What is spinel, and all you need to know about it.

Spinel is a gemstone that has been shining in the spotlight recently, gaining the attention of new jewellery aficionados as well as seasoned collectors. Spinel is found in a wide array of colours, and some of the vibrant colours in blue, pink and red can be very rare and valuable.

Why you should get a piece of jewellery with spinel?

Spinel’s somewhat recent rise to wider prominence has left some unfamiliar consumers to be hesitant about getting jewellery with the gemstone, thinking it may be “trendy”, and having inflated value. However, we are here to prove that in sharp contrast, spinel is a most exceptional gemstone and has been undervalues in the past!


Durability: Spinel is ranked 8 out of 10 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness, just under Corundum (Sapphire and Ruby). It is also an exceptionally tough crystal, and it is highly resistant to scratches and cracks, making it a very durable gemstone.  These hard-wearing qualities make Spinels perfect for everyday wear, and for those who wish to wear it every chance they get.


Creating timeless jewellery: As spinel comes in a wide variety of colours, some being very rare and unique, you can easily use it to create a unique piece of jewellery that can’t be found anywhere else. Colours such as Lilac, Mauve, Orange, Rose, Purple and Blue-Green are still very affordable, and share all the superior surface lustre, internal “fire” and durability of more costly intense Reds, Pinks and Blues. “Cobalt Blue”, “Jedi Red” and “Mahenge Pink” Spinels are extremely rare, and clean well-cut stones can be very valuable indeed, and these stones have seen a steady rise in price and desirability, most notably so since 2008.

Natural and Untreated: Many gemstones undergo heat treatment to enhance their colour and/or clarity, but Spinel does not benefit from such treatment and almost all stones are completely natural and free of manmade enhancements. This is a big benefit, as 100% Natural gemstones are most desired by gem lovers and collectors. The natural inclusions in Spinel can be very interesting in a microscope, resembling flying asteroids and perfect octahedral “plates” and crystals, and it is often featured in gemological photographs!


Versatile: Once again, the exceptional variety of enchanting colours in spinel come into play. It complements other gemstones well and can be used to unleash your creativity when designing a piece of jewellery. Both faceted stones and Cabochon-cut spinels show superior lustre and have top durability for rings, bangles and daily wear jewellery, making it a top choice for finer quality jewellery designs.

Is spinel valuable?

Yes, spinel is a valuable gemstone!


Being a very close mineralogical “cousin” to rubies and sapphires, this gem has captured the attention of top jewellers and gemstones aficionados for many years. In the past, it has frequently been mistaken for the more well-known cousins due to its vivid red and blue hues, which have led to an amount of mystery surrounding it. The 170 carat Black Prince’s Ruby in The State Crown of the UK is in fact a Red Spinel, as is the 352 carat Timur Ruby, also in The Crown Jewel Collection. So Spinel does indeed qualify as an exceptional and  “Precious” Gem!

How should I take care of it?

Spinel is rated high on the Mohs mineral hardness scale, just 2 points below diamonds, so we suggest that it be kept separated from your other pieces of jewellery. This is to prevent metals, Pearls, and softer gems from being scratched by the spinel. If your spinel jewellery gets dirty, you can simply clean it using warm soapy water and a soft cloth.


Spinel is highly resistant to chemicals, so normal glass cleaners and hot water are fine to use if your Spinel jewellery is especially dirty.


Normal common rules for jewellery care should be followed, which are:

  • Don’t wear to the beach!
  • Take off before bed
  • Clean regularly to maintain shine and sparkle


But you don’t need to treat your spinel jewellery like it’s made of glass, as its superior toughness and durability make it a prime choice for everyday wear!

Where can I get such a piece of jewellery?

You can get it right here at La Putri!


We have always appreciated fine Spinels, and La Putri has been collecting and featuring lovely Spinels of all kinds into our jewellery since the early 1990’s.

This lovely Lilac Spinel is set with a pair of Baby Pink Sappires to make a unique and stunning ring, suitable for a special occasion, or even as an Engagement ring.

These fiery Vivid Red Burmese Spinels glow in a delicate pendant set with White Sapphires and Diamonds.

Want to know more about spinel?

Contact us today if you have any questions, and feel free to visit our store to view more pieces of spinel jewellery!