SPOTLIGHT: Focus Jewel of the Week
Centerstone: Natural Untreated Gem Madagascar Pink Sapphire
Carat/Cut: 7.03ct Oval-cut
Lab: GIA Lab-certified
MOHS Hardness: 9
Price: below $150,000-
Pink sapphire comes in a variety of colors from a pale baby pink to intense hot magentas. The most valuable and rare pink sapphires are classified as being “hot pink” or “bubble-gum pink”.
Many consumers assume that sapphires only come in shades of blue but pink is another beautiful option that is becoming increasingly popular. Rough pink sapphire deposits were discovered in Madagascar in the late ’90s releasing more of these fine gems into the market. They are now often found not only in Madagascar but also in Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and East Africa.
The cause of the pink coloring sapphires is due to the presence of chromium (like rubies). Lower concentrations of chromium produce pink sapphires. If there are traces of titanium in the crystal, then the sapphire will have a more purplish-pink hue.
As with most gemstones, color is of the utmost importance and the stones with the highest saturation and color-quality are the most valuable. Because color is such an important trait in the pink sapphires, untreated stones are difficult to come-by and priced extremely high. Moderate heat treatment is common practice to bring out the color of the stones.
The heating process does not alter the internal characteristics of the gemstone which makes the detection of heat treatment difficult for gemologists. In some cases, it can be very difficult to determine if a pink sapphire from Madagascar has been heated. Even the most respected professional laboratories have been known to disagree when evaluating the same gemstone.
The popularity of pink sapphire can also be attributed to the fascination with pink diamonds. Because pink diamonds are rare and extremely high in price, pink sapphire is a more affordable alternative, though still rare and hardly inexpensive.
Sapphire has become very popular as engagement rings as well due to its luster and hardness (9 on the Mohs scale). Blue is the classic sapphire color that everyone is familiar with, but pinks in larger carat weights are actually much more rare and valuable.
This particular pink sapphire has been set in a classic micropave halo with matching thin micropave band for a timeless look.