Orange Gemstones: Complete Guide
Looking online or in jewelry stores will provide you with plenty of inspiration for your next piece of jewelry. While there is always a range in options, when it comes to gemstones, you are probably used to seeing the main, popular stones: diamonds, red rubies, gorgeous blue sapphires, perhaps a green emerald. And these are wonderful gemstones! But do you want something different? A less popular option are orange gemstone!
While orange is a favorite color for many people, there are certainly fewer options when it comes to jewelry. But does that mean there are no options? Of course not! In fact, there are several orange gemstones that you can choose from should you want to find a unique, bold gemstone for your next jewelry piece.
S o- let’s talk about options! Here is your complete guide to orange gemstones.
A Complete List of Orange Gemstones
Surprisingly, there are numerous orange gemstones you can choose from. While some you have likely never heard of, others you will find are an orange variety of a gemstone you are already familiar with (such as the orange sapphire).
✓ Orange Sapphire
Starting off with the mentioned sapphire, there is an orange variety of the well-known sapphire. There is a fairly wide range in color with this type of sapphire – so whether you want a deeper, bolder orange, or a more muted or yellow-ish hue, you can find it with a sapphire!
Most will be treated to enhance the color, something that is very common in the jewelry industry. Best of all, you know you are getting a quality gemstone because sapphire is one of the four precious gemstones.
✓ Spessartite Garnet
This gemstone is a varietal of the garnet. Traces of manganese in the gemstone is what gives it more of an orange hue as opposed to the typical deep red color.
The amount of manganese will determine if the gemstone is more of a yellow-orange or deeper in color, even looking almost brown in some cases, or just red-orange in color, which we find to be incredibly beautiful.
✓ Mexican Opal
Also known as the fire opal, this is the perfect gemstone if you want a very bold, orange gemstone. Fire opals are known for their intense color, although you can also find ones that are more of a yellow-orange hue.
It is also interesting to note that Mexican opals do not have the same characteristics as standard opals – they do not have that same ‘play of color’ that you typically associate with opals. The majority of these opals are found in Mexico which is why they have been given the name of the Mexican opal.
✓ Orange Zircon
Zircon is a lesser-known gemstone to begin with, especially orange-hued zircon. However, it is a wonderful gemstone that features a lot of similar qualities to diamonds- including wonderful brilliance and fire, ensuring it will have a lot of sparkle.
This is a great option if you do want a dazzling gemstone and a unique color. Orange zircon can range from true orange, to deeper red-orange hues. They are also much more affordable than diamonds, making them a great alternative diamond option to consider!
✓ Orange Spinel
Spinel, in appearance, it has similar brilliance to other gemstones like sapphires and rubies. They come in a variety of colors, including orange, and in fact, orange is one of the most popular colors of spinel!
In addition to its excellent brilliance and fire, it also has really great durability (it scores an 8 out of 10 on the Mohs hardness scale) making it a great choice for a long-lasting piece of jewelry.
✓ Imperial Topaz
Topaz comes in a variety of colors, and for orange colored gems, they get the special name of imperial topaz. Orange is actually the rarest color of topaz and therefore the most valuable. In terms of color, you have a lot of variety!
Some imperial topaz will be more yellow-orange, some true orange, some will have more of a pinkish hue, and on either end of the spectrum, you can find some that are more of a bright yellow color or more of a brown hue.
✓ Orange Tourmaline
Tourmaline is a fairly popular gemstone due to its wide color availability. You can find it in just about every color, including shades of orange! While orange is less common, it is an option. You can find tourmaline that ranges from true orange, to a lighter peach shade, or even a slightly pinker, almost champagne color.
In addition to all the color options, tourmaline is a great gemstone option because it has good durability and hardness as well as great transparency and luster. Oh, and it’s affordable! You can’t beat that.
Sunstone is a very rare gemstone that we are guessing you have never heard of. It is very rare and in fact only found in Oregon in the United States. In terms of its appearance, it has more of an opaque or milky quality, and has what people describe as a ‘glow from within.’
This glow can actually be attributed to inclusions in the gemstone that contain either goethite or hematite. In fact, if the light hits it properly, some people say that sunstone will look like it is glowing like it is on fire. Very cool!
If you want a colored gemstone that is very affordable, citrine is a great option. Citrine is actually a variety of quartz, a very abundant and affordable gemstone. It gets its name from the French word for lemon, largely because most citrines have a more golden appearance, as opposed to a true orange hue.
If you want a lighter orange gemstone, citrine is a great option. There are some darker-hued citrines, but they are known for their lighter, more golden colors.
✓ Orange Agate
If you want something truly unique, orange agate is the choice for you! They are actually banded forms of quartz, meaning you will find all sorts of unique banded designs that make every piece of orange agate unique and beautiful. Some are transparent, and some are opaque!
You will also find a lot of variety in terms of color, with shades ranging from bold orange, to more brownish hues, to amber tones.
Finally, amber is certainly a great option because it is not actually technically a gemstone, but is fossilized tree resin! There are a few sources of tree resin that fall into the category of gemstones even though they are not. Amber ranges in color from more of a golden shade to a deeper brown shade. This is not a great option if you want a bright orange gemstone, and is better if you want something a bit more muted.
Most amber has at least some inclusions which actually improves the overall look of it. Do keep in mind that amber is very fragile and only scores a 2 on the Mohs hardness scale, so you will not find often amber jewelry. If you do decide to go with amber, you will have to take very special care of it so that it does not scratch or break.
If orange is your favorite color, or if you are just in search of something different, you are in luck! There are plenty of gorgeous orange gemstone options out there to choose from. From sparkling stones like orange zircon or orange spinel, to more opaque gemstones like sunstone or orange agate, there really is something for everyone.
What is your favorite color of gemstone? Do you like something bold like orange gemstones (did the fire opal really catch your eye?) or do you prefer something more classic like a sapphire or a classic diamond? Let us know!