Many jewelry lovers who like turquoise wonder why this gemstone has a significant price difference. Assessing the value of turquoise is not easy for new buyers.
We created this post to help you learn more about turquoise jewelry. By the end of it, you will also learn the factors that determine the value of this gemstone.
Introduction to turquoise jewelry
Turquoise is among the oldest gemstones that have a high value. Many designers use it as a precious stone to make different kinds of jewelry.
This gemstone has existed for thousands of years and was among the first to be mined. It has been treasured for years in regions such as North and South America. This gemstone is common in dry arid regions such as the southwestern part of the US, Mexico, Egypt, and China.
For more than 2000 years, Iran was a primary source of this gemstone. Apart from the cultural heritage, the color of turquoise is also among the things that make it quite valuable.
Turquoise jewelry stands out due to its sky-blue color. Real turquoise also features vein-like structures that can be brown or black.
The color of this gemstone makes it quite captivating and valuable. The other factors that affect this gemstone’s value include its texture and the absence or presence of matrix.
Is turquoise worth any money?
If you have plans to invest in turquoise jewelry, you should first understand the worth of this gemstone. The price of this gemstone is between $0.05 and $1000 per carat based on the quality. Authentic turquoise jewelry made using real turquoise often goes for a high price, but it is worth the money.
Real turquoise is not easy to find in a store, and it can cost up to $1000 per carat. Though the real turquoise is quite valuable, people have come up with cheap versions of this gemstone which have affected its value.
This gemstone is a combination of aluminum phosphate and hydrated copper. It is formed after copper, phosphorus, aluminum, and water come together.
The blue color you see in turquoise jewelry comes from copper, while other elements, such as vanadium and chromium, add to its green color. On the other hand, iron contributes to the yellow color.
Real turquoise comes from inside the earth and is formed within different rocks under high pressure and temperature. This gemstone comes from dry arid places and is derived from elevations of around 3,000 and 8,500 feet.
The formation of turquoise and things to do with its structural integrity can have an impact on its price. Though turquoise is a precious gemstone, not every piece of turquoise jewelry is worth the money. You have to learn more about a piece of turquoise jewelry to understand its value.
What is the cost of a turquoise rock?
The cost of this ornamental stone varies based on the richness of color, hardness, and matrix. Turquoise rock costs between $15 and $25 per gram based on the quality of the gemstone.
The mother rock in which this gemstone is found is seen as a network of black or brown veins that run in a certain pattern. The veining adds value to the turquoise rock.
Though areas such as Mexico and Persia used to produce lots of turquoise rocks, the main source of this rock today is Chile, the US, Iran, and Egypt. The turquoise stone occurs within host rocks as an opaque deposit in nodules.
Which is the most valuable color of this gemstone?
Color is one of the things that leads to a difference in the price of turquoise jewelry. The colors of this gemstone often range from semi-translucent to opaque.
Turquoise jewelry that comes in Persian blue or robin’s egg blue is usually the most priced. When turquoise is bright blue, it shows that the stone did not experience any sun exposure. Iran still produces turquoise with the Persian grade.
According to some modern collectors, the turquoise that comes in green colors is also quite valuable. Such modern jewelers find the green tone of certain turquoise unique and therefore seek it out.
The components that make up this gemstone determine its color. For instance, copper adds blue to turquoise, while vanadium and chromium add green. Though rare, turquoise gemstones in blue-violet colors also exist. This contains strontium impurities.
Apart from focusing on the color, clarity is also an essential indicator of the turquoise value. Turquoise that has sharp clarity is considered to be quite valuable. If you need a piece of valuable turquoise jewelry, consider one whose stone is less dull or cloudy.
The value of turquoise per carat, gram, and pound
Knowing the estimated value of turquoise can give you an idea of how much you may spend as you shop for turquoise jewelry.
The cost of medium-quality turquoise costs between $3 and $5 per carat. This is between $450 and $750 per ounce and between $15 and $25 per gram. The price of gem quality can be up to $1000 per carat.
The value of this gemstone is also based on its originality. Original turquoise is rare and the most expensive. Purity also determines the value of turquoise. A pound of the purest form of turquoise can cost up to $2 million.
Here are some factors that make turquoise valuable
No two turquoise stones are the same. We mentioned that different factors play a big role in determining the value of this gemstone.
Some of them include the following.
Since turquoise comes in different colors, you may notice a difference in jewelry made from this gemstone. Natural turquoise may come in light blue or yellowish-green color.
The design may also contain vein-like structures. These are some of the factors that some collectors consider in determining the value of turquoise.
In some regions, the turquoise that comes with darker shades and those that are clear are considered to be more valuable than those that come in lighter shades. According to many, turquoise that features Persian blue or robin’s egg blue is the most valuable.
While some turquoise stones come in a soft texture, others are coarse. Those with a finer texture are considered to have better toughness than those with a coarse texture. Valuable turquoise comes in a cryptocrystalline texture.
The microscopic crystals in such turquoise create a solid mass, making them more durable. Turquoise that is of less quality is usually porous. Such a gemstone may experience a change in color over time from blue to verdant green.
The pattern of turquoise also affects its value. Some turquoise rocks come with patches of their host rocks like white kaolinite, black chert, or brown limonite.
This gives the turquoise patterns and color contrast. Many people feel that turquoise with the spiderweb matrix pattern is of higher value than those with other patterns.
This gemstone is often brittle. Since it can easily break, the turquoise stone that is used to make jewelry is often stabilized.
Only a very small percentage of this gemstone is hard. Experts refer to such turquoise as high grade, and it is quite expensive.
The rarer the turquoise stone, the more expensive it can be.
If, for instance, a mine stopped producing a certain turquoise, then the value of that particular gemstone that was previously mined from that location would increase.
Sometimes turquoise comes in plastic, and this is easily produced. Since such turquoise is available, it is less valuable than other turquoise forms that are hard to find.
What makes turquoise valuable?
One of the things that make turquoise quite valuable is its scarcity. Since the original turquoise is hard to find, people have been producing cheaper versions of this gemstone and using it to make jewelry.
However, the cost of such cheap versions cannot be compared to that of real turquoise.
The earliest mining of turquoise occurred around 3,000 BCE in Ancient Egypt. Since this gemstone has been famous for so many years, it is part of the culture of different nations.
Many people appreciate turquoise due to its cultural heritage. They also use it to make jewelry due to its captivating look.
People wear precious stones such as turquoise as a status symbol. From the above, you can tell that the value of turquoise jewelry depends on different factors, including matrix, texture, color, rarity, and hardness.
The price of turquoise ranges between 0.05 and 1000 per carat based on the quality.
The most valuable turquoise is one that features an intense blue color. When you go to buy turquoise jewelry, you now understand its basics.
Stephanie is a jewelry lover when she was a teenager. Her major was fashion design when she was in college. She is a jewelry designer at SOQ Jewelry and other design companies. Now she is also a writer for our website. She writes a lot of designs&brands posts with very actionable tips.