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Goshenite is a member of one of the most illustrious mineral families and the white version of stones such as emeralds, morganite and aquamarine which are all beryls as well.
Sometimes called the ‘mother of gemstones’, goshenite’s colorless or white appearance makes it a good choice for engagement rings and works even as a diamond substitute.
This little-known gemstone is easily available and affordable, and one that should be in everybody’s gemstone collection.
Here’s what you need to know before you buy goshenite.
What is Goshenite?
Sometimes called white beryl, goshenite is the colorless variety of beryl that is found without any trace elements. It’s mined from a number of regions around the world, with notable locations including the USA, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Ireland and Madagascar.
The stone is named after the town of Goshen in Massachusetts where it was first identified, but as mentioned, it isn’t limited to just this locality.
Goshenite is considered one of the purest of gemstones, as it contains no inclusions or other elements that color it. It’s always found in colorless, white or off-white varieties. It’s very similar to other white or colorless gemstones like Herkimer diamond, white topaz, zircon and quartz.
If you’re wondering if goshenite makes for a good diamond substitute, the answer is yes as it’s beautiful in appearance and durable. However, it doesn’t have the brilliance, fire or scintillation that diamonds are known for and as such, you may easily be able to tell that the stone isn’t a diamond.
This is a transparent gemstone, with most specimens appearing eye-clean with no visible inclusions. It can sometimes be cloudy or even opaque, but these varieties aren’t often used in jewelry making.
Clear goshenite pieces are very beautiful and make for gorgeous jewelry designs. Check your goshenite stone carefully prior to purchase to ensure that there aren’t any unsightly inclusions present within the stone.
A fun fact – goshenite was used to create lenses for the first eyeglasses due to its clarity and transparency in the early 13th century in Italy. At the time, goshenite crystals were clearer than glass.
Just like any other beryl, goshenite too can be cut into any popular gemstone shape. It’s commonly faceted into brilliant cuts to emphasise its light performance and to give it depth. A well-cut goshenite can appear brilliant with good light performance.
Sometimes goshenite is cut en cabochon to highlight its luster and color. Cabochon cuts are especially popular on white goshenite stones, which are milky in appearance.
In addition, rough goshenite gemstones are sometimes used as is without cutting or polishing, especially in hippie and bohemian style jewelry designs.
While goshenite is a beautiful stone in its own right, its value as a gemstone is quite low. It’s not a mainstream stone nor is it in much demand compared to other beryls like emerald and morganite. For example, you can buy a 1.65 carat goshenite as seen in this ring for just over $100 but a similar morganite ring might cost about $400.
This is partly due to the fact that goshenite lacks the color and uniqueness of other types of beryls which are known for their specific colors and beauty (e.g. aquamarine is blue, morganite is salmon and emerald is green). Having said that, it’s important to note that high-quality goshenite can sometimes command high prices.
Goshenite Treatments and Enhancements
Goshenite is not known to be treated or enhanced as it’s an inexpensive and abundantly found gemstone. However, it can sometimes be treated to give it vibrant colors like blue, green, purple and pink via irradiation.
When purchasing goshenite, always ask the retailer whether the stone has been treated in any way. The retailer should disclose this information to you.
Goshenite vs. Diamond
Diamonds remain the number one choice for engagement rings and jewelry in general, but it’s also an expensive gemstone and can leave a big hole in your wallet. Goshenite makes an excellent diamond alternative as it’s durable and affordable and unlike cubic zirconia, goshenite is a natural gemstone in its own right.
For those who know about it, goshenite is becoming a popular option for couples choosing diamond alternatives. To the untrained eye, it can be difficult to tell the two gemstones apart.
However, the main differences between the two is in relation to its brilliance and hardness. Diamonds are known for their excellent light performance whereas goshenite is still brilliant, especially if well-cut, but this brilliance doesn’t match that of diamonds.
With regular maintenance to keep dirt and grime build-up off the surface of the stone, goshenite can remain sparkling and almost diamond-like for a very long time.
Goshenite in Jewelry
Because of its wearability, goshenite can be used in any type of jewelry such as pendants, earrings, bracelets and rings. Because of its neutral color, goshenite pairs well with other gemstones and all types of metal colors,
However, one of the biggest problems when shopping for goshenite jewelry is the lack of options available. Unlike most other gemstones, there are few goshenite jewelry designs available on the market, which limits your choices.
Goshenite Engagement Ring
A goshenite engagement ring is a good idea as the stone can be worn on a daily basis, much like morganite engagement rings. Also, because the color is neutral like a diamond, goshenite matches any skin tone and suits any outfit color or style.
As goshenite can be cut into any suitable gemstone shape, you have many options in designing your own goshenite engagement ring. Pair goshenite with other gemstones for a more vibrant and colorful look. You can also opt to have a halo of diamond melees surrounding your goshenite as that will add to its brilliance.
While goshenite engagement rings don’t require specific protective ring settings, a halo or bezel setting will add an extra buffer of protection and keep it from getting scratched or knocked.
How To Take Care Of Goshenite
The stone ranks an 8 on the Mohs scale of hardness, which is reasonably hard and excellent for daily wear. Unlike emeralds, which are often fracture-filled and full of inclusions, goshenite is tougher as gem quality stones don’t have their crystal structure compromised by the presence of inclusions that could weaken the stone.
Dirty goshenite with grime on the surface will appear oily and cloudy. It’s best to clean the stone at regular intervals to ensure that it remains sparkling. Simply use a mild soap and warm water along with a soft cloth or soft toothbrush to clean it. Always rinse thoroughly and store carefully. Avoid using an ultrasonic cleaner to clean goshenite as the intense vibrations of the machine can cause damage to the stone.
Store goshenite jewelry away from harder gemstones and objects, like diamonds or sapphires as these can scratch goshenite. Conversely, store it away from softer stones as goshenite is quite hard and can scratch softer items.
Meaning and Symbolism of Goshenite
Goshenite is an ancient gemstone and has been used for centuries for various reasons. While it was primarily used as a gemstone, it also had other uses such as being made into spectacle lenses, which may be why it’s believed to be helpful in assisting poor eyesight.
Goshenite is believed to be a strength-giving stone, aiding you when you feel tired or fatigued. Many think that goshenite can help with clarity of mind and truth. It helps the user to enter a balanced state of mind and to connect the mental with the physical. Some also believe that goshenite brings good luck, fortune and energy.
Because of its transparency, goshenite is sometimes used as a crystal ball.
*Disclaimer: Jewelry Shopping Guide does not guarantee or validate any of the claims related to the metaphysical and alternative healing powers of this or any other gemstone. This information should in no way be used as a substitute for medical advice.
Where to Buy Goshenite Jewelry
As mentioned before, goshenite jewelry is hard to come by simply because the options are limited. This makes it a rare gemstone in jewelry making. Perhaps the best way to get the exact piece you’re after is to have it commissioned.
If you are looking to buy a ready-made piece of goshenite jewelry, you probably won’t find any at the local brick and mortar store. We suggest taking your search online onto platforms like Etsy and Amazon, where you have a range to choose from.
Etsy boutiques are known for their high-quality, artisan, hand-made items and excellent customer care. Always keep open communication with the retailer and check their policies carefully. Amazon also has a collection of goshenite jewelry in a variety of price ranges.