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Luxury & Rarity: The World’s Most Expensive Gemstones

Gemstones are exquisite, beautiful natural treasures from the earth. Traditionally, these rare stones are a symbol of wealth, status, and power. They’re expensive and highly valuable due to their rarity, beauty, and how they’re processed and produced. But what is the world’s most expensive gemstone?

Many people considered diamonds, emeralds, rubies, and sapphires as the most expensive gems. However, there are plenty of rare valuable gemstones more expensive and precious than these big 4 gemstones. Here are the most expensive gemstones you can find.

How Gemstone Value is Determined

The gemstones’ prices are determined by several factors. Collectively, these factors are used to identify the rarity, quality, desirability, and price of the gemstones. The 4Cs are used to assess the price of colorless diamonds. However, the type of gemstone will affect the criteria used to identify its price tag. These are the primary factors that help determine and evaluate the gemstone’s value.

Carat Weight

The weight of the rare stones is measured by carat — ⅕ of a gram — which is the term used to identify their size. Colorless diamonds are priced per carat. But there’s no absolute formula to get its value.

Traditionally, to get the weight of each colorless diamond a handheld balance scale is used. But today, an electronic digital scale is used.


To an expert jewelry appraiser, the colorless diamond has 3 components — hue, tone, and saturation. Hue is what everyone refers to as color. While tone or value is identified as the lightness and darkness of the color. Saturation or intensity characterizes how much color the rare stones have.


Clarity is the term used to identify the level of transparency of diamonds — free from inclusions and blemishes. Inclusions are the internal characteristics while blemishes are the external quality of the beautiful diamonds.


Cut pertains to how well the valuable diamonds are proportioned, cut, and polished rather than their shape. Well-cut and legitimate stones come with gemstone identification and are more brilliant, increasing their overall value. 


Because natural gemstones are difficult to mine, have limited availability, and can’t be replicated, natural gemstones tend to have a higher price tag. The rare the gemstones are, the higher their value will be. Some exceptionally rare gemstones like colored diamonds or special types of sapphires will have heftier prices.

Geographic Origin

Some countries and regions are popular for producing exceptional quality and specific types of gemstones. If your gemstones are from these areas, it will have a significant impact on the gemstone’s value and increase its price.


When gemstones are certified by popular and trusted gemological laboratories that are internationally recognized, like GIA or IGI, it adds value and credibility to the natural gemstones. Also, the certification includes all the necessary information about the gemstone to help determine its value.


Because gemstones are mined from the earth, they come in different forms, sizes, and conditions. Some gemstones need to undergo treatments to improve their color, clarity, size, and shape. However, these treatments will affect their durability and stability. Hence, affecting the gemstone’s value.

Demand and Trends

The current market trends and demands greatly influence the value of gemstones. Popular and on-trend gemstones have a higher value. 

Setting and Design

If the gemstone is set in a piece of jewelry, the overall craftsmanship, design, and materials affect its value. Custom jewelry made by reputable artisans and quality settings increases the gemstone’s value.

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Crown Jewel: The Most Expensive Gemstone

The Crown Jewels are the United Kingdom’s most precious and valuable treasures. The Royal Collection includes more than 23,000 expensive gemstones and 100 objects. These valuable gemstones are not only expensive but hold historical, symbolic, and cultural value. They’re not daily worn by royalty but on special occasions. For example, the Coronation Regalia is used in the coronations of monarchs like with the coronation of King Charles III in May 2023. 

Hence, the Crown Jewels are priceless but are estimated to be about $4 billion.

Read More: Definitive Guide to the Best Gemstones for Everyday Wear

Top 6 Most Expensive Gems in the World

These are the 6 most expensive gems in the world per carat, from the highest to lowest gemstone value.

Blue Diamond – $3.93 million per carat

The most expensive gemstone in the world is the Natural Blue Diamond with a price tag of $3.93 million per carat. The traces of boron are what give these blue diamonds their unique blue color. Blue Diamonds are sourced in Australia, South Africa, and India (where they were first discovered). 

Oppenheimer Blue Diamond is the most expensive blue diamond which was sold at Christie’s auction house for $57.5 million. It is mounted in the highest quality platinum and weighs about 14.62 carats.

Pink Diamond – $1.5 million per carat

Pink diamonds are one of the rarest, most valuable gemstones in the world. Just like blue diamonds, pink diamonds were first discovered in India. The extreme pressure during formation was the reason behind the lovely pink hue. 

