What Makes a Green Tourmaline a Chrome Tourmaline?

Basically, the green tourmaline or verdelite category includes any shade of green. However, chrome tourmalines differ chemically from their green cousins. Traces of chromium produce its emerald-like color. For this reason, chrome tourmalines are usually distinguished from other green varieties of tourmaline. Vanadium can also produce green color in tourmalines and has been found in stones identified as chrome tourmalines. Such stones are still called chrome tourmalines.

Many consider chrome tourmaline’s deep green the top green color for tourmalines. Thus, you’ll find a significant price difference among green tourmaline varieties. Chrome tourmaline’s price per carat is significantly higher and can jump considerably after one carat. In contrast, the price per carat of other green tourmalines doesn’t jump much before reaching five carats.

See our green tourmaline buying guide as well as our general tourmaline buying guide for additional information on non-chrome green tourmalines.

Chrome Tourmaline Buying and the 4 Cs

With a hardness of 7 to 7.5 and no cleavage, tourmalines of all types have good durability. However, watch out for stones with flaws/low clarity. These may be weaker.


Some people prefer their chrome tourmalines a little on the dark…