Jewellery Stories
By Niki Bruce
13 Jan 2020

Top 3 things to know about buying a Garnet gemstone

the jewel box singapore january birthstone garnet

The Garnet is one of the most striking and awesome gemstones used in making jewellery items thanks to the wide variety of colours it comes in. Here are the important things to know if you are buying a Garnet for yourself.      

What is a Garnet?

The Garnet gemstone is formed of silicate minerals with a common type of crystal structure. Garnets can be igneous, sedimentary or metamorphic in their origins. There are many different types of Garnet gemstones of various colours and types found all over the globe, such as Spessartine, Almandine, Uvarovite, Pyrope, Grossular and Andradite. Garnet gemstones have an easily distinguishable vitreous luster, a brittle tenacity, a diaphaneity that varies between transparency to translucency and a complete lack of cleavage. Sometimes Garnets also occur as individual crystals and granular aggregates. At other times, Garnet gemstones can be found as stream-worn pebbles or large, massive occurrences. 

the jewel box Top 3 things to know about buying a Garnet gemstone MAIN

Our Mandarin Magic garnet and diamond ring features a distinctive orange-red gemstone.

The different colours and types of Garnet gemstones: 

  • Spessartine – Orange, red and brown
  • Almandine – Red and brown 
  • Uvarovite – Green 
  • Pyrope – Red to purple 
  • Grossular – Red, pink, green, yellow and clear
  • Andradite – Black, green and yellow

The hardness of garnet depends on the type and may range anywhere between 6.5 and 7.5 on the Mohs Scale.

The Garnet is also the birthstone for the month of January. Its name comes from the Latin word granatus, meaning “pomegranate”, based on the reddish colour of the most common Garnets. Garnets are believed to help with higher thinking and self-empowerment, and is considered to be a stone of strength and safety, abundance, gratitude and service to others. These attributes are probably linked to Garnets due to its popularity with clergy during the Middle Ages when it was common for priests to wear and use red garnets as their signets and seals. Garnets are also believed to keep the wearer safe while travelling.

the jewel box Top 3 things to know about buying a Garnet gemstone EARRINGS

These stunning earrings feature Garnet and Tourmaline combined with diamonds.

The earliest specimens of Garnets were found in Ancient Egypt. Various types of Garnet gemstones are now mined in different parts of the globe. Almandine Garnets are found in India, Brazil, the United States and in Madagascar. Pyrope Garnets are mined in Thailand, Brazil, India and Sri Lanka. Grossularite Garnets are found in South Africa, Myanmar, and Zambia. Spessartite Garnets are mined in China, as well as Brazil, Madagascar and Kenya.     

How to choose the best Garnet?

  • Garnets that have a vivid red coloration tend to fetch the maximum price. However, bright green Garnets – also known as Tsavorite – are also highly valued in the gemstone market.   
  • Red Garnet gemstones are typically cut in standard shapes and cuts. Garnets like Semantoids and Tsavorites are rare and therefore they are cut in shapes that help in retaining their carat weight. These are generally priced highly. 
  • You should look out for stones that create a rainbow spectrum.   

How much does a good Garnet cost?

The cost of Garnet gemstones may vary between US$500 for a single carat stone with bright, clear colour and with few inclusions; to around US$2,000 to US$7,000 per carat if it has a rare colour, and no inclusions. Demantoid Garnet is by far the rarest and is valued greatly for its fire and brilliance and so it fetches around US$10,000 per carat.   

the jewel box Top 3 things to know about buying a Garnet gemstone DEMANTOID

This modified square/cushion-cut Demantoid Garnet was discovered at Antetezambato in Madagascar. Image: Rob Lavinsky.

If you are looking for jewellery featuring coloured gemstones, check out some of our stunning Coloured Gemstone Collection.

To have your own bespoke piece of jewellery either remade, or created new, call us at +65 6733 4100, visit our atelier at #05-04 International Building, 360 Orchard Road, Singapore 238869; or email us on bespoke@thejewelbox.com.

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