Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Is "Monalisa Stone" a Gemstone? Answer: No

Someone asked me about a new stone called "Monalisa" stone, and I've never heard of it until today.  Just googling that reveals that it is a manufactured GLASS stone in India, and sold as a glass stone from Indiamart.com. 

It is NOT a gemstone.

Here is Indiamart's array of colors available for this glass stone:

Offered as "treated gemstone"--NOT!

It's a pretty "cat's eye" effect glass stone that is seen in a lot of costume jewelry.  I've seen it many times but never knew it was called "Monalisa stone" until today.  These glass beads are made with horizontal filaments inside that give it that distinctive "cat's eye" effect.  Please note that there are genuine gemstones that display this cat's eye effect---everything from rubies to quartz.  But these aren't gemstones---these Monalisa stones are manufactured glass, and is clearly stated as glass.  Here's a link to indiamart's website---they are honestly selling these glass "badam" stones (Hindi for "almond"---their shape) and are not trying to sell them as mineral gems. 

Google reveals that this new term, Monalisa Stone, is found pretty much exclusively on Etsy.  Etsy jewelry designers seem to offer these "new gems" probably because the gemstone wholesalers in India heavily market their stones to Etsy sellers who really don't investigate what something is (such as silverite).  But a simple google search, which took me a minute, shows right away that this is GLASS, not a gemstone!

However, there are some sellers who are offering this glass as a "gemstone" which is wrong.  It is not a gemstone, it is a glass stone.
Just glass with embedded filaments
Pretty--not a gemstone though

I'm not begrudging anyone for selling jewelry or trying to "call out" anyone, but as an example, there is a seller who has this Monalisa Stone set in a sterling bangle and although it's very pretty (in various colors and shapes), it's NOT a gemstone and nowhere do they say that this is glass.  They say or imply that it's a natural gemstone like their other jewelry---and that's really not right. 

There are many pieces of jewelry on Etsy with this Monalisa stone, and some sellers say it's glass, some don't say what it is, and some outright claim this is a gemstone.  It's NOT a gemstone---it's definitely glass. 

It's pretty---but buyer beware: it's glass, not a mineral. (Have I said that enough? LOL)
You can see the post through the glass, and fracture features of glass on the side.


  1. thanks for this! I had difficulty locating a proper definition until I ran across tour post. I may have clicked “publish” too many times, and apologize for that as well as for the original typo! Nina

    1. Thank you so much, Nina! I'm glad I was able to help!
      - Dawn :)

  2. Thank you very much. Good information. very informative. Difficult to get so much on this stone in one go. Thanks again.

  3. Thanks so much for this info. I have no issues in enjoying pretty glass, but I do like to know that I am not being sold something under false pretenses.

    I recently spent some quality time on Google looking for what a lot of eBay sellers call Gleamy Moonstone. Result: definitely NOT MOONSTONE.

  4. I love beautiful glass too--I've been a fan of "goldstone" since I was a kid!

    Thanks for the heads up regarding "gleamy moonstone"! WOW, I've seen this fake stone for awhile but I didn't realize they were selling it as this! I'll write a separate post on it soon. Thanks again!!