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Garnet is a highly valued gemstone. Many people know garnet as an inexpensive dull red mineral. However, garnet occurs in a rainbow of colors. The most valuable colors are green, orange, and purplish red. Good-quality garnets of that color reach $7,000 per carat price.
Color is the most important factor of garnet value. Lush green, fiery orange, and raspberry red – are the most prized colors. Clarity, cut, and carat weight is also on the list of value factors. Inclusions are crucial for garnets, too. Specific “horsetail” inclusion can increase the value of demantoid garnet.
Some garnets are hardly distinguishable from emeralds. Tsavorite and demantoid garnets have color and saturation that are comparable to the best quality emeralds.
Some red garnets can be easily placed between the best quality pigeon-blood-colored rubies. Garnet has a lot of properties to surprise you. Keep going to discover the highest prized color of garnet, the range of prices for different types, and factors of garnet value.
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Do Garnets Have Any Value
You will be surprised by a variety of garnet colors. Color is the main factor of garnet value. Some top colors can reach $7,000 per carat. For sure, it is a substantial price to prove a garnet value.
Prices for the most valuable green and orange-colored natural garnet can easily reach thousands of dollars per carat. For example, prices for demantoid (vivid green color garnet) from Russia start from $1,000 per carat. Tsavorites (yellowish-green garnets) of the best color are worth $2,000 – 7,000 per carat.
The most valuable types of garnets are the next:
- Phenomenal garnets (color change and star garnets).
Let’s discuss them in detail.
Tsavorite – is a rare green variety of grossular garnet. Eye-clean tsavorite sells for a premium in larger sizes.
Demand often exceeds supply for tsavorites over three carats that are pure green to slightly bluish-green, bright and highly saturated in color, and eye-clean.
Demantoid – is the transparent green variety of andradite. They come mostly from sources in Russia and Africa.
It was first discovered in Russia’s Ural Mountains in the mid-1800s. It immediately became popular with the Russian nobility. Pieces accented with tiny demantoid garnets became a staple of Edwardian jewelry.
Rhodolite – is the most valuable red garnet. It has a dark purplish-red to light reddish-purple hue. Its saturation is strong, with good brilliance and little extinction. Gems are often remarkably free of inclusions that might reduce clarity and brilliance.
Spessartine is the most valuable orange garnet. Large, fine-quality stones sell at a premium.
As with star corundum, tiny needles of rutile cause asterism in some garnets.
Alexandrite-like color-change garnets from Africa and Sri Lanka are strong red under one light source and green, or even blue, under another. Phenomenal garnets are rare, and a small market of collectors seek these unusual garnets to sell at a premium.
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- Smithsonian Handbooks: Rocks & Minerals
- Gemstone & Crystal Properties (Quick Study Home)
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TIP: There are more than twenty different species of garnets but only five of gem-quality worth cutting and polishing. Check them out together with a DIY guide on cutting and polishing garnets in the article below:
How To Cut & Polish Garnets: Follow The 6 Simple Steps
Why is Garnet so Expensive?
Garnet is so expensive because of the inconsistent supply of raw materials and continuing demand. Garnets occur in a range of different saturated colors. They are free from inclusions and occur in crystals large enough to face beautiful gems. Additionally, garnets are rarely treated.
Factors of garnet value
The color of garnet group representatives varies from yellow through vivid green to brownish-black. This is a stereotype that garnets are only red.
Color is the main factor that influences garnet value. Lush green, mandarin orange, and raspberry red are the most valuable colors for garnet.
Clarity also increases the garnet value. Some garnet types like almandine, pyrope, and rhodolite typically do not have eye-visible inclusions. Some of the orange garnets, like spessartine and hessonite, often have eye-visible inclusions.
Most garnets are cut into standard shapes and standard sizes to allow easy setting into jewelry.
Expensive garnets like fine-quality tsavorite and demantoid are cut into shapes and cutting styles that allow more of the weight to be retained from the rough. Garnets are also popular for designer cuts and carvings.
Garnets can be found in all sizes and weights. Some garnets, like demantoid and tsavorite, are more commonly found in small sizes, so their value goes up significantly with size.
Other garnets, like almandine, are far more common in larger sizes, so there’s no dramatic rise in value as size increases.
In fact, demantoid is one gem where the presence of certain distinctive inclusions can have a positive influence on value. Classic features of Russian demantoid are the curving, radiating bundles of fibers known as “horsetails.”
And, since horsetail inclusions can increase a demantoid’s value, cutters strive to display them. If possible, cutters center the horsetails under the table facet where they’re most visible.
TIP: The almandine garnet is the most common type of garnet that can be found in the United States. Check out the best environments and exact locations where to find garnet in the article below:
Where to Find Garnet: 4 Best Locations Near Me (United States)
How Much Does a Real Garnet Cost?
Prices for real garnets of valuable green, orange, and purple colors, range from $500 per carat for the stones with inclusions and up to $7,000 for clean larger stones of the best color. Heavily included common red garnet can be purchased for $20 for 100 grams of raw material.
