Gorgeous Pink Sapphire, just over 1ct weight. This gem has a very attractive pink/purple colour radiating out of the stone. The cut is excellent, creating a lot of sparkle that is additionally boosted by microscopic fine rutile needle inclusions. This type of “imperfections” are typical of the best Sri Lankan Sapphires, as they are so small that they cannot be seen directly with a naked eye. Their effect on the appearance is actually positive as they disperse the light inside the stone, creating a delicate haze that gives it a velvety glow. There is one more function that the rutile performs for us- as it is easily affected by high temperature, it is a good indication of wether a particular stone has been heat treated or not. In this case there are fine undisturbed rutile inclusions inside the whole stone. There are some other small solid inclusions inside this Sapphire but far too small to be seen without magnification with one exception of a red veil at the very bottom of the stone. It would be more visible if its colour had been different but red virtually vanishes in this pink gem. It can only be seen when inspected close to the eye with good light and we guarantee that it doesnt detract from the appearance of this great gem. At 6mm this stone would nicely fit into a ring, pendant or any other jewel that is guaranteed to be an object of envy as stones of such hue and saturation are not easy to come by, especially in unheated stock.
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Sapphire is a gem quality corundum of all colours except for red, which is termed as ruby. Chemically it is an aluminium oxide crystallised in a trigonal system. The name sapphire is traditionally associated with blue hue but there are many other colours, generally described as fancy sapphires. Possible varieties include- colourless, yellow, greenish, pink, purple, orange, brown, black and the most expensive and famous of fancy sapphires, pink-orange stones named Padparadscha. When considering a sapphire purchase, colour is the most important factor. For blue stones it is a strength and purity of primary blue hue that is a basis for a valuation, it can be increased by a slight percentage of violet or decreased by green or grey mask. For fancy sapphires it is a general strength of colour decreased by grey or brown tones. Inclusions are of secondary consideration as they are present in most sapphires, plus they are not necessary a bad thing as they help with identification of possible treatments and origin of the stone.
Synthetic sapphires were already commercially available at the end of 19th century and are widely used in commercial level jewels today. Treatments used on sapphires include a traditional heat treatment, practiced already in Roman times. It can improve colour and clarity of the stones and is completely safe, permanent practice. There are more modern ways of improving sapphires like a beryllium treatment in which stones are heated just below the melting point to allow beryllium to penetrate its structure. This treatment changes colour dramatically and can vary in depth from shallow to a one that penetrates gem completely. Berylium treated stones are considerably cheaper than natural ones or heated ones and the treatment is usually not easy to detect. Other possible treatments include fracture filling, which nowdays is widely used for treatment of rubies.
Sapphires have hardness of 9 and are very durable in any jewellery application. They can be cleaned in ultrasonic cleaners as long as there are no liquid inclusions but steam cleaners are not recommended. The best way to clean your stones is to use soft toothbrush under running water and dry them with soft cloth.