Pink Tourmaline

Color:   Pastel bubblegum to hot pink
   
Gem Family:   Pink tourmaline is a member of the tourmaline family, the gem world's most colorful gem. Tourmaline is found in every color of the rainbow and also sometimes shows more than one color in a single crystal.
   
Source:   Pink tourmaline is found all over the globe, including Brazil, Afghanistan, California, Madagascar, and Mozambique.
   
Clarity:   Pink tourmalines often have inclusions, especially if the color is bright.
   
Size Range:   Sizes from 0.5 carat to 5 carats are in regular supply. Much larger stones are also available.
   
Shapes Available:   Ovals, cushions, round brilliants, trillions, barion cuts, princess cuts, and checkerboard cushions.
   
Enhancement:   The pink colors of tourmaline can be enhanced with exposure to radiation. Because this enhancement is undetectable, you should always assume that pink tourmaline has been enhanced. The color is stable and does not require any special care.
   
Lore & History:   Because its colors mimic those of other gems, tourmaline was often misidentified in the ancient world. Some of the "rubies" in the Russian Crown Jewels are, in fact, tourmaline. The Empress Dowager Tz'u Hsi, the last Empress of China, loved pink tourmaline so much that she was buried with her carved tourmaline pillow. At the turn of the century, she bought almost a ton of tourmaline from the newly discovered Himalayan Mine in California.
   
Toughness & Hardness:   Tourmaline has a Mohs hardness of 7 to 7.5 and is durable and suitable for everyday wear.
   
Care & Cleaning:   Clean with mild dish soap: use a toothbrush to scrub behind the stone where dust can collect.
   
Special Characteristics:   Tourmaline has unusual electrical properties: crystals acquire a polarized electrical charge when heated or compressed. This property has also made tourmaline the latest miracle ingredient in cleansing lotions: manufacturers say the gem can increase a product's ability to pull pollutants from the pores.

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