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Where can I sell my loose gemstones, birthstones and crystals?

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Gemstones, including rubies, emeralds, and sapphires, can be sold for cash, much the same as diamonds and other jewelry. However, more often than not, those stones have very little resale value, though the gold they are set in is valuable.

This post summarizes how to understand the value of your gemstone and the process of how to sell gemstones for the highest price to reputable gemstone buyers.

Selling your gemstones

Selling your birthstones

Selling crystals

Selling your gemstones

If you have loose gemstones or gemstone jewelry you'd like to sell, here's what you should know:

Are gemstones worth anything?

While there are a number of factors that will influence the value of your gemstone, the most important are the same as for diamonds:

  • Color: What specific color or hue is your stone? The rarer and more vibrant the color, generally speaking, the more valuable your gemstone.
  • Clarity: The clearer your stone, the more valuable it will be.
  • Carat: The larger your gemstone, the more valuable it will be.
  • Cut: If your gemstone is processed, the specific cut and quality of cut will impact its value.

Also, any stone treatments (such as heating) can potentially impact value greatly, even if the result is a large, clear, and vibrant stone. The origin of colored stones can also play a large part in their value.

For example, with all factors being equal, an emerald from Colombia is worth more than an emerald from Zambia, just like a Burmese ruby is valued higher than one from Mozambique.

While it may be possible to reference online charts and resources to conduct some sort of assessment for yourself, in order to get an accurate picture of your stone’s worth you need a gemstone appraisal.

Antoinette Matlins, a professional gemologist and member of the Accredited Gemologists Association, has authored 7 books on gemstones and jewelry. She recommends finding an appraiser through organizations like the Accredited Gemologists Association, which has a directory on its website.

“Retaining a knowledgeable, reliable gemologist or gemologist-appraiser can increase the likelihood of you not becoming a victim of fraud or misrepresentation by a dishonest dealer or retailer,” Matlins says.

What are the grades of gemstones?

According to the Gemological Institute of America, there is no standard quality-grading scale for gemstones.

In most gemstone grading reports, gemologists simply note whether a gem is “eye-clean” (meaning inclusions aren’t visible to the naked eye) or has visible inclusions, which lower a gem’s value. GIA groups colored gems into three clarity types1:

  • Type I (usually eye-clean)
  • Type II (usually included)
  • Type III (almost always included)

While it isn’t an “official” grading system, many individual companies follow these designations:

AA-AAA Grade:

  • Near perfect
  • More expensive
  • AAA usually reserved for more expensive gems like rubies, emeralds, and sapphires
  • AA usually reserved for stones like amethyst and garnet
  • High transparency
  • Vivid and even color saturation
  • Not usually color enhanced
  • Typically faceted cut

A-B Grade:

  • Slight inclusions
  • Good transparency
  • Well cut
  • Slight color variations or streaks

C-D Grade:

  • More inclusions
  • Low transparency
  • Varying cuts and styles
  • More noticeable color variations or streaks

What is the highest quality of gems?

The highest-quality gems have no inclusions visible to the naked eye, are vibrant in color, and are typically more expensive gems like rubies, sapphires and emeralds. GIA would rate the highest-quality gemstones as Type I, while most individual companies would issue a AAA designation.

These are the 10 most valuable gemstones in the world:

  1. Blue Diamond – $3.93 million per carat
  2. Jadeite – $3 million per carat
  3. Pink Diamond – $1.19 million per carat
  4. Ruby – $1.18 million per carat
  5. Emerald – $305,000 per carat
  6. Alexandrite – $70,000 per carat
  7. Musgravite – $35,000 per carat
  8. Red Beryl – $10,000 per carat
  9. Black Opal – $9,500 per carat
  10. Tanzanite – $1,200 per carat

Matlins says there are “no rules” for which gemstones will maintain their value over time.

“Most people don't realize that many ‘mall stores' work on a 3-4 times mark-up, whereas fine jewelers such as Tiffany or Cartier work on a 2-times markup or less,” Matlins says.

The finer the quality of the gemstone, the rarer and more expensive it will be, of course. But as diamond resale value is plummeting in recent years, gemstone resale value has always been low. If you have anything other than a very large and fine ruby, sapphire or emerald, your jewelry is likely only worth the value of scrap metal it is set in.

Good news is that gold and silver are near record highs. Learn more about selling gold, and selling silver.

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What is the difference between precious vs. semi precious gemstones?

According to the International Gem Society,2 today’s gemologists don’t typically classify gemstones as precious or semi precious anymore because these terms imply that some gems are worth more than others, which isn’t always the case.

