How to Tell if Aventurine is Real or Fake in 5 Easy Ways
The name aventurine is used for such a rock which is transparent to translucent and exhibits attractive colors. As a beginner hoping to access the vast universe of energies that a real Aventurine contains, use this guide to learn if an Aventurine is Real or Fake.
Although Aventurine is usually classified as a quartz variety, it is not a mineral in the strict sense of the term. It is a quartzite rock that contains other minerals besides quartz grains, usually mica minerals, which give it a metallic luminescence.
While Aventurine is relatively inexpensive, it can be compositionally obscure. Since there is no clarity on what precisely an aventurine is, any shiny glass can be sold as one.
Can Aventurine Go in Water? Is Aventurine Water Safe? Read here.
How can Aventurine be faked, and what to look out for?
Aventurine can be faked in many ways, we have collected the most popular ways. You can look out for fakes by checking for the below methods.
Check for Dyed Aventurine
Aventurine and translucent quartz without aventurescence are often dyed to give them vibrant coloration for use in inexpensive jewelry.
While Aventurine is a type of quartzite, calling any dyed variety of quartz “aventurine” can be inappropriate and is a standard marketing gimmick used for its greater appeal in the marketplace compared to terms like “translucent quartz” or other appropriate names.
Look for Aventurescent Glass
The name “aventurine” had its origins in the 1600s when Italian glassmakers blended tiny particles of copper unexpectedly into a batch of molten glass to create sparkly glass that they named Aventura, meaning ‘by chance in English.
Due to its aesthetic appeal, this accidental glass became a quick hit among jewelry makers and carvers, and the glass-making technique became a mainstream practice.
Such glass continues to be sold in the market as ‘aventurescent glass,’ which is not the same as naturally occurring aventurine mineral. Be sure to know that your Aventurine is not glass by checking for the physical properties described below.
The most popular variety of aventurescent glass is goldstone. Goldstone is an artificial aventurine simulant produced by mixing fine metal particles into molten transparent glass.
Goldstone has a much stronger aventurescence than most varieties of naturally occurring Aventurine. The glass used for the base can generally be clear, green, blue, purple, or other colors, giving variously colored crystals.
Goldstone is easy to identify and differentiate by how it behaves under a light source because the metal particles within the glass are strong reflectors of light, almost like craft glitter, made of flakes of plastic.
Identify Blue Aventurines
Some advertisers offer ‘blue’ Aventurine even though there isn’t any such naturally occurring variety.
Blue Aventurine is often sold in big pieces of rough, which appear blue all the way through. Thus the dealer can claim the color is natural.
Agates from specific locations are porous and absorb the color throughout, and the center of an Agate geode is often sold as Aventurine. This is wildly inaccurate, for ‘aventurine’ is a name applied exclusively to gems with flakes of another color, which gives minerals suspended.
The most common natural aventurines are a green variety with inclusions of fuchsite mica and a rarer purple aventurine, gem-quality lepidolite (although the color on this one fades over time).
What is being peddled as blue Aventurine is not Aventurine because it has none of the tell-tale features we describe below.
The blue color of the so-called “aventurine” is due to the cobalt content of the stone. It is pretty to look at, and the coloration is relatively permanent.
But the stones being offered do not represent some exotic find—instead, they are natural blue chalcedony, mainly from Virginia, United States.
How to Tell if an Aventurine is Real or Fake?
1. Check for Hardness
Aventurine shares most of the properties of quartz. Most excellent quality Aventurine will therefore have a hardness of 7 on the Mohs scale.
The hardness of any given Aventurine rock can vary depending on the size and amount of inclusions present since most mineral inclusions associated with Aventurine all have a hardness lower than 7.
The presence of too many inclusions tends to weaken the material’s overall atomic strength, resulting in a lower hardness.
Most commercially viable Aventurine will have a hardness range of about 6.5-7.
- You can test this by scratching your stone against a piece of glass or with a knife. Real Aventurine is hard enough to withstand scratching by a knife with no effect on its surface. It will also scratch glass.
