Morganite engagement rings can be as magnificent as any other popular diamond alternatives. The main but not the only reason for it is the amazing color of morganite, varying from slightly rosa to vibrant bold pink. Morganite stone is a beautiful, durable, and comparatively affordable pink gem. Here’s all you need to know before purchasing a morganite engagement ring.
What is morganite?
Morganite is a pink variation of the beryl stone. Other well-known varieties of beryl are emerald and aquamarine. Simply explained, mineral beryl can occur in many colors and some colors are just more popular in jewelry than others. Here they are:
- goshenite: colorless or white,
- green beryl: light green or olive green,
- aquamarine: blue-green to blue,
- emerald: deep green,
- heliodor: yellow or yellowish-green,
- red beryl and pezzottaite: pinkish-red to pink, and lastly — what we will talk in this article about —
- morganite with its pink or peachy pink tones.
As you see, each colored beryl stone comes with its own name, coloring element, and sometimes unique physical properties.
Morganite stone was found in California and Madagascar around 1910 and that time it was just called “pink beryl”. Later, the gem was renamed in honor of the famous financier J.P. Morgan (who was also a passionate gemologist).
Nowadays, morganite is mostly mined in Brazil as well as in the United States, Afghanistan, Mozambique, and Namibia. Most morganite stones on the market are mined. Though they can be made in the lab, lab-created morganites are rarely encountered in the trade.
The pink color of morganite comes from the mineral manganese, which gives it a variety of shades like rosa, peachy pink, salmon pink, or even purplish. Rarely, morganite can even be found colorless like a diamond and in this case, it’s called goshenite.
Check out our video How to Choose Morganite Engagement Ring RIGHT!
What is so special in morganite then?
- Morganite has lots of pink color variations. You will find it in different hues and shades, from quite pale to peachy pink and even purplish-pink. Actually, there is any hue of pink you can imagine — a delight for the eyes of a pink lover.
- Morganite’s greatest quality is its clarity. Unlike many other stones including diamonds, morganites usually don’t have visible inclusions. According to the GIA Gem Clarity Types, morganite has type I what is equal to “usually eye clean”. So, you will not make a compromise between the color you like and the clarity of the stone: morganites are as close to perfection as you can only get.
- Morganites on the market have a very stable color that will not fade. To reach this stability, the gem is almost always heat-treated to improve its pink color. The treatment drives off the yellow or orange undertone, leaving a purer and more attractive pink. However, the treatment is not visually detectable and the result you’ll get is a pure and stable tone.
Why a morganite engagement ring?
Now, when you have an idea of what is a morganite stone, be sure that this gem is a great choice for a non-traditional engagement ring.
- The color & purity of a morganite stone fascinates any viewer. In a suitable setting (for example, halo) it mesmerizes with its deepness and delicate brilliance. You will not find a morganite sparkling too tacky or bold: with its moderate Refractive Index (this index determines the sparkle of any gem) of 1.57 – 1.58, it has a restrained shine, discreet rather than showy.
- Morganite is not “just one more pink stone”: lots of its different hues offered on the market made a morganite engagement ring popular, thanks largely to a Millennial pink trend, starting in 2017. This unusual blush shade of pink didn’t lose in popularity over time. Millenial pink is not just bright pink, it’s cooler, with tones of peach and salmon and an absence of blue tones: like the color of morganite. According to the Knot’s engagement ring surveys, morganite is the second most popular non-diamond stone after sapphire.
- Morganite stone in a ring is a great diamond alternative, especially if you always dreamed of having something looking like pink diamond engagement rings of Blake Lively or Hillary Duff. A morganite is a perfect choice to embody these designs without paying a fortune. For example, a high-quality morganite (intense in color) you can find about $300 a carat with a custom cut. Less vibrant hues can go for less. So, a morganite engagement ring is an affordable and not less attractive option than a diamond ring
Blake Lively’s engagement ring is a pink diamond costing 2 million dollars. It has an oval cut stone set in rose gold, with small pave diamonds around the band. It was custom-designed to have an Art Deco look. A custom-designed morganite engagement ring from NinaVova will not cost this amount yet will be just as beautiful.
Still, you may hear some concerns about a morganite engagement ring. Let us take a closer look at them and see if there is really something behind.
Compared to diamond, moissanite, and sapphire, morganite is less scratch-resistant, that’s true. It’s the diamond’s 10 on the Mohs scale against morganite’s hardness of 7.5 to 8. However, there are many gemstones with similar hardness and we love them and work with them 🙂
If your gem’s hardness is less than 8-9, it does not mean that you can not have it in your engagement ring. It just means: if in case of your active lifestyle you are supposed to wear your ring every day, a morganite engagement ring will wear down faster than a diamond one (like many rings with other stones as well).
However, you can make something to protect your morganite from a quick wearing down, scratching, and other troubles:
Choose a ring in a safe setting. For a morganite setting, it can be a halo or bezel setting. In general, any low setting would be great so that it will serve as a protective barrier surrounding the stone.