Instead, gemstones are priced based on their beauty, rarity, durability, size, color, clarity, cut, and carat.

How much is alexandrite worth?

Alexandrite is a popular gemstone in how its color can change in different lights: blue or green in daylight, and purple, pink or red in incandescent or candlelight. As such, the value of your alexandrite is most impacted by the purity of its color, as well as how dramatic and noticeable the color change.

Other factors, such as clarity, carat size, and cut will also determine the value of your alexandrite. Low-quality alexandrite can sell for as little as $100, but high-quality stones can sell for tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

How much are emeralds worth?

As mentioned above, color, clarity, carat, and cut will all determine the value of your emerald. The most important of these factors, however, is color. 

The most valuable emeralds are typically those that exhibit a vivid, saturated, not-too-dark bluish-green to a pure green color. The color should be evenly distributed throughout the gem, and the gem should be fully transparent. Generally speaking, the richer and more saturated the hue of the emerald, the more valuable it will be. 

Emeralds sell for anywhere between a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. 

How much is a ruby worth?

As with other colored gemstones, color is one of the most important factors determining the price of your ruby. The most valuable of rubies tend to be an intense deep red in color, and may even be a slightly purplish red. Likewise, the clearer the stone—the fewer inclusions, or impurities—the more valuable it will be. 

While richer and deeper hues are typically better for gemstones, if a ruby is too dark in color, it may actually negatively affect the price.

This is typically a concern with stones that are so dark that the color of the ruby cannot be appreciated because it absorbs too much light. On the other end of the spectrum, once they are clearly pink and not red, they’re pink sapphires, and they can also fetch competitive prices. 

Generally speaking, the rarer the color, the more valuable the ruby will ultimately be. The most common hues falling in the middle of the spectrum between pinks and deeper reds can sell for hundreds or thousands of dollars, with rarer and higher-quality stones selling for tens of thousands of dollars. 

How much is a sapphire worth?

The value of sapphires, like rubies and emeralds, is predominantly tied to the color of the stone. Stones that have a high degree of clarity, color intensity, and saturation will be worth more than stones of lesser quality. Note: Treatments a stone may have undergone will play a part in its final value.

Heating sapphires and rubies to achieve a more desirable color is an accepted treatment, so untreated stones with naturally desirable colors are rare and hence valued more.   

While most people think of blue gemstones when they think of sapphires, the truth is that these gems can be found in a wide range of colors. Blue, pink, purple, orange, and yellow sapphires are all highly sought after. One of the rarest, and therefore most valuable, of colors is the Padparadscha sapphire, which is pink-orange in color.

Sapphires range in price from hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on size and quality.

How much is opal worth?

Opal is a unique stone in how it reflects light, and as such the value of opal is often tied to these unique qualities.

The class (single vs. doublet vs. triplet) body tone (white vs. black opal), play of color (variety of colors reflected in light), brilliance (clarity of the stone), and internal pattern can all significantly impact the value of an opal. Rare opals can sell for hundreds to thousands of dollars, while others are worth tens of dollars.

What's the best place to sell gemstones?

In my experience, selling to a reputable online buyer will get you the most money for your gemstones. However, if time is of the essence, the best place to sell your gemstones may be a local antique dealer or pawn shop.

The process of selling gemstones typically involves getting an estimate, either by mail or in person, and accepting an offer. 

Moissanite vs diamond: What to know about resale value in 2024

Cubic zirconia vs diamonds: What to know before you buy

Places that buy gemstones locally

Whether your gemstones are loose or are a component of jewelry, you may be able sell your gemstone to the same buyers that might be interested in purchasing diamonds or precious metals.

Jewelers, gemologists, gemstone dealers, diamond buyers, diamond exchanges, antique dealers, and local pawn shops may accept gemstones. Some may even specialize in buying and selling stones. Selling through a consignment store is also an option.

There are pros and cons to selling locally: Pros include that you may personally know and trust a gemstone buyer, and it can feel safer to sell in person.

However, note that your sapphire, ruby, emerald, pearls or semiprecious stone like topaz or amethyst is probably not very valuable—though the gold or silver in which it is set is actually very valuable right now—with gold prices around record highs:

As of , the spot gold value in the United States was trading at $ per ounce, or $ per gram. 

Learn more about the price of gold and selling gold for the highest price, the best silver buyers, as well as what platinum is worth.

What about selling to an online gemstone buyer?

Many online diamond buyers also buy other types of gemstones. These businesses have good reputations and are incentivized by sheer internet competition to pay the highest price, and maintain a good, honest business because their potential client base is national or international — and not just local.

