If you have a piece of ruby jewelry, you may be concerned about the authenticity of the stone. Here are some tips to help you tell if your ruby is real:
Rubies are red.
Closely observe the color of your stone. If your gem is a bright red color, you may have a genuine ruby. Stones that are fake are usually a bit dull, and they may not display the deep, rich hue of a real ruby. Instead, the color of a fake stone tends to be lighter. If your stone is a deep burgundy color instead of vibrant red, what you thought was a ruby may actually be a garnet.
Does it make the cut?
When you look at your stone under a magnifier, such as jeweler's loupe, you should see sharp edges on the facets. If the ruby appears rounded or has dull edges, it is most likely a reproduction.
Scratch and see.
Using a coin, scratch the surface of your stone. If marks appear on the gem, your ruby is probably not real. Genuine rubies are extremely hard and won't display scratches.
Look for perfection.
Using a loupe or a strong magnifying glass, carefully look at the gem in the light. If your ruby was mined, it should not be flawless. However, rubies that were created in a lab may not show discernible inconsistencies. In addition, the flaws in a ruby should never display as bubbles. If you see bubbles, you are probably dealing with a glass stone.
Compare and contrast.
Hold up a piece of red glass next to your stone. If the glass and the stone have similar color depth and refract light in the same way, your stone is likely a glass reproduction.
Use your stone to scratch a hard surface in the same that you would use sidewalk chalk. A real ruby may leave scratches on the hard surface, but it will not leave red residue. If your stone leaves red marks, it is not a genuine ruby.
If you have a piece of jewelry with a beautiful red stone, your gem could be an expensive, genuine ruby. However, glass reproductions that mimic the look of rubies are common. Testing your stone at home can help you identify a fake. Nevertheless, to ensure the authenticity of a ruby and learn its value, have your jewelry appraised by a jeweler, like Certified Gem Lab. He or she can assess your stone and even issue a certificate of authenticity as proof that your stone is real.