Color-changing gemstones are a small group of gems that exhibit the color change optical phenomena. Color changes in these stones can be due to the shifting wavelengths, and they are called photochromism.
Color-changing gems have been popular for centuries because they offer an easy way to create jewelry with dramatic but subtle colors that could not otherwise be achieved through traditional methods like dyeing or painting. Color-changing gems also offer an alternative to diamonds if you want something different than white for your engagement ring. Color-change garnets make stunning rings by themselves, while sapphire rings often feature diamond accents on the band. Color-changing stones are also popular for pendants and earrings, so you could get a pair of matching color-change garnets or sapphires. Color changes in color-changing gems are typically best observed in direct sunlight or controlled lighting conditions to reduce glare.
The color change is determined by the gem’s absorption spectrum which is in turn determined by its color, clarity, cut and size in addition to environmental factors. Color change in the same gemstone can also vary in different lights because gems are often cut differently to show off their best features when viewed under only one light source. Sapphires, Alexandrites, and Garnets are some of the most well-known color-changing gemstones.
Alexandrite is a type of chrysoberyl that exhibits a strong color change from green in incandescent light to red in daylight. The stone was first discovered in the Ural Mountains, hence its name from the Russian word рубить саблю, meaning “to cut with a sword”. In 1796, at the order of Empress Catherine II of Russia, a consignment of rough emerald was sent to Amsterdam for cutting and found to contain the new gemstone. Alexandrite is a rare stone and has been called “the queen of gemstones”. Color-changing natural Alexandrites are very expensive, but colorless Alexandrites can be found at affordable prices.
Color Change Garnets
Garnet is not just any old red gemstone; it comes in all shades of the rainbow and some even appear green! Color change garnets range in tone from pinkish-red to purplish-red and can even appear colorless. Color changes in red Garnet are the most common, but color change Garnets with other colors like green or purple are available as well. Color change garnets are popularly used as birthstones for January and also serve as the national gemstones for Sri Lanka and Tanzania. Color change Garnets are also known as Gordanites or Rhodolites.
Color Change Sapphire
Sapphire with a color change is an extremely uncommon, expensive type of corundum that can alter color when viewed under various light sources. The majority of color change sapphire typically changes hue from blue to violet-purple under natural sunlight. Color change sapphire was first discovered in Sri Lanka, hence the name for this variety of corundum. Color-change sapphire is commonly used for rings and earrings because of its durability and brilliant color changes. Color-changing sapphires are also popularly chosen as engagement rings because of their natural beauty and uniqueness.
Color-changing gemstones are a small group of gems that exhibit the color change optical phenomena. Color-changing gems have been popular for centuries because they offer an easy way to create jewelry with dramatic but subtle colors that could not otherwise be achieved with other gemstones. Color-changing gems also offer an alternative to diamonds if you want something different than white for your engagement ring.