Lately there have been an increase in gemstones that are not actual mined stones, but are man-made or lab-created. Many of these stones are extremely popular and many collectors are shocked when they learn these stones do not come from our beautiful, Mother Earth. Prepare to dig up your crystal stash and see what you got, I am about to drop some heavy info on you.
Now, I’m not talking about fake stones being passed up as real ones, for example sellers selling you glass and calling it quartz, (I’ll be done a series on spotting bogus pieces soon), but actual crystals that have exclusively been done in a lab and said to have “healing” properties. Now, before I begin, let me apologize in advance for potentially breaking your heart on these “stones”.
Yes, goldstone is not an actual gemstone.*GASP*. Relax, and take a breather. This extremely popular stone has been around since the 17th century (and possible even before, depending on whom you ask). How is it made? Well, depending on who’s recipe you follow, some make it out of glass, others make it out of ground up quartz and a few other chemicals. Once the quartz, or glass, is melted, copper salts are added. Copper salts are those tiny little beautiful specks that remind us of stars. All this is cooled and then shaped. How do they get the different colors? Add more chemical elements, of course. Add Cobalt for blue, Manganese for Purple and Chromium Oxide for green. Goldstone has often been called a stone of ambition and believed to offer protection. Some even believe that this stone is a programmable stone (this means you can set your stone with a particular intention), but I personally belief comes from it’s main ingredient of melted quartz.
Opalite is the trademark name for synthetic opalised glass. This is a bit of a tricky one for many since many retailers try to sell you Opalite as a real deal gemstone by calling it a variety of names, such as:
Opalite is simply glass that has a rainbow milky-finish. Often when it is held up to a white background will give off sort of a soft Amber glow. Too frequently, less than reputable sellers will often try to pass it off as genuine moonstone. A quick way to know the difference is moonstone will often have small flaws and a beautiful blue or rainbow sheen, while opalite is often flawless with the occasional scratches on the surface from processing.
Now, just to make this a bit more complicated, there is a true gemstone called opalite and that refers to an impure, common form of colored opal. I promise you, it is a far cry from the Opalite that your local vendor has.
Many believe that man-made Opalite in an ideal piece for meditation, including helping remove blockages from chakras and offering assistance during life transitions. For me, this all depends on the user.
So What is Obsidian? According to the Crystal Bible: “Obsidian is molten lava that cooled so quickly it had no time to crystallize.” The short answer: Obsidian is Volcanic Glass. Most commonly it is black and sometimes, you can acquire some with a rainbow sheen, a golden sheen, white or brown specks, but all dark in their appearance. The man-mad stuff I am referring to is the bright colored fakes that are going around, even in some reputable crystal shops are starting to carry them. I’ve seen Blue Obsidian, Cherry Obsidian, Fire Obsidian, Purple Obsidian, they are all like transparent skittles. These are lab-created, my friends. How can they get away with it, you ask? Well, Obsidian is glass, and what they are selling you is also glass, not naturally created of course, but glass none the less. It’s like a tiny stretch of the truth according to many.
What Does it All Mean to You?
For me, knowledge is power. The more you know, the more you are able to make an informed decision and not get ripped off by uneducated sellers. Do these “stones” still carry some sort of healing property? That is up to you to decide. If Opalite feels soothing and good to you, who cares what it’s made out of, it makes you feel good, what’s the harm in that? Many do consider glass to hold metaphysical properties, and yet there are others who don’t feel the same. Do what resonates with you. Don’t use this as a short list of “must avoids” but as tiny drop of knowledge in your crystal bucket when you are making a choice on your next piece to pick up.
Be on the look out f, next week for Part 2 of “Fakes”.
Love and Light,