Did you know that the oldest item of jewelry ever discovered so far is a set of shell beads that are about 150,000 years old? Today, we have many more choices of jewelry, including a wide variety of gemstones and metals. Turquoise, in particular has been used for jewelry for a very long time, and few other stones can compare to its unique blue shade. 💙
But what are turquoise cabochons, and how do they compare to other types of genuine turquoise for sale, such as facets? Is there much difference between cabochons and facets when it comes to wearing turquoise as jewelry? Keep reading and learn more about why this particular cut of turquoise is so popular. ✨
What Are Turquoise Cabochons Exactly?
A cabochon is not limited to turquoise alone. Any kind of gemstone can be cut en cabochon. A cabochon is nothing more than a particular gemstone cut.
You have likely seen gemstones cut this way before, but you may have not realized that they were en cabochon. Many semi-precious stones, such as turquoise gemstones, are in this fashion. This is because cutting a stone in this way can show off much of the stone's color and other unique features.
A cabochon is a gemstone cut into the shape of a dome. It is very smooth due to the polishing process it has to go through. The majority of the gem cut in this fashion is rounded except for the flat bottom.
The Versatility of Cabochons
However, cabochons don't have to be limited to a simple circular shape. You can easily find cabochon gemstones in the shape of ovals, rectangles, and even squares. The main theme of this cut is that the gemstone should be smooth and convex on top while flat on the bottom.
But what is the point of turquoise cabochons for sale, you might ask? Is there any point in cutting a gemstone in this particular way compared to other gemstone cuts? More often than not, cabochon providers will specifically cut a piece of turquoise en cabochon if that piece of turquoise has some sort of unique or impressive feature.
For example, suppose that a piece of turquoise has a very beautiful dark streak running across it. Cutting the turquoise in a traditional way could easily end up destroying this unique feature, or it might deform the feature somehow. But when you cut the turquoise en cabochon, you don't cut away too much of the stone itself.
What You Need to Know 📝
To get a gem en cabochon, you will aim to smooth out the surface of the stone until it achieves a dome-like shape. This will preserve the majority of the stone's features. That way, once the stone is polished, you will be able to admire whatever unique features the stone has.
Another reason why jewelry makers may use cabochons in their jewelry has to do with their opacity. For example, gems like emeralds or diamonds are very transparent, which allows light to filter through them and produce a very visually appealing effect. However, turquoise and other similar stones are too opaque to allow light to filter through them in this way.
For that reason, if you cut turquoise in the same way you cut a diamond or ruby, it wouldn't look very attractive because the turquoise wouldn't be able to reflect light in the same way. Instead, to maximize the turquoise's attractiveness, cutting the stone en cabochon will ensure that the turquoise will be able to show off its color as much as possible.
The great thing about cabochons is that they are very accessible and one-of-a-kind. Turquoise wholesale vendors often sell this type of jewelry because they are so popular. More than that, cabochons are ideal for stones that are a bit on the soft side and might otherwise fall apart if you tried to cut them in any other way.
But what about faceted gemstones? How do faceted gemstones compare with gemstones cut en cabochon, and is one better than the other?
What Is Faceting and What Makes It Unique?
If you go into your average jewelry shop, you will find that the majority of the jewelry there will have faceted gems. Why might this be, you might ask? First, let's explore what it means for a gemstone to be faceted.
Faceting is nothing more than a particular way of cutting a gemstone. It involves creating many cuts with flat surfaces across the gemstone. These cuts aim to give the stone a particular shape and maximize the stone's attractiveness.
Cutting a gem in a particular way will change the way light filters through it and, as a result, it will change the overall appearance of the gem. However, you should know that there is not one single way to facet a gemstone. There are four main ways to facet a gemstone: there are brilliant cuts, drop cuts, step cuts, and mixed cuts.
Gemstone Shapes 🤩
Within each of those cut types, there are more specific types of gemstone cuts. This makes it, so there is plenty of variation when it comes to choosing a gemstone shape. For example, round cuts are particularly popular, especially for diamonds, because they involve so many cuts to create a circular shape.
Because so many cuts are involved, much of the gemstone will be lost as a result. For that reason, gems cut in this way tend to be more on the expensive side, especially diamonds used for diamond rings. However, many people find that the price of this special cut is worth it because of how the cut makes the gem look.
Because there are so many flat surfaces on a round gemstone, the light will have the chance to reflect and refract onto and inside the gemstone in countless ways. As a result, the gemstone will be sparklier than a gemstone cut in any other way. This is not to mention that faceting a gemstone can not only make it sparkle more but enhance the depth of its color as well.
This is ideal for gemstones with rich colors such as emeralds, rubies, and sapphires. This is also great for gemstones that have some kind of flaw to them. For example, if there is a diamond with a flaw, the jewelry maker can easily cut out the flaw by faceting the stone.
However, the only downside of faceted gemstones is that faceting only works on transparent gemstones. If you try to cut an opaque stone in this way, it won't look all that great.
But when it comes to choosing a nice piece of jewelry, which is better: a faceted gem or a gem cut en cabochon?
Are Facets or Cabochons Better for Jewelry?
Facets and cabochons are completely different from each other. For that reason, one cut is not any better than the other. However, they do create very different looks when it comes to gemstones.
For that reason, when buying a piece of jewelry, you will want to think about what you're looking for and what you want your next piece of jewelry to look like. Many people tend to like faceted gemstones because they are so dynamic and eye-catching.
They can direct light further and deeper into a gemstone where the light will make the gemstone almost look like it has a glow of its own. You can also do this with turquoise, but the light won't shine through because of the stone's opaqueness.
Which Is Better? 🤔
On the other hand, cabochon stones are also unique. While they might not be able to direct light as faceted stones can, cabochons have the ability to show off an opaque stone's color in a very striking way. You can find cabochons in many shops that sell more casual pieces of jewelry, although cabochons don't always provide a casual look.
Some are very elegant, and you can wear them to virtually any occasion. This is not to mention that cabochons are much more affordable than faceted jewelry. If you're on a tight budget but still want to have a few pieces of nice jewelry on hand, then cabochons are your perfect solution.
All About Turquoise Cabochons
Turquoise cabochons are perfect if you love the variety of colors that turquoise provides and want to admire it all day. A cabochon is simply the cut of a stone, usually into a dome shape. A facet, on the other hand, involves many flat cuts, and it is usually reserved for transparent gems.
To learn more about gemstone shapes, contact us here. 💚 We're happy to answer your questions!