Hi, I’m Bess. I have been working with crystals for 7+ years. Are opal and opalite the same? Today we will discuss opalite vs opal, and the difference between opal and opalite.
What Is Opalite?
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The Origin Of Opalite
To start, we will discuss the word opalite and its origins. Where this word first got used was back in about the 50s or 60s. It was used for what is now called common opal. Common opal is the type of opal that contains no flash inside of it, so it’s opal but with no color play.
Over the years, the word opalite then became used for different types of stimulants of opal(synthetic opal look-alikes). So this could be any form of plastic, glass, acrylic, or a lot of other things that looked like this stone.
The term opalite now in the modern day is slowly being shifted away from these synthetics and look-alikes. They are usually typically branded as such so that a synthetic opal will be marked as a synthetic opal.
Is Opalite Man-made?
The term is now being used for what we call opalite as a gemstone, but it’s not really a gemstone. What is currently known as modern-day opalite is actually a man-made created opalescent glass.
While yes, it’s not a naturally occurring gemstone, it doesn’t mean that we can’t appreciate it for its natural beauty and properties.
Does Opalite Have Healing Properties?
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Many metaphysical practitioners heavily use opalite as a meditation aid. When you’re looking to purchase opalite, what you’re looking for is a nice milky color that will shine in different colors. You’ll get blues and sometimes some yellows, whites, and creams. It’ll showcase a lot of different colors.
What Is Opal?
Where Do Opals Come From?
Real opal will come from various locations, but the main deposits are actually from Ethiopia and Australia.
What Elements Make Up Opal?
First, we’re going to talk about what makes up opal. Opal is a form of silicon dioxide, which is the same chemical formula as quartz, but what makes it different and unique is it’s actually essentially super hydrated. That means there’s a lot higher water content in it.
This higher water content makes it a much more softer and brittle stone compared to quartz. Because of this chemical makeup, it is actually defined as an amorphous mineraloid stone.
So this means that it essentially has no crystal structure. Quartz has a specific shape of the crystal on the inside structure, whereas opal is scattered and created in all different spots. There’s no real pattern to the internal part of the stone.
How Does Opal Get Its Color?
The scattered nature is actually what causes the color play that you see in the beautiful opals that are out there. What happens is the light will enter into the stone, reflecting off of these random particles that are inside and re-emits as all the wonderful colors you see in opal.
What Are The Different Types Of Opals?
To start, let’s see an opal that comes from Ethiopia.
The Ethiopian deposits are clear, so you can see through them. Hence, many people actually mistake them for opalite, thinking that they’re fake stones but actually authentic. They have a lot of different color play in them. They’re super fun stones.
The next is an opal that comes from Australia. This one is called a doublet. So, this one’s a triplet. That means there is a base on the bottom of the slate, a glass cabochon over top to protect it, and a thin layer of the opal right in the middle.
Australian opals are typically more creamy, with all the color play shining through.
Lastly, I will show you a couple of other types of opal.
This one is what’s called fire opal. This one comes from Mexico. It’s called fire opal not because of its color play but because of the color of red and oranges you get.
Common opal can be a variety of colors, anywhere from creams, pinks, greens, all the different colors, but you’re not going to see any of that wonderful magical color play inside of it.
Conclusion On Opalite vs. Opal
That’s what we have for you today regarding covering opalite vs. opal. I hope we covered enough differences for you to be able to determine this yourself when you see it. Most reputable resellers will be able to disclose this information for you. But if you’re confused about what you’re looking at, you should be able to see the differences yourself now.