Not so famous stone when it comes to the jewellery, the Andalusite is a rock-forming mineral, which is hard and durable for most of the jewellery types. Often seen in a melange of colours, the beautiful warm coloured stone displays various shades of falls!
With a touch of earthy essence and feel of falls, the Andalusite is a very warm and gorgeous stone. It is very attractive and displays a melange of shades when viewed from different angles, from yellow to brown, green and orange. Its exotic colour makes it very appealing to pick and wear, and since this spectacular gemstone weighs 7.5 on the Mohs hardness scale, it is ideal for regular wear in any ring or other forms of jewellery.
History and Origin
This magnificent gemstone is not just rich in colour variance but also history. Andalusite was named after the first place it was discovered, in 1789- Andalusia, the region of Malaga in Spain. This unique gem is classed as an aluminium nesosilicate mineral with a thick columnar crystal system, which is quite easy to find but is rarely good enough to be used as a gemstone. The crystal structure of this great stone makes it different from Kyanite and Sillimanite, while they share a similar chemical composition. Andalusite still has traces in Spain but now is also be extracted from Brazil, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Australia and the Inyo Mountains of California.
Properties of Andalusite
This spectacular gem can be described as a ‘cognac cocktail’ of colour, indeed a sight to behold and a must-have for lovers of unusual jewellery. From cut to the clarity, this stone proves to be a must-have for real jewellery aficionado. With subtle colours and vibrance, the gemstone is not just appealing for the looks but has plenty of properties to fall in love with.
The cut of the gemstone is extremely important since it brings the colour shift nature of the Andalusite to the limelight. The stone displays an array of colours from different angles and through the cuts. When cutting with a long axis, it displays light hues in the centre but dark on the edges and ends. The shapes like round and square, however, show the patchwork of two to three different colours and at last, the poor cuts hardly show the shift of colours nut just dull shades.
Usually gemstones with crystal image show an excellent colour play, so when you turn them around, they showcase exclusive shades and hues. In Andalusite, you will not need to turn the stone a lot but can see the effects and hints of green, red and orange from one single. Andalusite has such a robust pleochroic feature that it is specially cut to enhance its unusual mixture of colour. Andalusite displays a remarkable shimmering dance of hues, especially when cutting into faceted shapes. Other cuts bring out a mosaic of blended colours, from green to golden yellow and reddish-brown, all intermingled beautifully.
Like most other gems, Andalusite has natural inclusions (inner flaws), the most common of which are rutile needles (needle-shaped crystals). Other specimens are featured with dark inclusions which produce cruciform (cross-shaped) patterns called chiastolite. As long as the inclusions do not affect the colour play, they can be beautiful on the surface.
Most of the Andalusite gemstones available in the market are small, and hence, any piece above a carat weight is rare. The clear ones above or approximately five carats are generally the expensive ones. However, the Andalusite gems from brazil can reach up to 75-100 carats.
What to remember while buying Andalusite?
Compared to many other quality gems, Andalusite stone is considered to be reasonably priced, and hence, always make sure you get the best price and quality while investing in the gem.
- The sheer variety that is also fit for jewellery is extremely rare, so it will command a higher price tag.
- The gemstone is pretty durable; it does not require any special treatment or care.
- The cutting in this stone is a very important aspect to observe before buying.
- The clearer the stone is, the better is the quality.
- The stone is usually small, and hence, it is rare to get your hands on anything above a carat.
- The violet coloured Andalusite gemstone is extremely rare and priced accordingly.
- It does not go through any type of enhancements or treatments.
- The availability of the stone is rare and hence always lookout for a genuine and trusted source.
- It is available in transparent to opaque visibility.
- Since the synthetic Andalusites are not yet there in the market, many retailers sell similar looking stones, and hence, we really recommend you to learn as much as possible before buying this gorgeous gemstone.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are several questions that are bound to come up, when you’re out buying that perfect emerald. We’ve tried our best to answer most of these questions below:
1. What is the spiritual meaning of Andalusite?
Andalusite is not a very well known gemstone when it comes to the spiritual realm, but is often believed to be associated with protection. The gem is said to possess the power of protection and can also help in releasing the stress and depression.
2. What is Andalusite used for?
Andalusite is known for the unique colour play and the melange of hues it projects. The stone is rare due to the availability, and because of the hardness and durability, it is fondly used in regular or daily use jewellery types.
3. How do you identify Andalusite?
It is always advised to get the certified gem from a trusted source. Before going to purchase, always make sure to get to know the appearance of the stone and do your homework. Since the stone is hard, a regular knife or nail cannot scratch the surface of the gem, so you can do this quick test after the owner approves.
4. What is the hardness of Andalusite?
Hardness of this durable stone ranges from 7 – 7.5 on the Mohs hardness scale.
5. Is Andalusite valuable?
Andalusite is not your usual gemstone, and hence, is rare to locate and find in the jewellery world. It is affordable, but due to the remote mines and scarce availability, it can range from time to time. Usually, they are available with carat value ranging between 5-10, but the stones derived from Brazil can seldomly be seen in weight approximately 75-100 carats.
6. Can Andalusite be treated?
Other than the usual cutting and polishing the surface to smooth, it is not treated.
7. What jewellery is Andalusite suitable for?
Ranking higher than regular gemstones, the Andalusite ranks 7-7.5 on the scale of hardness. Due to the durability of the gemstone, it can be pretty much ideal for every jewellery type.
8. How to care for Andalusite
This gemstone is hard enough for regular and daily jewellery, and it is still advised to not wear the product while doing any hardcore physical activity, such as sports and housework. Anything harder than the stone can scratch the surface and hence a little care is always advised.
9. Can Andalusite change its colour?
It is not specific which angle will enable the gem to showcase any particular colour, but indeed this pretty gem can give you the colours of fall altogether in one piece.
10. How is an Andalusite formed?
Andalusite stone is a form of aluminium silicate mineral which is the result of volcanic activity millions of years ago. The heat of magma and extreme pressure results in the formation of this exclusive gemstone.
Facts about Andalusite:
- This gem can display three unique colours, also called trichroism, depending on the angle of view and the cut of the stone.
- The Andalusite gem rarely undergoes through a heat treatment.
- Andalusite has a very good score of wearability
- Before gaining the reorganization as a jewellery gemstone, the stone was a paradise for the collectors.
- The rustic brown shades make it looks very natural and distinctive
- The stone is offered with cross-like features all over, and hence, is also said to offer the positivity of cross and keep the evil away.
- You can easily clean the stone while holding it under the running tap, stream. Later it is directed to keep it in the sun for a couple of hours to dry, or you can also dry with a soft, clean cloth.
Spiritual and health values of Andalusite:
Andalusite is known for its magical appearance and exotic pattern, this gemstone is also said to be rich in health and spiritual values. It is believed to reduce the stress of the wearer, and with the cross pattern featured on the surface, the stone is said to fight the evil and instigate the positive values in the life of the wearer. This earthy stone is best when worn to get the best values and can also be carried around in the loose form. If your exercise meditation, you can keep a raw gem or a simple ring in the palm and practise the peace to align the chakras. The stone is also known to ensure the speedy recovery and provide the overall well-being of an individual.