Coloured gemstones such as sapphires, rubies and emeralds are taking over diamonds as more women prefer colour in their jewellery.
In the last eight years, the price of coloured gemstones has increased at a faster rate than diamonds, but they are still cheaper to buy. Many women, particularly from Asia, want to buy coloured stones, with demand having increased three times since 2010. Vashi Dominguez, founder of Diamond Manufacturers, believes this is what is driving up prices.
Gemval, an online gemstone valuation tool, claims that the price for sapphires and rubies rose significantly by 37% and 47% respectively, and while emerald prices also increased, they only went up by 6%. According to RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI), the price for diamonds rose by 32%, proving that coloured stones are more popular and desirable.
The choices women make are also driven by celebrities such as Penelope Cruz, who wears sapphires rather than diamonds, and Angelina Jolie, who prefers emeralds. Chloe Fuller, a marketing manager from London, says that the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, has been very influential in raising the popularity of sapphire rings for women, since her engagement ring contains one of the timeless and classic gems.