What is the smoked opal?

Posted By: Alessandro Gabrijelcic In: News Opalemio On: Comment: 0 Hit: 19615

What is the smoked opal?

Many Ethiopian opals are sold in their natural state, and some are treated. Their porosity makes them good candidates for dye, smoke treatments. All of these treatments, when disclosed, reduce the price of the opal to much less than natural opal with the same appearance. When undisclosed they can deceive inexperienced buyers and sometimes even experienced buyers.

Smoke is a suspension of very fine particles in air or gas. Fine smoke particles can enter the pore spaces of opal and change its body color. The smoke treatment can be done by wrapping the opal in paper and heating the paper to a temperature that produces smoldering. The smoldering paper releases fine particles of black soot that enter the pores of the opal and darken its body color. The darker body color contrasts with the opal’s play-of-color, making it appear stronger and more obvious.

OpaleMio does not sell smocked opals.


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