Myths and legends

What is the difference between garnet and ruby?

Red gemstones in jewelry symbolize vitality, passion and leadership qualities. They are chosen by spectacular women and confident men. Red stones are worn in rings, earrings, pendants, bracelets and cufflinks to sparkle and stand out. Both garnet and ruby ​​are beautiful gemstones, each with their own unique characteristics and features. The choice between them depends on taste preferences, budget and type of product. Unfortunately, many still do not know what rubies look like and how to distinguish them from garnets, how to identify a natural stone and a fake. Comparing the characteristics of two such similar jewelry will help you understand this.

What is more expensive: garnet or ruby ​​and why

Ruby and garnet occupy a special place in the jewelry wardrobes of fashionistas: comparing these stones in terms of beauty and cost does not allow us to clearly choose just one of them. Natural ruby ​​is much more expensive than garnet, since it is one of the rarest gems. Ruby prices can reach tens of thousands of dollars per carat for the highest quality specimens. Stones with inclusions are cheaper, but still belong to the top category in jewelry. That is why earrings or a ring with a ruby ​​are a luxurious gift for any occasion for loved ones. Pomegranate is found much more often in nature. And although it costs less than a ruby, natural garnets cannot be cheap. The price of garnet ranges from a few dollars to several thousand dollars per carat depending on the type, quality and size. Jewelers use them mainly in rings, earrings, bracelets and pendants. Since there are different types of garnets, craftsmen can experiment with the design and visual appearance of the products.

Ruby stone

Ruby is one of the hardest gemstones (9 on the Mohs scale, as opposed to 6,5-7,5 for garnet). This is a type of corundum, one of the most expensive jewels, highly prized for its rarity and beauty. The main deposits of rubies are concentrated in Myanmar (Burma), Sri Lanka, Thailand, Madagascar and Tanzania. Valuable rubies have a rich red color (“pigeon’s blood”) and a minimal number of inclusions. For a ruby, not only color is important, but also purity. Most often they are perfectly transparent like crystals. When exposed to ultraviolet light, rubies glow red or orange. If you run it across topaz or crystal, it will leave a noticeable mark. These stones are used in various fields. While many people know what a ruby ​​looks like in earrings or pendants, not everyone is familiar with their role in the industrial production of armor, quantum electronics and watches. Thus, they are used not only in jewelry.

pomegranate stone

Garnet is a group of minerals that share a similar crystal structure and chemical composition. They are found throughout the world and are therefore not considered rare. The largest deposits are concentrated in Australia, Brazil, Russia, the Czech Republic, Sri Lanka, Madagascar, the USA and India. Garnet often contains inclusions in the form of needles or threads. This is a fairly hard stone that can scratch glass, but it cannot cope with topaz. Because it is a relatively affordable stone, a garnet ring is a piece of jewelry that can be found in almost every jewelry box. Garnets are often marketed as a more affordable alternative to rubies.

Garnet and ruby: what is the difference

Due to their similar red color, garnet and ruby ​​are gemstones that are often confused with each other. In India, for example, rubies were considered the “leader of gems” and were called the stone of the sun. In modern jewelry, the best natural rubies are valued above diamonds. However, this does not mean that garnets are classified as jewelry. In addition, determining the authenticity and quality of a stone at home is not always easy. Only a gemologist knows how to determine whether a garnet stone is natural or artificial.


Both of these stones can be a classic red color, but they can also have shades. Few people know that rubies with shades of blue, purple and even pink are found in nature. Garnet can also be not only red, but also orange, yellow, green, brown, pink, purple, black. The color should be uniform and rich, without cloudy inclusions or extraneous colors. They are usually diamond cut or cabochon cut.

Physical and chemical properties

Ruby is a gemstone, a variety of corundum, colored red due to an admixture of chromium. Most often clean and free of inclusions. The chemical composition of ruby ​​is aluminum oxide with an admixture of chromium. Ruby is not magnetized. One of the most attractive gemstones is natural garnet: the properties of the stone provide high density and a beautiful natural pattern. There are practically no perfectly clean stones. In terms of chemical composition, it is a silicate with various metals (iron, magnesium, calcium, chromium, manganese). Garnet is a poor conductor of heat. If you hold the stone to your cheek for a few seconds, it will remain cold. If you do a magnet test, stones, unlike rubies, will be attracted.

Mystical properties

Garnet is considered a stone that ignites the fire of love and passion, strengthening fidelity and friendship. It has healing properties, helping with diseases of the blood, heart, gastrointestinal tract, and skin diseases. Each variety of pomegranate is believed to protect against evil and negative energy. Red garnet symbolizes vitality, energy, resilience and determination. Rubies symbolize royalty, luxury and wealth, and are associated with strength, leadership, wisdom and justice. This stone is chosen by those who want to get rid of insomnia and depression, suffer from diseases of the blood, heart, and immune system. Ruby is considered a stone of love, passion, leadership. That is why a ring with a ruby ​​will protect from danger and bring good luck, stimulate creativity and inspiration. Planet Earth contains a whole treasure of minerals, as well as countless unique and beautiful minerals. Thanks to tectonic processes, they are formed over more than one million years. Some of them do not bring any benefit and are not even of any interest to the jewelry industry. But some are considered very expensive gems and belong to the group of precious stones. Some of these crystals are ruby, also known as yahont in ancient times, and garnet. Minerals are very similar to each other. But lovers of jewelry often have a question: “What is more expensive in value: a ruby ​​or a garnet, and how to distinguish between them?”. Let’s try to understand this issue.

What makes up the cost

The final cost of any natural mineral always consists of several indicators:

  • shade purity;
  • ideal brilliance;
  • the presence of inclusions: cracks, air or gas bubbles, scratches, cavities;
  • the size;
  • cut quality;
  • transparency.

If we consider specifically the ruby ​​and garnet, then everything is not so simple here either. Of course, bright red rubies with perfect transparency, perfect brilliance and excellent cut are one of the rarest and most valuable stones and, accordingly, very expensive. Sometimes the cost of such gems can even compete with the cost of diamonds, which, as you know, are considered the most valuable stones at all.

What about garnet and ruby? The fact is that both stones have their own value in the jewelry field. Of course, garnet is considered a simpler mineral. Ruby belongs to the precious stones of the first order. Its mining, production and use are controlled by law, as are diamond, sapphire, emerald and alexandrite.

If we take two minerals that are absolutely identical in their qualitative characteristics, then the garnet will, of course, lose in this “race”. Ruby is more expensive in all respects.

But there are other situations. For example, yahont has not the best characteristics: dim shine, cloudy shade, the presence of many blotches. Then his “rival”, which has impeccable properties, will cost more.

How to tell a garnet from a ruby

These minerals are very similar to each other in appearance. If you are not an expert in the field of jewelry, then it will be a little difficult to distinguish between stones. Not without reason, in the distant past, garnet was called by different names directly related to ruby: Californian, American, Arizona, Cape.

How to distinguish these two gems?

  1. Ruby has a weak property of dichroism. That is, under the influence of polarized light, it slightly changes its hue and this is very noticeable.
  2. Pomegranate, like a magnet, can attract thin sheets of paper or pieces of fluff if rubbed a little with a woolen cloth. His “rival” does not have such a property.

When buying any jewelry that has a stone insert, it is better to give preference to trusted jewelry stores. Be sure to ask the seller for a license, and even better – to conduct an examination of authenticity from professionals.

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