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Green Sapphire Versus Emerald

April 18, 2023

Green sapphire and emerald are two of the most stunning, vibrant stones you can find. Both stones make for brilliant choices should you go for either of them as the centrepiece of your jewellery pieces. 

However, you should carefully consider some of the differences between these two gemstones before you make your purchase. We’ll lay down some of the most important aspects that differentiate green sapphire and emerald, and help you make an informed choice about which one is right for you when it comes to sapphire and emerald jewellery in Melbourne and elsewhere.


Size and Shape 

Emeralds are often found in larger sizes than sapphires, due to the way that they are formed in the earth’s crust. This can also affect the shape and appearance of the stones, as larger emeralds may have more inclusions or internal flaws. Emeralds are often cut into rectangular or square shapes, known as emerald cuts, that emphasise the stone’s colour and clarity. 

Sapphires, on the other hand, can be cut into a wider variety of shapes, including oval, round, pear, and heart-shaped. Emeralds belong to the beryl family of minerals, while sapphires are a type of corundum. These different crystal structures also affect the shape and appearance of the stones.


Aesthetic Differences 

While it may seem like the difference between green sapphire and emerald is slight, there are clear differences between their appearance. Emeralds often have an intense, deep green colour with a hint of bluish or yellowish undertones. On the other hand, green sapphires often appear lighter in comparison, with hints of blue or yellow. 

Emeralds are also known to contain visible inclusions of black carbon material known as ‘jardin,’ which is said to enhance the stone’s beauty and vitality, while green sapphires are more transparent in terms of their clarity.


Durability and Hardness 

Unsurprisingly, both green sapphires and emeralds are incredibly resistant to scratches. Both gems achieve a Mohs scale hardness of between 7.5 and eight, making them durable enough for everyday wear. 

The main difference between emerald and green sapphire is in their fracture conchoidal score, which measures their resistance to chipping or cracking. On this scale, emeralds score between seven and 7.5 compared to green sapphires scoring between eight and 8.5–this means that while both gems are highly durable and scratch-resistant, emeralds are more prone to being chipped or cracked if subjected to too much pressure.


Wrapping Up

Both green sapphires and emeralds are beautiful stones that can add a unique, luxurious sparkle to any jewellery collection. Nevertheless, they differ in terms of their properties and characteristics. Green sapphires are more durable than emeralds, making them better suited for everyday wear. Emeralds, on the other hand, are brighter and more vibrant than the more transparent green sapphires. Ultimately, both gems have their own unique beauty.

Contact Holloway Diamonds if you want help deciding which stone to choose or want answers to questions such as, “What does the birthstone ruby mean?” or “What does emerald symbolise?” Work with us, and we’ll help you make the perfect choice when it comes to buying unique jewellery for you or your loved ones!

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