Tourmaline is the most colourful of all gemstones and has been used for centuries. According to an ancient Egyptian legend, tourmaline passed through a rainbow on its journey to Earth and brought all of the colours with it. Even its name comes from the Sinhalese word "toramalli" which translates to "mixed gems." Tourmaline is reputed to have a powerful positive influence on love and friendship.
Tourmaline is a richly hued mineral available in an array of solid and multi‐colour variations. The stone is called by multiple names depending on the colour. Single colour tourmalines are rare as most crystals have more than one shade. Tourmaline can also be dichroic, meaning some stones appear to change colour when angled.
Tourmaline is a gemstone variety unto itself.
Tourmaline rates a 7.0‐7.5 on the Mohs scale. It is a good choice for everyday wear.
Heat treatments are used to lighten blue or green stones, or to change colours. Irradiation produces deep pink, red or purple from lighter coloured material, and acids have been used to improve the appearance of cat's eye stones.
Tourmaline should be stored separately to keep from scratching or being scratched by other gemstones. Store them in a lined box or a soft pouch. Avoid steam and ultrasonic cleaners. Clean your tourmaline jewellery using warm soapy water and dry with a soft, lint‐free cloth.