Is sapphire expensive? Sapphires are one the most desirable precious stones on the market. Like all gemstones, you can expect to pay a good deal of money for the stone itself, let alone a piece of jewelry.
However, in the grand scheme of gemstone pricing, it may leave you asking “Is sapphire Expensive?” Let’s find out by explaining a few things.
Is Sapphire Expensive?
Sapphires, comprised of the mineral corundum, are dense and durable. While known for their regal blue color, sapphires range in color from red, orange, yellow, pink, and blue-black! (Red sapphires are rubies!
Sapphires were formed deep in the earth under fire and pressure and born to the surface via magma. While sapphires are mined from many sources around the world the method of retrieving them from weathered lava, sedimentary rock layers, and deposits are expensive and it is rare to find large specimens.
You can buy decent Sapphires cheaply or quality Sapphires in the thousands or even millions! To understand why this is so, you have to consider the source and “4Cs”: color, clarity, carat, and cut.
The “4Cs” are gemstone standards created by the industry revered Gemological Institute of America or GIA. The nonprofit educates, researches, and certifies gemstones.
‘4Cs’ determines the intrinsic value of gems by measuring the color, clarity, carat weight (1 carat =0.2 grams), and cut (the number of facets and shape-such as cushion, pear, baguette, emerald cuts).
“Source” is another important factor in the pricing of sapphires. Man-made sapphires come from the lab and while real, they command less than natural sapphires. Heat-treated color-enhanced sapphires are also less expensive than non-heat treated.
Also, rare colored sapphires coming from Australia, Sri Lanka, Madagascar, and the Kashmiri regions of India and Pakistan command high prices, as well. Clarity, meaning few to little impurities also increases the value of the gems and clear medium to dark blue sapphires a highly prized.
How Expensive is Sapphire?
Sapphires typically cut in oval, round, or cushion cut, vary greatly in price per carat weight from $450 to over $11,000 to as much as over $100,000! Quality and source are responsible for such disparity in pricing.
This means that larger stones of decent quality can be had for accessible prices, around $2,000 for a 3 carat stone and somewhat better quality but smaller stones at 1 carat may cost the same. Fine quality natural gems will be several times as much but not prohibitively expensive.
Are Sapphires More Expensive than Diamonds?
You might be surprised to hear that sapphires are actually less expensive than diamonds in most cases rather than more expensive. Ironically, the biggest price difference is between the sapphire that mimics Diamonds the most, the white sapphire.
Both stones are relatively clear, although white sapphires have less shine, diamonds are typically 5 times more expensive. Other colors of sapphire are still quite affordable in comparison to Diamonds.
Sapphires are actually rarer than Diamonds, the market for which is oversaturated, making their steep prices more synthetic than natural. So the next time you’re looking for a stone that maintains durability, style and doesn’t break the bank, try sapphires.
Which Color Sapphire is the Most Expensive?
Which color of sapphire is the most expensive is debatable. Pure blue sapphires, such as the Blue Belle of Asia, which sold for 17,305,996, are considered the most expensive and valuable sapphires.
However, colors like the Padparadscha sapphire, showcasing a unique blend of pink and orange or salmon hue can be priced similar to the most expensive Emeralds and Rubies. Affectionately called the “Lotus” sapphire, Padparadscha is extremely rare, and expensive, and comes as a close second to the most expensive color of sapphire.
Why is Sapphire so Expensive?
Sapphire is one of the most desirable gems on the market. As previously discussed, the rarity of certain colors and carat sizes makes their price skyrocket, as does the saturation of the color, especially for the deep blue shade.
Clarity and cut also play a big role in sapphire’s pricing, since its’ various shades must have clean-cut facets that do not take away from the color and enhance brilliance and color that isn’t cloudy. Overall, sapphires are durable and rare in general to find, inevitably making them very expensive.
Is Blue Sapphire Expensive?
Blue Sapphires are one of the most expensive options available. Specifically speaking, the shades “blue velvet,” which is a medium to the dark tone and a violet-blue, can run into the millions.
In order for blue sapphires to meet the top-quality standards, they should have clarity and a piercing color.
In addition, blue sapphires that are more than 3 carats are not only rare but also visually impactful. However, such blue sapphires are incredibly rare, making them in demand and consequently very expensive. Blue sapphires typically start in the low $10,000’s up to $3,000,000.
As you can see, there is a fair bit of price variance, so you definitely can get a blue sapphire at a relatively inexpensive price. However, you might not be getting the best option unless you’re willing to pay more.
Is White Sapphire Expensive?
White sapphires are actually significantly less expensive than most other sapphires! They are often used as a cheaper alternative to Diamonds and have become popular in engagement rings. White sapphires give off a silvery grey shade and are still quite rare.
Since they are less in demand than their more colorful counterparts, you can not only get a white sapphire for a cheaper price, but you can also get a larger stone.
Depending on the carat size, white sapphires can run from $400 to $200,000. If you’re simply looking for any kind of sapphire, choosing this clear and crisp stone is a good start.
How Much Does a Real Sapphire Cost?
Real sapphires can vary in price due to several factors, going from their hue and origin, all the way to their status when it pertains to the 4 C’s, cut, color, clarity, and carat.
Some sapphires can be $400 per carat, while others can be $11,000 per carat. Standard blue sapphires typically going to range from $450 to $1,600, depending on the quality of the gem.
When referring to a “real sapphire,” it’s important to note that this means the stone isn’t crafted in a laboratory. Sapphires created in labs are undoubtedly less expensive per carat as opposed to naturally developed sapphires.
Pure blue sapphires, often referred to as “blue velvet,” often found in Kashmir sapphires and are the most sought after and thus, the most expensive. However, if you’re looking for a larger sapphire, one that’s more than 3 carats, expect to spend upwards of anywhere from $5,000 to $80,000.
Furthermore, sapphires from the Indian Himalayan Region and as previously stated, Kashmir, are very expensive, since they come from caves that are hard to access.
Which is More Expensive – Ruby or Sapphire?
Ruby is a red variety of corundum and must have enough chromium to be a distinctly red, or slightly purplish-red color. Rubies also have a hardness rating of 9, making them incredibly durable.
It’s because of these qualities that rubies are one of the most elusive and expensive precious stones. Just one carat can go for $1,00,000, whereas most sapphires start at $450 per carat.
Of course, the price for either stone can vary depending on the 4C’s, but undoubtedly, rubies that are medium to high quality will always outprice sapphires.
Are Sapphire Rings Expensive?
In general, sapphire rings can actually be affordable in terms of having jewelry containing a precious stone. Blue sapphire rings can range from the low $200’s to the $500,000’s.
Sapphire rings are still expensive to the everyday buyer, but compared to diamonds, emeralds, or rubies, it is a luxury stone that still gives off a brilliant presence while remaining semi-affordable.
Of course, the cost of a sapphire ring depends on the quality and the color. By far, blue sapphires are the most common and most valuable in rings, but sapphires such as Padparadscha can go for over $2,000,000.
Pure blue sapphires can still range in the millions. However, the stone’s range of colors that are still within a reasonable price offers a wide variety of selections for any buyer.
As years go by, they are becoming a popular choice for engagement rings given their relative accessibility, not to mention their symbolic history of faithfulness and sincerity.
So is sapphire expensive? It really depends on the overall quality and/or variation of the stone.
Sapphires are a great option and in some ways are a better crystal than other precious gemstones available. Prices vary greatly and depending on what you want in color, size, and grade, you’re more likely to end up with the best fitting sapphire for you if the necessary research is done beforehand.