Sugilite Meaning and Properties

Sugilite History

Sugilite is a rare mineral named after Ken-ichi Sugi, a Japanese geologist who first discovered the material in 1944 on the Japanese island Shikoku. Sugilite is commonly pronounced SOO-jee-lite but is more accurately pronounced SOO-ghee-lite after the man it is named for.

Sugilite has a vivid purple color and is usually opaque to translucent. Some of the semi-transparent stones have facets. The gemstone is used to produce appealing beads, cabochons and decorative objects. Sugilite is also known as wesselite, after the purple color material was discovered in the Wessels Manganese Mine in South Africa. Sugilite is known by other names including purple turquoise, cybelene, lavulite, luvulite, royal azel, royal lavulite and royal lazelle.

Sugilite is not a well-known gemstone. Yet, on the red carpet of the 2013 Critics' Choice Awards, Naomi Watts was seen wearing a pair of sugilite drop earrings.

Sugilite is also a character in Cartoon Network's Steven Universe and is voiced by singer Nicki Minaj. The character Sugilite was created when the characters Garnet and Amethyst were synchronized dancing and became fused together.

Sugilite Metaphysical Properties

Sugilite is believed to generate positive energy to protect against and overcome negative emotions and situations. Thought to be a nurturing gemstone, sugilite offers release from worries. It also promotes positive emotions to help relieve stress, establish peace of mind and emotional healing. To metaphysical adherents, sugilite is a stone of forgiveness and instills the deep satisfaction of all-abiding freedom.

Sugilite is thought to be useful to enliven the crown chakra. Sugilite brings spiritual and unconditional love in through the crown and down to the base chakra by infusing the body with light, aligning all the chakras as it goes.

Sugilite Geological Properties

Sugilite occurs in bedded manganese deposits as an aegirine-bearing syenite stock in biotite granite. This uncommon cyclosilicate mineral displays violet to purple-red coloring. Sugilite crystallizes in the hexagonal system with prismatic crystals. Although crystal specimens of sugilite are infrequently discovered, those that have been found they are usually very large.

Sugilite deposits are found in Australia, India, Japan, Canada and South Africa.

Mineral Information Cyclosilicate mineral group
Chemical Composition KNa2(Fe3+,Mn3+,Al)2Li3Si12O30
Color Violet, purple-red
Hardness 5-1/2 to 6-1/2 (Mohs)
Specific Gravity 2.69 - 2.79
Refractive Index 1.607 - 1611

Proper Care of Sugilite

With a Mohs scale hardness of 5-1/2 to 6-1/2, sugilite is somewhat durable. However, be careful wiping dust from sugilite because household dust contains quartz, which may cause scratches. It is recommended to clean sugilite gemstones by using soapy water, rinsing well and drying with a soft cloth. Ultrasonic cleaners and steamers are not recommended. Always remove any jewelry or gemstones before exercising, cleaning or engaging in physical activities such as sports. Store sugilite gemstones away from other gemstones to prevent scratches, wrapped in soft cloth or placed inside a fabric-lined box.

To learn more about sugilite and other gemstones, order your copy of Walter Schumann's revised and expanded edition of Gemstones of the World.

Designing with Sugilite

Sugilite offers lots of designing possibilities--whether it's beads, cabochons, inlays and much more--and is ideal for men's and women's jewelry. Like amethyst, sugilite's variety of purples makes it go well with just about everything from gold or silver, pearls and paua shell, smoky quartz or peridot. Sugilite is especially striking set against gold hues, as used by well-known couture jewelry companies such as Dior. Sugilite also works well for southwestern/Native American-influenced jewelry set in silver and gold mosaic inlays along with other brightly colored gemstones.

Shop for Sugilite Items

**Please note that all metaphysical or healing properties listed are collected from various sources. This information is offered as a service and not meant to treat medical conditions. Fire Mountain Gems and Beads® does not guarantee the validity of any of these statements.

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