Aquamarines have a special charm to them. They remind most people of the sea, a warm day by the beach with your toes in the sand and a nice drink by your side. These gems are light, serene, and remind you that gemstones don’t have to be overly colorful to be impressive. There’s something a bit understated about an aquamarine, and we’re all for it.
You might be wondering if aquamarines sparkle, or if they can get cloudy, or whether you can wear them daily. All of these are good questions, since you’re likely going to want to wear this gem every waking moment once you have it. So let’s get to know aquamarines a little better.
Does aquamarine sparkle ?
No, aquamarine does not sparkle like a diamond, rather it has flashes of light and areas of concentrated color. This also depends on your cut style. An aquamarine doesn’t have much fire to speak of (rainbow sparkles) but it has a bit of brilliance (white sparkles). This combined with the nice contrast of alternating bright and concentrated areas within the gem make for a very pretty gem.
If you love aquamarine’s gentle blue color but want something with more fire you have a few options:
- Blue diamonds, they are usually light grey-blue. Very expensive but stunning.
- Blue moissanite, any shade of blue you like. Very affordable and fiery.
Either option will bring quite a bit of sparkle but come at vastly different price points. Aquamarine and moissanite are similar in price.
Read also: Do Rubies Break ? Do They Sparkle ?
Does aquamarine get cloudy ?
Yes, aquamarine can get cloudy because it is an exceptionally clear gemstone that is also a bit soft (8 on the Mohs hardness scale). This means any scratches that accumulate on this high clarity gem will be immediately noticeable and dull it after a few years. This is usually fixed through a re-polish by a jeweler, unless the scratches are very deep.
Another reason aquamarine can get cloudy is due to accumulated gripe and soap scum. These can be gently scrubbed off with a very soft toothbrush and warm soapy water. Pat dry and your aquamarine should be shiny again.
Keep in mind that the larger your aquamarine, the higher the chance of it getting cloudy since there is more surface to touch or scratch.
Does aquamarine fade in sunlight ?
Aquamarine can fade in sunlight if it has been heat-treated to intensify its color. Most aquamarine occurs in a very light shade of blue-green, which can be too light for many people. So the gems go through a special gentle heating process that intensifies their initial color, but like sapphires.
The result is a stronger color in aquamarines, but this color can fad in a few years if the gem is exposed to bright, direct sunlight very often. You options are to get an untreated aquamarine, or try to keep a treated one out of the sun.
Can aquamarine be worn every day ?
Aquamarines should not be worn every day, since they can easily accumulate scratches and lose their shine. These are gemstones that have a much higher clarity than emeralds, even if they are the same material. Any imperfection in an aquamarine will be glaringly obvious.
We recommend only wearing this ring to special occasions, or places where you know you won’t be doing much with your hands.
If your engagement ring has an aquamarine, perhaps it would be best to remove it when cooking, cleaning, gardening, moving heavy furniture, or something similar where you’re bound to hit the ring on something.
Best cuts for an aquamarine gemstone
Want the most out of your aquamarine ? It will look great in most cuts but there are a handful that will make it come alive ! Which style you choose depends on whether you want a brighter gem, that looks like sunlight on the shore, or a deeper color like looking through the glass floor of a boat.
Portuguese or oval cut to brighten the gem
Portuguese and oval cuts are two brilliant cut styles, and they both feature a whole lot of facets for the aquamarine to bounce light off of, and brighten the gemstone.
Portuguese cuts are far more facets than oval cuts, and are very deep cuts. They resemble a round cut, with with spiraling facets in one direction on the pavilion, spiraling facets in the other direction on the crown, and a large table. The result is a gem that looks like a chrysanthemum when viewed head-on, a lot of brightness, but still not terribly much fire since aquamarines can’t really do this for you.
Oval cut aquamarines are very common, and they concentrate some brilliance towards the tips, with a darker middle (bowtie). This contrast might look good or bad, depending on your tastes. One thing is for sure, the oval cut has a more dynamic light return than the Portuguese cut.
Emerald or Asscher cut to intensify the color
The emerald cut and the Asscher cut bring out the same thing in an aquamarine: color intensity. Both styles have mirroring facets that double the gem’s color so your aquamarine’s color will appear much more saturated. Asschers tend to do this a little better than emerald cuts, but both work very well.
Asscher cuts are rare in diamonds, and even rarer in aquamarines so you might need a bit of patience until you find one, or get a raw aquamarine and have your jeweler cut it.
Always set your aquamarine in white metal
Even if the ring shank is yellow gold or rose gold, make sure the prongs holding the aquamarine are a white metal like white gold, platinum, or palladium. Colored ring settings will only impart color to the aquamarine, while a white setting will not be noticeable.
And on that same note, a diamond or white moissanite halo will work very beautifully with an aquamarine. Truly, this gemstone can go with almost anything, since it has such a light and understated color. A diamond halo will look like an extension of the aquamarine itself, bringing the sparkle it lacks. This works even better with aquamarines in a brilliant cut, and under 2 carats.
I’m the main author for jewelrymaterialguide.com. I started this site after we did tons of research before our wedding and noticed that there is information about rings, jewelry, and so on that is really hard to find on the internet.