Info Gem Treatment
Gems when found in their natural condition can often contain inclusions, fissures and show color zoning. The gemstone industry has worked on ways to improve the beauty and often the durability, of many gems. These processes are referred to as 'gemstone treatments' and can at times, call for additional care and attention. Irrespective of any treatments being applied to a gem, it is always advisable to handle and store gemstone jewelry with care. Heat, chemicals, strong detergents and physical impact can scratch or chip most gemstones. In this section we list the common treatments applied to gemstones, use it as a reference point when buying jewelry. Follow the instructions to get longer and better and longer satisfaction when wearing your gorgeous jewels. The treatment information is applicable to the entire industry, it is just that most gem and jewelry providers, do not care to disclose details to their buyers.
Agate Black has a hardness of 6 and is generally dyed. It is suggested that you avoid exposing the stone to heat and harsh chemicals. Ultrasonic cleaners should not be used to clean the stone or agate jewelry.
Amethyst has a hardness of 7 and is generally heated to enhance its color. The treatment does not call for any special handling instructions.
Ammolite has a hardness of 6, it is generally assembled with a glass top to increase durability. Avoid heat and do not soak in water. Ultrasonic cleaning is not recommended. Handle with care and do not wear when doing heavy physical activity.
Emerald is generally oiled to improve its clarity and luster. The gem has a hardness of 7.5. Emeralds should be handled with care because of their physical properties. Do not soak in water, expose to heat or clean in ultrasonic cleaners.
Chalcedony Green has a hardness of 6.5 and is generally dyed to improve its color. Strong heat and prolonged exposure to bright light, can cause the color to fade. Do not clean in ultrasonic cleaners and avoid harsh use.
Chrome diopside has a hardness of 5.5 and should be handled with care. This gem is generally not treated in any way. Keep away from environments where it can be struck by hard objects or scratched.
Garnets are generally left untreated, the gem has a good hardness of 7-7.5 and does not need any special care while being worn, cleaned or stored.
Marcasite (Pyrite) has a hardness of 6-6.5 and is generally not treated in any way. The stone requires no special care but, should be kept away from chemicals.
Opal Mosaic is assembled from smaller pieces of opal, a quartz top is added to improve durability. Opal has a hardness of 5-6. Do not expose this gemstone to heat. When cleaning mosaic opal, do not use hot water or ultrasonic cleaners. Assembled opals cannot be re-cut or re-polished.
Pearls have a hardness of 3-4. While grey and pink pearls are generally dyed to give them their color, white pearls show their natural color. Pearls should be kept away from heat. Avoid getting pearls in contact with perfumes, hairsprays and other cosmetics. Household chemicals can also damage pearls.
Peridot has a hardness of 6.5 and is not treated in any way. Do not expose this gemstone to heat. Ultrasonic cleaners and chemicals should not be used to clean peridot.
Rhodolite has a hardness of 7-7.5 and is not treated in any way. The gemstone can be worn and handled with moderate care. There are no special instructions related to rhodolite care.
Ruby Fissure Filled, is treated to enhance the clarity of the gemstone. The gem shows good durability but, should not come into contact with chemical and heat. Ultrasonic cleaners should not be used to clean rubies treated by the fissure filling process. The gem should not be struck by physical impact.
Ruby Star Fissure Filled, this gem is fissure filled to impart the star effect. The handling instructions are similar to those for fissure filled ruby, mentioned above.
Ruby is almost always heated to improve clarity and color. This process does not reduce the value or durability of the gemstone. Heated rubies do not require any special care.
Rubies have a hardness rating of 9.
All the above sapphires are heat treated to improve clarity and color. Heated sapphires do not need any special care. The hardness of sapphires is 9.
Sapphire Blue Diffused
Sapphire Blue Diffused Star
The above sapphires are treated by the diffusion process to improve color and clarity. The gemstone maintains it high durability and requires no special care and attention. Diffused sapphire gems should not be re-cut or re-polished. Sapphires have a hardness of 9.
Sapphire Green Fissure Filled, this stone is treated by the fissure filling process to improve its clarity. This gemstone should not be put through severe wear and tear. Fissure filled sapphires should not be exposed to heat or chemicals, they should not be cleaned using ultrasonic equipment. Sapphires have a hardness of 9.
Sapphire Color Change
The above sapphires are left untreated and require no special care and attention. Sapphires have a hardness rating of 9.
These sapphires are beryllium heat treated. They require no special care and like all sapphires, have a hardness of 9.
Sphene is generally not treated in any way. It has a hardness of 5 and should therefore be treated with care. Physical impact and friction against hard surfaces can scratch or chip spehene gems.
Topaz Sky Blue
Topaz Swiss Blue
The above blue topaz gems are irradiated and annealed, this to give them their gorgeous color.
Topaz White is heated to improve clarity.
With a hardness of 8 topaz offers excellent durability and stability. The gems require no special care or attention.
Blue Zircon is heated to get a fine blue color.
White Zircon is heated to improve clarity and take off impurities.
The gem has a hardness of 7.5 and is very stable and easy to maintain. There are no special handling instructions for zircon gems.