Therapeutic properties

How to distinguish hairy quartz from a fake?

Hairworm is one of the most beautiful varieties of quartz and is a translucent mineral with distinct needle-like hairs inside. The stone has a rather extraordinary appearance and stands out noticeably against the background of many minerals.

Description

Volosatik is a type of rock crystal based on silicon dioxide SiO2 with inclusions of titanium dioxide (rutile). It is these inclusions that form thin, chaotically located hairs inside the mineral, making quartz original and distinctive. In most cases, needle-shaped inclusions are presented in the form of rays, however, sometimes minerals with intricate irregular stars and triangles are found. In color, rutile inclusions are most often golden-red or black, although from time to time there are specimens with gray, green, brown and red rays consisting of goethite or actinolite, tourmaline, riebeckite, lepidocrocite and hornblende. As for the physical properties of the mineral, its hardness reaches 7 units on the Mohs scale, which corresponds to the hardness of untempered glass, and its density is 2,6-2,65 g/cm3. Quartz has a glassy, ​​and thanks to rutile, diamond-like luster, acts as a dielectric and has a transparent, highly translucent structure. The stone is insoluble in alkalis, has a conchoidal fracture and imperfect cleavage.

History of origin

According to an ancient legend, the goddess Venus herself was involved in the appearance of the stone, who, while bathing in a mountain river, dropped a strand of golden hair into the crystal clear water. With the onset of cold weather, the water in the river froze, and the curls were frozen in ice. The goddess liked this picture so much that she decided to immortalize it in stone. Thanks to this story, the mineral received the name “hair of Venus,” which, however, is not the only unofficial name for the mineral.

For its impeccably smooth internal rays, it is often called “arrows of Cupid”, “arrows of love” and hedgehog stone.

In many Eastern countries, quartz with black inclusions is called “Ali’s beard” and is valued for its spectacular appearance and high decorative value. The stone received this name in honor of the brother of the Prophet Muhammad, Ali, who lived in the 7th century and was a spiritual educator of Muslims. After his death, a mosque named after him was built near Baghdad, not far from which a deposit of minerals with black hair inclusions was found inside.

Place of Birth

Currently, hairworms are mined for jewelry production in the territory of Brazil, Australia, Norway, Pakistan, the United States and Kazakhstan. In our country, back in the last century, a large deposit was explored and developed, located in the subpolar Urals. The minerals mined from it were widely used in jewelry and were collected by connoisseurs as collection material.

Currently, rutile quartz is mined at a deposit on the Kola Peninsula.

Varieties

The hairworm has no classification in the usual sense. This is due to the fact that two, or even more so several, identical specimens that could be separated into a separate class do not exist in nature. As a type of hairworm, only saguenite can be distinguished. The mineral has hairs 2–3 mm thick, located at an angle of 60 degrees relative to each other. This contributes to the formation of many internal triangles intertwined with each other.

Saguenite is considered one of the most valuable varieties from a decorative point of view, and is most often used for making jewelry.

An interesting fact is that quartz, which is mined on the Kola Peninsula, is strikingly different from the minerals mined in Pakistan or Australia, and looks somewhat different. It has a low-transparent structure and is painted in a smoky color. Thick inclusions of aegirine make the stone even less transparent and give it a greenish color. Because of this uncharacteristic appearance for most hairy creatures, scientists propose to separate it into a separate breed and not classify it as quartz.

Materials

Despite its attractive appearance, the magical and healing properties of the hairworm are of much greater importance to humans than its beauty and originality.

Magic

The properties of the mineral associated with magic are based solely on myths and legends. In the Middle Ages, hairworm, along with another variety of quartz called “hawk’s eye,” was actively used as a powerful love spell. It was worn as an amulet, capable of attracting the gaze of people of the opposite sex and awakening passion. The stone was in high demand among unmarried girls and single guys, and married couples firmly believed in its ability to warn spouses about upcoming problems in relationships.

It was believed that the loss of a stone foreshadows an imminent divorce, and the loss of transparency or cracking portends the betrayal of one of the spouses or even his death.

In addition to love magic, the mineral was used to attract positive emotions and events, as well as to attract wealth and good luck. It was also believed that the stone helps creative people to reveal their talents, and encourages people of science to make new discoveries. For each specific purpose, a different hair color was used. For example, if it was necessary to counteract witchcraft or damage, they took a mineral with silver threads, and to attract money and good luck – with gold ones. It is believed that the hairy cat cannot “show aggression” towards its owner and accumulate negative energy.

