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Opal stone is one of the best substitutes for Diamond stone. It is associated with the planet Venus. It comes in almost all colors, but it is mainly worn in white for astrological benefits. Opals contain water, and any sudden changes in temperature may cause them to crack or fracture.
Synthetic opal, Gilson created opal, Slocum glass, opalite (a plastic imitation with the play of color), composite (doublets and triplets), mother of pearl (some of it costly), and chalcedony.
Play Of Color Phenomena or Firing
The price of an opal stone depends mostly on this quality. Because of the play of color, sparkles of different colors are seen in the opals. The play of color is caused by the direction of light from the spheres of silica gel in the opal structure. Specific colors are seen depending on the size of the silica gel and its arrangement in the structure.
It is generally cut into basic cabochons cut to allow most of the light to pass through them. The basic technique of cutting involves keeping this gem as large as possible with minimizing waste. It is usually cut into cabochons to display its rainbow effect.
When talking about opal stone, clarity means judging the amount of transparency and minimum inclusions. It comes from transparent to opaque. The background plays a significant role in deciding the value. If its background is milky, it will be less valuable.
Opal stones come in a huge variety. Black ones are the rarest and most valued. The fire opal stone is also quite valuable and expensive. It displays a dominant red, orange, or yellow sparkle. Its range goes from around Rs. 400 per carat to Rs. 20,000 per carat.
According to Indian astrology, opal gemstone is related to Venus, and wearing it reduces the ill effects of Venus. This gemstone is most recommended for people with the zodiac signs of Taurus (Vrashab Rashi) and Libra (Tula Rashi). Its benefits are as follows;
1) Healing Benefits
It has the power to treat Parkinson’s disease, viral fevers, and infections. It purifies the blood. It is especially useful in the treatment of depression and other mental disorders because it eliminates lethargy or laziness in the body.
2) Satisfying Desires
If you don’t have satisfaction in life, then no matter how much you earn, you will not get rest. One feels satisfied with himself after wearing it. It brings comfort and luxury into the life of the wearer.
3) Improves Relationships
It helps remove mutual misunderstandings and works to improve relationships. As a result, anyone who has difficulty getting along with others should wear this stone.
4) Protects the wearer
It protects the wearer from evil spirits, nightmares, and fears. It creates a positive aura around the wearer. Apart from this, it also helps in avoiding natural calamities such as fire, storms, and accidents.
A major chunk of this comes from Australia (almost 95%). Therefore, check the country of origin or confirm it with the certification provider, dealer of stone, or shop owner from whom you are buying. This is because Russian and Hong Kong-produced fake give the appearance of being real.
Since it is a natural stone, it will retain some asymmetry in its shape even after cutting. This implies that if your opal stone is perfectly circular or oval, then you should consider inspecting it properly before buying it or buying it from a certified and authentic dealer.
Place the stone on a table and pass the white light over it. If it shows different layers of color, it is a sign of real and good quality. Be cautious when looking at color layers; if it appears just below the surface, it could be a fake.
Note: Do not use fluorescent lighting, as it may appear more fired than it is.
Real opal stones are a little bit more costly. If you are getting this at an extremely lower price than usual, you need to doubt the fakeness of the stone. However, you should also consider checking the quality.
Take your stone to the laboratory and carefully observe the large patches of color. If you find snaky patterns of colors that are very symmetrical and too perfect, it is possible that they are fake or synthetic, as the real ones do not have that much perfection in the rainbow effect.
Crystalline inclusions (needles), Flow structures, Cloud-like inclusions, Dendritic inclusions
The majority of opal stone (almost 95%) comes from Australia. Mexico, Brazil, Ethiopia, and the USA are some of the other places from where it comes. This gem comprises tiny spheres of silica. It is formed when silica-rich water seeps into the Earth’s crust. From there, it is separated into two categories: common and noble opal.
The chemical composition of opal stone is SiO2 nH2O+aI, Fe, Ca, Mg, and Na in traces. Some contain small amounts of radioactive elements. Water percentage is a variable. Its hardness is 5.5–6.5 on the Mohs scale. The specific gravity (S.G.) ranges between 1.98 and 2.20, and the refractive index (R.I.) lies between 1.40 to 1.47.