Structure : Monoclinic
Hardness : 7
Specific Gravity : 3.18
Refractive index : 1.66 - 1.6
Doubly Refracting (bi-refraction) : 0.015
With fashion always in the mood to think pink, Kunzite is a fashion favorite. Affordable and available in large sizes, this icy pink to lilac gem is a perfect complement to all the pastels in your wardrobe and also stunning against black.
Surprisingly Kunzite was discovered in the United States, early in the twentieth century. Even the name has American roots: it is pink gem variety of the mineral spodumene. The name is in tribute to George Kunz, the legendary gem scholar and gemologist, who, at the turn of the century, was a gem buyer for Tiffany & Co. Kunz, the author of The Curious Lore of Precious Stones, searched the globe for new varieties and new deposits of gemstones, during which he learned of the old stories and legends about gems.
Kunzite was first found in Connecticut, USA. But the first commercially significant deposit was discovered in 1902 in the Pala region of California, where Morganite beryl was also first discovered. The name was a brilliant marketing move: the miners named the gem after its most likely customer; Kunz. Morganite was named for the customer, J.P. Morgan.
Today, most kunzite is mined in Brazil, Afghanistan, and Madagascar. Kunzite is often found in association with Morganite and pink tourmaline, the other popular pink gemstones.
The largest faceted kunzite is an 880-specimen on display at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington D.C. Although kunzite found in most jewelry is smaller, kunzite shows the best color in larger sizes. Stones should be at least ten carats to be really in the pink.
Kunzite is relatively hard, with a hardness of seven just like quartz. However, Kunzite should be handled with care because, like diamond, it has a distinct cleavage. A sharp blow, if it lands in the wrong place, can break it in two. Kunzite should also be protected from heat as well as continued exposure to strong light which may gradually fade the color. Clean with mild dish soap: use a toothbrush to scrub behind the stone where dust can collect.
Purchasing Pink Kunzite From Gem Resources:
Faceted parcels of Pink Kunzite are available at $12.00 per carat, in 500 and 1000 carat parcel increments only. Please contact us if you have any interest in the material. Quantity discounts are available for orders over 1500 carats of this material. These parcels feature a variety of different shapes, but mainly come in Portuguese style ovals, emeralds, and other non standard calibrated sizes. Stones range from 5 carats to 40 carats plus. Pictures of parcels are available upon request. Material takes 10 to 15 days to be processed. Payment is required prior to receiving merchandise. There is a 10 day inspection period on this material.