Treatment

Along with magic, hairworm was often used as a remedy. Thus, in ancient times, it was used to alleviate the condition of people bitten by snakes and was used as a remedy for baldness. Wearing a hairworm as an amulet helped strengthen the immune system and reduced the risk of viral infections. Moreover, quartz, like any other transparent mineral, can improve mood, treat neuroses and fight depression.

Lithotherapists believe that the stone can treat heart diseases and relieve its owner from flu and bronchitis.

The mineral has has a general strengthening effect and promotes longevity, and women wearing hair jewelry are less susceptible to hormonal imbalances than others. It is also believed that the mineral helps neutralize the effects of radiation and fight insomnia, as well as treat infertility and impotence, and smooth out wrinkles. The stone is often used for massage and meditation and is used in the treatment of the gastrointestinal tract, liver and spleen.

How to distinguish from a fake?

  • A glass or plastic stone can be easily scratched with a sewing needle, while no needle marks will remain on natural material.
  • If you hold quartz in your hands for a while, it will still remain cold, while glass or plastic will quickly heat up. This is explained by the low thermal conductivity of the hair.
  • The density of natural quartz is much higher than the density of plastic, and therefore natural stone will weigh significantly more than artificial stone.
  • This mineral has small bubbles in its structure, which are formed during the ingrowth of rutile into quartz and the capture of various gases and impurities.
  • Due to the fact that no two absolutely identical stones exist in nature, the beads will differ significantly from each other, and each of them will have its own individual needle-like pattern.

To whom does it suit?

Hairy is suitable for representatives of almost all zodiac signs, except for Aries, for which it can only be considered as decoration. The greatest effect from wearing products with the mineral is observed in Taurus, Cancer and Leo. Therefore, if there is an urgent need to improve something in your personal life, these three signs are recommended to purchase quartz and wear it with short breaks.

Libra can safely choose a hairy bean as a talisman, and for Aquarius, buying a mineral with golden threads promises peace of mind and true love. The only condition for using hair spray is pauses in its use.

It is not recommended to wear the stone for a long time without removing it, as it “gets tired” of a person and needs rest.

Compatible with other stones

As with most varieties of quartz belonging to the element of Air, a combination with the element of Fire is recommended for hairworm. Good compatibility is noted with heliodor, garnet, pyrite, citrine, coral, amethyst, fluorite and golden beryl. The mineral is absolutely neutral to turquoise, malachite, jasper, lapis lazuli, chalcedony group stones and heliotrope. And it is extremely undesirable to have topaz, emerald, alexandrite, sapphire, peridot and pearls as neighbors.

Application

In addition to magic and lithotherapy, hairworm is widely used as a jewelry and ornamental stone. A wide variety of jewelry is made from it, such as bracelets, pendants, beads, earrings and rings. Minerals mined on the Kola Peninsula are used to make vases, boxes, frames and figurines. In addition, the mineral is in high demand among collectors and can become a worthy decoration for any collection. Hairworm is also used for interior decoration and for the manufacture of esoteric paraphernalia.

Care

In order for a product with hair to last as long as possible, and for the mineral to retain its original appearance for a long time, it must be properly cared for. To do this, you should follow a number of simple recommendations for caring for the mineral and follow the rules for storing the stone. Thus, it is advisable not to expose the stone to sudden temperature changes and protect it from the effects of household chemicals, and especially alkalis. Also, do not allow shocks, weight loads, or drops of the mineral onto a hard surface.

It is advisable to store products with hairs separately from other jewelry, since stones with higher hardness can easily scratch the surface of the mineral.

As for caring for quartz products, it is better to clean the stone with a soft cloth soaked in a soap solution, and for the frame it is better to choose a special product that is suitable directly for this metal. Using baking soda or toothpaste is inappropriate in this case, as they can scratch the frame and make the metal dull.

An important point in caring for the hairworm is the periodic “recharging” of the mineral, which allows it to be cleansed of negative energy and prepared for the next cycle of “work”. To do this, the stone is placed under running water for 6 hours, and it is better to use spring water rather than tap water. If this is not possible, then you can use melt water, also taken from natural sources, and not from the tap.

The mineral is then dried naturally and placed under direct ultraviolet rays for a couple of hours. At the end of the procedure, rutile quartz is considered recharged and ready for further use.

