In the jeweler industry, there are many stories we have heard from our grandmothers, friends or the media about diamonds, gemstones and gold. So it is really no surprise that over time many myths have been built up around these stories. We'd like to do our best to debunk these false rumors, so here are our top 10 jewelry myths we hear time and time again.
SAPPHIRES ARE ONLY BLUE
- Blue sapphires are very common and most popular due to celebrities and royalty. The color blue also is favorited by majority of people. Sapphires actually can be found in every rainbow of color except red. You may not realize that sapphires and rubies are in the same gemstone family called Corundum. Therefore, red corundum is called a ruby and all the other colors are named sapphire. The rarest sapphire is a genuine Padparadscha sapphire showcasing remarkable orange, peach and pink colors naturally.
SILVER TURNS MY SKIN GREEN
- Costume jewelry is made from brass and copper to keep the overall cost low. These metals can be plated with gold or silver color to change its appearance. As the jewelry is worn, the plating will wear off and the brass or copper will show through. These metals oxidize and therefore leave a green residue on your skin when you sweat or wash your hands.
- To prevent the green coloring, use clear nail polish to paint the inside of your ring to give a protective coating. Your jewelry can also be replated for around $55-65.
YOUR HANDS ARE THE SAME SIZE
- Each finger and each hand will have completely different ring sizes. Your dominant hand will be slightly larger due to your muscles being used more. Usually your left hand compared to your right hand is about ½ to ¾ size difference.
GOLD CAN BE MINED IN MANY COLORS
- We all have seen gold in colors of white, yellow, rose and green, but the only true color of gold is yellow. To create the rainbow of colors, other metals called alloys are mixed into the casting. For example silver colored metals like platinum, palladium and magnesium create white gold. Copper alloy creates rose or pink gold, while silver creates green gold. Two-toned jewelry is when a piece of jewelry has two colors of gold in the design.
DIAMONDS ARE INDESTRUCTIBLE
- Many people are notorious for wearing their wedding ring when they garden, exercise or do household chores. They are then shocked to see their diamonds have been scratched or chipped.
- These dazzling gems are the hardest stones on the Mohs Hardness Scale with a rating of 10 out of 10. This chart grades gemstones on their scratch resistance and durability. A diamond can only be scratched or cut by another diamond. This is why you should never store your jewelry together in one baggie.
- A diamond is very durable, yet they can chip or crack due to the structure of the diamond. Each diamond has ‘cleavage planes’ and if a diamond is hit just right or dropped at the right angle, the pressure can cause that cleavage plane to crack.
- To help save diamonds, I recommend that your fine jewelry should be the first thing you take off when you get home and the last thing you put on before leaving out the door.
I AM ALLERGIC TO ALL SILVER METALS
- Most people who say they have a skin allergy to jewelry are usually only allergic to nickel. This silver colored metal is found in costume jewelry, low cost sterling silver, or silver-plated jewelry. Here at Ambrosia, we do not use nickel in our white gold or sterling silver jewelry.
- For a safe alternative, purchase jewelry made from pure silver, 925 stamped sterling silver, or 14k and higher karat quality of jewelry. Platinum and palladium are silver toned metals which are both hypoallergenic and do not require rhodium plating as well.
OPALS SHOULD NOT BE WORN
- These beautiful gemstones can create a rainbow of colors or also known as ‘play of color.’ Many of us know that these gemstones can be fragile and are not as durable as diamonds as they are graded 5.5-6 on the Mohs hardness scale.
- Some people believe in leaving an opal in a jewelry box and should only be worn once or twice a year for a special occasion. In reality, opals loved to be worn. These gemstones are created naturally by water and silica and therefore need moisture to retain its luster.
- We recommend once a month to rub your opals gently with your hands. For opals that have not been worn in years, I recommend soaking in water for a few hours. The oils in our hands or the water will replenish the moisture of the opal and prevent it from cracking and drying out.
DIAMONDS ARE THE RAREST IN THE WORLD
- Although large, high quality and clear clarity diamonds are rare, diamonds actually are common and can be found around the world. Though most diamonds that are found are not used in jewelry, but instead for machinery and tools.
- In comparison, there are many natural colored gemstones that are extremely rare including alexandrite, red beryl (red emerald), benitoite, Paraiba tourmaline and naturally made pearls.
WHITE GOLD COSTS MORE THAN YELLOW GOLD
- If both colors of gold are the same karat quality, they will be of the same value. All 14-karat gold have the same quantity of gold (58.3%), therefore they are equal in price. For maintenance, white gold will cost a little more down the road as it requires a rhodium plating every 12-18 months and usually costs $55-65 for each time.
ONLY LAB-CREATED DIAMONDS ARE ETHICAL
- Lets first explain what a blood diamond really means. A blood diamond is a term used to call a diamond sold to fund an armed conflict in the country it was mined from. We immediately think of the movie Blood Diamond with Leonard DiCaprio and the brutal and bloody civil wars. Unfortunately, the media years ago has put the fear of blood diamonds were being sold in every jewelry store across the nation.
- 90% of diamonds mined today come from open pits owned by large companies who are not funding wars. Most diamonds are mined in Africa, Russia, Australia and Canada. The remaining approximately 10% of diamonds come from artisanal mining, which are small family owned mines. Many jewelry stores are purchasing from these well-known largely owned diamond companies.
- Now some people think lab-created diamonds are more ethical than genuine diamonds. With these new man-made diamonds becoming more popular, the demand is higher for manufacturers. Unethical manufactures are eager to take advantage of the trend and therefore have created sweatshop-like conditions to push more products. So is it really more ethical?
- I can speak personally on learning how gemstone mining has helped improve small villages and their communities. My druzy gemstone suppliers have increased their pricing over the last few years to give their miners and workers a raise. The employment helps the towns’ infrastructure and schooling for families.
I hope we have been able to clear up some of the stories and myths you have heard before. Comment below what you thought was a fact or what other rumors you have heard before.