Plus, online businesses do not have to invest in expensive retail locations or sales people, which keeps their costs down, and can pass the savings on to buyers in the form of higher prices paid out.

Note that diamond prices have fallen more than 30% over the past year, so you can expect less than half of what you paid retail for your diamond jewelry.

As lab-grown diamonds become more popular, and diamonds overall are less popular, experts expect diamond prices to fall further. We suggest selling now.

How to get a gemologist’s appraisal

You can find appraisers who specialize in appraising gemstones; many jewelers and buyers also appraise stones. The most accurate gemstone appraisal will require laboratory testing to measure color and clarity against scientific benchmarks and recent market data — whether yours is a loose stone, newer piece, or estate or antique jewelry. More on where to get a jewelry appraisal.

These posts will help you understand more about reselling fine jewelry for the highest price, including necklaces, engagement rings, earrings, bracelets, and pieces from Tiffany and Cartier — as well as watches.

Selling your birthstones

These are the current birthstones according to the International Gem Society3:

  • January – Garnet
  • February – Amethyst
  • March – Aquamarine
  • April – Diamond
  • May – Emerald
  • June – Alexandrite
  • July – Ruby
  • August – Peridot
  • September – Sapphire
  • October – Tourmaline
  • November – Topaz
  • December – Blue topaz

IGS says the list of birthstones most well-known in the United States originated in Poland between the 16th and 18th centuries. However, in 1912, the National Association of Jewelers released a list of “modern birthstones” that included only transparent gems (the list that appears above).

This was apparently done to make it easier for jewelers to create jewelry that featured the birthstones of a woman’s children.

These are some alternative birthstones for different months:

  • March – Bloodstone
  • June – Pearl
  • August – Spinel and Sardonyx
  • October – Opal
  • November – Citrine
  • December – Turquoise, Lapis Lazuli, Tanzanite, Blue Zircon

Which month’s birthstone is most expensive?

There is no single birthstone that is considered the most expensive. Each individual stone is priced based on its rarity and quality — color, clarity, cut, and carat weight — though diamonds, rubies, emeralds, and sapphires generally sell for the most money.

Selling crystals

According to IGS,4 a crystal is a solid whose atoms are arranged in a “highly ordered” repeating pattern called crystal systems. While some gemstones are crystals, not all crystals are gemstones.

Diamonds, amethyst, aquamarine, and citrine are examples of gemstones that are also crystals.

How to sell crystals online

If you have a crystal that is also a precious gemstone — like a diamond — you can sell to a reputable online diamond or jewelry buyer. 

However, if you have crystals that are not gemstones, you may be able to sell them on Facebook Marketplace, Etsy, or ebay. 

These are some crystals currently listed for sale on ebay as of March 2024:

Where can I sell my crystal rocks?

You can sell crystal rocks on Facebook Marketplace, ebay, or Etsy, or sell at local gemstone and mineral shows.

How much are crystals worth?

Crystals come in a variety of sizes and colors. How much they cost depends on their rarity and quality. Some lower-quality minerals may not be worth more than a few dollars, while some larger rare crystals could be worth thousands. 

The Pink Star diamond, widely believed to be the most expensive crystal in the world, sold in a Sotheby’s auction for $71.2 million in 2017.5

Can you make money selling gemstones, birthstones and crystals?

Yes! Once you learn about how to sell gemstones, you will want to know where to sell them. You can certainly search for “gemstone buyers near me” or “gem dealers near me,” but we recommend going with A+-rated CashforGoldUSA for selling your jewelry, though keep in mind you will likely only get paid for the gold, silver or any diamonds of at least .3 carats.

Get an immediate quote and get paid within 24 hours of accepting your offer now >>


  1. “What Do the GIA Gem Clarity Grading Codes Mean?” International Gem Society.
  2. “A Guide to Gem Classification,” IGS.
  3. “Birthstones,” IGS.
  4. “What is a Crystal?” IGS.
  5. “‘Pink Star' diamond sells for record $71.2 million at auction,” April 4, 2017. CNN Business.
How can I sell my gemstones for cash?

You can sell gemstones for cash to an online buyer like Diamonds USA, gemstone dealers, diamond exchanges, antique dealers, and local pawn shops — though only the very finest of gemstones have resale value. You can also sell on a site like ebay or on consignment. The process typically involves getting an estimate on your gemstones, either by mailing them in or going in person, and accepting an offer.

How do I sell raw gemstones?

Semiprecious stones in an unpolished or raw state — like amethyst, quartz, selenite, citrine, jade and lapis lazuli — can be sold on a site like Etsy or ebay. Raw or rough gemstones like rubies or sapphires, if they are of significant size and quality, may be of interest to the buyers.

