What is Russian Charoite?

Russian Charoite is a beautiful gemstone that delights us with its subtle shades of violet color. First found in Siberia, Russia, during the 1940s, the gem became famous for its color and was called 'lilac stone.' By the 1970s, it was renamed to charoite after the river Charo, its source. The Russian word chary means "magic," and it perfectly describes the impact of its color and luster. Known for its unique swirls of deep violet and lilac, we use this gemstone for beads, cabochons, and many other jewelry items.

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Determining Russian Charoite Value

Is Russian Charoite valuable? The value of colored stones is typically determined by a combination of its color, clarity, cut, and carat weight. This is no different when determining what Russian Charoite is worth. These guidelines will help you choose charoite stones for your collection.

  • Russian Charoite Color

Many consider charoite to be unusually beautiful, due to its distinct hues. Violet remains the dominant color in this gemstone, along with white and black swirls.

  • Russian Charoite Clarity

An opaque stone, the surface of Russian Charoite stone should be smooth after polishing, and free from surface defects. Rough spots, nicks, and chips can all lower the value of a gem. Famous for showing a pearly luster and wavy-fibered patterns, in rare cases, this stone shows chatoyancy, also known as the cat's eye effect.

  • Russian Charoite Cut

Cabochons are the best way of forming Russian Charoite. Shapes like oval, round, cushion, and pear are the most popular, as these are great for saving material. Ovals are especially common, as this shape is great for creating big and bold looks while keeping costs down.

  • Russian Charoite Carat

The better the cut and color of the stone, the higher the value. However, size also matters. Ranging from just a few carats, expect to find examples in double-digit carat weights.

Russian Charoite Treatment

Often, collectors might ask if Russian Charoite is real. What they are really asking is if this stone undergoes treatment. They will be happy to know this is a natural gemstone with no known treatment.

Caring for Russian Charoite

Russian Charoite ranks between five and six on the Mohs scale of hardness, making it a good choice for daily wear.

Avoid ultrasonic, steam, and chemical cleaning with this gem. Also, avoid exposure to extreme heat and cold.

When cleaning charoite, use lukewarm soapy water and a soft-bristled brush for gentle scrubbing. Rinse with fresh, cold water, and dry with a soft cloth.

Just like pearls, make it the last thing you put on and the first thing you remove. Avoid contact with cosmetics, hairspray, perfume, or household chemicals. Russian Charoite should be stored separately from other jewels to protect it from accidental damage. A fabric-lined jewelry box is ideal for this purpose.

Who Can Wear Russian Charoite?

One of the best things about Russian Charoite jewelry is the bold, prominent looks you can create. Designers who are working with this gem favor large stones for use in simple pendants that emphasize the natural beauty of the stone.

It looks mesmerizing in silver, as the white metal contrasts brilliantly with the gentle violet and white swirls of charoite. Artisan themes and geometric designs dominate this space, creating pieces of simple elegance and understated style.

This violet gemstone pairs perfectly with bright yellow, radiating red or even calming whites. Someone looking for a contemporary twist on a traditional look can opt for charoite jewelry complementing black or green clothing.

How Does Russian Charoite Compare to Other Purple Stones?

Some compare Russian Charoite to lavender stichtite in color, and it's easy to see why. However, lavender stichtite favors green tinges with its purple coloration, making it appear serene and majestic, where Russian Charoite shows white and black swirls in purple hues, making the color look more intense.

Anyone who loves purple hues, lavender stichtite, or other purple gems will appreciate the colorful glow of Russian Charoite.

Where Does Russian Charoite Come From?

Charoite occurs at only one location in the world. Shop LC sources our supply of Russian Charoite from the mines in the Chara River area of Russia.

How is Russian Charoite Mined?

We find charoite in a 10 to 12 square kilometer area. It is the only source of this gemstone on the planet.

The mining of charoite is hard as it is nearly impossible to move heavy machinery to the mining area. The mines are 1.5 km above sea level, and the unavailability of proper roads makes it tough for miners to reach the mines.

Explosives cannot be used in mining charoite as it can permanently damage the mine. Therefore, stone extraction is done carefully and slowly when compared to other traditional methods involving hand tools.

To avoid over-extraction, the Sakha Republic has limited the mining of charoite to only 100 tons per year. This policy ensures that the mines will be around for a long time. As a result, there is also a market for imitation charoite.

Russian Charoite Properties

What Does Russian Charoite Mean?

Gem therapists believe charoite is a stone of new beginnings. Also, the gemstone is said to strengthen self-confidence while promoting healthy habits. It is thought to help anxious people center themselves.

For informational purposes only. These remedies, approaches, and techniques are not a substitute for professional medical care or treatment. They should not be used to treat any ailment without prior consultation with a qualified health care professional.

For informational purposes only. These remedies, approaches, and techniques are not a substitute for professional medical care or treatment. They should not be used to treat any ailment without prior consultation with a qualified health care professional.

Is Russian Charoite a Birthstone?

Russian Charoite is not a modern birthstone. Some may prefer this purple stone as an alternative to amethyst.

Russian Charoite Facts

  • Russian Charoite ranks five to six on the Mohs scale of hardness.
  • It displays a distinctive purple color with swirls of white and black.
  • Shop LC sources our supply of Russian Charoite from Russia.
  • Russian Charoite does not undergo any known treatment.
  • This stone is also known incorrectly as "Charoite Jade."