What’s the Difference Between Green Tourmaline and Chrome Tourmaline?

Green tourmaline encompasses any shade of green. Many consider chrome tourmaline’s deep green the top green color for tourmalines. However, chrome tourmaline differs chemically. Chromium traces (and sometimes vanadium) produce its emerald-like color. For this reason, chrome tourmalines are usually distinguished from verdelites.

You’ll also find a significant price difference between these green tourmaline varieties. Chrome tourmaline’s price per carat is significantly higher and can jump considerably after one carat. Verdelite’s price per carat doesn’t jump much before reaching five carats.

If you like green and you’re on a budget, verdelite is the tourmaline for you.

I’ll deal with chrome tourmalines in another article. The following information refers just to non-chrome green tourmalines.

Verdelite Buying and The Four 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.


Green tourmaline’s color ranges from yellow-green to green to blue-green. As long as green predominates, you have a verdelite. If a tourmaline shows more blue than green, you have an indicolite or blue tourmaline. This is a judgment call. However,…