How to Pick a Tourmaline Stone

Adrian Pingstone, Jurema Oliveira

Tourmalines are gorgeous semi-precious gemstones that come in a wide variety of colors to please any taste. Prized for their multicolored beauty, tourmalines have been used as healing crystals as far back as the ancient Egyptians. Read on to learn more about this fascinating gem and how to pick the right tourmaline stone for you.

Choose a tourmaline for color. Tourmalines come in such a wide variety of colors that it's no wonder the ancient Egyptians thought they passed through a rainbow on their way to the earth's surface. Black tourmaline accounts for the majority of tourmaline that has been found, but tourmaline in hues of blue, red, green, yellow and purple are also available. There is even a variety of tourmaline called "watermelon tourmaline" that is green tourmaline with pink tourmaline at its center. This variety is particularly beautiful for jewelry.

Ask before you buy. Natural tourmaline can have a number of treatments done to it before it leaves the jewelry store. Some tourmaline is altered by irradiation to improve the gem's color. This process is very difficult to detect and has no impact on the value of the gem. However, be sure to ask your jeweler if your tourmaline has been clarity-enhanced. Clarity-enhanced tourmaline has a lower market value than an unaltered gem.

Choose tourmaline for health. Black tourmaline, also known as schorl, is not only beautiful but has long been thought to guard against high radiation and strengthen the nervous system. Schorl is also linked to and thought to have positive effect on the root chakra. To receive the benefits of black tourmaline, wear schorl against the body as jewelry or place black tourmaline on the part of the body you want to benefit. Discharge black tourmaline under running water and recharge by placing in sunlight for a few hours.

Let your body benefit from the healing powers of gorgeous green tourmaline. Green tourmaline, also known as verdilite, is said to strengthen the immune and nervous systems, as well as strengthen heart muscles and stimulate digestion. Just as it is thought to have healing powers on the heart, green tourmaline has been linked with the heart chakra. Green tourmaline is discharged jlike black tourmaline; under running water and recharged in the sunlight.

Use blue tourmaline to fight water retention. Blue tourmaline, also known as indocolite, is said to encourage detoxification of the body, strengthen the immune system, and guard against throat and bronchial infection. Because of this, blue tourmaline has been linked to the throat chakra. Blue tourmaline has also been identified as a positive healing gem for Libras. Just like black and green tourmaline, blue tourmaline can be discharged under running water and recharged in sunlight.