How to buy a ruby: How to Buy a Ruby Jewelry 13 Useful Tips 2023 Guide

How to buy a ruby

For example; two 1 carat rubies will be worth less than a single 2 carat ruby of comparable quality. Why a difference in price even though the carat weight is the same? Because a 2 carat ruby is that much rarer than two 1 carat rubies. Unlike color or even cut, carat weight cannot be gained, though it can be lost with re-cutting and re-polishing of the stone. The rarity of a ruby depends on the quality of the ruby crystals. Highly included, opaque rubies are nowhere near as rare as clear, transparent rubies or even clear, blue sapphires.

It does diminish the value of the stone slightly because it is a foreign material being inserted into the stone. This is a treatment used to stop rubies sticking together during the heating process. The rubies are coated with a layer of flux material which will protect it from sticking. Also, the way a stone is cut affects how it reflects light so as to create brilliance and sparkle.

Use your zip code to find a jeweler near you with GIA reports and GIA-trained staff. The snow white calcite matrix hints at the ruby crystal’s origin in marble.

  • Ensure that you purchase from a retailer that has excellent after-sales policies, especially a good returns policy.
  • Note that the keyword above is often and not always, as nature is rarely consistent and full of special exceptions.
  • This is called asterism and is caused by intersecting needle-like inclusions within the stone.
  • Regardless of what treatments a stone has undergone, its enhancements should be disclosed, so you should always ask whether a ruby has been treated before you buy it.

The process includes bleaching the ruby, filling any cracks or fissures with glass and then coloring the stone to give it its vibrant red color. These stones, while they appear beautiful, can be less stable and more likely to break when exposed to heat or chemicals. A high-quality ruby will have a dominant hue of red, vivid saturation (6) and a dark tone (6).

Mozambique rubies were discovered in 2009 and have quickly become one of the best ruby sources. The rubies from this mine are very fine and beautiful, comparable to even the Burmese rubies. This treatment, which has become more popular in recent times, is conducted by taking low grade rubies and making them appear as a higher-grade ruby. However, check to ensure that any inclusions are not in areas that may compromise the integrity of the stone. The clearer the stone and fewer the inclusions, the more expensive it becomes.

Particularly large, and subsequently heavier stones usually are not chosen to make something like ruby earrings and might be worn more comfortably as a ruby pendant. When discussing ruby color, it is also necessary to mention that the point between the “pink sapphire” and “ruby” is a heavily contested topic in the gem industry. Every stone is a unique combination of colors, and what is considered a pink sapphire in America might qualify as a ruby elsewhere in the world.

Tip 9: Imitation Rubies

Pricing due to clarity can fluctuate wildly between rubies due to the types of inclusions, their location, size, and number. Sometimes there are inclusions that make the stones valuable like certain amounts of silk (rutile needles). With the right amount and proper orientation, you get a star ruby. Color and carat or size have the greatest effect on a ruby’s value. Rubies from Myanmar (formerly Burma) possess the highly coveted “pigeon blood red” color.

The most desirable of all colored rubies is the pigeon blood red which has a very vivid red color. Pigeon blood rubies are  rare and valuable as they generally contain no secondary colors. The red color of the ruby is its distinguishing feature, but rubies often have secondary colors such as pink, purple or orange. Natural rubies are among the highest priced and most sought-after of all colored gemstones. The status of inclusions can reveal whether or not a stone has been heat-treated. Most rubies (and sapphires) have been heat-treated to improve clarity and color of the stone, and their price reflects this as demonstrated below.

  • This is the appearance of different colors in the stone when viewing it from different angles.
  • Everyone has different preferences, and not every preference will lead to the industry defined “ideal ruby”.
  • There are three main components to any color; hue, tone, and saturation.

When checking the clarity of a ruby, the most important factor is to look out for visible inclusions. If the ruby is eye-clean or has inclusions in hidden areas, then this will not affect the beauty of the stone. These inclusions can be anything from small gas bubbles, liquid, or trace amounts of other minerals which appear as cracks or lines through the stone.

Flux Healed Rubies

Rubies are also subjected to more treatments and enhancements than most other gems. Before you embark on a ruby buying adventure, learn how to evaluate a ruby’s quality and avoid potential pitfalls. The size, the quality, and the color of the ruby will decide the price you pay. Larger stones are more expensive; similarly, clear rubies with little or no inclusions will cost more than those with visible inclusions. A ruby without inclusions can cost you twice as much as another that is much bigger but with some inclusions within.

Rubies are formed at incredibly high temperatures in the depths of the earth when the mineral corundum is exposed to chromium oxide. This exposure happens deep in the cracks and crevices of large rock formations and mountain ranges. Created rubies have higher clarity than natural ones and are more affordable. Gemstone cut is an important consideration for several reasons. Click here to browse a selection of loose rubies and check their prices. Opaque rubies are much less valuable, even if they display cat’s eye or asterism.

