The Ultimate Emerald Guide

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Everything you need to know about emeralds

Unlock the timeless allure and hidden secrets of emeralds with our Ultimate Emerald Guide – your gateway to the world of this enchanting green gemstone!

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The Ultimate Guide to Emeralds

Emeralds are renowned for their vibrant green appearance, a color born from a unique blend of natural elements and occurrences. There’s a reason why emeralds are cherished worldwide—their mesmerizing green hue. Often, the intensity of green found in our finest emeralds is unparalleled by any other natural phenomenon.

This inspired us to create our Ultimate Emerald Guide, aimed at providing our valued customers with an informative and comprehensive reference. From their formation to selecting the perfect emerald for your jewelry, My Jewelry Repair invites you to embark on a learning journey. Enhance your emerald knowledge and make more informed purchases with our expertly crafted guide.

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What Features Should We Look for in an Emerald?

Did you know that emeralds are 20 times rarer than diamonds?

Sometimes, emeralds can command higher prices than diamonds. Their prices can vary widely, but beyond cost and value, the special feeling an emerald gives you when worn is priceless.

When discussing the anatomy of an emerald, it is essential to consider the four C’s:


  • The cut of an emerald highlights its unique features. Due to their brittle nature, emeralds require extra care during the cutting process.
  • A quality cut minimizes natural fractures and protects the gem from damage and wear.
  • The most common cut is the “emerald cut,” a rectangular, stepped cut that maximizes color and saturation.
  • A well-cut emerald makes a striking statement whenever worn.


  • All-natural gemstones have inclusions, visible “flaws” resulting from materials trapped during formation.
  • Compared to other gemstones, emeralds tend to have more inclusions. An “eye-clean” emerald, with no visible inclusions to the naked eye, is especially valuable.
  • Inclusions in emeralds often appear mossy, known as “jardin” (French for “garden”), which many connoisseurs seek for their lush, textural beauty.


  • Gemstone size varies in weight and density. Note that size is generally measured in diameter (millimeters), not carats.
  • Emeralds are typically valued more for their color than their size, as well as their cut and clarity.
  • Most emeralds weigh less than 1.5 carats, with larger stones being rarer.


  • Color is often the most crucial aspect of a gemstone, especially for emeralds.
  • The signature green color of emeralds can vary in saturation and intensity. Emeralds with a brilliant, bluish-green or pure-green hue are the rarest and most desirable, and they are also the most expensive.

Each of these metrics, along with others, combine to determine the value of an emerald, influencing its price and desirability.

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Natural vs. Lab-Created Emeralds

Let’s discuss an important trend in the jewelry industry: lab-created gemstones.

A lab-created emerald is classified as a real emerald but not a natural one. These synthetic emeralds are among the most expensive synthetic gems due to the sophisticated equipment and slow, meticulous process required for their creation. Despite their similar appearance and composition to natural emeralds, lab-created emeralds are not as valuable because they lack the rarity and unique natural inclusions that give natural emeralds their distinct beauty and high value.

Lab-created emeralds offer a more affordable and ethical option for those who desire the beauty of an emerald without the higher price tag or the environmental and social issues sometimes associated with gemstone mining. Understanding the differences between natural and lab-created emeralds allows you to make an informed decision that aligns with your values and preferences.

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The History of Emeralds

What’s in an Emerald?

Emeralds, a variant of the mineral beryl, range from bluish-green to pure green. Beryl also forms morganite and aquamarine. If a gemstone’s color leans more towards yellow or blue, it’s likely another variety of beryl, not an emerald. The verdant hue of emeralds comes from trace elements of chromium, vanadium, and iron.

Image Showcasing Restored Gold Ring with Multiple Emerald Gemstones

Emeralds are the most valuable stones in the beryl group and are one of the four precious gemstones alongside diamonds, rubies, and sapphires. They are relatively rare, found in select locations worldwide, including Canada, Colombia, Madagascar, Russia, and Zambia.

The most desirable emeralds range from bluish-green to pure green. Unlike other gemstones available in different colors, emeralds are always green. Most natural emeralds have imperfections visible to the naked eye, distinguishing them from lab-created or synthetic versions.

