Tanzanite vs. Diamond. Which One Is More Valuable?

Published by Virtu on

Diamonds are intriguing gemstones and are hard to find. These stones are marketed in such a way that they are hard to afford and extremely rare. However, because of such marketing strategies, people tend to overlook other commodities that are, if not more, equally rare than diamonds, which are the hardest substance found on Earth. One such example of a commodity is tanzanite. Now, what is tanzanite? Before we dig into tanzanite’s details, you should know that this gemstone is equally rare as diamonds and is much less popular and underrated.

Digging Into Tanzanite’s Details

Tanzanite’s origins

Commonly known as Africa’s real blue diamond, tanzanite is a rare gemstone that is mined from one source only. The one and only source of tanzanite is a 20 square kilometer-long land, which is located near Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. The name ‘tanzanite’ is similar to Tanzania because it is the only origin of the gemstone.

It is a semi-precious gemstone and is known to stand out become of its “trichroism,” a property that makes the color of the stone turn from blue to violet when it is exposed to light! This rare gemstone is also known as “blue zoisite.”


If rarity determines a gemstone’s price, then tanzanite should have the highest price of all gemstones in the world! However, diamond is given that status, even though tanzanite is about one thousand times rarer to be found than diamonds! Yet they are much, much more unpopular than them. 

Color and Chemical Properties

Tanzanite is natural, organic, and has an intense violet-blue color. Its chemical composition comprises aluminum, calcium, hydroxide, and silica oxide. Tanzanite has the two top qualities of gemstones: rarity and beauty. 

Physical Properties

According to the Mohs scale of hardness, tanzanite’s hardness falls between seven to eight out of 10. It is easier to scratch and liable to break as compared to diamonds. Additionally, it is known to be one of the most delicate and softest gemstones. So, designers have to be extra careful when they are cutting these gemstones, as the last thing they want to do would be to break the rarest stone on Earth. Because of its low toughness and resistance, it is prone to thermal shocks and temperature changes, which can cause its structure to deform easily.

What Are the Market Prices of Tanzanite?

The snuggling of tanzanite from mines in Tanzania has caused the Tanzanian government to place severe restrictions to curb the smuggling of this rare gemstone; this, in turn, has caused the prices of tanzanite in the markets to shoot up.

However, after the pandemic, the prices have lowered a bit, approximately by 20% to 30%, which makes the price of one carat around $500. However, there are many factors that influence its pricing.

Firstly, the gemstone’s color, cut, clarity, and depth define its price and value. Tanzanite with a perfect bluish violet color is graded an AAA+. These grades are used all over the market to define a tanzanite’s worth. The AAA grade represents a cloudy bluish shade, AA represents a decent blue color, whereas a single A grade is awarded to tanzanite having a light blue color. The AAA+ graded tanzanites are the highest in price.

What Is a Diamond?

Diamonds are actually highly pressurized carbon that is found in the Earth’s crust. Diamonds come in colored and non-colored forms but are unattainable because they are insanely expensive.

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) assesses the quality of diamonds and then ranks diamonds accordingly. Diamonds are extremely popular in the luxury jewelry market. The quality of a diamond is assessed on four factors that are known as “The 4 Cs”. The Cs corresponds to clarity, carat, color, and cut. If any three of these characteristics have really good quality, then the diamond prices will shoot really high!

Furthermore, diamond prices also vary because of some factors, such as their shape and how it reflects light. A diamond with an excellent cut and transparent color will have an exorbitant price compared to a diamond that doesn’t have a good finishing and has some color on its surface.

One gram of diamond is almost five carats. Carat is a measure of the purity of a material. One carat’s starting price is thousand dollars and can range up to tens of thousands of dollars.

A diamond is also valued on the basis of its certification. The certification provides authenticity to the diamond and influences its value and price. Certification makes it easier to differentiate between real diamonds and the fake ones (lab-created ones.)

Do They Differ in Values?

We have stated that tanzanite is found to be much less rare than diamonds, yet its selling price is far lower than theirs. But why is that? One reason might be the durability factor. Since tanzanite is on the softer side and is easy to break, it might be less durable than diamonds and priced at lower rates. Tanzanite can cost you up to around $300 to $425 per carat, while diamonds are around $3100 per carat, but this isn’t a fixed price since a diamond’s value fluctuates due to its demand.

