Sapphires are one of the three precious colored gemstones. The others being Rubies and Emeralds.  It is a variety of the mineral Corundum which is a mineral that includes both sapphires and rubies. Red corundum is known as ruby and all other colored corundum are known as sapphires with blue being the most common. Sapphires that are not blue are known as fancy sapphires and can occur in yellow, purple, orange, and green colors; “parti sapphires” show two or more colors.  Sapphires are the single most versatile stone with so many color choices and a hardness only beaten by diamonds.
The Highest quality sapphires come from Kashmir but premium sapphires also come from Burma, Sri Lanka, and Madagascar.
Blue Sapphires
Color has the greatest influence on a sapphire’s value, and preferred sapphires have strong to vivid blue color saturation. The most valued blue sapphires are velvety blue to violet blue, in medium to medium-dark tones. Sapphires with these qualities command the highest prices per carat. Less valuable blue sapphires might also be grayish, too light, or too dark.
Sapphire Clarity

Like with diamonds,  clarity has an impact on sapphires prices and rarity.  Blue sapphires typically have some inclusions and those with extremely high clarity are rare and very valuable.

 Type 1 – Sapphires are typically “eye-clean,” meaning that they have no inclusions visible to the naked eye.
Type 2 – Sapphires which display some inclusions visible to the naked eye. However, they don’t detract from the overall wonder and calming nature of the sapphire.
Type 3 – Sapphires with inclusions visible to the naked eye.
Sapphire Carat Weight
Blue sapphires can range in size anywhere from a few points to hundreds of carats, and large blue sapphires are more readily available than large rubies. However, most commercial-quality blue sapphires weigh less than 5.00 carats.

The majority of sapphires are treated with heat at extremely high temperatures to intensify their color, remove color-zoning, and improve their clarity. This is a common practice dating back thousand of years.  Although  “Heat Treated” these sapphires are 100% natural since they are mined from the earth and should not be confused with synthetic sapphires which are artifically grown have very little value.

Non-Treated Sapphires
Untreated sapphires means those that have not had any form of treatment to enhance their colour or clarity. This means these sapphires are in their purest form; they were mined and simply cut and polished to show their inner beauty. Most of the time untreated sapphires are referred to as unheated sapphires as the heat treatment is the most common enhancement.

Heated Sapphires Compared to Unheated Sapphires
With heated sapphires you will get a more vibrant, saturated stone for your budget. Most heated sapphires are eye-clean, with no inclusions visible to the naked eye. Unheated sapphires will have whatever inclusions were naturally created within them. Unheated sapphires are much more scarce and thus significantly more expensive than their heat-treated counterparts. 
It is esstential the non-treated sapphires are accompanied by a certificate from a  laboratory such as GIA, AGL, Gübelin, SSEF, or GRS.

DiamondsAntwerp.com only offers natural sapphires.


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