Gemstones are beautiful, popular and enhance a wide variety of wardrobe choices. Ranging from budget accessible to very pricey, celebrities can be seen sporting emerald and sapphire engagement rings, stunning rubies and a rainbow of other colours. Before you invest in a piece of gemstone jewellery, there are a few things you should consider.

Buying a gemstone differs from buying a diamond. For one thing, the colour of the gemstone is far more important. Gemstones are rated primarily on their brilliance and clarity of colour. The shine of a gemstone enhances the depth of its colour, so it is important to carefully examine the hue of the piece you want to buy. Many gemstones come in a variety of hues, so “emerald green” can actually mean three different shades. If you are unfamiliar with the variety, asking a jeweller for expertise can help you determine which shade is right for you.

Gemstones are usually not as “clear” as diamonds can be. This is because gemstones naturally contain more imperfections and imprints than diamonds do; it is part of what makes gemstones so unique and alluring. Therefore, if you look at a gemstone the same as you might evaluate a diamond, you could be passing up beautiful, quality pieces that are naturally “flawed.”

Find out if the stone you are purchasing is enhanced. Many gemstones are subjected to a scientific procedure designed to enhance the colour and beauty of the stone. This does not mean the stone isn’t genuine. But it could mean you need to care for this piece differently than you might a piece that had not been enhanced. Knowing these important facets of gemstones will ensure you get the piece you want and the enjoyment out of it you are expecting.