What are semi-precious stones?
A semi-precious stone is also known as a gem or gemstone (also a jewel, a gem, a precious stone) is a portion of mineral, which, in refined and cut form, is used to create jewelry or other embellishments. There are also organic resources or precise rocks that are not minerals (for example jet or amber) that are also used for jewelry and would also be considered to be gemstones as well.
In the West, precious stones are diamonds, sapphires, rubies and emeralds. All other stones are considered semi-precious stones. However, this is a commercial based classification and was a distinction that marketers created years ago which gives the false impression that precious stones are more valuable than semi-precious stones.
What’s the difference between a semi-precious stone and a precious stone?
Precious stones and semi-precious stones are terms that were created in the mid-1800’s to describe gemstones, which were categorized solely based on their rarity. Stones found in abundance were labeled semi-precious, and a stone that was rare would be categorized as precious and more valuable.
Diamonds, rubies, sapphires, emeralds were classified as precious stones. All other stones are classified as semi-precious stones.
The distinction between precious and semi-precious stones is their rarity and their quality. Despite this distinction and classification of precious stones vs. semi-precious stones, it is not necessarily true that a precious stones is always more valuable or rare than a semi-precious stone.
For example a green garnet known as Tsavorite is classified as a semi-precious stone, however, it is more valuable than an emerald, which is classified as a precious stone.
Now, value is measured by several different factors, and precious stones often do not hold more value than semi-precious stones. However, the label is still valuable and is used worldwide to promote and sell jewellery.