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About Synthetic Pink Gemstones

About Synthetic or Lab Created Gemstones-

A synthetic gem material is one that is made in a laboratory, but which shares virtually all chemical, optical, and physical characteristics of its natural mineral counterpart, though in some cases, namely synthetic turquoise and synthetic opal, additional compounds can be present.

Synthetic gem crystals have been manufactured since the late 1800s, and their production is often marked by a need for them in industrial applications outside of the jewelry industry. The first success was in producing synthetic ruby of faceting quality. Synthetic crystals are used in communications and laser technology, microelectronics, and abrasives. Because synthetics for jewelry applications can be “made to order” [i.e. consistent color and crystal shape] given the right ingredients, time, and the facilities to grow them, they are likely to be much less rare than natural gems of equal size, clarity, and saturation of color. Because of this, and because it is possible to confuse them with gems that are naturally occurring, there are strict guidelines regarding how they are marketed and sold

In melt processes, the chemical composition of melt is the same as the composition of the resulting crystal. In solution processes, the solution or melt has a different chemical composition than that of the resulting crystal. Constituents are dissolved in the solution or melt at high temperature, and the crystal forms initially on a seed crystal as the melt temperature is lowered*

*Source GIA (Gemological Institute of America)

List of Pink Color Gemstones-Naturally Mined-

Naturally occurring pink gemstones include; Rose Quartz, Pink Sapphire, Rhodolite Garnet, Pink Topaz, Morganite, Pink Opal Pink Kunzite, Pink Malaya Garnet, Pink Tourmaline, Pink Coral Gems, Pink Spinel, Pezzottaite, Pink Rhodochrosite, Pink Zircon, Pink Pearl, Pink Star Rose Quartz, Pink Moonstone, Pink Smithsonite, Pink Rhodonite.

The most popular synthetically or lab grown pink gemstones include; pink sapphire, morganite and garnet. 

Pink Sapphire is one of the most popular pink gemstones, and the pink variety of sapphire is in high demand. It’s rarer than a typical blue sapphire stone and is the second hardest stone in comparison to a diamond which is ranked highest (10) on the Moh's scale of hardness. Pink sapphire is available in shades that range from cool violet to warm peach. 

Morganite belongs to the same family of gemstones as the Golden Beryl, Aquamarine, and Emerald gemstones.  The most common shades of a natural occurring morganite range from hues of coral or salmon to very light pink hue. Morganite is a highly sought after alternative to the rarer and more expensive pink sapphire or pink diamonds. 

Pink Topaz  emerged in the late 90's therefore these pink stones are relatively new to the gemstone market.  To create these pink gemstones, a natural topaz is coated with a  film layer at the bottom of the stone. This process is called thin film deposition and can be used to create darker or light pink gemstones.

Grading Gemstones-

The grading of lab created pink gemstones including sapphires and morganite is equal to that of naturally mined gemstones.  This is because lab created stones are identical in chemical and physical properties to a naturally mined gem, the difference is that they have been grown in a lab vs. the earth!

One grading system developed by GIA that’s used for colored gems divides various types of colored stones into three categories; Type 1, Type 2, and Type 3. Type 1 includes stone types that rarely have visible inclusions (imperfections that are visible without magnification). Type 2 stones will have some visible inclusions seen by the naked eye. Type 3 stones have even more easily visible inclusions and are rarely used in jewelry settings.  A ‘Type 1’ gem is highly sought after as it means the stones are generally clear with few inclusions that can be observed with the naked eye (without magnification).   A majority of lab created gemstones fall into the Type 1 level of stones. 

A majority of professional gemologists also consider color to be one of the most important factors when grading stones. However, many gemologists or jewelers will consider more than just the stone's color and focus on the standard 4 C's of the stone; clarity, color, cut and carat weight to determine a gemstone's value. 

Typical gemstone color grading-

Good: A “good” stone does not allow light to pass through the stone affecting the stone's overall clarity. It is considered an entry level grading for fine jewelry.

Better: A “better”color exudes a light to medium hue. A limited amount of light passes through the gemstone. You may also see small inclusions with the naked eye.

Best: A “best” graded gemstone is the ideal color for the stone i.e. pink sapphires will have a medium pink color.  You’ll see very minor visible inclusions with the naked eye. This category of stone is rare and in some cases only the top 10% of gemstones can be considered the color grade. 

Heirloom: An “heirloom” gemstone will feature the ideal color of the gemstone, usually it has a deep intense color.  An heirloom gemstone will have incredible brilliance in both daylight and artificial light. This type of gemstone is the best grade of stone available in the world and therefore, much more valuable.

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