Stones by zodiac signs

What is zircon in jewelry?

Zircon is not a highly sought after stone in jewelery circles, but it is the most important gemstone available today. Unfortunately, many people now mistakenly confuse natural zircon stone with an artificial diamond simulator, cubic zirconium. Of course, they are completely different since cubic zirconia is a synthetic material that was created in a laboratory, while zircon is a natural gemstone with a completely different chemical composition. However, before the use of diamond simulants such as cubic zirconia and moissanite, white zircon was actually one of the most popular diamond substitutes due to its high dispersion and refractive index and was often sold under the deceptive trade name “Matura diamond”. Zircon is also extremely dense and has a very high birefringence index. Natural Zircon stone occurs in a wide range of colors, of which white or colorless is probably the least valuable or important. The most popular today is blue zircon, usually found with green pleochroism. Blue zircon is produced by heating the more commonly found brown zircon. However, only some brown minerals that have the appropriate physical structure turn blue when heated. These are typically stones found in Southeast Asia, so most blue zircons come from Cambodia or Burma. Blue zircon is one of the traditional December birthstones. The natural stone zircon is a very important mineral for jewelers. In fact, zircon led to the emergence of such a direction in science – “zirconology”. Natural zircon mineral considered to be the oldest gemstone on earth. Some specimens found on the continent of Australia are about 4,5 billion years old. Elements such as uranium and thorium were found in zircon samples; these minerals have their own half-life. Thanks to these elements, a significant change in the chemical properties of zircon occurred. Natural Zircon stone is usually classified into the form of opaque or translucent and transparent mineral. Opaque ones (especially bright green ones) have a higher content of rare earth minerals. Therefore, green zircon is very rare in the modern gemstone world and is quite in demand. ☘Zircon stone color range Natural zircon, which has no impurities, is completely colorless or white, only the presence of trace impurities gives it a wide range of interesting colors, including yellow, orange, red, green, blue, purple, brown and combinations in between. Zircons, Having colors ranging from yellow-brown to orange and red and colorless are the most common. Blue zircon is the most popular, but its color is obtained by heating brown zircon. Due to pleochroism, blue zircon can appear greenish when viewed from certain angles. Medium dark, clear blue stones have the highest value. Accordingly, the green zircon mineral is extremely rare and usually very expensive. ☘Transparency and shine Ordinary zircons without impurities have a transparent structure. In turn, impurities in zircon stone give it a variety of colors. There are stones with a “cat’s eye” effect. Some crystals contain radioactive elements. Over time, radioactivity destroys the crystalline structure, so that such stones tend to have an almost amorphous structure with a slightly lower luster than the crystalline form. Specimens of green zircon are rare and highly prized by gem collectors. When polished, zircon acquires a glassy shine. ☘Zircon cut The high birefringence of zircon allows the use of appropriate cuts. A colorless zircon stone is usually cut into diamond shapes. And for multi-colored minerals, a mixed form of cutting is used. (mostly stepped for the lower part and emerald for the upper). Stones with less transparency are cut into cabochons. The most popular shapes are also used: ovals, pears, octagons (emeralds), etc. ☘Processing of natural zircon stone. Many minerals may not be completely processed. Some brown minerals, mainly found in Asia, are heated to produce a colorless and blue zircons. These shades are not stable as UV exposure can cause color loss or change over time. Natural pink or pink-orange zircons are found mainly in Tanzania and bright orange or orange-brown zircons are mined in Cambodia. ☘Properties of zircon

  • Crystal structure: tetragonal
  • Chemical formula: ZrSiO4
  • Refractive index: on average from 1,810 to 2,024
  • Density: average from 3,93 to 4,73
  • Color: clear, blue, yellow, red, brown, purple, orange, green
  • Transparency: translucent, transparent, opaque
  • Hardness: average 6,5 and up to 7,5 on the Mohs scale
  • Luster: bright diamond
  • Birefringence: 0,002 to 0,059
  • Similar gems

Precious stone Zircon belongs to a large group of minerals that contain both silicon and oxygen. This group includes beryl, garnet, andalusite, kyanite, olivine (peridot), tanzanite, topaz, tourmaline and quartz. Zircon is also a major source mineral of zirconium, a shiny white-gray metal that closely resembles titanium. But zircon is a natural substitute for diamond, not a laboratory simulant. The colorless natural zircon stone was very popular as a substitute for natural precious diamond, and was sold under the same name “Matura diamond”. Just like sapphire or tourmaline, natural zircon stone is often sold with a color name.

