Genuine Ruby: How to Tell if a Ruby is Genuine

Genuine Ruby: How to Tell if a Ruby is Genuine

Are you in the market for a genuine ruby but unsure how to distinguish between a real gemstone and a synthetic or imitation one? Look no further! In this comprehensive guide, we will provide you with all the information you need to confidently identify whether a ruby is genuine or not. From examining the color and clarity to understanding the various types of treatments that may be applied to rubies, we will equip you with the knowledge to make an informed decision when purchasing this precious gemstone.

Physical Characteristics of Genuine Rubies


One of the most important characteristics of a genuine ruby is its color. A genuine ruby will have a deep red hue, often described as "pigeon blood red". This color is caused by the presence of chromium in the gemstone, which gives it its vibrant red color. Be wary of rubies that are too pink or too dark, as these may be synthetic or treated.


Another key characteristic of genuine rubies is their clarity. Look for rubies that are free from any visible inclusions or blemishes. While some inclusions are common in natural gemstones, a high-quality ruby will have minimal inclusions and excellent clarity. Be cautious of rubies that appear cloudy or have visible flaws, as these may not be genuine.


The cut of a ruby can also indicate its authenticity. Genuine rubies are typically cut in a way that maximizes their color and brilliance. Look for rubies with symmetrical facets and a well-proportioned cut. Avoid rubies that appear poorly cut or have uneven facets, as these may not be genuine. A well-cut ruby will exhibit a beautiful play of light and color, showcasing its natural beauty.

Testing Methods for Ruby Authenticity

Visual Inspection

When trying to determine if a ruby is genuine, one of the first methods to consider is a visual inspection. Look for any imperfections or inclusions within the stone, as natural rubies often have these unique characteristics. Additionally, real rubies typically have a deep red color that is consistent throughout the entire stone, whereas synthetic rubies may have a more uniform appearance.

Using a Gemstone Tester

Another effective method for testing the authenticity of a ruby is to use a gemstone tester. These devices can measure the refractive index and specific gravity of the stone, providing valuable information about its composition and authenticity. By comparing these readings to known values for natural rubies, you can determine if the stone is genuine or not.

Consulting a Professional Jeweler

If you are still unsure about the authenticity of a ruby, it is recommended to consult a professional jeweler. Jewelers have the expertise and tools necessary to accurately assess the authenticity of gemstones, including rubies. They can perform more advanced tests, such as spectroscopy or thermal conductivity testing, to determine if the ruby is natural or synthetic. By seeking the help of a professional, you can have peace of mind knowing the true value of your ruby.

Common Mistakes when Identifying Genuine Rubies

Assuming All Red Gemstones are Rubies

One common mistake people make when trying to identify genuine rubies is assuming that all red gemstones are rubies. While rubies are known for their vivid red color, there are actually many other red gemstones such as garnets and spinels that can easily be mistaken for rubies. It is important to look for other characteristics such as hardness, luster, and inclusions to accurately identify a genuine ruby.

Relying Solely on Price

Another mistake that people often make is relying solely on price to determine if a ruby is genuine. While it is true that genuine rubies can be quite expensive, there are also many synthetic rubies on the market that are priced similarly to genuine rubies. It is important to consider other factors such as the presence of inclusions, color consistency, and certification from a reputable gemological laboratory when determining the authenticity of a ruby.

Overlooking Inclusions

Inclusions are natural imperfections that are present in almost all gemstones, including rubies. While some people may be tempted to overlook inclusions in a ruby, they are actually a valuable indicator of a gemstone’s authenticity. Genuine rubies often have distinctive inclusions such as rutile needles or silk that can help differentiate them from synthetic or imitation rubies. It is important to closely examine the inclusions in a ruby under magnification to ensure its genuineness.

In conclusion, being able to distinguish a genuine ruby from a fake one is crucial for anyone looking to invest in this precious gemstone. By examining the color, clarity, cut, and origin of the ruby, one can ensure that they are getting an authentic and valuable gem. Remember to always purchase from reputable sources and seek the expertise of a gemologist if needed. With these tips in mind, you can confidently add a genuine ruby to your collection knowing that you have made a wise and informed decision.

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