Tanzanite may cause less than diamonds, but that does not mean they are inferior to diamonds.

In fact, you will understand the value difference if you see it this way: diamonds are actually 58 times harder than tanzanite, and that is the main factor that makes them stand out from other gemstones and minerals. Moreover, the diamond’s brilliance and stunning sparkle are what make it exceptional, but it degrades a tanzanite’s intense blue color. Both have their own unique qualities. All of this comparison was just to make you understand why diamonds cost more than tanzanite.

How To Differentiate Between the Two?

Do you want to know how to tell the difference between a diamond and tanzanite? You should check The Diamond Authority’s (TDA) website. The experts TDA have done deep research on the two subjects and have clearly written how to distinguish their features.

Firstly, both the stones look very different from each other. Tanzanite has shades of blue and violet, while diamonds have a brilliant white shine. Some diamonds also have a yellowish or pinkish tint on them, but these sorts of diamonds are very rare to be found.

Both of them make stunning pieces of jewelry. Be it engagement rings, necklaces, pendants, or bracelets, and these stones make the jewelry piece look a hundred times better. So, if you are looking to gift your loved one a stunning jewelry piece, you can go for a diamond or tanzanite pendant or ring (depending on your budget!) 

FAQs on Diamonds and Tanzanite

Q) Is tanzanite better than diamonds?

Ans. Its believed that tanzanite is somewhat similar to diamonds but is 1000 times more rare and valuable than diamonds are, and this is because Diamonds are mined in many places across the Earth. In contrast, tanzanite has only one source, and that is located in Tanzania.

Q) What is more expensive than a diamond?

Ans. Emeralds are more expensive than diamonds in some cases, but that depends on numerous factors. Diamonds that have imperfections that aren’t 100% clear will have their prices drop significantly. When you compare emeralds’ with the prices of diamonds (that have inclusions on their surfaces), the emeralds will cost you more! People go after diamonds that have a brilliant shine and perfect clarity.

Q) Is tanzanite diamond real diamond?

Ans. Tanzanite is a natural, organic gemstone that is mined in Tanzania only. It has an intense violet-blue color. On the other hand, diamond is also a naturally occurring gemstone and is colorless/white. Both of them are different gemstones, and tanzanite is not a form of a diamond.

Q) Can tanzanite be used for an engagement ring?

Ans. Given a rating of 6.5 to 7.0 by the Mohs hardness scale, tanzanite is great for engagement rings, but it would require special care as it is delicate. 

Q) Does tanzanite break easily?

Ans. Tanzanite is brittle, and it should be treated delicately. It can get scratched easily. According to the Mohs scale of hardness, tanzanite is given a 6 out of ten.

Q) How can you tell if tanzanite is real?

Ans. You will have to view the gem under incandescent light, which will make the gem appear intensely purple and will also spark flashes of red and pink colors.

Q) Is tanzanite precious or semi-precious?

Ans. Tanzanite is entitled as “the most beautiful gem,” and even “the most important gem discovered” in the last two thousand years. This bluish violet gem is loved by millions around the world and is high in demand! However, it is classified as a semi-precious stone, which means it has a commercial value of a gem but is not precious.

Q) What color of tanzanite is the best?

Ans. People prefer to buy blue-dominant tanzanite because of its stunning beauty. Moreover, blue-dominant tanzanite, in comparison to violet-dominant tanzanite, is great from an investment point of view.

Q) Will tanzanite go up in value?

Ans. Tanzanite’s prices are not likely to shoot up on a per carat basis. Unlike diamonds, tanzanite’s prices don’t depend on demand and supply. The only factors that determine a tanzanite’s price are rarity and beauty. The rarer the gemstone, the higher its price is. Moreover, tanzanite’s cut, color, and cut also define its prices. A perfectly cut and intense blue tanzanite will cost you around $425-$480 (you will get 0.00 – 1.99 carat) at this price.

Categories: Jewelry


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