Garnets: More Than Just A Red Gemstone

Garnets: More Than Just A Red Gemstone

When you think of garnet you most likely think of the color red as it is the most common. Did you know that garnet can be found in green, orange, yellow, pink and purples with many shades in-between?

There are over twenty species of garnet. Out of these, 6 are found most often when shopping for gemstones. What are they? (WARNING: I am about to nerd out on gem facts!)

  1. Andradite colors are yellow to yellowish green. A rare and sought after variety of andradite is demantoid, a bright green color, which is frequently used as a more affordably priced substitute stone for Emerald. Unique to demantoid, the presence of rare horsetail inclusions can dramatically increase the price of the gemstone. These inclusions look like a bundle of fibers in a golden brown color that radiates out from a central point. They are pretty spectacular to see in person!
  2. Almandine colors range from purple to reddish-orange.
  3. Grossular has the most color variety that includes colorless, vibrant green, orangish-red, reddish-orange, and yellow. Varieties of grossular include rhodolite (purplish-red), tsavorite (green), hessonite (mixed shades of orange, red, brown), and good quality tsavorites -- which can be an affordable substitute for an emerald.
  4. Pyrope colors range from purple to reddish-orange.
  5. Spessartine colors are often a wide range of orange and yellow shades.
  6. Uvarovite is a green garnet that is made up of tiny crystals, think druzy texture. This variety is usually used by lapidary artists and often incorporated into statement jewelry. See an example here.

And if that wasn’t enough to confuse you, many garnets are made up of more than one species! For example, the garnets in these earrings are made up of pyrope and spessartine. Rhodolite is another great example of mixing, it’s made up of almandine and pyrope and you can see an example of that garnet here. It’s definitely more of a purple color.

How is all of this possible? How is a garnet not just a garnet? It all comes down to different chemical elements in the same minerals structure. 

Ready to shop garnets and get inspired? You can shop garnets on karinluvaas.com here.

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