How to Evaluate and Choose the Perfect Peridot Gemstone

 

Peridot is one of the few translucent gems which have just one primary color. The olive-green may be lighter or darker. Have a stronger or weaker intensity, but it is always olive-green. It is idiochromatic. This means that its color is due to its own composition and not that of its impurities. Dating back to 1500 B.C. peridot is one of the earliest documented and used stones.

Place of Origin

This gem is still found and mined in its oldest known source, Myanmar. It can also be found in Pakistan, Australia, parts of the United States, China, Brazil, and many other regions. Brazil, as is always true for colored gems, is the most reliable source. Although Pakistan is leading when quantity is in question, Brazil offers a better quality. At Geshia, we get all our peridot from Brazil as it is a reliable and trustworthy supplier.

Treatment/Enhancement

Our peridot is not treated in any way and is 100% natural. However, there have been accounts of peridot enhancements. It is rumored that some companies have been known to coat pale peridot with a green foil to enhance color. This is not a long-term solution and not a practice of our company.

How Peridot Is Graded

The Cut

Peridots transparency is used to its full potential by faceting it. It is available in many shapes and cuts. The cut does not affect the color in any way and so the value is not necessarily affected. Naturally, badly cut gems will have a lower price per carat, but those are actually quite rare. The best cuts for peridot are the brilliant (or round) cut, the oval cut, and the heart shaped cut.

Different Cut of Peridot Gems

◆ The Brilliant Cut

This cut is used for all gemstones and makes up 75% of cut gemstones today. It has 58 facets which are divided amongst the crown ( the top half), the girdle (the widest side), and the pavilion (the bottom). A precise formula is created for each gem to maximize its fire and brilliance.

◆ The Oval Cut

The oval cut is derived from the brilliant cut. Generally having 56 facets, it is perfectly symmetrical. Peridot fits well with this cut as it shows the color and clarity of the gem exceptionally. Like the teardrop, it is great for women with shorter or average finger-length. The long oval shape creates the illusions of longer, more elegant fingers.

◆ The Heart Shaped Cut

This is one of the most complex cuts to create. The ultimate symbol of romance, the heart shaped cut has 59 facets. Essentially, it is like the pear-shaped cut with a side cleft. Much like the pear cut, it has a large table (the top of the gem) that is surrounded by smaller detailed cuts. This cut gives the peridot great radiance while showing its color and clarity. The quality of this cut greatly depends on the skills of the cutter. Pay attention to symmetry and look for a well-defined outline when buying this cut.

The Clarity

Peridot is often free from inclusion when seen with the naked eye. Under the microscope, though, they often have black spots which are actually mineral crystals. They have also been known to have reflective, round shaped inclusions dubbed lily-pads. Larger specimens have been known to be cloudy. The simple rule of clearer is better applies, of course, but the inclusions sometimes cannot be avoided. Lighter stones lose a lot of value if the dark spots are visible. Also, the number of inclusions will affect the value of the stone.

The Color

Peridot's color can be found in pure green, olive-green, yellowish-green, greenish-yellow, and everything in between.

Peridot Color

The most valuable peridot is a deep and vibrant green. These are extremely rare and are free from any yellow or brown tints. Peridots of 10 carats and larger are more likely to be this deep green color. As a peridot gem has more yellow or brown tints, the value goes down.The rarest color is the cat's eye effect. Though technically this is due to inclusions and not color. As with many other gems, the vibrancy of color is also very important. Paler gems are less valued than vibrant ones. We work with the vibrant, transparent peridot. As iron gives this stone its color, the best percentage of iron within peridot is between 12% and 15%. More iron gives the stone a muddy color, in which case its value would go down. The color is rated by the GIA scale from 2 (very pale) to 8 (very dark). The most optimum, and highest priced shade falls somewhere around 5 or 6.

The Carat Weight

The carat weight affects the price in that pieces above 4 carats, or larger than 10 x 8 mm, have a higher value. This, naturally, increases as does the carat weight. The best large pieces are mined in Myanmar (Burma) and of recent in Pakistan. Most peridots, however, that are smaller than 4 carats have a very reasonable price. Finally, all the factors are calculated. This gives the price per carat and is multiplied by the overall weight to give the price.