Why Is This Amethyst Losing its Purple Color and Becoming Cloudy?

Amethyst, with its captivating purple hues and crystalline structure, has fascinated humans for centuries. Its color ranges from delicate lilac to deep violet, making it one of the most sought-after gemstones in the world. However, like all precious things, amethyst requires care to maintain its natural beauty over time.

If you’ve noticed that the amethyst displayed in your home is fading and losing its vibrant purple color, several reasons could be causing this change:

Exposure to Sunlight

This is probably the most common reason amethyst begins to fade. That’s because amethyst is sensitive to prolonged exposure to sunlight, particularly to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. UV light can break down the color-causing agents within the amethyst crystals, leading to a gradual loss of its vibrant purple hue. This process is somewhat similar to how fabrics or paints can fade over time when exposed to sunlight.

Heat Exposure

High temperatures can alter the crystal structure of amethyst. This alteration can affect the oxidation states of iron impurities (which give amethyst its purple color) or cause internal fractures due to thermal expansion and contraction. As a result, the amethyst may lose its color intensity and appear lighter or even develop a yellowish tint.

Chemical Exposure

Amethyst can be sensitive to contact with chemicals found in cleaning agents, cosmetics, or even natural substances like sweat. Chemical reactions can affect the surface of the crystal, leading to a cloudy appearance or a loss of the crystal’s natural luster. It’s essential to clean amethyst gently using mild soap and water and avoid harsh chemicals to maintain its clarity and color.

Internal Strain or Inclusions

Some amethyst crystals may contain internal strains or inclusions of other minerals. These can interfere with the passage of light through the crystal, causing it to appear cloudy or less transparent. While such inclusions are natural and can give amethyst its unique character, excessive internal strain or numerous inclusions can reduce its clarity and brilliance.

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