Emeralds are 20 times rarer than diamonds, making them much more expensive.

The name “emerald” comes from the Old French word “esmeralde,” derived from the Greek word ‘smaragdos,’ meaning ‘green stone.’ Emeralds are also the modern birthstone for May.

These beautiful green gemstones symbolize good fortune, luck, growth, renewal, peace, balance, well-being, and hope. In ancient times, the Greek philosopher Aristotle claimed that wearing emeralds prevented epilepsy. They were also believed to fend off danger and protect against unfaithful lovers, known as the stone of fidelity. In some cultures, emeralds are even used in powdered form in traditional medicines.

Emeralds have a hardness of 7.5 – 8 on the Mohs scale, making them the softest and most fragile of the precious gemstones. Although this hardness is decent for jewelry, the many inclusions and fractures often found in emeralds can weaken the stone, making it brittle and prone to breakage. Extra care is needed for emeralds set in rings or bracelets, which endure more wear and tear.

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If you or someone you know was born in May, consider purchasing an emerald piece as a gift. Whether you’re drawn to the gemstone’s magical properties or simply its beautiful color, gifting an emerald ensures an unforgettable present.

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Picking the Perfect Emerald for Your Jewelry

Emeralds come in all shapes and sizes, literally. When choosing the perfect emerald for your jewelry, remember that you have many options. The characteristics of the jewelry might even reflect your personality and should certainly impact your decision.

Consider the following:

  • What type of jewelry are you adding an emerald to – a ring, bracelet, pendant, necklace, or earrings?
  • What kind of metal is the jewelry composed of?
  • What cut will look best in the jewelry setting?
  • Will the emerald be featured alone or will it have side stones accompanying it?

Each of these questions will help you select the perfect emerald for your setting and better visualize the look you’re trying to achieve.

Image Showcasing Silver Diamond Ring with Unique Emerald Center Stone Settings
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Caring for Your Emeralds

Emeralds face direct contact and natural wear and tear, especially when worn regularly. Everyday or casual use can attract grease to the emerald’s surface, resulting in a loss of sparkle and shine. Even the touch of your fingers can cause an emerald to lose its brilliance.

Properly cleaning and caring for emerald jewelry is crucial. Maintaining the sparkle and brilliance of your emerald is a simple task and can be done with warm water, a soft-bristled brush, and common dish soap.

  • Regular Cleaning: Clean and polish your emerald jewelry once or twice a week. Soak your jewelry in a mild degreasing solution—warm water with a few drops of dish-washing liquid works well.
  • Gentle Brushing: After soaking, use a soft brush (a soft-bristle toothbrush is ideal) to gently remove any remaining dirt and oil. Pay special attention to the underside of the emerald where dirt and oil can accumulate.
  • Rinsing: Rinse your emerald jewelry with clean water. Pro tip: block the drain if you’re cleaning your jewelry over a sink to avoid losing any pieces.
  • Drying: Dry your emerald jewelry with a soft, lint-free cloth.

Avoid using toothpaste or strong cleaning agents on emeralds, as these can be too harsh and contain abrasive elements that may damage precious metals and gemstones.

To give your emeralds the best care possible, have your emerald jewelry cleaned, polished, and inspected by a professional every six months.

My Jewelry Repair is your go-to source for semi-annual cleaning, polishing, and inspection services. Our service not only provides professional cleaning but also inspects the mounting to ensure the metal is in good condition and checks the security of your stones. Keep your emeralds and all your jewelry looking like new with our service, starting at $39.99.

Visit our Emerald Replacement page for more information or to create your first repair order.

Before & After #121 of a unqiue Emerald and Diamond Gold Ring Requiring Gemstone Replacement

(Before & After #121)

Image Showcasing Before & After #10 of a Gold, Emerald, and Diamond Ring Getting Premier Ring Restoration Services by Master Jewelers

(Before & After #10)

Originally Published May 17, 2022, Updated and Revised June 4th, 2024

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Revive Your Treasured Emerald Jewelry

Are you considering the restoration of a beloved piece of emerald jewelry? You’ve found the perfect place to revive cherished memories.

