What is Nigerian Rubellite?
For centuries, tourmaline gems were confused for other stones due to the sheer variety of color it displays. In fact, the name tourmaline has its roots in the Sinhalese word toramalli. meaning “mixed gems.” Originally it was used to describe parcels of mixed gemstones, but traders increasingly began using to describe what we now know as tourmaline. Rubellite, on the other hand, draws its name from the Latin word rubellus, which means “reddish,” and is a direct reference to its ruby color. Rubellite was first used to describe red tourmaline in the late 18th century.
Determining Nigerian Rubellite Value
Is Nigerian rubellite 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 rubellite is worth. These guidelines will help you choose Nigerian rubellite for your collection.
- Nigerian Rubellite Color
THighly prized for its ruby-like color, Nigerian rubellite occurs in a range of color, varying from a tender pink to crimson red, with the faintest hint of purple. A variety of tourmaline, the presence of trace amounts of manganese gives rubellite its pink and red coloration. In general, the redder the material is, the more valuable it is considered to be. The most valuable stones tend to display the same range of color as fine ruby.
Nigerian rubellite will range in color from a pink to red hue. Stones display a medium tone and are deeply saturated with color.
- Nigerian Rubellite Clarity
As a Type III gemstone, rubellite is expected to show inclusions. Type III gemstones frequently display visible inclusions. Unless they are especially prominent, they do not affect the value of the gem. Stones exhibit a glassy luster after polishing.
- Nigerian Rubellite Cut
Rubellite is typically found in a variety of traditional and fancy cuts. Stones favor shapes like ovals, pears, and marquis, as these cuts emphasize the form of most rubellite crystals, and let cutters produce larger stones. As with most gems, the round brilliant is also present, as its shape is perhaps the most widely recognized gemstone shape in the world.
- Nigerian Rubellite Carat
At Shop LC, the gem typically occurs in smaller sizes ranging in size from a few points up to around a carat and a half. Larger stones tend to be rarer, and quickly vanish from the market. As a result, there is a noticeable increase in price per carat for stones over one carat, with increasing costs as stones become larger.
Nigerian Rubellite Treatment
At times, stones may be enhanced to improve their durability or beauty. This practice is normal within the gemstone and jewelry industry.
Commonly, Nigerian rubellite may be heated to improve the stone’s color. This treatment is stable and permanent with standard care.
Occasionally, rubellite may be irradiated to improve the color of the stone. With routine care, this treatment is stable and permanent.
Occasionally, Nigerian rubellite may be oiled or fissure filled by resin to improve the clarity of the stone. These treatments are stable with usual care. Oiled stones may need to be periodically oiled by a trained professional to maintain the stone’s beauty.
Caring for Nigerian Rubellite
Rubellite is a relatively hard gemstone, ranking 7 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale. Combined with a fair toughness, Nigerian rubellite is a great option for durable jewelry items you’d like to wear frequently.
The recommended method for cleaning rubellite stones is the tried and true method of using warm water, mild dishwashing soap, and a soft bristled brush. Scrub the stone with the soap and water solution until all the dirt and oil is removed. After, rinse with fresh, clean water. Dry your rubellite jewelry with a soft, lint-free towel. You only need to clean the stone when they appear dirty. Using an ultrasonic cleaner or steam cleaner is very risky and should be avoided. These types of cleaning machines can cause your stone to fracture.
Avoid excessive heat. High heat can cause the color of the gem to fade, or even cause the stone to fracture! The stone remains stable to light exposure, and this should not affect the stone. While the stone isn’t likely to suffer damage from exposure to chemicals, it’s best practice to avoid exposing any jewelry to harmful elements, such as household cleaners.
The best way to store rubellite jewelry is in a lined jewelry box. Alternately, wrapping the item is a soft cloth for storage also works. It’s recommended to store jewelry apart from other items in your collection, so no accidental damage occurs.
Who Can Wear Nigerian Rubellite?
Its ruby red hues make Nigerian rubellite a classic choice in bold and striking gemstone jewelry. With a predilection toward longer gems like oval and marquis, cluster-style jewelry is a popular choice for rubellite.
Due to its association with ruby, expect to find rubellite used in similar ways to ruby stones. Rubellite is a great alternate for ruby in engagement rings and works splendidly with the same kind of neutral palette that emphasizes the beauty of the stone.
How Does Nigerian Rubellite Compare to Other Red Stones?
Rubellite easily draws the greatest comparison to ruby, as it was frequently mistaken for ruby before modern gemological understanding. Pinker varieties are comparable to pink sapphire but perhaps not as profoundly vivid in color.
Where Does Nigerian Rubellite Come From?
Rubellite occurs many places globally, from notable locations such as Brazil, Nigeria, and the United States. Ouro Fino, Brazil was a major producer of this stone, but no longer regularly produces this stone. Nigeria is also well-known for its supply of rubellite, and Shop LC sources our supply from Oyo, Nigeria.
How is Nigerian Rubellite Mined?
In pursuit of Nigerian rubellite, miners frequently dig pits between 30 to 60 feet deep. Accessible by only a ladder, miners dig for rough stone using artisanal methods involving tools like picks and shovels.
Rough rubellite occurs in pegmatites, a type of rock that forms during the tail end of geological activity when magma cools and crystalizes. At the bottom of these pits, miners will blast away stone to expose promising seams of material. Once detected, they will then use their hand tools to dig out pegmatite rocks.
Mining yield can be sparse, with sporadic yield. Many miners are supplementing an income from farming, and can only work when crop seasons are over.
Nigerian Rubellite Properties
What Does Nigerian Rubellite Mean?
Did you know that different varieties of tourmaline are said to possess different healing benefits? Gem therapists suggest that rubellite and pink tourmaline aids blood circulation. Also, it helps detoxify the body while regulating metabolism. Some say it stabilizes a woman’s monthly cycle.
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 Nigerian Rubellite a Birthstone?
Tourmaline is one of two modern October birthstones. As the red variety of tourmaline, Nigerian rubellite offers its exciting bright red as a blazing option for this fall birthstone. It’s the perfect choice for anyone that desires a brilliant red stone.
Nigerian Rubellite Facts
- Nigerian rubellite ranks 7 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale of hardness.
- This gem is known for its stunning and captivating red hues.
- Shop LC sources our supply of Nigerian rubellite from Nigeria.
- Pink Sapphire Treatment