Home Knowledges Blue Beryl VS Aquamarine: Is It the Same?

Blue Beryl VS Aquamarine: Is It the Same?

by Madonna

Blue gemstones have long captivated our hearts with their serene and enchanting hues. Two names that often come to mind when discussing blue gemstones are “blue beryl” and “aquamarine.” But are these two gemstones truly one and the same, or do they possess distinct characteristics that set them apart? In this article, we will delve into the world of blue beryl and aquamarine, unraveling their similarities, differences, and the factors that make each of them unique.

The Fascination with Blue Gemstones

Before we dive into the specifics of blue beryl and aquamarine, let’s explore the enduring allure of blue gemstones. Blue has been a coveted color in the world of gemstones and jewelry for centuries. Its calming and evocative qualities, reminiscent of the vast ocean or a clear summer sky, make it a popular choice for all types of adornments.


Blue gemstones are known for their versatility, as they can complement a wide range of metals and other gemstones. They are also often associated with qualities such as serenity, tranquility, and clarity, making them a meaningful choice for both personal adornment and gift-giving.


Blue Beryl: A Diverse Family of Gemstones

To understand the relationship between blue beryl and aquamarine, we must first explore the concept of blue beryl itself. Beryl is a mineral species that includes several varieties, each with its unique colors. Blue beryl encompasses beryl varieties that display shades of blue, and it includes two primary types: aquamarine and blue-green beryl.


1. Aquamarine: The Delicate Blue Gem

Aquamarine, with its name derived from the Latin words “aqua” (water) and “marina” (of the sea), is the most well-known and beloved variety of blue beryl. It is celebrated for its exquisite blue color, which ranges from pale, almost colorless blue to vivid, deep blue-green. Aquamarine’s captivating color often evokes images of tropical waters and tranquil lagoons.

The presence of iron traces within the beryl structure is responsible for aquamarine’s enchanting blue hues. This variety of blue beryl is highly sought after for its soothing and timeless appeal. Aquamarine has been used in jewelry for centuries, adorning both modern pieces and antique treasures.

See Also: The Elegance of Milky Aquamarine: A Glimpse into a Treasure

2. Blue-Green Beryl: The Lesser-Known Sibling

Blue-green beryl, as the name suggests, encompasses beryl varieties that exhibit a range of blue and green shades. While they share the beryl family with aquamarine, blue-green beryl gemstones possess a distinctive color profile that sets them apart.

The Most Famous Variety of Blue-green Beryl

The most notable blue-green beryl varieties include:

1. Blue Heliodor:

This variety of blue beryl combines blue and yellowish-green hues, creating a unique and eye-catching gemstone.

2. Maxixe Beryl:

Maxixe beryl is a rare and prized variety known for its deep blue color. Unlike aquamarine, maxixe beryl’s color can fade upon exposure to light, making it a more delicate gemstone.

Aquamarine: Distinctive Characteristics and Qualities

Now that we have distinguished between blue beryl and its various varieties let’s focus on aquamarine’s unique characteristics and qualities that make it a gemstone of enduring popularity.

1. Color Range

One of the most defining features of aquamarine is its remarkable color range. Aquamarine can display a spectrum of blue shades, from the palest blue reminiscent of a clear sky to deeper, more intense blue-green tones resembling the sea’s depths. These variations in color are often categorized into different grades, with the most valuable aquamarines exhibiting a pure, saturated blue hue.

2. Clarity

Aquamarine is renowned for its exceptional clarity. It typically has fewer inclusions compared to other gemstones, which contributes to its brilliant sparkle and transparency. High-quality aquamarines are often free from visible inclusions, enhancing their value and desirability.

3. Durability

With a hardness rating of 7.5 to 8 on the Mohs scale, aquamarine is a relatively durable gemstone, suitable for everyday wear in jewelry. However, it is essential to handle aquamarine jewelry with care to prevent scratches or damage to the gemstone.

4. Origin

Aquamarine is found in various locations around the world, including Brazil, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, and Afghanistan. Each source may produce aquamarines with unique color characteristics and inclusions.

5. Symbolism and Meanings

Aquamarine has a rich history of symbolism and meanings. It is often associated with the soothing qualities of water and is believed to bring tranquility, courage, and clarity to its wearer. It has been considered a symbol of protection for sailors and travelers, earning it the nickname “Sailor’s Stone.”

See Also: The Value of an Aquamarine Ring: Factors and Considerations

Blue Beryl vs. Aquamarine: How They Differ

Now that we’ve explored the qualities and characteristics of aquamarine, it’s time to clarify the distinction between blue beryl and aquamarine.

Blue beryl is the overarching category that includes all beryl varieties displaying shades of blue, with aquamarine being the most well-known and cherished variety within this group. The primary difference lies in the specific shade and intensity of blue:

Aquamarine refers to beryl gemstones that display blue hues ranging from pale blue to deep blue-green. Its color is reminiscent of the ocean’s tranquil waters.

Blue-green beryl encompasses beryl varieties that exhibit a mix of blue and green shades, creating a unique and distinct color profile within the blue beryl family.

While aquamarine is undoubtedly a type of blue beryl, not all blue beryl gemstones can be classified as aquamarine. The term “aquamarine” is reserved for those blue beryl gemstones that closely resemble the serene blue tones of the sea.

Choosing Between Blue Beryl and Aquamarine

When deciding between blue beryl and aquamarine for a piece of jewelry or a gemstone collection, it ultimately comes down to personal preferences and the intended use of the gemstone.

Consider the following factors:

1. Color Preference:

If you are drawn to the soft and tranquil shades of blue that evoke images of the sea, aquamarine is an ideal choice. On the other hand, if you prefer a mix of blue and green hues, blue-green beryl may be more appealing.

2. Meaning and Symbolism:

The symbolism and meanings associated with aquamarine, such as tranquility and courage, may resonate with you and influence your choice.

3. Jewelry Design:

The design of the jewelry piece you have in mind can also dictate your choice. The color and shape of the gemstone should complement the overall design and aesthetic.

4. Budget:

While aquamarine is generally more available and affordable than some other blue gemstones, factors like size, color, and clarity can significantly impact the price. Consider your budget when making your selection.

5. Rareness and Uniqueness:

Blue-green beryl varieties, such as blue heliodor and maxixe beryl, are less common and may appeal to those seeking unique and rare gemstones.

In conclusion

Both blue beryl and aquamarine have their own distinct charm and qualities, making them valuable additions to the world of gemstones. Whether you opt for the serene beauty of aquamarine or the unique allure of blue-green beryl, both gemstones offer timeless elegance and a touch of the captivating blue that has entranced us for centuries.


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