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Wondering if the malachite beads are real - would they chip to reveal white?

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My husband just came back from India with a beautiful necklace ostensibly of malachite beads.  When i looked closer, a few of the beads have chipped revealing a white surface.  My gut says that malachite would be green all the way through so a chip would only reveal green, but it isn't a stone I'm overly familiar with.

Did he get the real thing or was he sold something else?
asked Oct 27, 2015 by Diana NC (120 points)

1 Answer

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Malachite is carved and sanded into shapes. Chipped malachite does not show white. Real malachite will seem heavy and cold. Imitations will warm quickly in your hands, plastic and glass mostly. Plastic will melt with a hot needle, they also make it from dust and waste malachite with polymers. If you are not sure, any lapidary can tell you. If you have the packaging there may be a hint, they call it blue malachite and silaceous malachite, misleading the customers. Actually had a guy come to this site to ask how to synthesize turquoise for jewelry. Asked which dyes were most successful.....hope for the best
answered Oct 27, 2015 by Weasel (40,240 points)
 


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