Another popular member of corundum family is sapphire (Ruby is the other one). Myanmar Sapphire is mined from Mogok area.
Myanmar sapphires exist in blues, pinks, yellows and in clear color. Unheated medium tone intense blue commands the highest price.
Sapphire is a versatile gemstone for jewelry. In addition to the readily available faceted sapphires from tiny to 3ct sizes, there are beautiful cabochon cut blue sapphires from translucent to opaque in various sizes. These provide an opportunity for a unique one-of-the kind jewelry pieces at various budget levels.
Like Star-Ruby, there is a Star-Sapphire. The “Star” is a light reflecting or shimmering on top of cabochon cut sapphire in blue to grey tones. The light reflection is a result of optical phenomenon called “Asterism” which is caused by needle type inclusions in the gemstone. A perfect Star-Sapphire would be centered and have six even, clear rays on a blue gemstone, when viewed from the top. These are rare.
Sapphire is believed to have number healing properties. It is said to boost intuition, mental clarity and spiritual power as well as aid in personal and spiritual growth.
Like Ruby, Sapphire hardness (resistance to scratches) is 9 (max 10) while toughness (resistance to chips, breakage etc.) is good, making it an excellent gemstone to wear in jewelry.
Sapphire is the birthstone for September.