White topaz and white sapphire are two of the top diamond substitutes. The two gemstones are beautiful, worthy choices in jewelry even when they’re not used as diamond substitutes. If you need to choose between the two for a piece of jewelry, you should be aware of key differences in hardness, color, sparkle, brilliance, cut, clarity, and price before making a decision.
Difference in Hardness
White sapphire is one of the hardest gemstones with a Mohs rating of 9. It’s harder than white topaz, which has a rating of 8 on the Mohs scale. As a result, white sapphire doesn’t scratch as easily as white topaz. White sapphire is the best choice between white topaz vs white sapphire in terms of hardness. It has better durability due to being a harder gem.
If you’re looking into the white topaz vs white sapphire debate to buy an engagement ring, then you probably want to buy a white sapphire since it will be worn everyday. You won’t want the stone to accumulate scratches too quickly. White topaz loses its shine over time as scratches accumulate. You must have it professionally repolished to restore shine.
Difference in Color
White topaz and white sapphire are both clear gemstones. White topaz is the purest form of topaz because impurities cause colors. It’s also the rarest form of topaz. Staying safe from impurities during creation is difficult. Sapphire is usually blue, but if it has enough oxygen in it, the color is white. White sapphire is extremely rare because limited oxygen can get inside the crystal. Be aware when choosing between white topaz vs white sapphire that white sapphire can have a yellowish hue. AAA rated white sapphire is the whitest and brightest of white sapphire.
Difference in Sparkle
When white sapphire becomes dirty, it loses sparkle. You must have it cleaned to restore the fire. Lotions, soap scum buildup, and water spots are examples of things that dirty white sapphire. You can clean white sapphire on your own or go to a local jewelry store to have them clean it with an ultrasonic cleaner.
The sparkle of white topaz diminishes over time as scratches accumulate. You can have it repolished by a professional to bring back the sparkle. Because white sapphire is more resistant to scratches than white topaz, you may have to repolish white topaz more frequently than white sapphire. Upkeep is an important consideration when choosing between white topaz vs white sapphire.
Difference in Brilliance
Brilliance is a feature of gemstones that describes how light is reflected from inside the gemstone. Diamond is known for having excellent brilliance, but it’s not the most brilliant of gemstones. It is one of the most brilliant. Neither white sapphire nor white topaz have greater brilliance than diamond. But both stones still have good light reflection.
Refractive index and cut determine a clear gemstone’s brilliance. White sapphire has a refractive index of 1.77. White topaz has a lower refractive index of 1.64, meaning it’s not as brilliant. For an idea of how they compare to diamond, diamond has a 2.42 refractive index.
Difference in Cut
White topaz is available in multifarious cuts, including round, cushion, emerald, marquise, oval, pear and triangle. Fancy designer cuts via hand or machine is possible with white topaz as well. While browsing white topaz jewelry, you should pay special attention to the quality of the cut. A poorly cut white topaz doesn’t reflect light well and can look dull. Another major concern when shopping for white topaz jewelry is depth of cut. A cut that is too deep will cause the gemstone to be hidden when it’s placed in a setting.
White sapphire that is cut well sparkles more than the average white sapphire. Like white topaz, white sapphire is available in numerous cuts, such as princess, round, and natural. A downside of white topaz in terms of cut you should be aware of is cuts besides round tend to not resemble a diamond as closely. This is only important if you plan on using it as a diamond substitute.
Difference in Clarity
White topaz and white sapphire have internal inclusions, a common factor among natural gemstones. Even natural diamond has internal inclusions. How severe the inclusions are affects clarity. Gemstones with high clarity have minimal internal imperfections. Types of inclusions that can be found in white sapphire are feathers, concaves, cavities, and halo.
Top grade white sapphire clarity is eye clean, meaning the inclusions can’t be seen with the naked eye. Similarly, some white topaz is eye clean. Between white topaz vs white sapphire, white sapphire has better clarity because white topaz decreases in clarity with size. Larger white topaz is cheaper than small white topaz for this reason.
Difference in Price
White sapphire and white topaz are affordable gemstones. White topaz is more common than white sapphire, so you’ll usually find it as complementary gemstones in jewelry, rather than center pieces. But there are still options with white topaz as the main gemstone in jewelry, including in engagement rings. White sapphire, as a rare stone, is usually used as the centerpiece in jewelry. Like white topaz, it’s sometimes used as a diamond substitute for engagement rings.
White sapphire is more expensive than white topaz. It costs around $200-$300 per carat. White topaz runs at $50-$100 per carat. Quality ratings are given to white sapphire. AAA is the highest quality white sapphire you can buy. Approximately 10% of white sapphire is graded AAA. Some white sapphire on the market was created in a laboratory instead of mined from the earth. Man-made white sapphire is inferior in quality to natural white sapphire.
Between white topaz vs white sapphire, we think white sapphire is the better choice. It wins in hardness, clarity, and brilliance. The stone will last longer than white topaz without dulling or breaking. White sapphire is a suitable diamond substitute for jewelry and wedding rings.
Some people still opt for white topaz engagement rings because they’re one of the cheapest natural diamond substitutes. White topaz is a great gemstone too, but one must be aware it’s not as durable as diamond.
White topaz vs white sapphire – which gemstone do you think is the best choice? Let us know in the comments below.