Search for a high-quality morganite and make it custom-cut. Poor commercial (factory) cuts can increase the fragility of a stone. A сustom cut and customized setting choice (while a jeweler examines the stone before setting it) will not only bring out the full beauty of a stone but decrease the probability of breakage.
Don’t expose your morganite ring to direct sun: prolonged heat is not recommended for this stone. Avoid salty water or any chemical liquids while wearing a ring: getting in touch with the acid-base, the gem can change its color. Add your morganite ring to the look when going out (not every day) and keep it in a separate box far from other rings. By this way, you will reduce any risk for your morganite ring to a minimum.
You can also find a mixed setting, for example, a bezeled morganite halo ring. The setting looks grandiose and is protective enough.
Morganite vs Diamond: what to choose?
Is morganite a diamond? No, it is not. Let us one more time sum up the main similarities & differences between both gemstones.
Color: both stones have a large color range. Though they both are especially beloved for different color variations: diamond is most appreciated for sparkling transparency, morganite — for pink shades.
Brilliance or Refractive Index: morganite has the RI of 1.572-1.592 compared to the diamond’s 2.42 and it’s actually a bit far from diamond’s sparkle. Morganite has its special delicate shine.
Cut: just like diamonds, morganites appear in different cuts and shapes on the market.
Clarity: morganites usually don’t feature visible inclusions or flaws like some diamonds do. You will not find salt & pepper morganite on the market 🙂
Mohs Hardness Scale: morganite comes at 7.5 to 8 on the Mohs scale in comparison to the diamond’s 10. So, a morganite stone cannot be equal to a diamond in hardiness (like many other gemstones as well).
Morganite price vs diamond: you can buy large morganite stones the same as large diamonds. Still, the prices will surely differ. Most high-quality morganites are usually sold from $100 to $300 per carat. As for a diamond, it can cost upwards of $3,250 per carat.
If you are not ready to refuse the idea of having diamonds in your ring, you can find a compromise by combining morganite and diamond in a custom design. Just pair the two stones together: for example, morganite as a centerpiece and small diamond accents around. This option will also be less costly than a large center diamond.
Other pink stones engagement rings
According to the Knot’s Jewelry and Engagement Study, the most popular center stones other than diamonds are:
- moissanite (which has nearly doubled in popularity since 2017) at 19%,
- sapphire at 18%,
- and morganite at 12%.
Along with these gems, there are some other pink stones engagement rings that can be nice alternatives to traditional rings.
Pink Moissanite Engagement Ring
Moissanite in itself is a great choice, plus it can come in almost any color you need including pink. Pink moissanite with its amazing brilliance (its refractive index (RI) is more than RI of a diamond) is also very hard and scratch-resistant. It will look fascinating in a high prong setting or in a halo ring.
Pink Sapphire Engagement Ring
The next beautiful pink stone is a sapphire. It is also highly durable as moissanite, scratch-resistant, and tough gem, ideal for everyday wear. Sapphires were always a more affordable alternative to diamonds. And pink sapphires are usually less expensive than blue sapphires.
Pink Tourmaline Engagement Ring
What is great in tourmaline is that this gem can occur not only in lots of colors but also can have multiple colors in the same gem. Pink and red hues are the most common colors of tourmaline, along with green. Tourmalines are affordable stones, but their pricing can be a bit complicated depending on color, purity & size. Slight tone differences between the pink hues of two tourmalines can make a big impact on their value. Pink-red will have higher prices than bubblegum pink or baby pink. A tourmaline with its hardness of 7 to 7.5 is less scratch-resistant than a diamond or sapphire.
Pink Topaz Engagement Ring
Traditionally, topaz is considered a golden yellow stone. But this gemstone can occur in many colors. Pink (or rosa) topaz has one big advantage over pink diamond and sapphire. It’s much less expensive and often available in larger sizes than both diamond or sapphire. You can purchase a really large rosa topaz for your engagement ring and don’t get out of your budget. Thanks to its hardness of 8 on the Mohs scale, topaz is very resistant to scratching and can be beautifully polished to achieve a spectacular look.
Pink Spinel Engagement Ring
Spinel comes in a variety of colors, but the most favored are red and pink. Vibrant hot pink spinel is very popular in jewelry and it’s often sold for less than pink sapphire. So, a pink spinel ring will be quite an affordable purchase in comparison to diamond and sapphire rings. Spinel is hard enough (8 on the Mohs Hardness Scale) to be in an engagement ring for daily wear.
Pink Moonstone Engagement Ring
The most beloved moonstones are totally transparent and colorless. However, sheer moonstones in pink coloration without visible inclusions are also popular for any kind of jewelry. Though moonstone is less durable than gems like sapphire, diamond, or amethyst, with proper care and attention you can wear your moonstone engagement ring for years without any problems. It will be also quite affordable: prices range from $10 to $1000 where the clearest moonstones without inclusions are the most valuable.
More about other excellent alternatives for an engagement ring divided by colors you can read in our big illustrated guide.