Kyanite Gemstone Information
Even if you adore gems, there’s a good chance the kyanite gemstone hasn’t crossed your radar. While it’s a beautiful stone, it isn’t widely known. As a result, many people miss out on a breathtaking gemstone simply because they weren’t aware of kyanite.
Luckily, by learning more about the kyanite stone, you can get a chance to appreciate it. If you’re wondering, “What is kyanite?” or are curious about the kyanite stone’s color, properties, and more, here’s what you need to know.
So, what is kyanite? While many people refer to it as a kyanite crystal, kyanite is really an aluminosilicate mineral. Clay-rich environments are necessary for its formation, growing into long, distinct crystals.
In most cases, raw kyanite forms as bladed crystals, though it occasionally will develop as a radiating crystal mass. As for its hardness, that technically varies depending on the angle. Parallel to the kyanite crystal’s length, it’s usually between a 4.5 and 5 on the Mohs scale. Perpendicular to the kyanite stone’s length, 6.5 to 7 is more likely.
Since kyanite essentially has two hardnesses, it is hard to cut. However, that doesn’t stop people from turning them into breathtaking faceted gems.
Another interesting fact about kyanite is that it shouldn’t be left submerged in water. If it is, the kyanite gem can actually dissolve, making it fairly unique in the world of crystals.
When people ask, “What does kyanite look like?” one of the big things they are curious about is the gem’s coloring. Kyanite crystals come in several hues.
Generally speaking, blue kyanite is the most common. It can range in hue from a vibrant royal blue to a softer robin’s egg. In some cases, there will be delicate gray or near-white sections, depending on the specimen.
Green kyanite is far rarer than its blue brethren. It may also come in a variety of shades, including jade, forest, and olive. Usually, these stones have a streaked or mottled appearance, featuring many shades within the same stone.
Gray and black kyanite are also available, though not as widely as blue kyanite. With these, if they lean in any color direction, it tends to be toward blue. However, some may seem slightly green.
In some cases, you’ll even find white kyanite. In most cases, clear sections will feature less translucent streaks, though some gems may be practically fully transparent.
The History of Kyanite
The name kyanite is Greek in origin. It’s derived from “kyanos,” a Greek word that means “blue,” paying homage to the gemstone’s coloring.
However, kyanite has gone by different names over the years, including “cyanite,” “disthene,” and “rhaeticide.” In some cases, the name variants apply to different life phases for the stone, while others are simply regional.
If you’re wondering, “What is kyanite used for?” you may be surprised. Kyanite stones have played a prominent role in manufacturing, particularly when it comes to mortars, bricks, porcelain, and similar materials.
Kyanite is also occasionally used in the creation of products that need significant heat resistance, such as brakes for vehicles and spark plug insulators. At times, it finds its way into abrasives, especially those where heat resistance is a must.
However, while there are many industrial kyanite uses, it’s also an ornamental stone. The crystals make their way into jewelry, and raw kyanite is a favorite among gem collectors.
Where Is Kyanite Found?
The kyanite gemstone is usually found alongside metamorphic rocks, at times with mica, garnet, and quartz. In some cases, it may be found with igneous rocks such as granite, though this isn’t as common.
As for leading Kyanite producers, several countries have notable deposits. France, India, South Africa, and the United States are all known sources of kyanite.
However, kyanite has been found in several other countries. Australia, Brazil, Kenya, Myanmar, Switzerland, and Yugoslavia all have the gemstone within their borders.
Kyanite jewelry isn’t something you’ll find at a chain jeweler. However, its striking coloring and translucent to transparent nature are very popular with independent designers.
Usually, jewelry-quality kyanite stones are either cut into cabochons or are faceted into traditional gemstone shapes. Often, the approach is based on the quality of the gem, with those exhibiting exceptional clarity more likely to be faceted.
In some cases, raw kyanite is also simply tumbled. This allows them to have a cabochon-like appearance while maintaining a more organic shape overall.
Kyanite beads are also incredibly popular. While spherical beads are available, kyanite is also shaped into rondelle beads, giving them a final shape closer to a donut or disc instead of a ball.
As with all other gems, the kyanite meaning can vary depending on a person’s belief system. Additionally, the stone’s color can play a role.
Generally, many feel that the blue kyanite meaning focuses on communication, truth, and connection. It’s also connected to the throat chakra due to its color.
With green kyanite, there’s a connection to the heart chakra instead. Additionally, it’s said to promote a sense of calm and make it easier for a person to open up their hearts to others.
Black kyanite relates to the root chakra. Many think it can keep a person grounded and stable, ensuring they aren’t thrown off balance by the unexpected.
As for kyanite healing properties, those also vary. Some associate the stone with pain relief, lowering blood pressure, reducing inflammation, and overcoming trauma. On the mental side, some think that kyanite can assist with anxiety and anger, soothing aggressive emotions and imbuing nurturing energy.
However, it’s important to understand that there isn’t any proof that wearing, holding, or meditating on the kyanite crystal has any health benefits. It’s never wise to try and treat or prevent a medical condition by using stones. Instead, seeing a doctor is always your best bet, ensuring you get proper medical care when you need it.
Stones Similar to Kyanite
If you’re looking for alternatives to the kyanite stone, there are quite a few options, depending on the color you’re after.
For blue kyanite gems, it can depend a bit on the shade. Iolite, sapphire, spinel, topaz, tourmaline, and zircon could all potentially work, depending on the precise hue you’re after.
If you’re looking for something a bit opaquer, which you’ll more commonly see in kyanite beads, sodalite may be a reasonable choice. Some blue agate could work as well, though its tendency toward stripes may make it less suitable.
As a substitute for green kyanite, you may want to consider malachite. While it isn’t as translucent, it can be found in similar shades. Green turquoise could also be worth considering, as well as green clinochlore.
For gray kyanite, smoky quartz might be your best bet. It’s got a similar coloring, and it is widely available, making it an affordable alternative.
With white kyanite, quartz is also a great choice. If you’re trying to find a stand-in for black kyanite, zircon, tourmaline, and spinel may all be worth checking out.