In the early years, mineralogists called it “BlueCordierite”. Later, gemologists called this mineral as Iolite. This purple crystal is transparent to opaque. It has extremely strong dichroism, also known as “dichroic stone”.

It has strong polychrome. It is blue purple when viewed from the front, and maybe yellow gray or blue or even colorless when viewed from the side. The purple-blue color of Iolite is because it contains trace “iron” chromogenic elements. The output of this kind of mineral crystals is not large, and most of them are collectors’ favourites.

iolite beads

Basic Properties of Iolite

1) Chemical composition: (Mg. Fe) 2AL4Si5O8 in which Mg and Fe can form complete isomorphic substitution. Most Iolite in nature is rich in magnesium.

2) Crystallographic characteristics: It belongs to the orthorhombic system and is often produced as short columnar crystals or water-eroded pebbles.

3) Color: the color of gem grade varieties is blue and blue-purple, or colorless, yellowish-white, green, brown and gray.

4) Mohs hardness: 7~7.5.

5) Relative density: 2.60; the density gradually increases with the increase of iron (Fe) content.

6) Cleavage: there are three groups of cleavage, in which {010} is medium cleavage, {100} and {001} are incomplete cleavage, and the fracture surface is staggered.

7) Gloss: glass luster.

8) Transparency: Transparent to translucent.

9) Refractive index and birefringence: refractive index 1.54~1.55, birefringence 0.01 ± 0.002. It is related to the proportion of magnesium (Mg) and iron (Fe) in their composition. The refractive index is low when magnesium is rich and high when the iron is rich.

10) Optical characteristics: negative optical property of crystal.

11) Multicolor: strong, obvious tricolor. Visible to the naked eye, if viewed from different directions, different colors can be seen.

12) Luminous property: None

13) Absorption spectrum: It shows the absorption spectrum of iron.

14)Inclusion characteristics: typical mineral inclusions include hematite or goethite, apatite, zircon, gas and liquid inclusions, etc.

A kind of Iolite produced in Sri Lanka. Its inclusions are mainly hematite and goethite, which are red in color. Most of the particles are tabular and acicular and arranged directionally. When the inclusions appear in large quantities, Iolite can be red, so it is also called “Bloodshot”.

Origin of Iolite

Iolite is produced in gneiss, schist and contacts metamorphic rock. Placer ore is the primary source of Iolite. High-quality raw stones are mainly from Sri Lanka and are also produced in Myanmar and the United States.

Main identification characteristics of Iolite

1) Color: Blue to bright blue, often with gray tones and different shades of color.

2) Refractive index: refractive index 1.54~1.55, birefringence 0.008~0.012, biaxial crystal negative.

3) Dichroic mirror: trichromatic, rotating blue/light blue/light yellow. When the particles are large, the naked eye can see apparent changes in trichromatism.

4) Relative density: small, floating in 2.65 heavy liquid.

Quality Evaluation of Iolite

Iolite is multi-color. If there is deviation when cutting, it cannot show the beautiful color. When cutting it, the more clear the contrast between two colors, the greater the value.

The beautiful legend of Iolite

Travellers and navigators used to wear Iolite on their bodies to know where they were. It was called “marine sapphire” or “traveller’s compass needle”.

The square angle of the compass needle is cut by taking advantage of the multi-colour characteristic that the color of Iolite changes when facing the sun.

The Nordic narrative poem “Saga” describes that from the end of the 10th century to the beginning of the 11th century:

A very active explorer crossed the Atlantic Ocean from Europe to reach the American continent. It is said that he sailed with Iolite. Therefore, Iolite has been the patron saint of navigation safety since ancient times. It is said that there is also a legend that “wearing a ring made of Iolite can bring happiness”.

Energy of Iolite

Iolite belongs to the rhombic crystal system. Its energy is stable and can bring about clear consciousness. It can help us focus on the right direction and not be confused by other external factors.

Iolite can also keep the energy in the body unblocked and stable, especially when the energy is constantly fluctuating and anxious When people feel that they cannot resist the temptation, and repeats the inertia of making themself regret it. Iolite makes people see the truth and break away from bad habits, which is a kind of ore capable of self-management.

Iolite contains iron ions and magnesium ions. Iron ions can make people feel a hundred times more energetic and committed to their goals: magnesium ions can bring vitality and quickly restore body functions.

The healing property of Iolite

According to crystallography, Iolite is a stone of imagination, which can activate the eyebrow center wheel, help to visualize, improve intuition and insight, and strengthen the connection between people and their inner wisdom.

In Shamanism ceremony, it is used to drive the “soul to wear”. According to the crystal fans, it is connected with the human aura, which can release electric energy and replenish energy for the aura.

In terms of psychology, Iolite has multiple effects, such as helping people get rid of bad habits, too heavy pressure and expectations, and expressing their true selves. Mentally, it is said that it can make people’s thinking patterns clear. On the emotional level, it is believed that it can eliminate the disharmony in the interpersonal relationship and encourage both husband and wife to be independent and get rid of the life mode of relying on each other too much.

Iolite is said to have the following effects:

  • relieving alcohol addiction and strengthening the body;
  • Reduce fat accumulation in the body;
  • Strengthen the detoxification function of the liver;
  • Speed up the physical recovery;
  • Cure sores and fever;
  • It is beneficial to pituitary, sinus and respiratory system; Alleviate migraine;
  • Disinfect and diminish inflammation.

How to use Iolite

People can wear Iolite to eliminate some bad habits and discharge their wastes, which is also known as the “weight loss stone”.

In Iolite’s energy, we will become self-disciplined and understanding. With this awakened and clear energy, we can also make the big and small things around us organized.

Iolite can help deal with deep-rooted paranoia and relieve the pressure on the brain and eyes; It can also help people break away from self-dissatisfaction and maintain a sense of freedom and relaxation.

When to use Iolite

  • When you want to think clearly
  • When you want to lose weight or detoxify
  • When the pressure is too high to be removed
  • When unable to resist certain temptations

How to clean Iolite

Purification mode

√: Fragrance, smoke, crystal hole, sound.

×:Sea salt and flowing water may cause crystal damage, and the sunlight method may cause ore fading.


The name of Iolite originates from the Greek word “violet”, which means “purple-blue stone”, and the highest color is very similar to sapphire. It is also called “water sapphire”.

Another ancient name for Ioliteis is “dichroite”, indicating the dichroism of Iolite- presents different colors from different directions.

For example, it is blue from the front, while from the side, it is purple. This feature helps the ancient Nordic people determine the direction when navigating the Atlantic Ocean, also known as the “Viking Compass Stone”.

If Ioliteis crystal is separated, it will form cherry blossom shape on the section after metamorphism and weathering, so it is called “cherry stone” and is loved by the Japanese. If the Ioliteis is more seriously metamorphosed, it will become mica, chlorite, talc and other minerals.