ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Paraiba Tourmaline a Rare & Expensive Gemstone

Updated on January 31, 2019
greatstuff profile image

Mazlan has an affinity for trivia and fun facts that he loves to share with others.

Paraiba tourmaline loose stones
Paraiba tourmaline loose stones | Source

Paraiba Tourmaline Price per Carat

Paraiba Tourmaline gemstone is one of the rarest and most expensive gemstones in the world. Although not listed in the top ten most expensive gemstones category, it is trading between US$10,000 to US$50,000 +/- per carat depending on the size and quality of the gemstone. It was US$6,000 to US$15,000 per carat when I wrote this article in 2012. The most expensive gemstone is Jadeite, which is over US$3 m per carat.

Paraiba stones usually come in sizes less than one carat and it is rare to find it in sizes more than one carat.

Paraiba Tourmaline from Brazil

It is a relatively new gemstone and discovered only in the late '80s by Heitor Dimas Barbosa in Paraiba, Brazil. That is how it got its name. Besides Brazil, this gemstone was mined in Nigeria and Mozambique in Africa.

It makes its debut at the annual Tucson, Arizona gem show in the early '90s and became an immediate hit. It is rare for such new gem variety to cause so much excitement in the gemstone world, and so quickly.

Brazilian Paraiba Tourmaline Ring
Brazilian Paraiba Tourmaline Ring | Source

Why Paraiba Tourmalines Are Unique and Exciting

The excitement is probably due to its color. It has a unique neon blue glow that people described it as 'neon' or 'electric' which is a cross between green, blue and turquoise.

Paraiba also has an intense shine and glow, with an intensity that is not commonly found in other gemstones.

Paraiba stone crystal
Paraiba stone crystal | Source

Paraiba Tourmaline Color

This striking green and turquoise hue are due to the high proportions of copper. It is also responsible for the deep glow.

In order to remove other minerals such as manganese that are present in the stone, a 'burning' under high heat technique is used. This is part of the gemstone's cutting process. This leaves only copper in a concentrated form to produce a gemstone that has pure vivid color.

Paraiba Tourmaline Stone

If you buy a Paraiba gemstone and that has not gone through the 'burning' process, then it is not a Parabai tourmaline.

This vivid color is only seen in cut and faceted Paraiba stone and it is not present in the uncut stone. This unusual glow, which sometimes described as 'fire' make Paraiba a highly collectible gemstone. The most prized and expensive are those with the intense 'neon blue' color.

Why is it Expensive?

The relatively high price for Paraiba gemstone, in the jewelry making business, is due to several reasons:

  • The attractive color of Paraiba has increased the popularity and demand worldwide
  • It is a rare gemstone
  • Can only be found in Brazil, Nigeria, and Mozambique in areas that are rich in copper
  • It is manually mined with wedges and sledgehammer, and the mining conditions are tough. The rough Paraiba gemstone can only be found in small veins within the stone

Paraiba Tourmalines are priced and evaluated in a similar manner as diamonds. It uses the four C’s of cut, color, carat, and clarity.

Carat Size

A carat is roughly a fifth of a gram

Why is Paraiba Gemstone Rare

Within a short period of Paraiba tourmaline discovery in Brazil in 1987, the mine was completely mined and fully depleted of this gemstone.

Paraiba Tourmaline from Mozambique and Nigeria

Then, about a decade later, similar gemstones were discovered in Nigeria in 2001 and Mozambique in 2004. Within a short span, these were also completely mined.

This is mainly due to the small number of tourmalines in the stone veins.

With no more mines and other known sources, the Paraiba tourmaline gemstone remains a rare and priceless gemstone.

Paraiba Tourmaline from Mozambique and Nigeria are cheaper compared to Brazilian Paraiba Tourmaline and are from US$2,000 to US$15,000 +/- per carat.

Where To Buy Parabai Gemstones

Just like most expensive gemstones and jewelry, Paraiba tourmalines are sold mainly in the most upscale and upmarket jewelry stores.

However, you can also buy them online from reputable designers and stores and even on eBay. Be extra careful and do your research when you buy these gemstones online and buy only from reputable sellers.

Lawsuit on the use of Paraiba name

Stones mined in Nigeria and Mozambique do not have the same brilliance and vivid color as those mined in Brazil. However, they were still called Paraiba gemstone.

In the original lawsuit, claimed that the name Paraíba was wrongly used and hijacked by the American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) and others to describe similar gemstone mined from other countries. They claimed that these stones are of inferior quality and hence, should not use the term Paraiba. It should only be used to describe gemstones mined only in Paraiba, Brazil.

Unfortunately, lost and this lawsuit dismissed. The name ‘Paraíba’ can now be used to describe gemstone of such composition and characteristic that is not only mined in Paraiba, Brazil, but also from Nigeria and Mozambique.

Paraiba Tourmaline Jewelry- a Real Treasure

Paraiba Gemstone Continues to be Favorites with Buyers

The AGTA or American Gem Trade Association's Gem Fair show is always considered and judged as a reliable source of the hottest and latest gemstone trend.

Based on the 2012 show, gemstones that were in the buyer's favorite list include the Parabai Tourmaline. This favorite gemstone trend continues even in 2019.

This is not a surprised as Paraiba's color, luminosity, and its rarity have achieved great popularity not just with buyers, but also with jewelry designers.

© 2012 Mazlan


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • greatstuff profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Malaysia

      @billybuc, Thanks for dropping by and I am glad this hub has enlighten you on Paraiba gemstone

      @teaches12345 . Paraiba is indeed a pretty gemstone. I went to the jewelry shop to view their Paraiba collection and both my wife and I were mesmerized by the color. Cannot afford to buy though!

      Always enjoy hearing from both of you!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      7 years ago

      This is a very pretty gemstone. I love to just look at the lights reflected from them. I don't know if I will ever own one, but it is nice to look at them. Interesting facts and trivia on this beautiful stone.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      7 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I know practically nothing about gemstones, so I found this interesting and informative. Good job and thanks for the education.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)