How to buy quality colored gemstones


Colored gemstones used to be called either precious or semi-precious stones, but now they're all known as colored gemstones. Helena Krodel of the Jewelry Information Center tells you how to spot quality when buying these beautiful, but often very expensive, colored gemstones.

How to buy quality colored gemstones

Our expert guide to gemstones, Helena Krodel, has these tips for determining the quality of colored gemstones:

  • As with diamonds, when you are judging colored gemstones, the 4 C's are what matter most - cut, color, clarity and carat.
  • Color is what matters most when you buy gemstones. The more saturated the color, the better.
  • Semi-precious and precious stones are all considered colored gemstones now.
  • The stones considered semi-precious, like topaz and amethyst, are more common in nature and thus cost less than the precious colored gemstones like sapphires, rubies and emeralds -- also known as royal gems.
  • Colored gemstones come in a wide spectrum of colors. For example, sapphires can be many colors besides blue - green, orange and yellow.

Hi I'm Helena Krodel of Jewelry Information Center here for and today we're going to be talking about how to buy colored gemstone jewelry. They're so many beautiful gemstones available today and the most important thing to remember when shopping for colored gemstones is the four C's just like the four C's for diamonds. However, with colored gemstones, the color is the most important C.

Now with colored gemstones, the more saturated the color the better. So if you have a more vibrant colored gemstone that's more desirable than one that's a little more faded in color. So here are some examples of colored gemstones that used to be called semi-precious. Now today we call all gemstones colored gemstones, but the reason why these are actually more affordable is because they're found in abundance in nature.

Now we have some examples. Some of these are birthstones like amethyst. And we have one here that's blue topaz; this is very popular. Blue is a very common color.

Now we'll transition over to the quote unquote precious gemstones that we used to know as the three royal gems. The first one is a ruby. Now that has a beautiful red color. This one here is a real emerald and that is very precious and very expensive, also because of the size. And then the last one here is a sapphire. Now sapphires typically are blue, however they can come in many different colors. Like this pair of earrings here, as you can see, has everything from green to orange to yellow. Now those are real sapphires too.

Now remember when you're shopping for colored gemstone jewelry, the four C's are cut, color, clarity, and carat weight, color being the most important. I'm Helena Krodel with Jewelry Information Center for

meet theexpert
  • Helena Krodel

    Helena Krodel Jewelry Information Center Helena Krodel's the Associate Director for Media and Spokesperson for Jewelry Information Center, the public relations arm of fine jewelry and watch industries. A non-profit trade association in NYC, JIC is the objective authority on fine jewelry/watches.
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