If you’re concerned about getting a Moissanite ring that has a yellowish tint to it, you want to find ways to make a Moissanite that you already own to look more colorless, or you’re worried that your stone might yellow over time, keep reading, because we’ll address all fo those issues (and more) below.
Why does Moissanite look yellow? Stones made in nature, or in a lab, often have a yellow hue to them. Moissanite is no exception. The cause is often elements, like Nitrogen, that get trapped as the stone forms or the extreme heat and pressure of the creation process. More colorless versions are often available but sell for higher prices.
If you prefer Moissanite that’s colorless, or near-colorless, keep reading. We’ll help you understand how to steer clear of the more tinted stones.
Different Eras and Classes of Moissanite
Just like lab-created diamonds, Moissanite has seen major strides in product quality and selection over the past 10 years. Older Moissanite more commonly had a yellow overtone to it. The technology just didn’t exist to produce truly colorless stones.
If the stones from older Moissanite rings were graded on the same D to Z color scale that diamonds are generally graded on today, they would likely fall somewhere in the range of ‘G’ through ‘J’ (at best).
Today, Moissanite is available in a wider range of shades and colors than ever before. You can now purchase a Moissanite stone that could rate ‘D’ or ‘E’ (completely colorless or nearly colorless) on the diamond color scale…and STILL save a BOATLOAD of money over the cost of a comparable diamond!
A Yellow Hue is Common in Many Types of Stones & Gems
A slightly yellowish hue to some stones isn’t unique to Moissanite. In fact, the vast majority of natural diamonds have a yellow hue to them too. Even lab-grown diamonds often have a yellow tint, in fact, I published an article about this several months ago. Most diamond buyers don’t buy “colorless” (DEF) diamonds—especially when they’re looking to wear a larger stone. Colorless diamonds (particularly larger ones) are much more rare and expensive. Want proof? I just researched prices with a trusted online diamond retailer. Here’s what I found…
A two-carat diamond with VS1 clarity, an Excellent cut, and a J color-grade starts at about $12,000. If you’re determined to get a colorless version (a D grade) of the same diamond, it’s going to cost you just over $24,000. That’s 100% more expensive, based only on the difference in the gem’s color.
Again, Moissanite also offers you the ability to choose a slightly colored option at a lower price or a completely colorless stone for a higher price. A 2.2 carat Moissanite that falls in the G, H, I spectrum is about $1,100. The same 2.2 carat stone in a D color (completely colorless) runs $1,600.
Colorless Moissanite is 94% less expensive than the colorless diamond that’s also .2 carats smaller in this case! My purpose in sharing this pricing is to illustrate how color impacts price. The fact that some Moissanite stones have a little more yellow tint than others is often a good thing—because it gives buyers greater ability to make ‘strategic trade-offs’ in order to get the ring they want—at the price they NEED. If they want a larger stone, they might be willing to take a slightly tinted center stone in order to get the look of the larger stone size that they’re after, while still staying within the confines of their budget.
When I mention a yellow tint to some Moissanite, please don’t misunderstand. The distinction between various color options is typically pretty slight. Check out the side-by-side comparison of three different grades of Moissanite in the following video. You can see a difference if you look closely, but it’s a fairly subtle distinction between each stone.
If you want to save money on your stone, but also want to minimize the yellowish appearance of a particular stone that you’re considering, the color of your band could make a really a big difference. If you get a stone that has a slight tint to it, you’ll probably want to avoid light-colored metals like white gold or platinum. Using yellow gold, for example, will help to camouflage any color that’s in your ring. It really does make a difference.
On the flip side, you may be wasting your money, if you spend extra to get a completely colorless ring Moissanite and then set it on a yellow-gold band for example. The color of the gold can reflect off of the stone, making it look slightly tinted. Colorless stones often look best when they’re set against a light-colored setting.
When you place a Moissanite stone that has a yellow overtone against a light-colored band (as shown below), the color that’s in the stone becomes far more prominent.
Will Moissanite Gradually Yellow Over Time?
There are several varieties of stones with coloring that’s impacted by exposure to the sun or other common elements, but Moissanite isn’t one of them. It’s a stable stone, so its colors won’t change as time passes. The color that you see when you first buy or receive your Moissanite, is the exact same color that you’ll see when you look at it decades from now.
Tips for Buying Colorless Moissanite & Keeping it Colorless
If you like the look of colorless Moissanite, I have several buying tips that should help.
- Buy high-quality Moissanite from trusted retailers. Don’t go for the cheapest stone that you can find. Quality often costs just a little more, but it’s a small investment when you’re talking about a lifetime of usage, and the difference in quality can be substantial. We share information on the company that we like most HERE.
- Purchase smaller Moissanite stones. Small stones always look more colorless than larger stones. The same is true with mined diamonds. Clustering smaller stones with poorer coloring can be a strategy for saving money, while still having the look of colorless stones.
- Stick to brilliant round cut or cushion cut Moissanite. The cut can make a real difference in how colorless a given stone appears. Brilliant round cuts channel more light back up through the table of the stone, which can help it appear more colorless that it would be if it were cut in some other shape.
- Remove your ring before cleaning with harsh chemicals! While Moissanite is a pretty fuss-free stone, you should avoid contact with harsh chemicals. Not because of potential color change specifically, but just because you never know the kind of impact that contact with those agents might have on any given stone. I wrote a whole post on protecting your Moissanite that may want to review.
Temporary Yellow or Gray Hue on Moissanite
Because we’ve only been talking about inherent, or permanent, color qualities to this point, I wanted to take a moment to let you know about temporary (and fairly infrequent) color variation that can happen because of certain lighting conditions and viewing angles with Moissanite. This is a very temporary color phenomenon that’s common to Moissanite where the stone takes on a short-lived yellow undertone.
I gave my wife a Moissanite ring for our anniversary about six months ago. She has mentioned several times over the past six months that she has seen the stone take on a light yellow undertone while she’s driving with her hands are sitting high on the wheel. It only seems to happen on very bright sunny days, and only from a very particular angle. When she moves the position of her left hand, or heads into different lighting, completely normal coloring returns.
Again, the effect is the result of lighting and angles, meaning that if someone were beside you looking at the same ring, they may not see an undertone that you spot for a brief moment, because they’re viewing the ring from a different angle. Here’s a picture of my wife’s ring.
I took pictures of the ring, from lots of different angles, for nearly an hour, trying to catch glimpses of the yellow hue that I mentioned above. It’s not an easy thing to do, but my wife confirmed that the following image is a good representation of the yellow undertone that she sometimes catches sight of as she drives. Again, once she moves her hand, the ring returns to fully normal coloring.
Many happy Moissanite owners that I’ve communicated with through the years actually love this characteristic of their Moissanite ring. They feel like it’s something fun and unique about their stone. Since it’s temporary, and because it’s something distinctive and special about Moissanite, they really enjoy it when they catch those moments.
You can now purchase Moissanite that has a slight yellow hue, or completely colorless versions of the stones. You can even find fancy colored options (check out the related posts section below for more information on those). Because you can count on the color of your ‘Moissy’ to stay the same throughout the years, and because Moissanite is such a scratch-resistant stone, it makes a wonderful forever stone that doesn’t have to come bundled with a mountain of debt!