The Pink Star Diamond is the most popular and expensive pink diamond sold at Sotheby’s Auction for $71.2 million. It weighs about 59.6 carats.

Red Diamond – $1.3 million per carat

Due to their rarity and beauty, red diamonds get the 3rd most expensive stone position. The vibrant red hue is due to boron and nitrogen. Red diamonds were first discovered in Brazil in 1989. Today, most red diamonds in the market are sourced from Australia.

The largest, rarest, and most expensive red diamond weighs around 5.11 carats. It is called Moussaieff Red Diamond with a $20 million price tag.

Emerald – $200,000 per carat

Emeralds are rare and have a captivating, vibrant hue making them popular for kings and queens. The emeralds with exceptional clarity and color can be more than $200,000. They were originally mined in Egypt. But today, emeralds are sourced from Colombia, Brazil, and Zambia.

Rockefeller Emerald is the world’s most expensive emerald sold at $5.51 million. It weighs around 18 carats.

Painite – $60,000 per carat

In 1950, painite was named after the scientist who first discovered this rare valuable gemstone in Myanmar. They’re a very rare form of borate and can cost about $60,000 or more. Painites are available in different hues and are extremely rare. In fact, there were only 3 known painite precious stones till 2001. Hence, the high price tag. Also, the Guinness Book of World Records considers painite as the rarest natural gemstone.

The most expensive painite belongs in the Medici Jewelry Collection at $12.8 million and weighs around 213.52 carats.

Jadeite – $40,000 per carat

Jadeite is the rarest and purest natural gemstone in the Jade family. It’s a pyroxene mineral and is monoclinic. Jadeite is very durable, dense, and hard with about 6.5 to 7 Mohs hardness. Hence, jadeite is used in carving statues, decorations, ornaments, and various weapons. In ancient Aztec and Mayan civilizations, jadeite was more valuable and expensive than gold.

The most expensive jadeite jewelry is the Hutton Mdivani necklace sold at $27.44 million. It has around 27 jadeite gemstones in one thread.

What Sets These Valuable Gemstones Apart

These expensive gemstones are 100% natural and sourced from the surface of the earth, unlike lab-created gemstones. They are mined, cut, polished, and turned into jewelry, decorations, and ornaments by experienced artisans and jewelers. Natural gemstones are formed within the Earth’s mantle, asteroid impact sites, subduction zones, and even from outer space. Hence, the soil components or environment can affect the variety of gemstones in the Philippines and other countries. Also, it takes years to decades and even millennia to create these natural, beautiful, and valuable gemstones. 

Although expensive, natural gemstones are great investments because their value increases over time. 

What is the Rarest Gemstone?

The rarest natural gemstone is musgravite. It was discovered in 1967 in Musgrave Ranges, Australia. Later, musgravite was found in Greenland and Madagascar. Because of its rarity, only eight musgravite specimens were discovered. This natural, unique gemstone value can be up to $35,000 price per carat, depending on its quality.

Learn More About Expensive Gemstones at W. Villarica Jewelry

Identifying the price and authenticity of the most expensive gemstones is a valuable skill learned through years of training, experience, practice, and knowledge. To an untrained eye, the most expensive gemstone might look like a normal, low-quality stone. That’s why if you’re purchasing jewelry with precious stones, it’s best to get your jewelry appraised by an expert.

Willyn Villarica is your trusted partner for jewelry appraisal services, catering to clients around the globe. Our expertise and commitment to excellence ensure accurate and reliable assessments of your precious gemstones. It’s important to note that while we offer our services worldwide, clients are responsible for covering all travel expenses. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to have your diamonds expertly graded by Willyn Villarica. For inquiries or appointments, reach out to us via email at admin@willynvillaricajewelry.com, or engage with us on our official Facebook (Willyn Villarica Jewelry) and Instagram (@willynvillarica_jewelry) accounts. Furthermore, we are readily available for direct communication at +63279497547.

  • Willyn Villarica

    Willyn Villarica, a third-generation jeweler from the Philippines, brings a wealth of expertise to the world of gemology and jewelry appraisal. As a licensed Graduate Gemologist, accredited by the prestigious Gemological Institute of America, she is not only a master of her craft but also holds the distinction of being the first Filipino member of the National Associ...

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