As a Mine Finds customer, we know you expect to cherish your turquoise for years to come. And we also realize you want to be knowledgeable about the treatments we use on our genuine turquoise. Why do we need them? Because they will help protect the beauty of your turquoise against the damaging effects of lotions, soaps, chemicals and other factors.
You probably already know that turquoise is a soft, porous stone and most often it’s found only in chalk form. For it to be usable and durable, treatments are used to produce stable material for jewelry making. Some or all of these may be used to ensure the long lasting beauty of your turquoise.
Below are some commonly used turquoise treatments which are recognized by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA.)
Stabilization is a process developed in the USA in which rough material is soaked in a solution of epoxies and sometimes pressure, to harden the stone. This gives the stone greater durability, improves its appearance and helps prevent color change over time. Approximately 98% of the turquoise currently on the market has been stabilized.
Stabilized compressed, also known as just “compressed,” is an expensive process of molding fingertip sized pieces of turquoise into a larger, more workable material. These small pieces are exposed to extreme hydraulic pressure at the time of stabilization. Compressed turquoise is an affordable option compared to the much more expensive, and rarer nugget. It also utilizes all remaining material ensuring there is no waste. As with stabilization, this treatment was also developed by the folks here in the USA.
Color enhancement refers to color that is injected into the stone during the stabilization and/or compression process. You’ll most often see this with lemon lime green or purple turquoise pieces as finding these colors straight from the ground would be close to impossible for turquoise.
Enhanced turquoise is material that has been treated with electrical current and mineral compounds. The treatment doesn’t change the color, but stabilizes the turquoise so it’s more workable and has durability when used in jewelry. It’s a treatment that was developed in the USA of which the exact steps are proprietary.
By utilizing these treatments we are taking the necessary steps to help protect your turquoise jewelry. However, some precautions depend on you for the care of your turquoise.
Here are some helpful hints:
Remove your turquoise before applying lotions, soaps, perfumes and before cleaning with harsh chemicals.
Avoid excessive sunlight, perspiration (we know it’s hard to do in the summer), oils and water, as these can damage the finish, leaving your turquoise vulnerable. Make sure to wipe down your piece with a soft jewelry cloth after wear.
Remove your turquoise before jumping into the swimming pool, sauna or hot tub. You may need that deep soak, but your turquoise doesn’t.
By following these guidelines, you will enjoy your turquoise for years to come.