Rock Discoveries

Gemstones: How to Avoid Scams and Fakes

Shopping for gemstones can be an exciting and rewarding experience. Whether you’re just starting out or are an experienced collector, there are many ways to buy stones, both online and in-person.

In this article, we’ll explore the pros and cons of buying gemstones online and in-person, as well as offer some helpful tips and recommendations for making the most of your shopping experience.

Buying Stones Online

The internet has opened up a whole new world of shopping opportunities, and buying gemstones is no exception. However, there are some risks associated with buying stones online.

For one, it can be difficult to verify the quality of the stones without seeing them in person. Additionally, it can be challenging to determine the authenticity of the seller.

When buying stones online, it’s important to do your research and only buy from reputable sources. Some popular online marketplaces for buying gemstones include Etsy, eBay, Amazon, and GemRockAuctions.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that there are also many private websites out there that sell gemstones, and some of these may be scams. One website that is highly recommended for buying gemstones online is AsherGems.

This site offers high-quality gemstones at a fair price, and the owner is known for his excellent customer service. However, buying from private websites always comes with a certain amount of risk, so be sure to do your due diligence before making a purchase.

In-Person Shops and Shows

While buying stones online can be convenient, there are also many advantages to buying in person. For one, you’re able to see and touch the stones before making a purchase, which can be helpful in determining their quality.

Additionally, you’re able to talk to the seller and get a firsthand sense of their expertise and experience. One popular place to buy gemstones in person is at gem and mineral shows.

These events bring together vendors from all over the world, giving you a chance to see a wide variety of stones and meet experts in the field. The competition at these shows can also drive prices down, making it a great opportunity to find deals.

Rock shops are another option for buying gemstones in person. These shops specialize in selling a wide variety of rocks and minerals, and many also carry gemstones.

Some shops may even allow you to view the stones under a microscope, giving you a chance to see the unique features of each stone up close. Finally, flea markets and swap meets can also be a great place to find gemstones.

While these markets are often known for selling inexpensive goods, you never know what kind of treasure you might find. Be sure to do your research beforehand, so you know what to look for and can recognize a good deal when you see one.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to buying gemstones, there are many different options available to you. Whether you choose to buy online or in person, be sure to do your research and only buy from reputable sources.

Additionally, keep in mind that different sellers may have different pricing and quality standards, so it’s always a good idea to shop around and compare prices before making a purchase. Overall, buying gemstones can be a fun and rewarding experience, no matter where you choose to do it.

By following the tips and recommendations in this article, you’ll be well on your way to building a stunning collection of gemstones that you can enjoy for years to come. Gemstones have been prized for their beauty and healing properties for centuries.

However, the industry is not without its challenges. With many different types of gemstones available on the market, it can be easy to fall prey to scams and fakes.

In this article, we’ll be discussing some tips for avoiding scams and fakes when shopping for gemstones.

Importance of Avoiding Scams and Fakes

Buying a fake or a scam gemstone can be a frustrating and expensive experience. Not only will you have wasted your money, but you’ll also be left with a worthless product.

Additionally, some fake or scam gemstones can be harmful if they’re worn or used in certain ways. Therefore, it’s crucial to learn how to spot fake and scam gemstones, and take steps to avoid them.

Checking Product Reviews

Reading product reviews is an excellent way to gauge the reputation of a vendor or seller. These reviews are typically written by previous customers, and they can give you valuable insight into the quality of the stones and the customer service provided by the vendor.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that fake reviews are also a possibility. Look for reviews that provide detailed information about the product, and be wary of reviews that seem overly positive or negative.

Focus on Metaphysical Properties

If you’re interested in the metaphysical properties of gemstones, one way to avoid scams is to pay attention to the properties of the stone you’re interested in. Scam sellers may advertise false or exaggerated claims regarding the healing properties of the gemstones they’re selling.

By educating yourself on the properties of different gemstones, you’ll be better able to differentiate between legitimate and scam sellers.

The Clear Obsidian Test

One way to determine if a gemstone is fake is to perform a clear obsidian test. Obsidian is a type of volcanic glass that is known for its transparency.

To perform this test, place the gemstone on top of a piece of clear obsidian. If the gemstone is a fake, the obsidian will not be visible beneath it.

On the other hand, if the gemstone is genuine, you should be able to see the obsidian underneath.

Selling Andara Crystals

Andara crystals are a type of gemstone that have grown in popularity in recent years. These crystals are believed to have healing and metaphysical properties.

However, there are many fake Andara crystals on the market. When buying Andara crystals, it’s crucial to do your research and only buy from reputable vendors.

Look for vendors who are able to provide detailed information about the origin of the crystals and their properties.

Comparing and Contrasting Prices

Another way to avoid scams and fakes is to compare and contrast prices between different vendors. If one vendor is selling a gemstone for significantly less than other vendors, it’s possible that the stone is a fake.

Conversely, if a vendor is selling a stone for an exorbitant price, it may be a sign that the stone is not genuine.

Educating Yourself on Fakes

One of the best ways to avoid scams and fakes when shopping for gemstones is to educate yourself on the different types of fakes and scams that are out there. Some common types of fake gemstones include synthetic gemstones, which are manufactured in a lab to look like natural gemstones, and glass-filled gemstones, which are treated with a type of glass to enhance their appearance.

By familiarizing yourself with these types of fakes, you’ll be better able to spot them when shopping for gemstones.

Asking Questions and Examining Pictures

Finally, when shopping for gemstones online, it’s important to ask questions and examine pictures of the stones before making a purchase. Legitimate sellers should be willing and able to answer your questions and provide you with detailed information about the gemstones they’re selling.

Additionally, clear pictures of the stones can give you a better idea of their quality and authenticity.


The world of gemstones can be a fascinating and rewarding one, but it’s important to be vigilant when shopping for gemstones to avoid scams and fakes. By following the tips outlined in this article, you’ll be better able to differentiate between legitimate and scam sellers, and build a collection of high-quality gemstones that you can enjoy for years to come.

In conclusion, whether you’re shopping for gemstones online or in person, it’s important to do your research and carefully evaluate the stones before making a purchase. Look for reputable sellers who offer detailed information and can provide clear pictures of the stones.

Focus on the metaphysical properties of the stones, perform the clear obsidian test when possible, compare prices and educate yourself on fakes. By keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to building a stunning collection of gemstones that you can enjoy for years to come.


Q: How do I know if an online seller is reputable? A: Check the seller’s ratings and reviews, and research their business history and customer service.

Q: How can I determine the quality of a gemstone I’m buying in person? A: Observe the stone’s clarity, color, cut, and carat weight, and ask the seller for information about the stone’s grading and certification.

Q: What should I do if I suspect a stone I’ve purchased is a fake? A: Contact the seller and ask for a refund or an exchange, and report the incident to the appropriate authorities if necessary.

Q: What are some common types of fake gemstones? A: Synthetic gemstones, glass-filled gemstones, and imitation gemstones are among the most common types of fakes.

Q: Can I buy gemstones at a discount without risking buying a fake? A: Yes, but it’s important to research the seller and compare prices with other vendors to ensure the stone is genuine and fairly priced.

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