Are gemstones hard to sell?

While the amount you get for your gemstones will vary depending on the type of stone, quality, size, and cut, it is not hard to sell gemstones for money, either online or in person.

Where should I sell my gemstones for cash?

Whether your gemstones are loose or are a component of jewelry, you can typically sell your gemstone to the same buyers that might be interested in purchasing diamonds or precious metals. Jewelers, gemstone dealers, diamond buyers, diamond exchanges, antique dealers, and local pawn shops all typically accept gemstones.

Who buys gemstones?

Pawn shops, jewelers, local cash-for-gold shops and estate and antique dealers in your area likely buy diamonds. There are also gemstone buyers online.

How do I find the value of my gemstones?

In order to get the most money, you must understand how gemstones are graded, which gives you an idea of what they’re worth. While there are a number of factors that will influence the value of your gemstone, the most important are the same as for diamonds: color, clarity, carat, and cut. A local jeweler can help you understand the basics.


Diamonds USA does NOT buy tanzanite and they do not disclose this until after you have shipped your items via their own appraisal kit

My dad gave me a variety of sapphire two beautiful Montana sapphire, some córundum. They are in individual bags and labeled with it’s origin, carat, along with a price for each one. The question I have is this, I know that these particular gems were priced 40 plus years ago, would the value have appreciated or depreciated? Also there is one oval sapphire which there is labeled nothing other than sapphire, it’s exactly 8 carat and I thought it was a dark purple or red, until I looked at it in the sun light, it changed into lighter red and purple, but also blue and or green. Can it’s origin or lack of origins affect the price? And could be have been wrong about it being sapphire? Since I have been unable to really match it with anything displayed on line.

Certainly, the price tag can’t be that of 40 years old. It might have escalated in multiple. Secondly, the change in cokour of stone in sunlight is very common factor and it is its real colour and not that seen in other light sources. Thirdly, the origin of stone to some extant matters but not for those which are exceptionally good..

Sounds good but many people get confused regarding jade. Unless you get it tested by gemologist it can’t be trusted.

I noticed you don’t mention pearls at all. I have a Tiffany and Co pearl necklace but have no idea what it’s worth it’s stamped 925

I believe I found a couple of possible meteorites, blue sapphire, diamonds, including 2 possible kimberlites, white, yellow, Oregon, butte green orange and black opals, lithium quartz, black sunstone, rainbow moonstone and a bunch of unique rare specimens

I have amethyst, topaz, pink spinel, a dark green one that is gorgeous but I don’t know what it 8s, and several strands of pearls.

My father was a jewelry hobbyist and before he passed away he gave me several trays of various gem stone where can I get a free appraisal for the for possibility of selling them and where can I take them to sell them

I don’t know anyone that would do appraisals on gems or jewelry for free. You could search for a jewelry store that has a GIA Gemologist. That more than likely
would not be in a chain type jewelry store like Zales etc. Either way you will have to pay for the appraisal. I would ask for close up pictures of quality too.

Sir/ madam
I have to sell top quality transperant burma ruby of 4 pieces caret 3, and 9 caret, and helo sapphire of 3.50 caret, white sapphire 4.50 caret, dark blue sapphire of 11.75 caret, blue silony sapphire clean top quality of 4.85 caret all stones are natural unheated and untreated . let me know how to sell and cost

I have multiple loose and cut Tanzanite/Tsavorite stones. that I Brough home from Kenya. All have been appraised now I’m looking for buyers. How can I get rid of these?

I live in Chicago. My mom just shipped me 500 grams of morganite ranging from 5 carats to 37 carats. I am looking for buyers. Any advice.

Hello I live in tx and I have a raw gem stone .i have been told by a small gem stone store it is a phosphophylite gem .they said it is a rare stone .it weight is 4lbs 13 oz .and I can’t find any body that wants to look at it .to tell me if it is as such any help would be very grateful.

Hi, I have a gemstone and looking for an expect to tell me how much it worth and where can I can help to sell it. I can also share the pictures if anyone interested to see.

My mom passed away she had several loose gems I would like to know how much they are worth . I can not afford to have them appraised. We are on a fixed income. My husband is on disability. I am only able to work part time. So I can help him. I have sold a few. To a jeweler I feel like I may have been taken advantage of. Can anyone help?

I just had some gems, that I faucet, from raw stones and cost me $ 150.00 per gem, so I only did 2 and still can’t find buyers, I have pictures of everyone I have now that are cut polished if know anyone

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