Zircon is a natural stone, its properties and who it suits according to their zodiac sign.

Natural zircon stone is considered official for those born in December. This gemstone became famous back in ancient times. The name “zircon” is anciently translated as the color gold from ancient Persian. The Hindu lyras wrote about the “kalpa-vriksha tree,” a beautiful gift from the gods, which was a luminous tree, covered with fruits made of many precious stones and with leaves made of beautiful and unique zircon.

The ancients believed that zircon treated insomnia, brought wealth and prosperity, and encouraged the honor and knowledge of its owner. Natural Zircon stone is associated with the planet Pluto. They say that zircon helps with varicose veins, diseases of the heart, liver, stomach, etc.

Zircon stone in jewelry

Natural stone Zircon quite fragile and therefore sensitive to pressure and shock. However, it has good hardness and durability. Mostly the natural zircon mineral is small in size due to their dense nature, but sometimes large stones are found that are good for making pendants and brooches. Blue zircons are used for zircon rings or zircon earrings, while colorless zircon stone is mainly used for bridal jewelry as a substitute for diamonds. Thanks to its universal color range, zircon jewelry is considered ideal for men and women.

Natural zircon stone is the densest in the world of precious stones. Therefore, it will be significantly smaller than any other gemstone of the same weight. It is on average 50% denser than precious diamond.

How to Clean Zircon Gemstones

How to clean gemstones? Natural zircon stone It is very durable due to its high density, but at the same time it is brittle, which can cause fractures and chips, especially along the edges of the facet, and therefore requires special care when cutting, cleaning or wearing. Avoid steam or ultrasonic cleaners when cleaning zircon gemstones and jewelry, especially stones that have been discolored. Avoid using chemicals, bleach and acid. You can clean the stones using a soft cloth or brush and mild soap or detergent if necessary. Don’t forget to rinse the stones thoroughly at the end, using warm or room water to remove any soapy residue.

Zircon is a zirconium silicate mineral with the chemical composition ZrSiO4. It is distributed throughout the world as a minor constituent of igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks.

Zircon is a popular gemstone which has been in use for almost 2000 years. It comes in a wide range of colors and has a brilliance and fire that rivals diamonds. Colorless zircon is sometimes used as a cheap alternative to diamond. Zircon should not be confused with cubic zirconia, which is a man-made material.
Zircon is present in most soils and clastic sediments. Zircon-rich sediments are mined and the recovered zircon is used to produce zirconium and zirconia. They are used in a wide variety of industrial products and industrial processes.
Zircon has been used as a gemstone for over 2000 years. Its very high dispersion and refractive index give it a sparkle and fire that rivals diamonds. For this reason, colorless cut zircon was often used as a fake diamond.
Gemologists and many knowledgeable jewelers can tell the difference between a zircon and a diamond fairly quickly. To do this, they look into the stone through the facet of the table and focus on the pavilion boundary transitions with a 10x loupe. The pavilion divisions should be double images caused by the double refraction of the zircon. A diamond is refracted once and will not show doubling features within the stone. The same test can be used to distinguish zircon from cubic zirconia.
Zircon is a popular stone because it can be purchased in a variety of pleasing colors. Most natural zircons are yellow, red or brown. Heating and irradiation can be used to produce colorless, blue, green and many other colors of zircon. Blue is the most popular zircon color that can be purchased. About 80% of zircons sold today are blue. You can also buy a ring with zircon, earrings with zircon and other jewelry in stores, where, often, zircon will be presented in a blue shade.
Although it is not as strong as diamond, zircon has good physical strength as a gemstone. It has a hardness of 7.5 and imperfect cleavage, which allows this gemstone to be used in the manufacture of jewelry such as rings, earrings, pendants, brooches and other jewelry. Some zircons, especially heat-treated gemstones, can be brittle. The borders of these gemstones are susceptible to cracks and chips. Buy zircon stone It is possible in online jewelry stores, but also in stores specializing in the sale of stones and minerals. In our jewelry online store you can buy zircon stone, as well as jewelry with zircons

In many jewelry stores you can find products with inexpensive but very beautiful stones. On the tag for the product, the inserts are often designated as “zircon”, and less often as “cubic zirconia”. Based on the experience of our communication with connoisseurs of beauty, many do not see any problem in this, considering both cubic zirconia and zircon to be different names for the same mineral. And this, friends, is a very common misconception even among professionals.

