All About Star Sapphire Stones All Entries
If you've every seen a gem that embodies the image of a star, it may be a star sapphire stone. Its optical effect is known as "asterism." These gems are rare in nature and typically result from heat treatment by a manufacturer. Here's a look at what star sapphire stones are and why they are so attractive.
Why People Seek Star Sapphires
Part of the appeal of star sapphire stones is their earthy look. The star is a symbol widely cherished for its triangulated geometric shapes, its twinkle and associations with the vast universe. Due to the mystique of asterism, the gem is associated with love, making it suitable for an engagement ring.
The rays that make up the star image are inclusions within the crystal. These inclusions affect light reflection, which accounts for the gem's subtle shine. Usually star sapphire stones contain 6 rays, but sometimes there can be as many as 12. The more perfect the star looks, the more likely it was crafted by a human or machine.
Any rare type of gem typically stimulates interest among jewelry collectors, which is certainly part of the star sapphire stone's appeal. Another reason people love these specimens is for their amazing color and shine, as with quality sapphires in general. Colors span the rainbow including blue, green, yellow, orange, and pink.
The largest sapphires often correlate with asterism. The best looking star sapphires are mostly transparent and feature centered stars with thin sharp lines. The star effect should be quite prominent rather than faint or questionable for maximum value. Most star saffire stones come from Sri Lanka and Burma.
Treated Star Sapphire Stones
Synthethic star sapphire stones are made of aluminum oxide and have a hardness of 9 on the Mohs scale. That puts them in between emeralds at 8 and diamonds at 10. The chemicals are heated by a flame at high temperature to produce synthetic gems that have the same properties as natural sapphire.
Lab created gems are popular because they can be mass produced at a lower cost than mining, making it a more affordable option for consumers. Heat treatment can enhance the color, but it must be done very carefully. This process can be used to turn natural sapphires into more valuable specimens.
When you go shopping for star sapphire stones it's imperative to ensure they've been evaluated by a professonal GIA-certified gemologist. From them, you'll get an accurate estimate as to how much the gem is worth.
One of the most hypnotic looking gems in the world is the star sapphire, due to its unusual hypnotic appearance. Make sure you know if the gem at least partially comes from nature, which makes it more valuable, or if it comes completely from a lab, which makes it more affordable.
Contact Ralph Mueller & Associates for more information on star sapphire stones and where to find them. We are a GIA-certified jeweler that facilitates global buying and selling of eye-catching gemstones.