Back to IGS | FAQ | Contact

Black opal

Hi again…I’m obsessed with opals and have another one I would like your opinions on. This one is a 7.6 carat black opal with blue flashes of color. In your opinions, is this opal smoked? I don’t care if it is as I love this stone. I paid $8.50 for it and it reminds me of a thunderstorm. I’d love your opinions and any information you would like to share. Thank you

Hi, on inspection of the opal just by the images it does appear to be smoked. I have a couple smoked opals and they have a distinct black body to it different from untreated opals. But it is beautiful, may I ask have you ever had this opal subjected to any moisture or water? Like out in the rain or washing. As I have noticed with smoked opals of this nature they tend to go completely black and lose their fires, and after couple hours of drying come back to life.


At a price of $8.50 you must strongly consider it is only a “fashion” gem. But it is very pretty and well worth the price. Just be careful with its wearing and cleaning. You want it to last forever.

1 Like

Hi, it has a very similar look to some of the Andamooka Opal as per attached![P102andamooka-opal-rough-parcel-top-gem_1_bc7b945cd3ff4dc6b8f8d60e6fa3d7f81 09331|690x467]

1 Like

Thank you for responding! To answer your question, no, it has never been subjected to water. I bought it as a rub and my friend polished and set it. I just got the ring a month ago and have not wore it, other than to marvel at it. It may not be a great opal and it’s probably smoked, but I love it. I hope it doesn’t lose its color.

A fashion gem?!! So you’re saying it’s not a real opal, because of the price I paid for it?? You wouldn’t believe the gemstones I’ve bought for extremely low prices. It’s a real opal- smoked more than likely- but real nonetheless. Thank you for responding

Thank you! These are gorgeous!!

1 Like

‘fashion gem’ just means that it is to wear and enjoy, not investment quality or museum quality etc, not that it’s fake.

1 Like

I understand the meaning now. Fashion gem just sounds like a snooty way to say it’s not worth much, because it’s NOT museum or investment quality. So where is the line drawn from fashion gem to investment gem? Is there a dollar amount? Is it ok to set investment gems into jewelry, and if so, does it diminish the value of the stone? What qualifies a stone to be museum quality? I mean, I’ve seen some opal jewelry that’s worth thousands of dollars. Are those considered ‘fashion gems’ or investment gems? I’ve never purchased a gem strictly for its value. I’m a blue collar worker that buys stones that appeal to me to be set into jewelry. When I find a stone that I know is worth way more than I paid for it, it’s a thrill. I don’t have a high end budget or a professional jeweler to set them. But I do have some gorgeous jewelry to pass down to my grandkids, and to me, that holds the most value. Thank you for responding.

I can see how it comes off as snooty!

I’ve been playing with the idea of making a youtube video about this, so this thread really crystalizes that for me.

It’s a bit of a long answer, I’m going to try to get back to it, if I don’t, I will make the vid and link it for you. :slight_smile:

1 Like

Thank you! I would love to see a video explaining all this. I was asked if it had been exposed to water, which it has not. But now I wonder what the best way is to keep it from crazing. Should I put it in water? Mineral oil? Leave it the hell alone?! I have also heard that smoked opals- if it is actually smoked- lose their color over time. I thought I had a pretty good grip on opal info, but every time I turn around, I learn something new! I definitely want this to last forever. I did notice an odd phenomenon. I used to be able to see a slight flash of green in the stone and it’s no longer there. It is very humid right now and I don’t know…does weather play a role in opals? How does one care for opals that are set into jewelry, as some opals lose their color if exposed to water. Ok I’m rambling here. So thank you for responding and I look forward to your video or any information!

I am tempted to agree with SYDP , I have treated andamooka and have a few that are similair in color , Does it have a high polish

1 Like

I’d also love to see a video of this topic. I’ve been looking for something to include on my website about this very topic. Please tag me when you have something created.

1 Like