Garnet Value (Price) per Different Units
Gem-quality garnets value is rarely measured by ounces, pounds, and kilos, so we are glad to describe prices of faceted garnets in carats and grams. The prices of raw materials are given in ounces, pounds, and kilos.
|per carat |
|$500 – $2,000 per carat for good color with inclusions,|
$2,000 – $7,000 per carat for the larger, clean stones with top color.
|$2,500 – $10,000 for faceted stones |
$0.2 – $1 for raw material
|$5.6 – $28|
|$90 – $453|
|$200 – $2,000|
TIP: You can see that garnet prices can vary considerably in terms of their quality and even more the specimen of garnet is fake. Check out the main differences between real and fake garnets in the article below:
Real vs. Fake Garnet: Focus on These 6 Differences
Garnet Value (Price) per Different Colors
Here is a table of garnet values for different colors. Orange, green, and purple-colored garnets are the most valuable.
|Color of garnet||Price|
|Orange/mandarin||Orange garnet (spessartine) prices range from around $300 a carat for high-quality orange-red stones to over $2,000 a carat for the top vivid orange in large sizes.|
|Green||Green garnet (tsavorite) prices range from $500 per carat for good colors with some inclusions to $2,000 to $7,000 for clean larger stones with top color. Prices for Russian demantoid start at about $1,000 per carat.|
|Pink||Fine quality stones in larger sizes sell for $300 – $400 per carat, with the very rare Pink Malaia garnets going for $1,000 to $3,000 per carat.|
|Purple-red||Purple-red garnet (rhodolite) is the least expensive of the rarer garnets, and high-quality specimens can be found for around $150 to $350 per carat.|
|Purple||Prices range from around $400 to $800 per carat, depending on size and quality.|
|Common red||Raw material can be purchased for about $10 – $40 per 100 grams.|
TIP: Do you know what determines rock color? It is quite fascinating why different rocks have different colors, find out more in the article below:
Rock Colors: What Determines Color & Why Different Colors
Garnet Value (Price) per Different Type
This table gives an overview of raw and faceted materials of different types of garnet.
|Type of garnet||Price|
|Raw garnet||$10 – 90 depending on color and quality|
|Bohemian garnet||$5 – 20 per carat|
|Rhodolite||$150 – $350 per carat.|
|Tsavorite||$500 – 7,000 per carat|
|Hessonite||$100 – 400 per carat|
|Malaya garnet||$300 – 3,000 per carat|
|Topazolite||$100 – 300 per carat|
|Spessartine||$300 – 2,000 per carat|
|Demantoid||starting from $1,000 per carat|
|Star garnet||$300 – 1,000 per carat|
|Color change garnet||from $1,000 per carat|
For a better understanding of different types of garnet, here is a short explanation of the three frequently mistaken and most complicated types:
- Raw garnet: crystal debris
- Bohemian garnet: red garnet from the Czech Republic
- Malaya garnet: pinkish-orange mixture of pyrope, almandine, and spessartine garnets
- Topazolite: pure yellow andradite garnet
FAQ About Garnet Worth
Still did not find the answer to your answers about garnet value? Find frequently asked questions in the section below:
How Much is Rough Garnet Worth?
Common red garnet of highly saturated red color worth $10 – 40 per 100 grams of crystal pieces, depending on transparency and the presence of inclusions.
Prices for raw garnet of orange color range from $50 – 90 per 100 grams, depending on the saturation of colors and prevalence of hues.
What color Garnet is Most Valuable?
The most valuable color of garnet is vivid green. The green color is represented by two varieties: tsavorite – a grossular garnet variety and demantoid – and andradite garnet variety. Other valuable colors are orange (spessartine garnet) and purplish-red (rhodolite garnet).
Garnet is not that old-fashioned dark-red stone in Grandmother’s jewelry. Today, garnet is a fancy gemstone widely used in high-end pieces of jewelry. Garnet occurs in a spectrum of colors: from yellow, orange, pink, red, green to purple, and almost black.
There are 5 crucial factors of garnet value:
- Color. The most praised colors are vivid green, golden green, orange, and purplish red.
- Clarity. Inclusion-free garnets are more expensive.
- Cut. Garnets can be faceted in a fancy design cut, which increases the value.
- Weight. Some garnets like tsavorites and demantoids are rarely bigger than 3 carats, so the price for big stones soars dramatically.
- Inclusions. It’s a special factor for demantoid garnet, where “horsetail” or firework-like inclusion increases the price.
The price for the best quality garnets spessartine (orange), tsavorites (vivid green), demantoid (golden green), and rhodolite (purplish-red) garnets starts from $1,000 per carat.
Even more, fine-quality tsavorites and demantoids rough in sizes over three carats are very rare, resulting in a wide price difference between small and large sizes of the same quality. So bigger stones’ value ranges from $2,000 up to $7,000 per carat.
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5 Best Books for Identifying Rocks & Minerals You Must Read