natural spinel

Spinel gemstones meaning. Black, blue, red, pink, green, white, yellow, purple, grey color.

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The stone is the magnesium aluminium member of the larger group of minerals. It has the formula MgAl2O4 in the cubic crystal system. Its name comes from Latin “spina”. Balas ruby is also an old name for a rose-tinted variety.

Spinel properties

The stones crystallizes in the isometric system. Common crystal forms are octahedra, usually twinned. It has an imperfect octahedral cleavage and also a conchoidal fracture. Its hardness is 8, its specific gravity is 3.5 to 4.1. While it is transparent to opaque with a vitreous to dull luster.

It may be colorless. But is usually various shades of pink, aso rose, red, blue, green, yellow, brown, black, or violet. There is a unique natural white color. Now lost, that surfaced briefly in what is now Sri Lanka.

The transparent red stones were called balas rubies. In the past, before the arrival of modern science, spinels gem and rubies were equally known as rubies. After the 18th century, we use the word ruby, for the red variety of mineral corundum only. And finally, understood the difference between the two gemstones.


It has long been found in the gemstone-bearing gravel of Sri Lanka. And also in limestones of the Badakshan Province in modern-day Afghanistan, Alqo Tajikistan and of Mogok in Burma. Recently gem quality stones also found in the marbles of Luc Yen, Vietnam.

Mahenge and Matombo, Tanzania. Another Tsavo, Kenya and in the gravels of Tunduru, Tanzania. And furthermore Ilakaka, Madagascar. Spinel is a metamorphic mineral. And also as a primary mineral in rare mafic igneous rocks. In these igneous rocks, the magmas are relatively deficient in alkalis relative to aluminium.

And aluminium oxide may form as the mineral corundum. It can also may combine with magnesia to form crystals. This is why we often found it with ruby together. There is a debate about the stone petrogenesis in mafic magmatic rocks. But certainly results from mafic magma interaction with more evolved magma or rock.

Spinel meaning

The following section is pseudo scientific and based on cultural beliefs.

An excellent support for those recovering from trauma or illness as it reduces fatigue and replenishes depleted energy levels. It assists the body with detoxification and encourages elimination on both physical and energetic levels.

Pink spinel rough from Mogok, Myanmar

Red Spinel in marble from Mogok, Myanmar


Are spinel stones valuable?

It occurs in a wide range of colors, including red, pink, orange, yellow, green, blue, gray and black. Star are known, but are extremely rare. Certain colors are more valuable, especially reds and strong pinks. Top gemstone in the 2 to 5 carat size will often sell for $3,000 to $5,000 a carat.

Is spinel a precious stone?

There are only 4 precious stones : Diamond, ruby, sapphire and emeralds. It is therefore a semi precious gemstone.

What mineral is spinel?

It is mineral composed of magnesium aluminum oxide (MgAl2O4) or any member of a group of rock-forming minerals, all of which are metal oxides with the general composition AB2O4, in which a may be magnesium, iron, zinc, manganese, or nickel; B may be aluminum, chromium, or iron; and O is oxygen.

How is spinel formed?

Almost all the gemstones have been formed by contact metamorphic activity associated with intrusions of molten rock Masses into impure limestones or dolomites. Stones of non gem quality occur in certain aluminum-rich basic igneous rocks, as well as in deposits that arise from the metamorphic alteration of these rocks.

What is the rarest spinel?

Blue color is a very special gemstone because it is one of the few that occur naturally. While all are increasing in popularity, it is the blue variety that is starting to attract attention of savvy gemstone buyers

How can you tell fake spinel ?

The proper way to analyze whether the stone is real is to put it under a UV radiation light. Set it to long wave and look for any stones that are particularly glowy. If the stones are glowy, that means it’s synthetic and not natural.

What month is spinel birthstone?

The gemstone is one of the august alternative birthstones. Often assumed to be other gemstones because it tends to resemble either a ruby or sapphire. In fact, some of the most famous rubies in history have turned out to be spinel gemstones.

Natural spinel for sale in our gem shop

We make custom made spinel jewelry as engagement rings, necklaces, stud earrings, bracelets, pendants… Please contact us for a quote.