What are Montana Sapphires?

A Guide to Montana Sapphires

All About Montana Sapphires

Montana sapphires are naturally occurring gemstones found in deposits in the Big Sky state of Montana. Montana sapphires have many qualities that make them an extra-special choice for fine jewelry like engagement rings, right-hand rings, and more.

What Colors are Montana Sapphires?

Montana sapphires can be found in a wide range of colors, from deep blue to pastel hues in shades of green, blue, pink, and even yellow. The most well-known Montana sapphire color is a beautiful rich teal, that is beautiful on its own or complimented with lab-grown diamonds.

Montana sapphire colors

Image source: GIA

Are Montana Sapphires Natural?

Yes! Montana sapphires are 100% naturally occurring sapphires. They were initially discarded as a byproduct of gold mining in the mid-1800s. In the late 1800s, one prospector decided to send a selection of stones to Tiffany & Co. in New York for evaluation. They enthusiastically paid a hefty sum for the gems; the rest is history. Learn more about the history of Montana sapphires here. 

Are Montana Sapphires Ethical?

These special gems are mined by small-scale, mostly artisan operations that are gentle on the environment and surrounding ecosystems. There are four specific areas mined for sapphires in Montana - Yogo Gulch, the upper Rock Creek drainage, and the El Dorado Bar and Spokane Bar of the Missouri River. Montana sapphires are not only conflict-free but they are also mined and cut entirely in the USA.

Are Montana Sapphires Valuable?

Attributes that affect the value of Montana sapphires include size, color, and clarity. Montana sapphires tend to be on the smaller side when mined (1.00 carat and under.) Larger stones are rare, thus more valuable. In the same vein, purely deep blue Montana sapphires are very rare and amongst the most valuable.

Montana sapphire engagement rings

Are Montana Sapphires Popular for Engagement Rings?  

Montana sapphires have become a popular alternative to diamonds for engagement rings thanks in part to an increase in demand for ethical, conflict-free, and sustainable fine jewelry. Montana sapphires are also often chosen for their bold, dramatic beauty by those who favor a more non-traditional look. The durability of Montana sapphires (second only to diamonds and moissanite) makes these gemstones the ultimate diamond alternative that will stand the test of time.

BONUS: Sapphire Fun Fact!

Rings that signify a  promise to marry (engagement rings) became popular with royal and wealthy families in the 14th or 15th century. Many precious stones were popular including emeralds, rubies, and diamonds, but sapphires were favored for their representation of romantic love, truth, and commitment. 

To view our selection of Montana sapphire engagement rings, click here.