A lavender to purple gemstone, sometimes wrongly named as “purple Turquoise.”
When the gem was first discovered in Siberia, Russia in the 1940s, it was simply known as the “Lilac Stone”. In the 1970s the gem burst onto the international gem scene and it was renamed Charoite after the river Charo from where it is mined. To-date this remains the only known location for this gemstone.
Its appearance is similar to how you might imagine a purple Turquoise to look, with individual swirling patterns of white, grey and black veins and a lustre that appears slightly silky. Its structure can be compared to a Lapis Lazuli as it too is constructed of several minerals including Feldspar and Tinaksite (a complex mineral composed of many elements including Calcium, Manganese, Titanium and Iron).
Similar to Turquoise, the gemstone is normally reconstituted to make it more durable for setting in jewellery. For this reason, as is the case with Turquoise, cleaning your jewellery with a steam or ultrasonic cleaner is not recommended.
Crystal Healers believe that Charoite jewellery should be placed beneath your pillow to aid a good night’s sleep and that the gem helps to cleanse and purify the body.