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About Healing Phoenix
Cultured Opals

Healing Phoenix Lapidary offers two types of brilliant and unique Cultured Opals. Christopher Gage's Artisan-Cut Opals and all-new Fire in Place Cultured Opals for Jewelers. Their beauty, quality, and sustainability make them a great choice for jewelers.

Artisan-Cut Cultured Opals

This Cultured Opal material has a varied and intricate matrix, beautiful flash, and color shifts at every angle. They are hand cut by Christopher Gage with meticulous attention to detail. Many of his stones are reversible with eye-catching pop on both sides. This Opal is NOT heat-tolerant and must be cold set versus fired in place.

  • These Cultured Opals are recognized by the GIA as true synthetic opals having essentially the same chemical, physical, and optical properties as natural, but are grown by experts in a laboratory.

  • This Cultured Opal is 5 - 5.5 on the Mohs hardness scale.

  • Cultured Opals are sustainable because they are not mined with forced labor and are renewable without being mined out of existence.

Modern nouveau by Holly Gage

Fired in Place Cultured Opals

New Fire in Place Cultured Opals opens up a world of possibility. This new heat-resistant Cultured Opal is a fascinating top quality Opal that takes 14 to 18 months to grow by experts in a lab. The colors are natural with no treatment or enhancements. 

  • These Cultured Opals can withstand temperatures to 1650º F or 900º C in a torch or kiln with the color and sparkle staying true without the risk of changing as some gems do. (See full details on the Firing Cultured Opals page)

  • These Cultured Opals are also recognized by the GIA as true synthetic opals having essentially the same chemical, physical, and optical properties as natural without the water content. 

  • Natural Opal is 5 - 6.5 on the Mohs hardness scale. This Cultured Opal is 6 - 7 on the Mohs scale making it more durable.

  • This Cultured Opal does not decompose or release any substances or gases when heated to very high temperatures.

  • These Cultured Opals are also sustainable because they are not mined with forced labor and are renewable without being mined out of existence.

Beware, not all cultured or lab-grown opals have the same properties nor are they heat resistant.

Holly Gage's Bermuda Ocean Cultured Opal Necklace

Buying Opals

Buying Opals can be confusing. What difference is there between Natural Opal, Imitation Opal, Fake Opal, Cultured Opal, Lab-Grown, and Synthetic Opal? What????

 

Natural Opals
These Opals are mined from the earth. The Opal patterns are random and have not been enhanced in any way by humans other than to cut and shape them for jewelry.
 

Cultured Opal, Lab-Grown, and Synthetic Opal

This category of Opals and their titles are essentially interchangeable. The Gemological Institute Of America (GIA) has certified that Cultured Opal, Lab Grown, and Synthetic Opal have essentially the same chemical, physical, and optical properties, but are grown by experts in a laboratory.
 

Imitations and Fake Opals

These are look-like Opals, but they differ from the natural Opal's chemical makeup. Most imitation opals are made from glass, resin, or plastic.

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