Katy Beh Jewelry

What is the difference between a ruby and a rubellite?

22k gold rubellite rings, Katy Beh Jewelry | New Orleans

You've heard of them both, and in fact I use rubellite in my one of a kind jewelry quite frequently. What is a rubellite? A tiny ruby? A man made ruby?

First, ruby is a precious stone whereas rubellite is a rare (semi-precious) gemstone. The rubellite varies from a tender pink color to crimson red with pinches of purple where rubies offer deep red tones only. If rubellites are rare, rubies have been considered to be one of the most valuable gemstones on earth.

My Becca Rubellite and Opal Ring features a candy-pink rubellite cabochon reminiscent of a Jolly Rancher.

22k Gold Becca Rubellite Opal Ring Katy Beh Jewelry New Orleans

Rubellite is in fact a super-gorgeous pink tourmaline. It's pricier than the dusty rose tourmalines and sought out for its hot pink color.

The rubellite is a transparent gemstone from the colorful family of the tourmalines. Its color can vary from red to violet to pale and dramatic pink. Its name comes from the Latin word “rubellus” which means reddish. It is the most prized and expensive member of the tourmaline family because of its beauty and rarity.

Rubellites are one of the few stones, where the presence of inclusions is actually a benefit. Mainly found in Brazil, Madagascar, Mozambique, Nigeria and Pakistan, a genuine rubellite does not change its color depending on the light source. Because of its deep rich color, the gem is compared to the magnificent ruby, but the difference between a ruby and a rubellite lies in the structure and intensity of color. Rubies have a higher density and a richer red undertone, but rubellites are rarer. That makes them more expensive as well.

In contrast, ruby is favored for its rich, saturated red.

My Wren Ruby Pendant is a classic ruby red; a unexpected wow-factor on my Erykah Carnelian, Pearl and Peridot Necklace.

Wren Ruby Pendant 22k Katy Beh Jewelry New Orleans

Originating from the Latin word ‘to ruber’, the ruby has a secret identity, too. Ruby is the red variety of the mineral family of the corundum. Its color is caused by the presence of chromium oxide. As pure corundum is colorless only red corundum can called ruby, with all other color variations being classified as sapphires. It has become less and less easy to find unheated rubies on the market.

Valuable and rare, the market value of a ruby depends on several factors: its dimensions, its color, its purity and its cut. Every ruby naturally possesses inclusions and only rubies made of synthetic materials can give the impression of being flawless. The more these inclusions are rare and minor, the higher the value of the gem is. And that is true for every stone.

July babies, with ruby as your birthstone, I give you full permission to choose either a ruby or rubellite as the perfect gem for a special piece of jewelry. I would love to custom design - collaborate with you - on a mother's ring, a pair of birthday earrings or a signature necklace. Start here & let's talk!

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Katy Beh Goldsmith New Orleans Jewelry