Topaz is an almost ideal gemstone. It comes in a wide range of lovely colors, is durable enough for just about all jewelry items, is readily available and, in most cases, very reasonably priced.
On top of this, Topaz happens to be one of the most beautiful gemstones around with an illustrious history and a reputation for its spiritual strength.
Although Topaz can be found in many colors, it is the blues that are the most popular, with London Blue, Swiss Blue and Sky Blue the most famous names in Topaz.
The rarest, and therefore most expensive, topaz ranges in color from golden yellow to pink-orange and is known as Imperial Topaz and can reach very high prices.
The most commonly found colors are pale yellow, gold, orange, pink and colorless.
Topaz can also appear to change color as it is viewed from different angles in a phenomenon known as pleochroism.
Read more about gemstones colors here
Topaz is an allochromatic gemstone, which means that its color is the result of impurities or defects in its crystal structure rather than by the presence of an element like iron or chromium and is quite unusual.
While topaz gemstones are all very similar in crystal structure and makeup they are often separated into varieties according to color and treatments.
- Imperial Topaz - a peachy pink variety which is the most valuable topaz
- Swiss Blue - a popular light blue topaz which is the result of irradiation treatment
- London Blue - another blue variety, this time a deep, navy blue
- Mystic Topaz - a striking pink stone with a titanium coating
As with nearly all gemstones it is the color that will most affect the price of Topaz.
Imperial Topaz is the most valued of all topaz and should adhere to strict boundaries where color is concerned. Imperial Topaz is a peachy-pink gemstone with some light orange or champagne tones but look out as anyone can use the name Imperial as there is no official standard.
Blue topaz is one of the most popular gemstones in the world as jewelers like the uniform color, availability and generally inexpensive price.
If we ignore Imperial Topaz for a moment, topaz can be found in very large carat weights in nature. The blue and white versions are often treated and cut to size most suitable for jewelry making so calibrated gemstones are relatively plentiful and inexpensive.
Swiss Blue gemstones under 5 carats in weight will be around $6 - $20 per carat while London Blue can be a little more expensive at $7 - $30 per carat. Blue topaz larger than 5 carats can be more expensive per carat but still very reasonable.
Imperial Topaz is a different kettle of fish altogether with gemstones fetching anything from $500 to $1500 per carat for good quality examples.
Most blue topaz has been treated, usually by irradiation, and this is generally an accepted practice in order to supply the world markets.
Mystic and Azotic Topaz are enhanced with special thin coatings to create their vivid colors.
The golden orange/pinkish imperial topaz is overall an all-natural untreated gemstone.
All treatments are clearly and fully disclosed on our product pages.
Where are Topaz found?
The largest producer of topaz gemstones by far is Brazil while Sri Lanka, southern Africa and south east Asia are also sources. The traditional mines that first produced Imperial Topaz are in Russia but they are rarely found there these days.
Birthstones and Anniversaries
Yellow or orange Topaz is a birthstone of November and would make a great gift for anyone who has a birthday in that month. Blue Topaz can be used as an alternative birthstone for December.
Blue topaz is the gem for the 4th wedding anniversary and Imperial topaz is the stone for the 23rd wedding anniversary.