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What is Jade: Jade Gemstone vs Jade Imitations

What is Jade: Jade Gemstone vs Jade Imitations

There may be many confusions with this greenish alien-like rock, is it a stone or a gem? Could it be worth a lot? Is it rare? Are there more than one type of this rock? 

When most people think of jade, they think of China because of the cultural and artistic tradition of jade in the country. Although it has historically been used outside of Imperial China for ornamental objects, tools, and weapons, jade is actually more important in China than in other areas. The tradition of gem-carving is thousands of years old in China with jadeite jade, one of the two types of jade, as the important material. Jadeite was first discovered in China from Burma (now Myanmar) in the late 1700s. The Chinese believe that jade helps with the clarity of the mind and purity of the spirit. Because of its hardness, stone age workers frequently used the stone to make tools and weapons. Interestingly, ancient cultures with jade artifacts all used it independently as an important stone, with no contact or trading with one another.

Many people get tricked by merchants who claim that any green stone is jade since green is such a well-known thing about jade, but it isn’t jade if it is not jadeite or nephrite, the only two types of jade.

Faux Jade

Jade is a lovely stone that comes in a variety of colors, including green, orange, and white. The majority of us usually think of the green-colored jade. However, because jade is a very popular and expensive stone, there are many fakes, imitations, or treated jades on the market. According to historical records, the Chinese began dyeing jade to improve its color in the 13th century. 

Hydrogrossular             Serpentine Jade  
These are some more examples of imitation jade: prehnite, chrysoprase, aventurine, and serpentine.
Serpentine jade, chalcedony jade, mountain jade, and grossular are some examples of faux and imitation jade. These stones are frequently softer and will fail the common scratch test used to verify the authenticity of genuine jade where you use a steel knife to try to scratch the “jade” you are testing. Furthermore, while many people regard jade as a precious gem, these stones are only semi-precious. While these substitutes may appear similar, there are only two true types of jade: jadeite and nephrite. Many vendors will also identify their imitations using the word “jade” in the name with names such as “African jade'' or “Amazon jade''. These are faux jade and are all varieties of the stones, but not jade. 

When we talk about jade, we are referring to the gemstone. There are often many misconceptions about what jade is since there are many imitations. These are not the genuine gemstones, but rather other minerals that resemble them in appearance.

Now that you have learned more about what fake jade is, come check out 100% certified grade A jade jewelry at Dahlia. If you are still curious about how to tell real and natural jadeite, we have some methods in our other blog post.

Curious for more information on jade? Interested in purchasing your own jadeite jade jewelry? Visit us at 

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