The brilliant lustre and fire of zircon, combined with its durability and spectrum of beautiful sparkling colours, makes this gemstone a highly desirable choice in jewellery, especially zircon rings.
The following guide will explore some interesting facts about zircon gems, as well as outline some top buyers tips when it comes to ring shopping.
Introduction to Zircon
Zircon comes from the mineral family known as neosilicates – it is a type of silicate containing the element of zirconium, which is a lustrous white-gray metal similar to titanium. The gem is often confused with the diamond simulant named cubic zirconia, but is completely different as zircon is a natural mineral rather than a lab manufactured material.
Nevertheless, zircon has a high refractive index (sparkle) similar to diamonds, and features a combination of stunning brilliance with a striking dispersion of hue given its tendency to split white light into different colours. In the days before synthetic diamonds and moissonite, white zircon was a popular substitute for diamond and was relatively inexpensive.
The term zircon is derived from an adaption of words from Syriac, Arabic and Persian which are loosely termed “jargoon” and apply to light coloured zircons. The term “hyacinth” is used for yellow zircons from the Hyacinthus flower, whose name is of ancient Greek origin.
Zircon comes in a range of gorgeous colours, the most popular being the light electric blue produced by heat treatment and containing a pleaochoic (changeable at different angles) effect causing it to look greenish from a certain direction.
The rare rose and rose-orange zircon from Tanzania is not treated in any way, while the yellow or gold variety is heat treated to enhance the colour and green specimens are produced by minute natural elements of uranium and thorium.
Main Sources of Zircon
Deposits of zircon can be found in a number of locations throughout Asia, particularly Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, Burma, Myanmar and Sri Lanka. Most blue zircon comes from Cambodia or Burma.
African sources are becoming more prevalent, and are found in Tanzania, Mozambique and Nigeria. Other deposits of gem quality zircon are found in Madagascar, India, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, Norway and Quebec.
Zircon can be found in beach sand worldwide and also occurs in sedimentary rocks as well as stream gravels.
Zircon Ring Buyers Tips
- Gem quality zircon should be clear, with no impurities or visible fissures within its structure .The quality can be checked by simply placing the gemstone under a source of light to detect whether any cracks or chips can be seen.
- Zircon is a fairly durable gemstone, weighing 6.5 to 7.5 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness, so it is a good choice on rings. Nevertheless, zircon is inclined to be slightly brittle so it has a tendency to wear along faceted edges, so do be careful of this.
- Colourless zircon can be distinguished from diamond by its strong double refraction.
- Zircon has an adamantine (diamond-like) lustre and can be transparent to translucent, which contributes to how effectively it transmits rays of light.
- Because zircon resembles diamond in lustre and fire, colourless zircons have been mistaken for diamonds even by experienced jewellers.
- Only certain zircon gems have the right physical structure to turn blue when heat treated.
- Large zircon crystals are extremely rare.
- The brilliant cut is the most popular for zircon jewellery as it brings out the fiery brilliance of the gem to its fullest.
- One of the most crucial things to get right when buying a ring is obviously the correct sizing – if you’re unsure of this, simply visit a jeweller who will fit you using a professional steel-gauge.
- Because fingers change in size over the course of a day due to various factors such as temperature, work and diet, it is recommended that you measure your ring size at the end of the day when fingers tend to be at their largest diameter.
- People with large knuckles/hands should wear a slightly loose ring, while those with slimmer knuckles/smaller hands should choose a ring that is snugger.
Zodiac & Health Benefits
Zircon gemstones are a fairly new addition to the astrological birthstone chart, but it is now a popular choice for those born in December and is also associated with the zodiac sign of Sagittarius. Furthermore, this lustrous gem is closely related to Venus and is believed to increase powers of intuition and protect the wearer from negative influences.
Health wise, zircon is thought to promoting general well-being, calm, love and happiness as well as aiding in the prevention of insomnia. It is also believed to cure epilepsy, fever, but many believe it is important to maintain the lustrous shine of the stone to prevent its power changing from positive to negative.
This exquisitely beautiful gemstone, with its variety of lustrous colours, makes it a highly prized choice in jewellery. It has a glorious sparkle that you will want to show it off as much as possible, so zircon rings would be an excellent option.
Author Bio: Julia Littlewood is a Jewellery Designer. She is passionate about ornaments, gems and stones. If you want to explore the most vibrant and widest range of jewellery pieces , she suggests you to visit The Jewellery Channel. Julia loves joining parties, fashion shows, exhibitions apart from designing costume jewelleries and writing articles for her followers.
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