How to Buy Peridot
Whether you’re shopping for an August birthday or a 16th wedding anniversary, peridot makes the perfect gift that will leave others green with envy.
Peridot can be assessed with the same criteria as diamonds—using color, clarity, cut and carat weight to determine value.
The finest peridots have a lovely lime green hue without any hints of brown or yellow. Quality gems have no inclusions visible to the naked eye, though dark spots may be evident under a microscope. When you look closely, due to double refraction, you may see two of each facet on a peridot.
Thanks to rich deposits of peridot that were discovered in Pakistan in the 1990s, the gem is relatively inexpensive in smaller grain sizes but prices increase for larger stones. Commercially-mined peridots typically measure six to 13 millimeters, so faceted stones are generally about one carat in size.
Flawless peridots over five carats are particularly rare, though stones as large as 22 carats have been cut from basalt rock in Arizona—where most of the world’s peridot is found. The world’s largest peridot is a 310-carat gem in the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C.
Thankfully, there’s now enough raw material on the market so that the perfect peridot can be found to fit any taste or budget.