general public probably because its low durability rating means it is not often used in jewelry although it could make very intriguing pendants, brooches or earrings.
It does have admirers for its powerful spiritual properties and it is beloved by gemstone collectors for curiosity value.
Apatite has such a range of stunning colors that if it were not for its relative softness it would be a much sought after gemstone.
The standard green, golden yellow and blue gemstones are pretty enough but the neon blue and vivid turquoise versions have an intensity that rivals the famous $10,000 per carat Paraiba Tourmalines!
Apatites consist of the same phosphate mineral that makes up agricultural fertilizer and nutrients as well as the major component of our bones and teeth.
A small percentage of this rather drab material can be turned into some incredibly bright and colorful gemstones.
There are also some cat's eye apatite gemstones.
What are the spiritual benefits of Apatite?
Apatite is sometimes called 'the Stone of Inspiration and Motivation' and contains the same material that makes up our teeth and bones. This can give us a few clues as to their spiritual assets:
- Focus and Concentration
- Encourages Environmental Awareness
Apatite and the Chakras
Chakras are energy centers which can influence our physical and mental well-being. Each Chakra has an assigned color and gemstones of that color can help unblock and realign a troubled Chakra.
Apatites can be found in a number of different colors and each can be linked to a Chakra:
- Yellow Apatite - Solar Plexus Chakra
- Green Apatite - Heart Chakra
- Blue Apatite - Throat Chakra
Like nearly all colored gemstones, it is the color of apatites that determine their price. This consists of the hue, the tone and the saturation of said color.
- hue is the base color of the gemstone
- tone is how light or dark the gemstone
- saturation refers to the intensity of the gemstone
The most valuable color is described as neon, electric or, sometimes, swimming pool blue and is very similar to the very expensive Paraiba Tourmalines but at a fraction of the price.
Apatite gemstones larger than a carat in weight are very rare and the price can jump dramatically as they get bigger.
A simple golden yellow apatite up to one carat in weight will be around $10 - $20 per carat according to the brightness of the color and its clarity. However the same qualities in a gemstone that is larger than a carat can mean a price jump to $80 per carat.
The most expensive Paraiba blue apatites are about $40 per carat for smaller stones and $180 per carat for those over one carat in weight.
Most apatites are not treated in any way other than the usual cutting and polishing into gemstones.
We have heard that some of the Paraiba blue examples have been heated to get the neon color but as apatite is very heat sensitive this can be a risky practice.
Apatite is not known to have had a long history as a gemstone - very few such artifacts have been discovered in any archaeological digs for example.
It was catalogued by German geologist Gottlob Werner in 1786 who named it apatite from the Greek 'apatao' meaning to deceive as it was often mistaken for other gem types.
Where are Apatites found?
Brazil, Canada, India, Madagascar and Mexico are the world's top producers of apatite gemstones and Spain is known for its Asparagus Stone green gems while Maine in the US is the source for the lovely lilac apatites.
What jewelry is Apatite suitable for?
Apatites are rated at 5 on Mohs hardness scale which is considered low for jewelry however earrings, pendants and brooches should not be a problem and its use as a spiritual crystal is not affected.