It is an extremely hard and a very expensive exercise trying to source natural Sapphires
that have not been heat-treated as these gems are amongst the most valuable gemstones
known today. However, thanks to modern gemstone enhancements and treatments, it
is now possible to own wonderful, heat-treated natural Sapphires that are both available
to meet demand, and priced at a level making this beautiful gemstone attainable
/ available to most people.
Whilst today's main sources of Sapphire are Africa,
Australia, Myanmar (Burma),
Sri Lanka (Ceylon), Thailand and the United States (Montana, North Carolina), there
are also known Sapphire deposits in
Brazil, Cambodia, India, Madagascar, Tanzania
Blue Sapphires are available in a range of different shades of blue, from a pale
baby blue to a rich royal blue.
The highest quality and most desirable Sapphires are those that originate in India,
Myanmar (Burma), and Sri Lanka (Ceylon). Sapphires from India and Myanmar (Burma),
are highly prized for their pure blue colors and stones from these regions are priced
accordingly, often at collectors prices, particularly if there is documentation
available to prove the origin of the Sapphire. Sri Lankan (Ceylon) Sapphires are
sought after for both their delightful pastel blue and fancy colored variations.
Sapphire is rated at 9 on the Moh's Scale of Hardness and is second only to the
Diamond in this regard. Sapphires therefore are perfectly suited to all jewelry
purposes / uses and is a very hard-wearing, durable and versatile gemstone suitable
for everyday wear.
When thinking of Sapphire, most people immediately think of, and prefer, a blue
gemstone. Sapphire is however actually much more than just a blue gem and is found
in various colors including, black, blues, browns, colorless, pink, orange, peach,
purple, voilet, white and yellow. The one color that Sapphire is not is red. Red
Corundum is what we know as Ruby. In adition to the single colors, Sapphires are
also available in “Stars” where inclusions make the stone translucent or opaque
and affect the way that the gemstone reflects light. The effect created is a “Star”
and this star floats across the surface of the stone as it is moved.
The most valuable natural Sapphires are those that exhibit pure blue colors. The
purer the blue color, the more valuable the Sapphire becomes. When buying Sapphires,
color, clarity and size are the main considerations and those that have the most
effect upon overall worth. Pay particular attention to color - look for a stone
that displays intense, uniform, pure blue coloration with no overtones or secondary
Being an extremely hard gemstone that is very well-suited to jewelry purposes, Sapphires
are cut into almost all of the known gemstone cuts, with Cushion, Emerald, Pear
and Oval cuts being particularly popular.
Almost all Sapphires found on the market today have been heat-treated in order to
intensify color and remove “silk”, small inclusions present in most natural Sapphires.
This method of treatment is considered permanent and color should not fade over
Care & Cleaning:
Sapphires are a very tough, durable gemstone and can safely be cleaned with
soapy water or commercial solvent and a brush, and can also safely be cleaned using most
modern mechanical cleaners. Do however avoid subjecting Sapphires to prolonged exposure
to strong heat or light sources, particularly with regard to heat-treated gems,
as prolonged exposure may cause permanent changes in coloration.