Home Tanzanite What Are the different colors of tanzanite: A Full Guide

What Are the different colors of tanzanite: A Full Guide

by Madonna

Tanzanite, a mesmerizing gemstone discovered in Tanzania in 1967, is celebrated for its captivating blue-violet color. This unique gem offers a wide range of colors within the blue-violet spectrum, adding to its allure and desirability. In this comprehensive article, we will delve into the world of tanzanite and explore the different colors it can exhibit. Understanding the nuances of tanzanite’s color variations will allow us to appreciate the diverse palette this gemstone has to offer.

Tanzanite’s Blue-Violet Spectrum

Tanzanite is known for its vibrant and enchanting blue-violet color. The gemstone’s primary hue falls within the blue-violet range, but it can display variations that create a diverse color spectrum.


a. Deep Blue Tanzanite

Deep blue tanzanite showcases a rich and intense blue color that captures attention with its striking vibrancy. These gemstones exhibit a captivating blue hue that is highly coveted among tanzanite enthusiasts. The deep blue shade showcases the gem’s brilliance and adds a touch of sophistication to any jewelry piece.


b. Violet-Blue Tanzanite

Violet-blue tanzanite combines shades of blue and purple, resulting in a captivating blend of colors. These gemstones possess a dominant blue hue with a subtle infusion of purple, creating an alluring play of colors. The violet-blue tanzanite is highly prized by collectors and jewelry connoisseurs for its unique and captivating appearance.


c. Violetish Blue Tanzanite

Violetish blue tanzanite leans more towards the purple spectrum, with a predominant violet undertone and a secondary presence of blue. This color variation adds a touch of sophistication and mystique to the gemstone, making it a sought-after choice for those who appreciate its unique coloring. The violetish blue tanzanite possesses an alluring charm that sets it apart from other gemstones.

Factors Influencing Tanzanite’s Color

The color of tanzanite is influenced by several factors, and these factors play a significant role in determining its overall appearance and value. The key factors that influence tanzanite’s color are as follows:


Tanzanite is trichroic, meaning it exhibits different colors when viewed from different angles. It typically shows blue, violet, and burgundy hues. The primary color visible in a tanzanite gemstone depends on the direction from which it is viewed.


Pleochroism refers to the phenomenon where a gemstone displays different colors when viewed along different crystallographic axes. Tanzanite often exhibits pleochroism, showing a lighter blue or violet-blue color when viewed perpendicular to the crystal’s c-axis and a deeper blue or violet-blue color when viewed parallel to the c-axis.

Color saturation:

The saturation or intensity of the color is a crucial factor in tanzanite’s appearance. The most desirable tanzanite gemstones have a vivid, intense blue or violet-blue color. Gems with strong color saturation are rarer and more valuable.


The tone of tanzanite refers to how light or dark the gemstone appears. Tanzanite can range from light to dark tones, with medium tones being the most desirable. Gems that are too light may appear washed out, while overly dark stones may lose their brilliance and appear overly saturated.

Color zoning:

Tanzanite can sometimes exhibit color zoning, which refers to uneven distribution of color within the gemstone. Color zoning may appear as bands or patches of different hues or intensities. Ideally, a tanzanite should display an even, uniform color throughout the gemstone.

Heat treatment:

Most tanzanite on the market has undergone heat treatment to enhance its color. Heat treatment can intensify the blue or violet-blue color and remove undesirable yellow or brownish hues, resulting in a more desirable appearance.

While blue is the most popular and sought-after color for tanzanite, some individuals may prefer the violet or violet-blue hues. Ultimately, the color choice depends on individual taste and the specific qualities that one finds most appealing in a tanzanite gemstone.

Tanzanite’s Rarity and Collectibility

Tanzanite is renowned for its rarity and collectibility, which contribute to its allure and value in the gemstone market. Here are some key factors that make tanzanite a highly sought-after gemstone for collectors:Limited Geographic Source: Tanzanite is found in only one location in the world: the Merelani Hills in northern Tanzania. This geographical exclusivity adds to its rarity and makes it a unique gemstone coveted by collectors.

Exhaustible Supply:

Tanzanite’s supply is limited and finite. The gemstone was discovered relatively recently, in the 1960s, and mining operations are concentrated in a small area. Experts estimate that the known deposits could be depleted within a few decades, making tanzanite a finite resource.

Geologically Unique Formation:

Tanzanite’s formation is geologically fascinating. It is a variety of the mineral zoisite and owes its exceptional blue color to the presence of vanadium and the geological conditions during its formation. The combination of specific elements and geological processes necessary for tanzanite formation is exceptionally rare, further enhancing its collectibility.

Color Variations:

Tanzanite exhibits a captivating range of blue hues, from deep ultramarine blue to violet-blue. Collectors appreciate the gemstone’s ability to display different shades when viewed from various angles, adding to its aesthetic appeal and desirability.

Size and Quality:

Large and high-quality tanzanite gemstones are particularly rare and highly valued. Fine-quality tanzanites with intense blue color, excellent clarity, and superior cutting are especially sought-after by collectors.

Investment Potential:

Tanzanite’s rarity and limited supply have contributed to its investment potential. Over time, as the supply diminishes, the value of tanzanite may appreciate, making it an attractive choice for collectors seeking both aesthetic pleasure and potential financial gain.

Market Demand:

Tanzanite has gained significant popularity and recognition over the years, both for its beauty and its rarity. This has created a strong demand for tanzanite among collectors, further driving its value and collectibility.

Collectors are drawn to tanzanite not only for its aesthetic qualities but also for the sense of exclusivity and the opportunity to own a rare gemstone with a limited supply. The combination of its geographic scarcity, geological uniqueness, and captivating color variations make tanzanite a highly coveted gemstone in the world of collecting.


Tanzanite’s color spectrum encompasses a range of breathtaking blue-violet hues, each with its own unique charm and appeal. From deep blue to violet-blue and violetish blue, the variations in color contribute to tanzanite’s allure and individuality. The gem’s pleochroism further enhances its color play, showcasing additional shades when viewed from different angles. Factors such as chemical composition, heat treatment, cut, and lighting conditions influence tanzanite’s color, adding complexity and depth to its appearance. By appreciating tanzanite’s color-grading system and understanding its rarity, we can gain a deeper understanding of the gemstone’s beauty and collectibility. Tanzanite, with its stunning array of colors, continues to captivate gem enthusiasts and serve as a remarkable addition to any jewelry collection.


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