How to spot treated opal

This week Justin will take you through some obvious and not so obvious differences between natural Australian black opal and treated black opal.

Key factors on how to spot a fake —

Polish — treated opal doesn’t have a high polish, ripples are usually present on the outside of the gem.

Double-Sided — natural black opals can be double-sided but most treated opals are double-sided and are cut with an obvious sharp edge from the dome to the back.

Red on Black — when you see a lot of black in the gem it’s a red flag — most treated opals sit around an N1 or N2 with flecks of color.

Green — the green in treated opals are a really distinctive type of green color and you’ll be able to tell the difference once you see a few treated opals.

Honeycomb Potch — This is a dead giveaway — nothing Australian has a honeycomb potch.

Transparent — When you hold treated opal up to the light it compares to looking through glass, it is very see-through, unlike most natural black opal.

In summary —

All opals are special and have their place in the world — as long as you know exactly what you are purchasing.
Be sure to do your research and make sure you are dealing with a reputable seller of opal or gems.

We hope you got a lot of information from the video and we will strive to continue our education to about all things opal.

Find here a similar video we made almost 10 years ago —
You can find some of our past blog posts on the subject here —
1. How to spot a fake black opal
2. Ebay and fake Lightning Ridge opal

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