Top 8 Best Purple Gemstones In Jewelry (2020 Review)
Wondering about purple gemstones and the various types that exist in jewelry?
Perfect, you're in the right place!
In this guide we cover:
- What purple gemstones are (and why they're purple)
- The different types of purple gemstones available
- And my unique analysis on each gem
All of that is covered and more. Let's jump in!
Bottom Line Up Front: Blue Nile has some of the best selection of purple gemstone jewelry such as gorgeous amethyst bracelets and necklaces. Blue Nile is also a fantastic online retailer of jewelry in general. They offer a more seamless, low stress buying experience. And since they are an online only shop, Blue Nile can deliver a better quality product at a lower price compared to other name brands.
What Are Purple Gemstones?
Purple gemstones have been around for centuries and are mainly used in the production of jewelry and artifacts. These stones may not be as popular as other colored gemstones, although they are quite handful available.
Generally, the color purple, obtained from chemical inclusions, is believed to have an effect in bringing out a “clarity of thoughts”. The color purple is also associated with wealth and power. Purple gemstones exude in different shades of purple like Mauve, lavender, lilac, among others. Gemstones with the deepest colors are rare and therefore the most expensive.
Where Do You Buy Purple Gemstones?
Most purple gemstones are abundant are shouldn’t be hard to find. Online retailers like James Allen or Blue Nile will have plenty of purple gemstones, either loose or incorporated in jewelry. You can also buy purple gemstones in local jewelry shops and malls.
What Are The Types Of Purple Gemstones?
The number of gemstones that are naturally purple is quite a handful. Here’s a list of the best types used in jewelry:
- Purple diamonds
- Purple chalcedony
- Purple Sapphire
- Purple spinel
- Purple Tourmaline
- Purple Jasper
For the formation of purple diamonds, there must be high amounts of hydrogen present. This particular type of gemstone is extremely rare (second to red diamond). Due to its rarity, it is highly priced and a single carat can fetch tens of thousands of dollars.
High-quality purple diamonds have a deeper purple shade but are hard to find. Some of the purple diamond’s shades have acquired nicknames such as Orchid, Lilac, Grape, and Lavender diamonds. They’re found in a few locations globally and are currently mined in Russia, Australia, and recently Canada.
The price of purple diamonds heavily depends on the shade of purple. For instance, a 0.50 carat oval cut purple diamond is priced at $18,510 on JA, while another similar 0.51 carat purple cushion-cut purple diamond is priced at $5,640. You’ll notice that even though both stones have minor inclusions, the second stone has a fainter shade of purple.
- It is very rare
- It is very expensive
- Synthetic forms are less costly
- Exclusive gemstone
$1,900 - $25,000
- Truly unique characteristics
- Higher karat value compared to colorless diamonds
- Very durable (Mohs hardness 10)
- Very expensive
- Not readily available in many stores
- Possibility of finding lab-grown types
In identifying the most popular purple gemstones, Amethyst should be number one. In ancient times, the stone was regarded as precious as diamonds, rubies, and emeralds. It was only until large deposits were found in Brazil that amethyst became so common.
Amethyst has all shades of purple, with those having the darkest purple hues regarded the best. Gemstones like amethyst are used in jewelry for its ability to blend with both neutral and colorful outfits. The lighter hues will add a gentle vibe to your apparel while deep hues add vibrancy. If exposed to direct light for long, amethyst can also fade.
Due to the stone’s availability, amethyst has a wide range of pricing. Pieces with deeper colors may fetch higher prices, although the stone may lose its color if subjected to sunlight for longer periods.
Read Also: What're the best amethyst earrings?
Read Also: What're the best amethyst pendants?
- Easy to find/abundant
- Quite popular
- Generally good hardness
$ 10- $700
- It is readily available
- Pocket-friendly prices
- Not very hard
- Fades with time
Purple chalcedony has nice shades of purple ranging from light lilac to dark purple. The purple gemstone is generally translucent to opaque and has a very rich color.
Chalcedony is compact and has no cleavages. This is partly due to the gemstone’s lack of crystal formations. It has a microcrystalline structure and a medium hardness of about 6.5 to 7 Mohs. Chalcedony has a bohemian appeal and can be incorporated in ethnic jewelry designs.
- Waxy-vitreous luster
- Generally affordable
- Quite affordable
- Lasts for long
Most people confuse purple sapphire with amethyst. Even though purple sapphire is not abundant, it’s still as good-looking as blue sapphires. The purple in color in this type of sapphire is obtained from the presence of chromium during its formation.
These stones occur in very deep and vivid colors and there is no need for treating or any other form of enhancing. Purple sapphires are mostly used in engagement rings, as they are the second toughest gemstones. Generally, purple sapphires are a perfect choice for everyday jewelry.
- A rare type of sapphire
- Barely untreated
- Highly durable
- Excellent brilliance
- Very hard (9 Mohs)
- Quite rare
Purple spinel comes in select shades with lilac and mauve as the most attractive. The stone may be a little bit expensive but will not exceed its blue and red counterparts. It is quite durable and can be used as everyday jewelry.
Purple sapphire can be cut and faceted to add to its already excellent brilliance. Although there are lab-grown kinds of purple spines, most varieties are natural since stone’s color cannot be synthesized.
- Exceedingly brilliant
- Very tough (Mohs 8)
- Rather rare
- Somewhat affordable
- Appealing brilliance
- A little bit expensive
Since Iolites are highly abundant, they tend to be cheaper. This particular stone exhibits excellent brilliance and competes with both the Sapphire and Tanzanite. It has an ideal color, especially the purple shades. The Iolite is relatively hard (7 to 7.5 Mohs) and is used in making almost any type of jewelry.
When curated with rings, it is more appealing to place Iolite in fine settings like a bezel or even halo. These settings give the stone optimal shine, as it will attract attention from a distance. Lolite also shows high levels of pleochroism. It does have a cleavage and is sometimes easy to break or chip.
- Popular gemstone
- Above average brilliance
- It is easily available
- Great brilliance
- Less durable
Purple tourmaline is one of the least popular varieties of tourmaline gemstones. Even though people barely know them, these stones have great brilliance and show levels of pleochroic behaviors when viewed from different angles of light.
It is a beautiful gem and is used to make select pieces of jewelry. Jewelers facet these gems to add to their brilliance and pleochroism. Since purple tourmaline is not that hard (7 to 7.5 Mohs), most undergo through heat treatment. Always ask your jeweler about this process whenever shopping for purple tourmalines.
- Great durability
- Reasonable durability
- Relatively Affordable
- Some varieties can be expensive
Jasper is mainly a blue gemstone, although there are varieties with purple shades. The purple Jasper has a hardness of about 6.5 to 7 (Mohs). Jasper has a unique matrix of veins and patterns that make the stone worthy. Since Jasper is in the Chalcedony family, it is cut en cabochon and barely faceted.
Purple Jasper is slightly opaque and can last for a long time, if well maintained. Purple Jasper is a blend of blue and red, hence its warm nature. It is widely used in statement pieces and fine jewelry. Purple Jasper has been known to have a touch of royalty, which adds to its uniqueness.
- Easily available
- Fabricated with abstract patterns and matrix
- Medium hardness (~6.5 Mohs)
- Very tough
- Unique texture
- Relatively affordable
- Low price to value