See the following video about the properties of the stone.

There are three types of fake jewelry stones: synthetic, fake and imitation – glass and plastic. Fake stones are most often less valuable ornamental stones, similar to expensive jewelry stones. Synthetic jewelry stones have the same basic chemical composition as natural ones, but, as a rule, they differ from them in the quality and quantity of coloring additives. Most often, the content of such additives in them is higher than in natural stones, and the range of dyes is much wider; Recently, oxides of rare earth elements have been used, making it possible to obtain a wide range of colors.

So how can one determine the naturalness of a stone among all the variety presented on the gemstone market? Of course, modern technologies make it possible to produce very high-quality imitations, which are quite difficult to distinguish from natural stones, but we will try to figure it out together as much as possible, and I hope that experts, professionals and simply very observant and knowledgeable people in the stone business will complement!

I’ll start with the quartz group of stones, the bulk of which are widely available today.

Quartz is one of the most common minerals in the earth’s crust, the rock-forming mineral of most igneous and metamorphic rocks. 12 percent of the earth’s crust is made of quartz.

Chemical formula: SiO2 (silicon dioxide).

predominantly iron oxides, giving it a wide variety of colors. Among the color varieties of quartz are almost black morion, violet (amethyst), yellow (citrine), etc. The reasons for the color of some varieties of quartz have their own specific nature. Artificial crystals are also given green (very rare in nature) and blue (there are no natural analogues) colors.
Glassy luster, sometimes greasy in solid masses
The fracture is uneven or conchoidal
No cleavage
Hardness 7
Dissolves in hydrofluoric acid and alkali melts

Dielectric (does not conduct electricity)
Piezoelectric

Minerals and varieties of quartz:

Aventurine – yellowish or shimmering brownish-red quartzite (due to inclusions of mica and iron mica)

Agate is a layered-banded variety of chalcedony.

Amethyst is purple.

Binghemite is iridescent quartz with goethite inclusions.

Volosatik is rock crystal with inclusions of finely needle-shaped crystals of rutile, tourmaline and/or other minerals that form needle-shaped crystals.

Rock crystal is crystals of colorless transparent quartz.

Flint is a fine-grained cryptocrystalline silica aggregate of variable composition, consisting mainly of quartz and to a lesser extent chalcedony, cristobalite, sometimes with the presence of a small amount of opal. Usually found in the form of nodules or pebbles that arise when they are destroyed.

Morion is black.

Prazem is green (due to actinolite inclusions).

Prasiolite is onion-green, obtained artificially by calcining yellow quartz.

Rauchtopaz (smoky quartz) – light gray or light brown.

Rose quartz is pink.

Chalcedony is a cryptocrystalline fine-fiber variety. Translucent or translucent, color from white to honey-yellow. Forms spherulites, spherulite crusts, pseudostalactites or continuous massive formations.

Citrine is lemon yellow.

Sapphire quartz is a bluish, coarse-grained quartz aggregate.

Cat’s eye – white, pinkish, gray quartz with a light tint effect.

Hawkeye is a silicified aggregate of bluish-gray amphibole.

Tiger’s Eye – Similar to Hawk’s Eye, but golden brown in color.

Today we will focus on some varieties – aventurine, amethyst, citrine, rock crystal.

Aventurine – one of the oldest synthetic imitations. It received its name for its resemblance to a special aventurine glass that was accidentally (in Italian “aventura”) obtained at the very beginning of the 18th century, into which small copper filings fell. True, the Egyptians knew how to make such glass much earlier, but the recipe for making it was kept a special secret and was lost. In the 19th century aventurine glass was obtained at the St. Petersburg Institute of Technology. Glass imitation of aventurine is now widely used in jewelry. It is obtained by adding copper and iron oxides (red-brown “aventurine”), chromium oxides (green), and cobalt oxides (blue) to the molten glass mass. Blue glass can be almost black with blue or green “sparkles.” As a rule, this is sold in stores under the name “aventurine”. The technology for producing such glasses is quite complex.

Natural stones are very rare. Basically, it is an imitation of glass and plastic with chip filling. An excessive abundance of sparkles and a variety of any colors usually indicates a fake. Sometimes a natural mineral, unlike synthetics, can exhibit weak iridescence (glow, iridescence), while synthetic aventurine can simply shine very much.

Modern aventurine glass differs from natural aventurine in its lower hardness, the presence of regular trigonal or hexagonal inclusions of copper shavings, and octahedral copper crystals.

