Tanzanite is known for the exquisite combination of purple and blue hues, one of the loveliest of gems that was discovered in modern times. Tanzanite,discovered in Tanzania in 1967 and introduced to the world in 1968, is mined as a greenish yellowish brownish crystalline material that resembles Andalusite. Tanzanite is basically the Blue variety of "Zoisite", and mined in Tanzania just below the base of majestic Mount Kilamanjaro. Zoisite was originally used in lamp shades and other ornamental art carved items. Tiffany's acquired rights to the trade name "Tanzanite". Tanzanite is sensitive to sudden temperature changes that may cause cracking, the fracture is uneven and brittle, and a jeweler's torch could fuse the gem, so it may be prudent to ask a Jeweler to remove the stone before applying his torch. Tanzanite is easily attacked by hydrochloric and hydrofluoric acid.
Tanzanite has been adopted as a December birthstone by the American Gem Trade Association and shares its last-month-of-the-year membership with turquoise and zircon. It's affordability and distinctive beauty have earned this gem a status that rivals Kashmir Blue Sapphire. Tanzanite can be cut to emphasize its blue or violet color component, so it can resemble the finest royal-blue sapphire or hint at amethyst purple. This color versatility has endeared this member of the Zoisite family to leading jewelry designers in America, Europe and Japan. Tanzanite has became a staple gem, and now that supplies show no sign of letting up, it was deemed as worthy of membership on the birthstone list as aquamarine and sapphire, the birthstones for March and September. Even though all the major industry associations agreed that the public would respond positively to a dynamic new birthstone choice for December, amending the birthstone list is like amending the Constitution. There must be compelling reason and wide support. The last time the birthstone list was revised was 1912, when jewelry industry leaders met to give gems discovered since the formulation of the traditional list a shot at birthstone status. Alexandrite made the 1912 list, and now that Tanzanite has been given birthstone status it shows the degree to which this gem is revered by the trade and public alike. Top Gem Tanzanite is very beautiful and looks great in jewelry. If you are considering Tanzanite, we stock the finest gems available in AAA and AAA+ Top Gem colors of rich deep Intense blue/blue-violet.
TREATMENTS - Virtually every Tanzanite is heated to permanently change its color from it's orange-brown state to the spectacular violet-blue color for which this precious gemstone variety is known. Moderate heat (750o-950o F) is applied to get the color you see today ranging from light blue/blue-violet (very inexpensive) to AAA+ Top Gem colors of rich deep Intense blue/blue-violet. The typical heat treatment process is a permanent process that does not adversely affect the performance and durability of the gemstone, so there's no need to worry when you see this enhancement disclosed.
CARE - Tanzanite should never be cleaned in an ultrasonic or steam cleaner, since this cleaning method can
cause irreparable damage to the stone. We strongly recommend Ionic Cleaners and/or warm, soapy water and a soft brush as the best way to clean Tanzanite jewelry. Since Tanzanite is of the softer variety of gems, like emerald, we recommend it be handled as though it is was as soft as opal. Also, if mounted on a Ring, since rings are susceptible to knocks and abrasion, we recommend mounting in a bezel or protected with heavy prongs as much as possible.