How to buy a ruby

Rubies that have a report from an independent laboratory like GIA confirming there is no evidence of heat command a premium due to their rarity. Rubies that have been diffused or are glass filled are worth less than heated rubies. A report from an independent laboratory like GIA can confirm that the ruby you are buying is natural and tell you whether there is evidence of treatment. Where a ruby comes from is no guarantee of value or quality.

We recommend James Allen (read review) because you can take a 360-degree look at any ruby before having it set in a piece of jewelry. Make sure that you ask about all treatments the ruby has undergone and how these enhancements affect the way you should wear it and care for it. Also, don’t forget to ask whether the ruby you are buying is natural or artificially created. Unlike imitations, synthetic rubies have the same chemical structure as natural rubies. Synthetic rubies are created in a laboratory, but they are still real rubies, although artificial ones.

The most important feature of a ruby is its red color, as other hues of this gem species are considered sapphire. Rubies lose value (and classification as a ruby) as they lean toward brown, orange or even pink. However, the stones can come in almost all shades of red, including pink, according to Gemological Institute of America, Inc.

The GIA states that you should assume your ruby is heat treated as this is a common industry practice. It does not bring down the value of the stone but rubies with a report that state that there is no evidence of heat are very rare and therefore very expensive. Lower quality rubies are heat treated to improve color saturation and minimize inclusions, making these varieties more affordable. The last part of durability is about the stability of the stone, meaning how much things like light, temperatures changes, and chemicals affect it. Rubies do not react much to light, changes in temperature, and various chemicals.

Different Basic Hues

This opens up many options to you and lets you create your dream ring. Rubies, as we mentioned above, are a versatile stone that goes well in any type of jewelry. The benefit of this process is the ability of this flux material to penetrate into the depths of the stone and fill in any cracks and crevices.

In general, when evaluating cut, you should be looking for stones that are proportional and have good sparkle. Rubies that have an intense red hue are more valuable than those whose color is not as vivid. Heat-treating rubies is widely accepted in the industry with disclosure due to the improvement in color, clarity, and the fact that it is a permanent, stable treatment. Toughness, another part of stone durability, is separate from hardness and refers to a stone’s tendency to chip and break. Ruby lacks cleavage planes (places where the stone likes to crack), though does have a tendency to part.

Ruby Value, Price, and Jewelry Information

This makes ruby jewelry ideal for frequent use and for pieces that are more susceptible to damage, like ruby rings and bracelets. Fine-quality rubies over one carat are very rare, but commercial-quality rubies are commonly available in a wide range of sizes. The price per carat goes up significantly for ruby as it increases in size. Very often, rubies have some form of a surface coating that is used to camouflage surface fractures. Always ask your jeweler if the ruby has been treated or coated in any manner to enhance its appearance. Different types of treatments include heat treatments, glass filling, or flux healing.

Rubies are perfect for engagement and wedding rings, and pair well with diamonds, like this ring setting. Ruby is a red variety of the mineral corundum and is one of the most expensive gemstones. It is also one of the most durable gems, with a hardness rating of 9 on the Mohs scale (diamond is a 10). The highest quality rubies come from Burma, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Kenya and Vietnam. The price-per- carat of rubies, like any gemstone, increases exponentially with the carat weight.

Rubies can be cleaned in ultrasonic jewelry cleaners as they are quite hard, but it is preferable to clean them by hand using soap, water, and a mild soap. It is important to dry your stone thoroughly after cleaning as leaving water resting on the stone could damage both the setting and the stone. Another thing to consider when looking for your ideal ruby is to be aware that most rubies come to the market already cut in a style that is custom to the country of origin.

The color must be neither too dark nor too light to be considered finest quality. As more people opt for colored gemstones in their engagement rings, ruby engagement rings have seen an increase in sales. These stones are symbolic, hardy, and stunning in appearance, ticking all the boxes. The most popular red gemstone of all time, rubies have been prized and coveted for centuries. Their durability and hardness make them an ideal gemstone for daily wear.

Here are some pointers on how to buy jewelry with inset rubies. As you can see, ruby engagement rings are durable, rare, and valuable. The stone also carries a lot of symbolism ideal for any relationship. Rubies larger than this are incredibly rare and would therefore be very expensive. Due to their vibrant color and elegant look, even small rubies can be utilized in a unique way to provide glamor and class to a piece of jewelry.

When it comes to buying a ruby or ruby jewelry, there are a few key factors you need to take into consideration before making your purchase. Not only is the color and clarity important, but the cut and origins come into play. So, it can be important to have a good understanding of what to look for when buying rubies. Each stone is a unique profile of clarity characteristics, coloration, cut, and weight. Even if every stone were cut to the same calibrated specifications, the type and arrangement of clarity characteristics all tell different stories.