What is Turquoise?Turquoise is a crystalline mineral made up of hydrated copper phosphate and aluminum. The mineral is formed from a chemical reaction when water containing aluminum and copper flows or drips through rock: these mineral-rich deposits then turn into clumps of natural turquoise. The blue stone has green undertones and may contain tiny cracks with branching veins of red, gray, or brown. Polished gemstones may also be speckled with pyrite. Typically opaque, with coloration ranging from powder blue and sky blue to blue-green and yellow-green, turquoise beads and stones make stunning jewelry. Turquoise has a distinctive luster, with a waxy and somewhat glass-like surface appearance. Its unique and striking beauty makes it a prized stone in the jewelry design market.
The History of TurquoiseThe word turquoise comes from the French turquois, meaning Turkish, and dates back to the 1600s. The blue-green mineral was likely so named since it was imported into Europe via Turkey after being initially mined in Persia, or modern day Iran. Deposits can also be found in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, Chile, Tibet, Mexico, and the United States. Here in North America, it is found across the Southwest and is often a byproduct of copper mining. Turquoise is widely used in silver jewelry made by indigenous peoples in the Southwestern U.S., Mexico, and elsewhere in the world. To enhance its strength and durability, natural turquoise may be stabilized before being drilled, carved, or polished into beads for jewelry designers and craftsmen.
Imitation TurquoiseAfrican turquoise is actually a teal-colored jasper and generally features beautiful black or brown mottling. This imitation turquoise is more common, and less expensive, than the real stone and is practical as well, since it is more durable than real turquoise. Other minerals that mimic turquoise include dyed magnesite and howlite, which start out white with black veining. Additionally, bone-beads can be colored to resemble any number of stone beads, Turquoise being one of them. These Turquoise-colored bone beads can be used either as an imitation of the stone, or as an accent to existing stone beads in a piece of jewelry. Scrupulous suppliers always disclose imitation turquoise and label beads accordingly.
The Psychology of the ColorTurquoise as a color is said to induce or evoke clarity of mind, idealism, and open communication. Since turquoise is comprised of blue and green shades, depending upon the exact mineral content, the psychological meaning of those colors may play into how turquoise is perceived. For example, the color blue has strong associations with the earthly elements of sky and water. Because of this, blue tends to imply purity, cleanliness, and trust and is often found on medication packaging, healthcare branding, and financial sector and technology company logos. Blue may also be seen as an indicator of loyalty and integrity, which may have to do with its use in the military. Green is the color of growth and balance, perhaps because the color is often found in, and associated with, nature and plant life. The relationship is so close that the word greenery is synonymous with foliage or plants in general. The color green can suggest either positive feelings of self-reliance or negative ideas of possessiveness or jealousy. Although the exact significance and true meaning of it is of course personal to the viewer or wearer, the combination of the two hues in turquoise consequently imparts a feeling of revitalized energy, tempered with a welcome, peaceful calm.
Popular Turquoise Bead ShapesTurquoise comes in many shapes in sizes: it’s a versatile material that can be applied to numerous forms of art and expression. Some of the most popular include:
- Oval or round beads
- Square or rectangular beads
- Rondelle beads
- Pillow beads
- Teardrop beads
- Seed beads
- Chip beads
High-Quality Turquoise-Colored BeadsOur gorgeous turquoise-colored bone beads allow creative jewelry designers to fashion unique and stunning rings, pendants, necklaces, earrings, bracelets, brooches, cufflinks, string ties, belt buckles, and much more. Mimicking the natural turquoise look at a fraction of the price, they can either be used in place of the stone to considerably lower the cost of a piece, or they can be used in conjunction with stones in order to accent their appearance. Let our beads inspire you to design all manner of jewels to adorn the fingers, wrists, necks, and ears of discerning men and women everywhere.