Agate – basically they are not counterfeited, but they are colored in various ways: immersed in various solutions, heated, impregnated, fired, irradiated. Here, when purchasing, we can advise you to be wary of very bright combinations of concentric stripes in agate, since, most likely, this is the result of artificial coloring.

Stone chips are also passed off as natural white or black agate. To determine whether a stone is natural, hold it in your hand – even in the heat, natural stone will heat up more slowly, glass faster, and plastic is usually already “warm” right away. Also, “stone chips”, as well as pressing and imitation, crumble if you scratch it with a needle at the hole or break off.

Amethyst, citrine, rock crystal – general characteristic of naturalness – having a hardness of 7 on the Mohs scale, they scratch glass.

Amethyst – it is also synthesized: artificial crystals differ from natural crystals in higher thermal conductivity. It can be difficult even for a sophisticated connoisseur or specialist to identify them from natural ones only by appearance, and their objective cost, naturally, is much lower. It is easy to distinguish natural amethyst from artificial one: in water, natural amethyst turns pale at the edges, as if its color is washed away by moisture.

When exposed to direct sunlight, amethyst can lose its color over time and turn into colorless or grayish rock crystal. The ability of amethyst to discolor when heated was known to jewelers several centuries ago.

The main feature of a real amethyst is natural inclusions and defects visible under a 10x magnifying glass.

Fluorite, passed off as amethyst, has a hardness of 4 and can be scratched by a knife or glass, unlike amethyst, which itself scratches glass.

Commercial amethyst is brought from Brazil and Uruguay. You can also find it in Russia – but these are mostly nondescript crystals (Yakutia, Subpolar Urals, Far East) for collectors. If they offer a beautiful crystal from the Urals that is 5 times more expensive than a South American one, then it is better to refuse the purchase.

Citrine – Citrine crystals are rare in nature. Therefore, back in the Middle Ages, imitation citrine was obtained artificially by heating amethyst crystals. In the Urals, back in the 18th century, by baking large crystals of smoky rock crystal in dough, they obtained golden citrines, which were then in fashion at the court of Catherine II. To avoid cracking, the stone was removed only after complete cooling. Smaller stones were placed in a clay pot, covered with ash and placed in a hot oven until the next day. The darker and more uniform the smoky color in the crystal, the brighter the golden color.

Purple amethyst turns yellow-orange when heated this way. Brazilian amethyst turns light yellow at a temperature of 470°C, and some types of smoky quartz acquire the color of citrine already at 200°C. Citrines obtained by annealing morions have particularly beautiful shades, are highly resistant to daylight and become discolored at temperatures of 400 – 500°C. Their color is explained by the incomplete destruction during annealing of other color centers present in the crystal, in particular amethyst and smoky.

Artificially colored crystals differ from real citrines in being slightly more durable and less bright; almost all burnt citrines have a reddish tint. Natural ones, as already mentioned, are predominantly painted in a pale yellow color.

Natural lemon-yellow citrine often exhibits dichroism, which its artificial counterpart lacks.

Dichroism is a property of some crystals, which manifests itself in the fact that they change color depending on the direction of light incident on them.

Rhinestone – natural rock crystal back in the 17th century. was almost completely replaced by a skillful imitation – crystal glass. It is brewed from especially pure quartz sand, crushed fragments of quartz crystals or the purest quartz glass with the addition of lead oxide and other components. Quartz glass does not have a crystalline structure, but it retains the transparency, luster and other qualities of quartz.

Unlike glass, quartz freely transmits ultraviolet rays, the antiseptic effect of which is well known. In ancient times, the Tibetans, passing a sunbeam through crystal balls, irradiated the wounds of warriors.

Rock crystal is not only pure and transparent, like spring water, but also cold to the touch. However, if you take a crystal and a piece of glass in your hand, you can immediately determine where the stone is. Crystal remains cold, but glass conducts heat and immediately heats up.

Jewelers and archaeologists, in order to verify the authenticity of rock crystal, apply it to the cheek: if a feeling of coolness appears, then you can be sure that it is a real stone and not a glass imitation.

A technology has been developed to imitate products made from rock crystal to look like emerald, ruby, aquamarine and other gems by placing a heated crystal (products made from it) in a cold solution of the corresponding dye, which, as a result of micro-cracking of quartz, penetrates into it and changes color.

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