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Paraíba

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The Caribbean’s colors gems

It has lots of different trade names, all different from each other, but everyone referred to one unique gem: we are talking about parahíba, a tourmaline’s variety whose has bright hues that remind Caribbean’s water…

This kind of gems owe their spectacular coloring – it goes from light blue with a strong green undertone to a strong blue – thanks to the presence of copper and manganese into the crystal lattice, two chemical elements fundamental to recognize and give to the gem the tourmaline’s gemological variety.

10.42ct Paraiba + 2.94ct Diamonds.
Photo credits: www.davidmorris.com/

The parahíba tourmaline coloring is usually imitated by different types of gems because of their abundance make sure that their prices are lower rather than parahíba’s ones: among main imitations we can find sky blue apatites (good color and eye-catcher, but not suitable to be set into a jewel setting due to his fragility), blue zircons, man-made glasses, and synthetic hydrothermal beryls.

Mined for the first time in 1982 in a Parahíba’s mine (Brazil), its production it’s still restricted to few Brazilian and African mines, and this condition ensures that the market prices are really high, especially given to the continuous growth in public demand: gems with high sizes and bright colors could even reach hundreds of thousands of euros per carat!

Naturally, parahíbas are out of ordinary gems, and their popularity has grown over the past few years thanks to large marketing operations from high jewelry brands that decide to invest and experiment with one of the most breathtaking and impressive gems that Nature can create.

Written by Giulia Lombardo