Discovering The Authenticity Of Your Amethyst Gem


Amethyst is a lustrous violet purple stone that is available in abundance, so the chances you have a fake are low. However, some may try to sell glass or plastic as amethyst. It is, in fact, a type of quartz. It has iron and aluminum deposits which give this stone its radiant color. The shade of purple can go from pale to deep.

Special Property

One of the best special properties and the easiest way to see its authenticity is its color. That is, it changes the shade of purple depending on the type of lighting, artificial or natural. Also, it is a type I gem for clarity, so is almost never sold with any inclusions.


How to Discern Amethyst-Amethyst Sometimes Have A Red Hue

Simple Tests

There are a number of tests to check if your Amethyst is real. First, look at the gem on a white background like a piece of paper. It should be purplish violet and can sometimes have a red hue. The color should actually be uneven. Amethyst is known for having color zoning. This means that you should be able to see different shades of purple throughout the gem except in very small pieces. If the cut is round, these differences will be visible when looked at with a magnifying glass. While looking through the magnifying glass, pay attention that there are no inclusions. Glass typically will have air bubbles, and plastic will have a slight ripple effect on its facets. Finally, the scratch test. Amethyst is quite hard, 7 on the Mohs hardness scale, so if you scratch it with a knife or steel blade, it will not scratch. Glass and plastic, on the other hand, will.


Artificial & Synthetic Amethyst

Lab Tests

The first procedure that is done in the laboratory is noting the color, the cut, and the clarity. Also, if the color zoning is noticed, it will be noted and on its own will be evidence of Amethyst. Next, the refractive index and specific gravity will be measured. Like all quartz, Amethyst has a refractive index between 1.544 and 1.553. The specific density of all quartz is 2.65. They would also test if it has a double refraction. That means that the light rays which enter the stone split into two when exiting. As all quartz have the same properties, they would identify the stone as quartz and the color would tell the gemologists that it is an amethyst.