Tourmaline is a gemstone found in a variety of colors. It covers the entire ambit of the rainbow palette and is thus called the Rainbow stone. The colors range from blue, green, pink, purple, violet red, yellow, brown, and black and are also available in rare white or colorless colors. Black Tourmaline is the most popular color, followed by Pink color. The dazzling color of the tourmaline has made it popular for making jewelry down the ages.
Tourmaline: Meaning and History
The word ‘Tourmaline’ comes from ‘turamali,’ an ancient Sinhalese word meaning “mixed gems” or “a precious stone of mixed colors,” as the name was in Sri Lanka. A Spanish conqueror discovered green tourmaline but mistaken it for Emerald, and it was later identified as tourmaline.
Often tourmaline is thought of as ruby because of its bright pink/red color. The beautiful tourmaline has a complex mineral composition and is primarily boron silicate with magnesium, aluminum, iron, lithium, sodium, and potassium. It measures 7 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale and can be transparent or translucent to opaque. The rainbow stone comes in mixed colors, meaning it may have pink or green in the center.
Tourmaline Stone: Origin
Dutch traders first spotted tourmaline on the west coast of Italy. It is found worldwide in Brazil, Sri Lanka, India, Russia, Myanmar, Australia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, America, and African countries.
Types of Tourmaline Stone
- Black Tourmaline - Most widely available and popular among tourmaline and is famous as a protective and grounding stone. The color ranges from brownish-black to black color.
- Pink Tourmaline: Also known as Rubellite, the stone for the healing heart brings compassion and unconditional love. It also helps you to release unwanted emotions. Brazil is known to produce some of the best quality pink tourmalines.
- Watermelon tourmaline: This stone looks like a slice of delicious watermelon, pink in the center, spreading out to colorless and green on the outside. It rejuvenates the heart and brings joy, self-confidence, and the spirit of adventure. Brazil, Afghanistan, the USA, Madagascar, and Nigeria are known to produce this fruity stone.
- Green Tourmaline: This stone is used to heal physical ailments, emotional issues, and Brazilian emeralds. Through vedic astrology, green tourmaline is connected to mercury and gives relief from the ill effects of malefic mercury.
- Paraiba Tourmaline: Discovered in 1989, paraiba are among the world’s most prized gems. The paraibas with the highest value have a neon blue color with intense saturation. The quality paraiba tourmalines range from $2,000 to $50,000 per carat.
- Black Tourmaline: The most widely available and popular tourmaline is famous as a protective and grounding stone.
Tourmaline Stone Benefits
- Tourmaline balances energies and establishes inner-outer balance.
- It aids in making you flexible and adaptable to situations.
- Wearing a tourmaline grounds your energy and makes you feel stable.
- Pink and Green tourmalines are great for healing emotions. They bring in love and compassion.
- Black tourmaline benefits are the most popular and favored by healers.
- Tourmaline keeps you on track and helps you maintain focus to achieve your goals.
Tourmaline prices are under $500 per carat; in Paraiba, it can reach up to $50000 per carat. These multicolor stones are popular with high-quality specimens and sell for higher prices in the range of $300 to $600 per carat in the USA. While the gray and black tourmaline prices per carat range from 500 to 550 INR.
Quality of the Tourmaline
Color: Tourmaline color is king; tourmaline comes in every possible color. Here are some of them:
- Rubellite - Red
- Indicolite - Blue
- Chrome - Intense green colored by chromium
- Bi-Color - Displays two or more colors at the same time.
Different tourmalines tend to have different clarities. Thus, large clean tourmalines in blue-green colors are available and show eye-visible inclusions.
Due to its strong pleochroism, darker stones are cut to display lighter colors. Gems cut with this orientation or rectangles, rounds, triangles, trillions, and ovals.
Care and Cleaning of Tourmaline
It is essential to be delicate with the tourmaline as it can be pretty brittle. It is recommended to keep the stone separate from harder gems. Also, the reflective surface and the crystals tend to gather dust, so keeping your stone covered is a good idea. You can also soak the stone in the water if needed.