Five Things to Consider When Buying Fire Opals

So even though Fire Opals are from outside Australia we thought these five tips would be handy. They are most commonly found in Maxico and generally embedded in volcanic rock formations near the Yucatan Peninsula in Southern Mexico.


Fire opals are extremely fragile in nature, and unfortunately can be prone to crack within just a few months of wear. Check if the fire opal retailer keeps the stone for at least a year before selling it, and if they offer a guarantee against natural cracks and fissures. Most reputable dealers do!


Look closely at the brightness or clarity of the fire opal. Are there any inclusions? If so then its possible the stones value will be decreased.

The Cut of the Fire Opal

Cabochons with good color play are generally more valuable than faceted fire opals.


Color is one of the most important features in determining the value of a fire opal. Fire opals may run the gamut from deeper red, to orange, to yellow. Red stones are typically the most stable, though red-orange is a more desirable color. The more rich and lively the color, the better and generally the more valuable. Unlike standard opals, flashes of color play are not as common, so a fire opal without color play is still valuable. However, stones with red, orange, yellow, or even a blue color play flash in the light can be considered particularly valuable. You should check how the stone looks under both natural and unnatural (florescent) light in order to judge it's appearance.


The carat size of an opal can increase it's value, roughly the same as a diamond. Be sure that the stone has good depth and can withstand being set in jewellery.

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