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Create Custom Gemstone Pieces With Loose Rubies

Ranging from deep red to brilliant pinkish-red, the vibrant color of rubies makes them a lovely precious gemstone for bracelets, earrings, rings, and more. When you want to design a custom ruby ring or replace a missing or damaged ruby in an existing piece of jewelry, loose rubies can be an excellent option. You can find all sorts of sizes and shapes on eBay, making it easy to select the ideal ruby for your needs.

Choosing between lab-created and natural rubies

Rubies can be grown in lab situations, so you have the option of picking from lab-grown or natural rubies. The right ruby for you will simply depend on how much you prioritize size, color, price, rarity, natural versus synthetic, and other factors. Laboratory rubies are formed in ideal conditions, so they tend to have stronger colors and fewer flaws than natural rubies. Since they do not require challenging mining operations, lab stones are also cheaper loose rubies. However, natural gemstones are still often sought after due to their rarity, and some can have interesting inclusions or color variations that make them visually attractive.

How do you pick out a loose ruby?

When shopping for new and preowned loose gemstones on eBay, you will need to decide on these options to select the right ruby for you.

  • Level of finish: Decide if you want a polished gemstone or a raw crystal.
  • Size: If you already have the jewelry you plan on setting the ruby in, make sure it has the appropriate dimensions.
  • Color: Rubies can range from bright pink to deep red or purplish red, so pick your favorite shade. While all pink and red corundum may be called ruby, U.S. gemologists use color saturation standards to classify some stones as rubies and others as pink sapphires.
  • Shape: You can find rubies in all sorts of shapes, including round, oval, square or princess, rectangular, and triangular.
Understanding the different gemstone cuts

You can find rough crystals on eBay, but if you want rubies that are ready to use as jewelry, it is helpful to understand the names for popular shapes of cut and polished stones.

  • Brilliant: Also called a round cut, this ruby has tiny triangle facets to help it catch light.
  • Emerald: An emerald cut ruby is rectangular, with long, narrow stepped facets to highlight the gem's depth and clarity.
  • Marquise: This is a faceted oval with pointed ends.
  • Princess: A princess-cut ruby is faceted and square.
  • Cushion: The cushion shape has faceted, square sides with rounded corners.
  • Cabochon: These stones have been polished but not faceted. They have rounded tops.
How to determine the quality of a genuine ruby

Like genuine diamonds, natural rubies are graded according to the following criteria:

  • VVS - Very, very slightly included: These nearly flawless gems have tiny inclusions that can only be seen under 10x magnification.
  • SI1 - Slightly included: These have flaws that are often not visible to the naked eye.
  • SI2 - Slightly included: The inclusions are slightly more noticeable, but this is still considered a good quality for use in fine jewelry.
  • I1, I2, and I3: These rubies have flaws that are increasingly obvious and prominent. They also exhibit less vibrant color and less precise cutting and may be heavily treated. They are considered commercial grade and often found in mass-produced jewelry.