- Common imitation materials like glass or plastic will not leave a scratch on glass and will also be scratched easily by a knife.
Many of the typical aventurine inclusions have higher specific gravity than quartz. When inclusions such as hematite, ilmenite, and goethite are abundantly present, it can give Aventurine a specific gravity that is higher than quartz’s typical specific gravity of about 2.6. You can also ask your jeweler to conduct a gravity test to ensure that your stone is genuine.
2. Look for Inclusions
An inclusion, in simple terms, is any material that gets trapped inside another mineral at the time of crystallization. The size and kind of inclusions visible with the naked eye or under magnification tell a lot about the origin and formation and can therefore be used to describe apart fake stones.
Flakes and plates of Fuschite: The most common inclusion in Aventurine is a green chromium-rich mica called fuchsite. Even a tiny proportion of fuchsite by volume lends the stone its distinct green color.
Some specimens of Aventurine contain nearly ten to twenty percent fuchsite. Such a large amount can cause problems.
If the fuchsite flakes are in standard orientation, they impart cleavages to the material, causing it to splinter quickly along the zones where the fuchsite is concentrated. When the mineral grains are coarse, they tend to form pits at locations where they intersect the polished surface.
- Flakes of lepidolite mica lend it a pink, red, or purple color.
- Hematite and goethite impurities can produce pink, orange, red, and brown Aventurine.
- Muscovite and ilmenite produce gray, yellowish, or silvery Aventurine.
Suggested Reading: Muscovite Meaning: Healing Properties, Benefits and Uses
3. Look for Aventurescence
Aventurine is translucent quartz or quartzite with abundant small plate-like or flake-shaped inclusions. When light enters the crystal, it strikes these inclusions and reflects from them with differing degrees of diffusion, resulting in a sparkly appearance known as ‘aventurescence’.
This phenomenon results in a glittering appearance under the surface of the stone. The inclusions also impart a distinct and often beautiful color to the material.
If the mica particles in an aventurine are small, you will observe a smooth and lustrous finish on the surface of your stone. Coarse mica particles tend to pluck out, giving the polished stones a pitted, sometimes hollowed-out appearance.
The presence of such inclusions as oxides of aluminum, cerium, and tin produces a bright-colored polish on the surface of the Aventurine under the light.
If your Aventurine looks evenly colored with no shiny specks of color, hold it out in your palm against a source of diffuse light and observe the way light reflects on the surface. Dyes are often surface deep and are easily visible to the naked eye in sunlight.
4. Observe Crystal Structure and Cleavages
Aventurine has a hexagonal crystal structure and conchoidal cleavage. This means that its planes of breakage are shell-like. Sometimes Agate may be sold as blue Aventurine.
One way to identify an Agate is that it is a cryptocrystalline quartz crystal, meaning it may occur with ingrown quartz crystal and a fibrous crystal structure. A real aventurine does not have a fibrous structure.
5. Inquire for places of Origin
Ask where your Aventurine comes from. India is the most significant commercial producer of Aventurine, followed by Brazil. Green aventurine, the most popular kind, comes from India, and new varieties of patterning and shades of color continue to be reported from the country.
American variants of Aventurine are likely to be Aventurescent glass or dyed quartz. Some other places of origin are Russia, Spain, Austria, and Tanzania. Crystals from these areas are tiny in size and popular material for making tumbled stones.
Do you want to know How to tell if Green Aventurine is Real or Fake in 5 Easy Ways? Read here.
Real Aventurine crystals, often tumbled and polished into cabochons, have a long history of use in jewelry and alternative medicinal practices for their healing capacity.
Buying an aventurescent glass also means a remoteness to the calming energies that the natural stone is known to have. Many imitations are equally beautiful, and if you tend to gravitate towards a piece like that, you can enjoy them just as much, if not more, contingent on the intentions you set for yourself and the rock.
Knowing the origins of a rock enables us to establish better, more deliberate relationships with it while also making sure that we negotiate a reasonable price.