Known for its almost sinful beauty, amethyst will never fail a sexy look. While this stone is a favorite of many, few know how it was formed.
If you find yourself intrigued by this topic, then we highly recommend reading on…
What is Amethyst?
Simply put, amethyst is one of the most popular semi-precious stones in the world. Depending on the amount of iron and aluminum in its chemical structure, this gemstone comes in a variety of shades, from lavender to deep reddish-purple. While every variant is equally beautiful, amethyst with an intense purple hue is the most valued today.
As a member of the quartz family, this gemstone is easily found all over the world, making it relatively affordable. In addition to this, the stone is also quite durable, with a Mohs scale of 7 and zero gem cleavage. This means that while amethyst is not immune to damage, it can still be shown off through a variety of jewelry and can be worn regularly.
How is Amethyst Formed?
As mentioned earlier, this gemstone is a variety of quartz, composed of silica. It can be found in the inner walls of geode, also known as hollow rock.
During an eruption, several bubbles form deep within the liquid lava and slowly rise to the surface as the temperature changes. As the lava cools and forms vesicles or cavities within the rock, these bubbles get locked in place. Over time, these cavities fill with a silica-rich liquid containing trace amounts of iron and aluminum, which eventually crystallizes and produces amethyst.
Where is Amethyst Found?
Amethyst currently comes from many countries around the world. Some of these include Brazil, Mexico, Australia, India, Sri Lanka, Uruguay, Canada and the United States of America. As with all gemstones, the type and color of amethyst varies depending on where it is mined. Today, the best amethysts in the world are believed to come from Brazil and Uruguay.
Yes, they are!
In most cases, these stones are heat-treated to improve their clarity and color. Most amethysts found on the market today are synthetically enhanced to enhance the gemstone's hue. This was done mainly to meet the growing demand for intense purple amethyst. During this process, the stones are periodically exposed to varying temperatures between 400-500 degrees Celsius until they reach the desired rich hue.
Heat treatments are considered stable, and the results tend to last for a long time, provided the gemstones are handled with care.
IMPORTANT: While most amethysts are clear on the eyes, in rare cases these crystals may require a fissure filling treatment to close cracks in their surface and improve overall clarity.
At the end of the day, it's undeniable that amethyst is somewhat mysterious. And the above information about its formation just adds to the conspiracy.