The color of turquoise ranges from blue to green to yellow. Its luster waxy. Its surface ridden with an intricate matrix. This beautiful gem isn’t just a precious rock, it tells a story. It tells of history, tradition, culture. Turquoise is a sacred stone of the Navajo people and has also occupied a position of prestige in other places around the world. This magnificent gem has graced the palace halls and mausoleums of great kings and pharaohs. You might have heard of it. Perhaps you even own one. Have you ever thought, however, that this gem might have more to it than just aesthetic beauty and sentimental value?
Turquoise is Becoming Rare
Turquoise is typically found in dry climates. Major mining areas include Northwest China, Iran, Northeast Egypt, and the American Southwest. Mines from these areas are quickly running dry.
75% of global turquoise production comes from China. Although China does produce some high-quality Turquoise, an overwhelming majority of turquoise that comes from China is color treated, reconstituted, or plain fake. On top of that, China has temporarily discontinued turquoise mining for economic and environmental reasons. The mining history of Persian and Egyptian turquoise started thousands of years ago. Turquoise in both places was mined to exhaustion. Turquoise mined in the American Southwest is becoming even rarer as most mines have closed down because of rising mining costs and tighter government regulations. To complicate things further, less than 5% of the turquoise obtained from all these mines are gem quality. Now you can understand why turquoise is so valuable.
Diamond, on the other hand, might not be as rare as you think. Scientists have recently figured out how to create real diamonds by means of highly-controlled laboratories. A lot of the diamond’s value is due to the amount of money that has been invested in its marketing.
Every Piece of Turquoise is Unique
Sometimes the webbing on the surface of turquoise can be compared to lightning bolts. No two bolts are alike. In the same way, the intricate webbing patterns on the surface of a turquoise gemstone are unique. Even the color is unique. Despite the fact that this gemstone has a hue of blue named after it, turquoise actually has a wide variety of colors, ranging from blue to green to yellow. That means that when you buy a turquoise gem or piece of jewelry, you have something that is one of a kind.
Diamond, on the other hand, shows resemblance in color and form. Most stones looking roughly the same.
Each piece of turquoise also tells a story. If you give a turquoise gemstone to an expert, he/she can usually say with accuracy where it was mined, sometimes down to the specific mine. Different mines produce different types of turquoise. You could almost say that, depending on the mine from which it comes from, a turquoise gem has a distinct “personality”.
Turquoise is Undervalued
Diamond is well known around the world. It is perhaps the most advertised gemstone in history, thanks to movie plots and song lyrics. This has undoubtedly helped to drive up its value. Additionally, the sale of diamond is controlled. For example, all the mines in South Africa are owned by a single consortium. They can control the production and sales of diamonds in order to make them artificially rare.
Turquoise, while being comparable on many levels, isn’t as well advertised. We feel like turquoise is underappreciated. This means that its price is currently not a good reflection of its value.
These are some of the reasons that serve to illustrate why you might want to consider a piece of turquoise jewelry when you are looking to buy something new. It is definitely an investment worth making. Buy a turquoise jewelry, wear it on special occasions, and keep it close. You’ll be happy looking back at your decision.