Topaz is a popular gemstone, thanks to its relative hardness, its affordable price and the range of colors it comes from. It is sometimes used as a substitute to other more expensive stones, but it is valuable and beautiful on its own too.

The Healing Properties of Topaz

Topaz is a gemstone associated with many mystical qualities and healing properties. In different cultures it has been thought to make women more fertile and happier and to make men handsome. It is believed to dispel sadness and anger, and to give protection against death. The ancient Greeks used it for strength and in the Middle Ages it was used in Europe to heal the sick. Topaz is November's birthstone and topaz jewelry makes a great gift for anyone born in November. It is also associated with the zodiac sign Scorpio.

Colored and Mystic Topaz

In its pure and natural state topaz is clear and colorless. Most topaz gemstones have some impurities, and it is these impurities that give the stone its range of colors. Topaz can be yellow, white, green, blue, red, pink and brown. Many topaz stones on the market today have been treated with heat or radiation to enhance their color. When shopping for topaz jewelry, examine the piece under a few different light sources to check its color and to see if there are any visible inclusions. A reputable jeweler should be able to show a certificate so you can check if the stone has been treated to enhance the color. Blue topaz is popular but naturally deep blue topaz is rare, and pale blue stones are often treated to deepen the color. Mystic topaz is an artificially treated, originally colorless stone that has been given a colorful coating to make it shine in all colors of the rainbow.

How To Look After Your Topaz Jewelry

Topaz gets 8 on the Mohs scale that determines the hardness of gemstones (diamonds being the hardest at 10 on the scale). Although topaz is relatively hard, it could split into two from a sharp blow or suffer damage from scratching against other gemstones. When storing your topaz jewelry, wrap every piece inside an individual piece of soft cloth. Remove your gemstone jewelry before doing any household chores that could damage the stone. Store the jewelry away from high temperatures or direct light, and clean it with soapy water using only mild liquid soaps. Never use harsh scrubs to wash your gemstones.

Yellow Topaz(62488)
Credit: Rob Lavinsky/