Tourmaline Buying Guide

Known for stunning, saturated hues, tourmaline is a colorful and modern gemstone. This October birthstone is hard enough and durable enough for everyday jewelry wear. Most tourmalines undergo heat and radiation treatments to achieve these hues. However, these procedures have stable results. With so many varieties and colors, you can always add more tourmalines to your collection.

Tourmaline Buying and the Four Cs

The IGS tourmaline value listing has price guidelines for Paraíba tourmalines, indicolite, rubellite, chrome tourmalines, and other colors of faceted stones, as well as cat’s eye and non-phenomenal cabochons.


Tourmalines come in all the colors of the rainbow. When buying tourmaline of any color, view it under several different types of lighting, as most gems will exhibit some alteration in color or decreased saturation in incandescent light.


In tourmalines, blue and blue-green hues arise from iron or copper in the crystal structure. While rare, blue hues are also the most popular color of this gemstone.

Indicolite is the gemological name for blue tourmalines. Generally, this term refers to tourmalines colored by iron. Indicolites can be greyish blue, blue, or blue-green. The most costly gems exhibit medium tones and saturated color. Since indicolites commonly receive heat …

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  • Tourmaline Buying and the Four Cs
    • Color
      • Blue
      • Green
      • Pink
      • Other Colors
      • Bi-colored and Parti-colored Tourmalines
    • Clarity
    • Cut
    • Carat
  • Dichroism: The Multicolor Effect
  • Gemstone Treatments
  • Simulants

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