In this article we will tell you why zircon and cubic zirconia are the names of completely different stones, and you will understand why calling cubic zirconia zircon is tantamount to misleading the buyer, even if this is done out of ignorance.

But first, let’s write about the main difference between zircons and cubic zirconia: zircon is a rather rare (and relatively expensive) natural gem. Cubic zirconia is an inexpensive synthetic (artificial) stone.

Chemical composition and physical properties

Zircon zirconium silicate. It is a natural semi-precious mineral with the chemical formula Zr[SiO4]. The stone can be colorless or have a color that depends on the presence of impurities in its composition – copper, iron, titanium, zinc. The most beautiful and valuable specimens of jewelry quality are considered to be golden-yellow stones – jargons, and rare red ones – hyacinths; blue, green and black zircons are also found.

Zircon crystals have a bright, diamond-like luster, which is why they are often used as imitation diamonds in jewelry. It is noteworthy that the bright green large minerals contain radioactive components and can be a rather dangerous source of radiation.

Cubic zirconia is zirconium dioxide – ZrO2, also called cubic zirconium. This is an artificially grown mineral. More about this below. At first glance, cubic zirconia differs little from faceted zircon. But the refractive index of cubic zirconia is much higher. The color palette of the stone is limitless (the color can be different and depends on the additives introduced). And due to the similarity of optical properties with precious stones, cubic zirconia is often used as an imitation of diamonds and many semi-precious stones. Abroad, you can often find jewelry with stones that are described as Diamond CZ, Ruby CZ or Sapphire CZ. These are the designations for cubic zirconia in most countries.

Zircon is of volcanic origin and is mined from igneous rocks. Zircon deposits are rare. The largest of them are in Norway. Gem-quality minerals are mined in East Asia – in Thailand, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, and Madagascar, which is why zircon is often called Siamese diamond. Zircon can be found in smaller quantities in Brazil, the USA, Canada and Australia. Russian deposits are concentrated in the Urals and Yakutia.

Cubic zirconia is a synthetic crystal developed in the early 70s of the last century at the Physical Institute of the Academy of Sciences. Lebedev (FIAN). The development was led by a Soviet scientist, a specialist in the field of solid state physics and laser materials, later a professor, academician of the USSR Academy of Sciences and then the Russian Academy of Sciences – Vyacheslav Vasilyevich Osiko. Thanks to the abbreviation FIAN, cubic zirconia got its name.

Despite the fact that currently there are many technologies for producing cubic zirconia of different quality, the best crystals are still produced according to the one developed at the Lebedev Physical Institute.

Cubic zirconia is known under different names: cubic zirconium, brilliantianite, brilliantine, jevalite, zirconite, diamonesque, daimonic, dialite, diamanite, diamon.

Application

Cubic zirconia is most often used in inexpensive jewelry as an imitation diamond. Cubic zirconia is quite hard and has good optical characteristics, and thanks to the ability to paint crystals in almost any color, jewelry with this stone is very beautiful and is in great demand. In addition, due to its similarity to diamond, cubic zirconia is used in radio engineering, medicine, optics, and metalworking.

Zircons are now almost never used in mass jewelry production, since crystals of suitable quality are very rare, and they are also fragile and easily scratched. They were long ago replaced by cubic zirconia from the jewelry market. Zircon crystals are mainly used as a source of hafnium, uranium and zirconium. Based on this mineral, fire-resistant materials are produced: brick, enamels, paints.

Cubic zirconias are inexpensive – in most cases they cost a few hryvnia per stone. Swarovski crystals with the laser inscription “SWAROVSKI ZIRCONIA” are priced a little more expensive – up to several hundred hryvnia per stone.

Currently, cubic zirconia is a beautiful and inexpensive insert in jewelry. Jewelry with cubic zirconia can be worn individually or as part of a set. Stones are used in both men’s and women’s jewelry.

The most expensive – the highest quality blue zircons – cost from $180 to $400 per carat. Green and red – from $150 to $280 per carat. Brown zircons – from $80 to $150 per carat. Other colors typically cost between $70 and $140 per carat.

The greatest success of zircons came in the Middle Ages, when they firmly occupied second place in popularity after pearls. In those days, red and red-purple stones, which were called hyacinths, were especially valued. Nowadays, jewelry connoisseurs have lost interest in zircon, preferring other precious stones.

We hope that from now on you will be firmly confident in what stone adorns the product – cubic zirconia or zircon.

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