Emeralds breathe life into any piece of jewelry but are also prone to wear and tear. Whether you’re dealing with a loose, lost, or scratched emerald, we take the revitalization of your precious items to heart. No matter the damage, we are committed to making your emerald jewelry shine as brilliantly as the day it was first worn.

Our team of specialists is equipped to meticulously source the precise type of emerald needed for your valued piece. We recognize that each gemstone is unique and demands careful, specialized attention. Our Professional Stone Sourcing team ensures that every replacement stone matches the original in quality and fit.

Explore our Gemstone Replacement Services page to learn more about how we can help restore your emerald jewelry to its former glory.

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Have Questions?

How Do You Clean & Polish Emeralds?

Clean & Polish Services
A basic clean, polish, and inspection is part of the routine care and maintenance needed to keep your jewelry looking like new. The inspection process includes looking for loose stones, bent prongs, and any damage to the metal or stones that need to be repaired.”

How Do I Repair My Emerald's Stone Setting?

Stone Setting Repair
“A stone setting repair can be a simple re-tipping of a worn prong (which is considered routine care and maintenance) or the complete rebuilding/replacing of a damaged prong. In the case of severe damage, the entire head of the ring may need to be replaced.

Regardless of whether or not the prongs are compromised due to normal wear and tear or a result of accidental damage, we can provide the routine care and maintenance in order to ensure you do not lose a stone in your setting.”

Where Can I Get an Emerald Done?

Emerald Replacement Services
“The process of a Emerald Replacement is simple enough, yet requires trained eyes to be able to make a flawless switch. We aim to leave no trace of our work, which means not only will your setting be perfected, but the emerald we choose will complete your jewelry piece effortlessly.”

Where Can I Repair My Invisible Set Emerald?

Invisible Setting Repairs
“A centuries-old, originally French technique, invisible set gemstone jewelry (aka the Invisible Setting), is one of the most beautiful setting types available. It involves the process of setting stones side-by-side, hiding the metalwork underneath, which can give the appearance of a larger stone. This technique creates an uninterrupted flow in the gemstones, thus producing the coveted “Invisible Setting”.

We hand-select master jewelers who not only know how to perform an invisible setting repair but are specialists in the art of this technique. Your special accessory will be placed in the hands of a professional who appreciates the difficult process of making your invisibly set jewelry as perfect as possible.”

The Glue Method is not a practice we subscribe to at My Jewelry Repair.

How Do I Know My Emerald Is Real?

Emerald Gemstone Services
“The most trusted way to identify if your emerald is real or not is to have it inspected directly by an experienced jeweler. My Jewelry Repair happens to have Master Jewelers, who have long-term experience with emeralds, as well as the equipment needed to work with any type of gemstones.

Depending on where you purchase your emerald, individual companies may provide a Emerald Certification that confirms the quality of diamond, accurate information on its grade, and ownership verification. This also can be referred to as the 5th C when evaluating emeralds.”

Is Emerald My Birthstone?

The Ultimate Birthstone Guide
“If you were born in May, your month’s birthstones are Emerald and Agate.

If you didn’t already know, there are some months that have multiple birthstones, whereas some only have one. Traditional birthstones are gemstones that were most commonly associated with its respective month in the early 20th century and even beyond, with Ancient Greek and Roman philosophers associating these gemstones with the star signs. Those that are more commonly known in this day and age are the modern birthstones, which were officially named by the Jewelers of America in the 1950’s.

If you would like to learn more about birthstones in general, visit our Ultimate Birthstone Guide!

Where Can I Learn More About My Emerald?

Contact Us
“If you would like to learn more about emeralds or inquire about a specific one, feel free to contact us on our website to learn more.

This is the best Emerald guide out there to learn from, unless of course, you’re looking for the Pokémon Emerald Walkthrough. We can’t help you catch them all as a jewelry and watch repair company, but we sure can restore them all. If your ultra ball is broken, we can fix that!”

Explore the Magic of Our Emerald Services!

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