You can perfectly find health stones in a lithotherapy shop. But it is also possible for you to choose a faster and easier solution: the online solution. But even with this practicality, this solution can have risks and in particular the risk of being swindled. So how can you avoid this unfortunate incident?
CHECK THE STONES TO BUY CAREFULLY
You have to start by finding a specialized site that sells semi-precious and precious stones online like Minerals Kingdom for instance. Once you have found this site and the stone you need, don’t hesitate to go directly to the point of sale of the shop and don’t be satisfied with what you see on your screen. Once you have the stone in your hand, you should start by taking a good look at the colors of the stone, and see if it has a nice color or not. Be aware that 50% of the value of a precious or semi-precious stone is determined by its colour. Moreover, this colour should never be too light or too dark. It must be balanced and harmonious. But know that there is no such thing as a perfectly colored stone, because the ideal color of a stone depends on the taste of the person who wants to buy it. Then look at the weight of the stone of your choice. For gemstones, the total carat weight does not necessarily determine their value. In this way, the value of a stone is not always proportional to its weight even though the dimensions of a gemstone are very important in assessing its value. In this way, the value of a gemstone does not always increase in proportion to its weight. Also, the value of a stone is also dictated by its rarity on the market even if the stone in question does not weigh much. In addition, it is also recommended that you check the purity of the stone. A beautiful stone should be very clear and bright. Nevertheless, you should know that fine and precious stones (apart from diamonds) are grouped into three categories in which the purity corresponds to the type of the stone. In the first category, the gems must be totally transparent to the naked eye at 15 cm. This first category includes fine stones such as Topaz, Amethysts and Aquamarine. Stones belonging to the second category, on the other hand, may have some visible inclusions because it is very rare to find gems in nature belonging to this category of stone without inclusions. But this is not impossible either, except that if this rare case occurs, it goes without saying that its price is very high. This is the case for sapphires and rubies. The purer and more transparent these gemstones are, the more their values will skyrocket. However, it is useful to know that sapphires and rubies can lose value when they tend to become opaque for a simple reason: there are sellers who sell jewellery with completely opaque sapphires or rubies at very high prices. But these stones are not always real gemstones. To avoid being scammed, you should rather choose jewellery set with transparent gemstones or fine stones. Stones belonging to the third category have well marked inclusions. An example of a stone in this category is the emerald and its famous “garden”. This gemstone always has a large number of inclusions which are not defects but give it value. However, there are emeralds that contain only small inclusions, but of course at a very high price. On the other hand, always have the reflex to check the value of a stone by looking at it in natural light. Indeed, a stone can appear differently to you according to the source of light through which you look at it. For example, if you look at a stone in artificial light that is too diffuse, such as neon, it will certainly prevent you from seeing the shards and play of light of a stone at its best. So, to appreciate a stone properly, it is recommended that you find a source of natural light and let the sun’s rays pass through it. Then, all you have to do is play with the rays, and admire your stone from different angles, in profile, on top, from ¾, and in every way imaginable.
HAVE KNOWLEDGE NOT TO GET RIPPED OFF
It is never useless to have some knowledge of gemmology even if you cannot claim to be an expert. Indeed, to better look at a stone (whether precious stones like ruby and sapphire or semi-precious stones like obsidian or agates) and easily detect the true and the false, it is advisable to have some notions of gemmology. By having some knowledge of gemmology, you will not be an expert, but it will help you avoid being easily swindled. If it interests you, you can then document yourself, learn how to look with a magnifying glass to discern the true from the false. With this knowledge, you can tell the difference between a Verneuil (synthetic corundum invented by Auguste Verneuil) and corundum (ruby or sapphire) just by looking at the areas of growth. It is surely useful to know that there are short training courses in gemmology granted by the National Institute of Gemmology, the Ecole des Gemmes, the BJOP with the Laboratoire Français de Gemmologie. On the other hand, if you simply want to make a discovery of stones you can register for a course.
THE CERTIFICATE OF AUTHENTICITY
It is also recommended that you ask to see the certificate of authenticity of the health stone you want to buy before making any transaction. It is useful to know that the certificate of authenticity is a guarantee that the stone is not artificial and does not come from a laboratory. By looking at this certificate, you must find the place where the stone in question was quarried. In addition, you can also find precise information about the stone such as its weight in carats, the size of the stone and its dimensions, which will be useful in case you wish to make an eventual insurance and/or expertise. All the more reason why having all this information will help you avoid problems concerning illegal trade. However, it is recommended that you make sure that the certificates presented to you comply with the international gemmological standards of the major authorities, namely the GIA or the CIBJO (International Confederation of Jewellery, Jewellery and Silverware).
COLLECT INFORMATION ON AVAILABLE STONES AND ON THE MARKET
If you are planning to buy gemstones in a foreign country, you should first get information about the different varieties of gemstones you can find there. You must be very careful when you are presented with a stone that is not usually found in the country. To find information on this area, you are advised to consult specialized sites that will surely give you information on the health stones that you can find in each country. In addition, there are documentations and books that talk about this subject and that will also give you information about the stones, their origins and their specificities. On the other hand, have a notion about the price of these stones in your home country so that you do not buy one in a foreign country with a high price. Some sellers are very good at selling gemstones at exorbitant prices to naive and ill-informed tourists. Similarly, if you are offered a gemstone at too low a price, you should also be wary because it may be a fake stone. It is always advisable to check the price offered on different stones by going to specialized sites. This will surely help you to know how to haggle over the price of a gemstone. However, it is recommended that you know the different ways to haggle for stones that differ from one country to another. For example, in North Africa, you are advised to leave without concluding a sale so that the seller can catch up with you to resume negotiations. But in Brazil, it is more beneficial to spend time building a relationship with the trader. Another example, in Sri Lanka it is advisable to simulate anger so that the seller will offer you a reasonable price in the end. But in all countries, in general, when the seller offers you a price and it is possible to haggle, offer a very low price to start the negotiation and then raise the offer by taking your time.