More and more couples today are marking their imminent betrothal with sapphire engagement rings. Sapphires are a fashionable alternative to the traditional look of diamonds, and the naturally blue gemstones don’t sacrifice the durability sapphire engagement ring or hardness that comes with buying diamonds. If you feel that you want to mark your marriage with an eye-catching coloured stone, a sapphire engagement ring may be your best bet. However, to guarantee that you make a quality purchase, consider the step-by-step guide below.
1. Know What Tone of Blue You Desire
Sapphires come in a multitude of different shades of blue. The lightest is known as the Sweden princess blue, a tone that resembles baby blue, and the darkest shade is akin to a navy or near-black. Royal blue is the middle of the scale and it is also considered the most prized colour. Thus, royal sapphires are the most expensive. Camelot and commodore blues, a lighter and darker shade to royal respectively, are similar hues that make for more affordable alternatives.
2. Consideration of The Hue
Blue sapphires can be entirely blue, or they can contain tints, most commonly of green or purple. In terms of cost, a pure blue sapphire is valued the highest, followed by a slight purple tint and slight green tint sapphire. Any sapphire with strong tints of green or purple are generally rendered undesirable since these undertones overshadow the stone’s natural blue hue.
3. Look at the Transparency of the Stone
Transparency is commonly overlooked when shopping for sapphire engagement rings, but the more transparent a gemstone is, the more radiant it will look. Transparency also directly correlates with value, so should definitely be considered by the buyer. Translucent gems, one rank below transparent, allow light to pass through with a little amount of obscurity. This downgrades their value but makes for a good compromise between quality and budget. Semi-opaque and opaque stones allow little to no light to pass through and as such are valued the least among all sapphires.
4. Consider a Fancy Colour Sapphire
Although blue is the most common and most coveted colour for a sapphire, these gemstones also appear in several other shades. Padparadscha sapphires are rare, orange-pink coloured stones and are considered very valuable. Pure pink sapphires are also a prized colour, whereas yellow and green are valued less as a fancy sapphire.
5. Be Aware of How Origin Affects Price
Where a sapphire was mined can have a vast influence on its asking price. Sapphires sourced from Kashmir, Burma, and Sri Lanka tend to be more prized than those sourced elsewhere because the quality of stones from these mines is usually higher than those originating from other locations. However, this is only a general trend and in some ways resembles paying for a product with a brand name. A good cost effective alternative is to shop for quality sapphire engagement rings adorned with a sapphire from a less prolific mining location.