These are apparently dyed, does this mean they are not turquoise?

After my previous post about this ring and pendant, I started to worry. I’ve never “tested” turquoise but I did swab the backs of both stones with acetone and the blue came right off. So - I swabbed the slab I got from a completely different dealer at a completely different time and while the blue didn’t come off at all, the brown matrix color did. So, does this mean none of the three pieces are turquoise? If that’s the case I will seek a refund on the ring and pendant. Thanks in advance -

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Hmm…same. No color from the finished side of the stone though, only from the back. Like there is some sort of glossy coating on the front and sides only. Curious.

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I do not have a good feeling about this. Anxiously hoping someone can shed some light.

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I gotta admit, something about the pieces just seemed slightly off to me. I can’t put my finger on it, just didn’t seem to have the right look, but I’m kinda surprised at AC’s.

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So would this definitively mean the stones are not turquoise, but some other stone dyed to look like turquoise?

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I don’t really know. I don’t know if they ever use dye when they stabilize or not. Somebody else that knows more will jump in.

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I’ve heard a phrase “colorshot” that I think is basically dying paler colored turquoise darker. I don’t know if that’s what this is or not, but I don’t think it’s dyed Howlite or Magnesite.

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And if they did, would they dye it and then stabilized or was it all one process with dye added to the stabilizing solution.

I just found the original open back setting in my scrap pile and popped it back in to show you what it looked like. Only bought it for the stone.

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I did read that turquoise never has a “glassy” finish, and that’s what struck me when I opened the package and took out the ring and pendant. REALLY high gloss, slick finish. That and the white color along the edge of the pendant. From the backs of the pieces they are some type of stone, I don’t know if that means they could be enhanced turquoise or if they are a whole different animal. And the slab - ?? But the ring and pendant were sold to me as turquoise and if they’re not, I do need to request a refund. I think I will only ever buy turquoise again from the store in Tubac. And even at that, with a reputable dealer, it appears if you didn’t mine it yourself, it’s all just a guess. It’s very discouraging.

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Don’t be too discouraged. I have bought A LOT of turquoise from many different reputable shops, and none of it has been not turquoise. But I only buy Native American jewelry, and only from places I trust, and this is one of the reasons I mostly don’t shop online (I also prefer to buy in person to see how things truly look). If I were to online shop I would (again) only buy from reputable shops. There are others on here who shop on eBay, but I’m a little too nervous to do that. What has helped me is a book I bought years ago (I think from a National Park store) called Trading Posts Guidebook, and I have used it extensively to know where to go. Any of us here can give you our favorite places to look.

I really can’t answer whether it’s fake or not; I have just looked at a lot of turquoise, and it becomes a gut feeling about how something looks. But, once again, I’m extremely careful where I buy, and what to ask.

As far as turquoise never having a “glassy” finish, I’m not sure I totally agree with that, although I’m uncertain exactly what that means. I have a couple of really nice natural stones that are very shiny because they were also very hard.

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And I don’t know they aren’t turquoise, but clearly there seems to be some sort of dying process involved. I wondered if the ring and pendant could a turquoise composite. Agree they don’t look like Howlite.

I’ll definitely check out that book. And honestly, I don’t think I’ll get anything from anywhere else except the shop I trust in Tubac, or a shop or dealer recommended in this forum. Only problem is, I’m across the country from Tubac. But they ship. :grin:

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Off the top of my head, check out Perry Null (NM) and Garlands (AZ) to start; they have websites. The authors of the book are Patrick Eddington and Susan Makov. I need to see if there is a new edition. Not only does it describe all the trading posts/shops, it also has a lot of history and photos. Quite a few of the stores have websites. If you can travel to northern AZ and NM and visit, you will learn so much. When I visited, so many of the trading post owners/shopkeepers have been so generous with their knowledge. One of my favorites is Ogg’s Hogan in Prescott, AZ, but I don’t believe they have a website.

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I will say, that for the price I paid, and as nice as it looked, I suspected something might be fishy. But I figured, with the setting that it was in that it was probably low quality turquoise from the middle east that had been color enhanced somehow and stabilized. I agree with @Ziacat on the high gloss, I think that’s usually indicative of a really hard stone with high silica content. And that would be troubling to think they might be able to make a composite that looks that close to real. I’ll keep digging.

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I’m pretty sure I’ve read that turquoise can be stabilized both with and without adding a dying agent.

Following because I have a couple of these pieces. Open backed, similar setting and the “turquoise” looks amazing. Inexpensive. I’ve also come to suspect that it’s not actual turquoise, but boy is it a pretty imitation. Really glossy finish on the front. Scary if they’re getting this good on imitations, but I suspect they are. AC I’m with you in hoping against hope it might be low grade turquoise from the East, but if I had to bet, I’d bet not.

Hope someone here knows for sure!

Update: adding pics of the 2 I have and yup color from the unfinished side, but not the finished side.



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Check out Siderolite and dyed Imperial Jasper.

I have some Imperial Jasper that was dyed turquoise that looks very similar.

Siderolite is a combo of Turquoise dust, a brown rock dust and resin.

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@fernwood That makes sense to me upon looking these terms up - I see what you mean - One of mine has an area where it looks like the “finish” didn’t cover and it does look a very dusty reddish brown, that I tried to get a shot of - could fool someone into thinking it was actual matrix, vs a sort of manmade matrix. Clever and ok I suppose, unless promoted as something it’s not. I’m seeing a lot of this out there. Promoted as the real thing. :frowning:

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I’m curious because I don’t shop for turquoise online, but where are these being seen? Ebay, etsy, store websites, who’s selling them?

@Ziacat I’ve seen them on Mercari, Ebay, Poshmark, and Etsy. I suspect they are on other sites as well that I don’t go to. I think @fernwood has nailed it. There’s no doubt they’re pretty, but I guess technically these would be man-made composite “stones” that probably may or may not have any actual turquoise in them. I would bet there are some firsthand sellers - perhaps from the East based on the settings - that sell them and now they are in the secondhand market as well. I couldn’t give you all the details, I just know what I’ve been seeing. After purchasing a couple, you kind of get an eye. The original poster stated s/he could probably return for a refund, and since they were sold as actual turquoise, they may want to consider doing that, though I don’t really know about that slab. :woman_shrugging:

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I bought a strand of polished/drilled mini-slab beads from Michaels about 3 years ago.
They really looked like Turquoise.
Used as focal beads for necklaces.

I did not misrepresent what they were.

Found a couple of photos and more info.
They were listed as Natural Blue Imperial Jasper. They are dyed blue and a composite material.
I paid $3.00 for the strand.
Hope the photos and info help others.

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