Gemstone Treatments: Beauty Enhancement or Deception

gemstone treatment

There’s no denying the fact that we love gemstones. Be it glimmering diamonds, deep blue sapphires or bright red rubies, these stunning beauties have a special place in our hearts (and jewellery boxes). But have you ever wondered what lies beneath their shiny surface? Or whether the stone on your favourite piece of jewellery is completely natural or heavily treated? 

Let's face it. The jewellery industry isn't untouched by controversies and gemstone treatments have sparked debates for decades. While some treatments are considered standard and are widely accepted, others have left consumers questioning their necessity. 

Join us as we take a closer look at gemstone treatments and explore their impact. But before we begin, let’s take you through some of the most common treatments that enhance the beauty and value of gemstones.

Common Gemstone Treatments

  • Heat Treatment

Heat treatment is an industry-accepted practice. This involves applying controlled heat to gemstones so as to enhance their clarity and colour. Applying high temperature also removes inclusions and improves the gem’s overall appearance. 

  • Irradiation

In this treatment, gemstones like diamonds are exposed to radiation to alter or intensify their colour. It’s often followed by heat treatment to produce unique colours like black, brown or pink diamond gemstones

  • Surface Coating

Coating a gemstone's surface with a thin layer of material (like paint, ink or metal oxide) enhances its appearance. It can alter the gem's colour and improve its lustre. But this treatment may wear off over time and affect the stone’s long-term beauty.

  • Fracture or Cavity Filling

A natural gemstone sometimes has visible fractures or cavities that are filled with substances (glass, wax, resin or oil) for improved clarity. Surface inclusions in ruby gemstones are often filled with glass for enhanced transparency. 

  • High Pressure, High Temperature (HPHT)

This process replicates the high pressure and high temperature conditions within the earth's crust. It's used to alter a gemstone's colour and clarity.

Benefits of Gemstone Treatments

Most gemstones used in jewellery undergo some form of treatment. One of the primary benefits of these treatments is the enhancement of the gem’s natural beauty. Techniques like irradiation and heat treatment can intensify a stone’s colour and make it look more visually appealing. 

Some treatments, such as fracture or cavity filling help improve the gemstone’s durability. These methods also enable the creation of gemstones in unique and rare colours. Treated gems are also considered to be more easily available than untreated stones.

Some Ways in Which Customers May Get Deceived

The lack of transparency in treatment disclosure can mislead buyers. Most treatments alter the gemstone’s value and customers may unknowingly purchase the stone at a higher rate, believing it’s an untreated natural one.  Some sellers may also misrepresent the quality/grade of gemstones to make them appear more valuable than they actually are.

Importance of Buying Gemstones From Trusted Jewellers

A reputable jeweller like Angara will openly disclose any treatments the gemstones have undergone and provide details about their quality. Purchasing from a reliable source will ensure that you always get jewellery with authentic gemstones

At Angara, we source our stones from trusted suppliers, so you can be assured that the gemstone you buy is genuine and of the best quality. We also provide a certificate of authenticity with all our jewellery. This certificate discloses the enhancements done (if any), validates the gemstone’s quality and offers all the details you need to know about the piece you’re buying.

FAQs

1. What does it mean when a gemstone is treated?
A treated gemstone undergoes specific processes or techniques that improve its appearance, clarity and durability.

2. Does heat treatment destroy the astrological power of a gemstone?
The concept of powers of a gemstone is based on traditional beliefs and isn’t scientifically proven. Having said that, some do believe that heat treatments can affect the energy of a stone.

3. What impact do gemstone treatments have on a gemstone's value? 
Gemstone treatments can have both positive and negative effects on a gemstone’s value. In some cases, the treatment can increase the stone’s value. Whereas poorly executed or excessive treatments can have a negative impact on it.

 

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