Alexandrite Value, Price, and Jewelry Information

Alexandrite - 4.85cts. Amazing Russian Alexandrite Oval Gemstone

Alexandrite - 4.85cts. Amazing Russian Alexandrite Oval Gemstone

Alexandrite is a remarkable gem. It is one of the finest color change stones in nature, resembling fine emerald or ruby, depending on the light source. It is so rare, that most people have never seen one. Yet, when the modern list of birthstones was assembled, it was listed as June'’s birthstone.

Alexandrite Value

Chrysoberyl Value via Gem Price Guide

Top Color: styG, YG, gY 3/4

Faceted1 to 7 carats
Color Change$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝,000/ct 
Fine Green$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝/ct .
Bright Yellow$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝/ct 
Brownish Yellow$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝/ct 
Cat’s EyeAll sizes
$⊝⊝⊝/ct  to $⊝⊝⊝/ct 

Alexandrite Value via Gem Price Guide

Top Color: G 5/2 and R or slpR 5/3

Facetedto .5 carat.5 to 1 carat1 carat plus
Top Red/Green$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝/ct $⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝/ct to $⊝⊝⊝,000,000/ct 
Medium Red/Green$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝/ct to $⊝⊝⊝,000/ct 
Slight Red/Green$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝/ct to $⊝⊝⊝/ct 

 

Cabochons.3 to 1.5 carat1.5 carats plus
Strong red/green$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝/ct to $⊝⊝⊝,000/ct 

 

Cat’s EyeAll sizes
Strong red/green$⊝⊝⊝ to $⊝⊝⊝/ct 

(learn more)

Alexandrite Information

DataValue
NameAlexandrite
Is a Variety ofChrysoberyl
Crystallography Orthorhombic
Refractive Index 1.746 – 1.755
Hardness 8.5
Specific Gravity 3.68 – 3.80
Cleavage Distinct to poor, 1 direction
Heat SensitivityNo
Wearability Excellent
Enhancements None known
Special Care InstructionsNone
Birthstone June
FormulaBeAl2O4 + Fe, Ti
CHRYSOBERYL: Alexandrite. USSR (~6 carats); incandescent light

CHRYSOBERYL: Alexandrite. USSR (~6 carats); incandescent light

CHRYSOBERYL: Alexandrite. USSR (~6 carats); daylight

CHRYSOBERYL: Alexandrite. USSR (~6 carats); daylight

Emerald by day and a Ruby by night!

Alexandrite is a remarkable gem. It is one of the finest color change stones in nature, resembling fine emerald or ruby, depending on the light source. It is so rare, that most people have never seen one. Yet, when the modern list of birthstones was assembled, it was listed as June’s birthstone.

Alexandrite has a distinguished and glamorous past. It was first discovered in the Ural Mountains of Russia in 1830. The Russian imperial colors were red and green, so Alexandrite made quite an impression. It was named after Czar Alexander II’ at his coming of age ceremony.

The original source of Alexandrite closed after only a few decades of mining. Today those mines have been re-opened, but still only produce a few carats of gem quality material each year. In 1987, a new find of Alexandrite was made in Brazil. Later, Alexandrite discoveries were made in Sri Lanka, Madagascar, Myanmar, and Zimbabwe. However, none of these sites produce as rich and vivid a color change as the original Russian source.

AlexA1 Alex10light

Which Alexandrite is most valuable?

Alexandrite is a color change variety of gem quality chrysoberyl. There are two primary drivers of value.  First, the closer the colors are to pure green and red, the higher the value. Second, the more distinct the color change, the higher the value. Alexandrite can exhibit everything from 100% to just 5% color change.

So the most valuable of Alexandrite gems would have a 100% color shift from pure green to pure red.

Clarity is another significant grading factor. As with most gems, the majority of what nature offers us is cabbing grade, not clean facetable material. However, with Alexandrite, the color change has more effect on value than clarity. For example, say you had two gems weighing a half-carat each. One gem is eye clean, with a 50% brownish/red to greenish/blue color change. The other, an opaque cab with a 100% green to red color change, would be higher in value.

Size is always a significant factor in value. The largest Alexandrite known is a yellow/green gem weighing 74.4 carats. The largest Russian gems are about 30 carats. However, the vast majority of Alexandrite are under one carat. You can see this reflected in our Price Guide. In sizes up to one carat, top quality natural gems sell for $15,000. Over one carat, the prices range from $50,000 to $1,000,000 per carat.

Distinguishing Between Natural and Synthetic Alexandrite

We receive many emails asking what an inherited gem is worth. Most people do not realize that there are many synthetic Alexandrite and simulants (look-alikes) on the market. Some of these have been available nearly as long as the natural gem.

While determining the exact origin of a gem is a matter for professionals, here is a brief guideline. If the gem has good clarity, strong color change, reasonable size, and your grandmother was not exceptionally wealthy, it is most likely a synthetic.

Also see “The Misconception and Erroneous Marketing of Alexandrite Vs Color Change Chrysoberyl”


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