Articles / Think Pink: Tucson Gem Show Reveals Best Bets

If you want to know what kind of gemstones will be fashion "must haves" this year, think pink. That was the word from the Tucson (Arizona) Gem Show in February, the world's largest showcase for gemstones, beads, minerals and gemstone jewelry.

The pink influence, which began to take the fashion world by storm right after Ben Affleck gave Jennifer Lopez a 6.1-carat pink diamond engagement ring in 2002, is still going strong, gem insiders say.

At the top of the list is fancy pink sapphires. These stones come in a range of pink hues and offer a novel departure from the traditional blue sapphire. Pink sapphires also offer a fun, fashion-forward look in one of the world's toughest, most durable and most valuable gemstones - without the huge price tag that a comparable pink diamond would have.

Another "white hot" pink stone right now is pink tourmaline. This trendy pink shade of tourmaline recently came out of nowhere to become the sixth best-selling gemstone, based on a survey of jewelry store owners. Gemstone experts who attended the Tucson Show in confirmed that demand continues to build for this popular stone. The benefits of tourmaline as a fashion accessory are many: the stone is relatively hard, durable, brilliant and very wearable. In addition to pink, tourmaline comes in many different shades, and also can be found in bi-color or even tri-color combinations.

While pink-hued tourmaline has done particularly well with the younger crowd, another favorite according to those who visited the Tucson Show this year was spessartite garnet. This type of garnet features orange and reddish-orange stones in a variety of shades. Once a rare collector's gem, spessartite garnet burst upon the scene in 1991 when a deposit was found in Namibia. This stone is known for its brilliance and remarkable beauty.

David WeissDavid Weiss

Graduate Gemologist, GIA
Certified Appraiser