Blue Sapphire vs. Pink Sapphire: Which One Should You Choose?
Sapphire has been trending over the last decade due to its popularity in engagement rings. However, this gorgeous precious gemstone isn’t new. It has been mesmerizing people with its beauty since ancient times.
Often a celestial blue color, sapphire has long been believed to represent heaven, bringing the wearer divine favor and wisdom. Greeks commonly wore the stone, as did Buddhists, Hindus, and early Christians, highlighting the stone's value throughout time and to diverse groups.
What we now consider the common sapphire color, a violet-blue, was first found in India’s Kashmir region around the late 19th century. India has produced some of the most lovely and large stones, such as the Star of India, at 563.4 carats. Other sapphire mine locations include Madagascar and Australia.
Though many of the sapphires throughout history have been prized for their blue color, there is another popular variant – pink sapphire.
Pink sapphire is the most sought-after behind blue, beating out shades like yellow and green. The versatility in shades of pink makes this stunning gem an ideal stone for all kinds of jewelry. Some are even amazing dupes for rubies. Unlike its blue cousin, pink sapphires represent loyalty, trust, and sincerity. Pink sapphire also doesn’t have as long a history as blue sapphire due to its scarcity until the late 1990s. Pre-nineties and with the discovery of Madagascar deposits, pink sapphire could be found in very few locations, such as Sri Lanka and Myanmar.
Today, you have your choice of these two breathtaking sapphire colors. But deciding between pink vs. blue sapphire can be tricky. Thankfully, we’ve got your back! Keep reading to learn more about the differences and similarities between pink and blue sapphires.
Blue vs. Pink Sapphire
Color & Visual Appeal
Blue sapphire is considered the traditional sapphire color, though the gem comes in a range of shades. When it comes to blue, the most popular color tends to be blue-violet. However, many individuals prefer a velvety blue as well. To achieve both these visual aesthetics, the blue color must be medium-dark. Blue sapphires can look elegant and regal, often working well with cooler metals such as platinum.
Pink sapphires come in a variety of tones and shades. You can find a bright, bubblegum pink or a pale baby pink. Some even have hints of violet or red, which can be misidentified as rubies. Look for a highly saturated stone with medium to dark color if you want a valuable pink sapphire. Romantic and feminine, pink sapphires make lovely engagement rings and suit nearly all metal tones.
Popularity in Fine Jewelry
Blue sapphire tends to get more press when it comes to fine jewelry. Just consider Kate Middleton’s engagement ring from Prince William. However, pink sapphires are gaining attention. Due to their ability to pass for pink diamonds, pink sapphires are being included in more and more engagement rings.
In the case of both sapphires, though, there are a variety of jewelry settings that complement these gems. You can choose a sapphire necklace, a pair of studs, or a sapphire studded bangle.
Unsurprisingly, rosy pink sapphires represent love, femininity, sincerity, trust, and compassion. Blue sapphires tend to be associated with wisdom or the heavens, thanks to their celestial color. Sapphire is the September birthstone and is often associated with blue. Still, September-born individuals can take their pick of color!
Pink sapphires were thought to be exceedingly rare until additional deposits were found in Madagascar in the 1990s. Before this, only a few places worldwide were known to produce pink sapphire. Alternatively, blue sapphire isn’t as rare unless you talk about those with excellent color and extremely high clarity. Today, pink sapphire is still considered rarer than classic blue.
Sapphire rates a nine on the Mohs scale, regardless of whether it is blue or pink. Thankfully, this makes it incredibly durable. Sapphire is one of the hardest colored stones, perfect for daily wear pieces like engagement rings.
Sapphire clarity can vary. Gems with excellent clarity are difficult to come by, whether blue or pink. Most sapphires on the market are “eye clean’ meaning that no inclusions are visible to the naked eye sans magnification. Most natural gemstones will have inclusions. Still, the better the clarity, the more valuable the stone. Also, consider lighter shades of pink may show inclusions more readily than medium to dark shades of blue.
Most commercial-grade sapphires have been treated in some way. Often, heat treatment can help bring out the best colors in the gems. Pink sapphires are heat treated to help eliminate purple hues, enhance their pinkness, and increase clarity. Blue sapphires can get a similar heat-based treatment to optimize their color. In either case, treating with heat is generally acceptable for most fine jewelry sapphires.
Price & Value
Determining which color is more valuable can be tricky. Blue sapphires are the more classic color, enhancing their popularity and increasing the price and value. Pink sapphires are rarer and appear more like (very costly) pink diamonds. Still, they may not fetch as high a price as blue due to their lower popularity. For both shades, color is very important to price and value, with medium-dark blues and intense, saturated pinks considered the most valuable.
Ultimately, the best sapphire color for you depends on your preferences. Do you prefer a blue stone that bears the traditional elegance of sapphire? Or do you appreciate the feminine pink sapphires that are romantic and rare? Aside from their color, pink and blue sapphires share characteristics like clarity and hardness, so you can feel confident picking a shade that speaks to you!
Are pink sapphires real?
Naturally occurring pink sapphires are real, though counterfeit ones made of glass exist.
Which is more expensive – pink sapphire or blue sapphire?
Blue is the classic color, increasing its popularity and, therefore, its price. However, excellent quality pink sapphires are rare and can be quite valuable
What does pink sapphire symbolize?
Pink sapphire symbolizes femininity, love, truth, and sincerity.
Which is better for an engagement ring – pink or blue sapphire?
The best sapphire color for an engagement ring depends on your taste, style, and preferences. They have equal hardness, making both colors suitable for everyday wear in an engagement ring.