January Birthstone -Garnet

Garnet - January's Birthstone

When a person thinks of a garnet, a beautiful red gemstone comes to mind of most people.  But garnet comes in many colors, greens, reds, yellows, oranges, even the color blue is found in the color change garnet.

 Tsavorite Garnet #IT-230

    Garnet is one of the few untreated stones, usually natural and very durable.  Garnets can range from $20 per carat to over $5000 per carat. Green garnet, Tsavorite, can be mistaken for a fine emerald.  The intense, bright green color is more clearer and brilliant than a emerald, more durable too.  Demantoid, another green garnet, is very rare.  This garnet has the fire next to diamond, but not as expensive.      Red Garnet, (Almandite, Pyrope, Rhodolite) can also be mistaken for a fine colored ruby. Red garnet can come in shades of deep red , purplish red, orangish red, wine color and pinkish red.      There is a red color change  garnet that is red in incandescent light and blue in daylight or fluorescent lighting. 


Understanding Garnet Gem Groups, Species and Variety


A family of closely related mineral species.
Species: Individual members within the gem group.
Variety: Individual gems with the same crystal structure and chemical composition, differing only in   color.
Example :  
Group: Garnet.
Species: Andradite - Just one of the species of the Garnet group.
Variety: Demantoid - The green variety of the Species of the Garnet Group.
Group: Garnet.
Species: Pyrope, Almandite, Andradite, Spessartite, Grossularite Hydrogrossular, Uvarovite
Variety: Rhodolite, Malaya (Malaia), Demantoid, Tsavorite, Hessonite, Grossular.
Pyrope: The finest Pyrope garnet have a glowing red color.  Other colors range from medium to dark reddish orange to purplish red.  Sometimes rivaling the ruby color.
Almandite: Most familiar garnet, a color range from orangy red through red to reddish purple.
Rhodolite: Most valuable of the red garnets. A mixture of Almandite and Pyrope, has a rich Raspberry color. Colors range from light to dark purplish red through reddish purple.
  Malaya (Malaia):
A relatively new member to the Garnet group.  A mixture of pyrope and spessartite. A lively color of light to dark pinkish, reddish, or yellowish orange.  One of the more expensive Garnets.  Also known as Umbalite in Europe.
  Color-Change Garnets:
These garnets can have a color shift from a strong red  to green in different lighting.  Even olor shifting to a blue, this is very rare.
Some garnets in this species are a bright and lively orange.  They can also range from medium light to dark yellowish or reddish orange.
Andradite:  Yellow to Yellowish green garnets.
Means "diamond like" in Dutch.  A rare, lush green garnet with a higher dispersion than a  diamond, rainbows of colors that are very noticeable. Colors range from a vivid green to yellowish green and greenish yellow. A vivid green can cost as much as a fine merald.
  A pure yellow andradite, sometimes having a brown hue.
Grossularite: Green, greenish yellow and orange garnets.
An intense bright green colored garnet, a perfect alternative for emerald. One of the expensive garnets. Generally found in small sizes, up to 3 carats.  Light to weak colored stones, yellowish green should be sold as green Grossularite, they are less valuable.
Orange to a cinnamon orange variety of grossularite garnet. Rarely of  high clarity for jewelry.
A component of the massive grossulars.  Translucent to opaque green, pink or white. Used for cabochons and beads.  A good substitute for jade.
A dark rich green, like that of an emerald.  Very rare mineral prized by collectors. Faceted Uvarovite is very rare, as the crystal is usually opaque. Not generally regarded as a gem garnet.
Garnet is a very durable stone,  6½  to 7½ on the Mohs scale for hardness.  Safe to wear in rings, earrings or a pendent, for everyday wear.  To clean gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and mild dish soap and warm water.

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