More Crystal Fakes: Healerite, Larimar & Galena Geodes?

Hibiscus Moon Crystals, fakes 47 Comments

Here we have another “FAKE CRYSTALS” update for us today!

I think this has become one of my fav blog posts to write. ♥

More Crystal Fakes

My goal is to educate our Crystal Family community on what’s available out there so we can make informed decisions when adding specimens to our sacred collections and keep the fake crystals out! If you feel passionate about this too, please share this post in any way you prefer. (There are some handy-dandy “SHARE” buttons you can use at the bottom).

Galena Geodes aka Berber Geodes… a totally fake crystal!

OK, these are becoming more popular on the metaphysical market right now.

I mean…they’re gorgeous, right?

Image2

Photo credit: By Guy Courtois (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

They’re often touted as being from Morocco.

Well sorry Jelly Bean,  no such thing!

galena geode

What’s done here is a natural quartz geode (or even a fake clay one may be used as is done in the above photo. These were sold at the Tucson Gem Show!) is broken open & crushed lead-based Galena is sprayed inside.

Whaaaaa? Don’t be fooled!

How to Spot a Fake Larimar

Yes, due to its popularity, sadly larimar is one of the hottest crystal fakes on the market. 🙁

It’s a semi-precious stone that is extremely rare due to supply & demand and mining it is extremely difficult. Geological surveys either were not done or were not able to determine the exact size of the mine so no one is really sure just how much larimar is left for us since it’s only found in this 1 place. So what I’m saying here is that there just isn’t that much of it to be had & there’s a fear that it could be exhausted at any time. 

Some have taken to whipping up plastic or reconstituted fake larimar in the lab.  (Ickk…I know). 

Luckily, these lab-fakes are pretty easy to spot as they look NOTHING like the real deal. If you familiarize yourself with the genuine stones by looking at lots of photos of it you’ll be able to easily pick out the lab created fakes.

Genuine Larimar

Genuine Larimar

Larimar Geology

Larimar is a type of pectolite; a sodium calcium silicate that forms in cavities of basaltic lava.  This stone is found in only 1 place on the entire planet: the Barahona region mines in the Dominican Republic. Geek out on more larimar geology here. 

The mines are really difficult to access  AND the area may be closed off 5 months of the year due to the torrential rains & hurricane season making it very unsafe to dig.

This is the REAL DEAL!

This is the REAL DEAL!

So you can probably now easily see the motive to fake this stone. Right?

Some sellers desperately get a hold of the lower quality larimar intermingled with some silicate/quartz containing rock material and sell that off as larimar. Well, technically, they’re not entirely wrong here and energetically this is still gorgeous energy to work with! LET’S BE CLEAR ON THAT.

My purpose here is to inform you & make sure that you’re armed with all the knowledge to make a highly informed purchase decision and that you’re not paying unnecessarily higher prices for something that is not entirely what it’s being claimed to be.

True-Blue Larimar (*Yep! Pun intended*) should not be mixed in with any of that translucent quartz material at all…as seen in my photo below. This is not larimar but was sold as such in a shop I was in.

fake crystals

See the translucency?

I tested this stone and its Mohs Hardness was a 7, therefore, telling me that is a copper-bearing quartz rock (chrysocolla most likely?)

{GEO GEEK FACTOID: Larimar’s Mohs Hardness is between 4.5-5}

3 Easy Tips to Spot Fake Larimar

  • Is the stone translucent at all? Lift the stone up to the sun. This is an extremely reliable way to tell. If you can see ANY light through any part of it, no bueno! Real-deal high-quality larimar is opaque. Light does not penetrate at all.
  • Does it have any white veins, streaks or what look like clouds? This is a hallmark trait of genuine larimar and part of what makes it so beautiful.  White streaks are also very common in larimar stones and are key-markers that distinguish the stone from turquoise or other copper-bearing silicates. Be wary of any supposed larimar stone that doesn’t have some hint of a white streak, veins or clouds.
  • Ask about the mining location. Some unethical sellers try to come up with new & exotic locations for stones to make a great new story to help sell them. Yep, they just make something up. If it doesn’t come from the Dominican Republic, it ain’t the real deal. Walk away, Jelly Bean.

BTW, I have a whole blog post devoted entirely to luscious larimar here if you’d like to learn more about it. 🙂

Healerite

This is another one of those trademarked jobbies rather than a fake crystal.

I feel there’s no good reason to trademark this stone because its part of a well-known subgroup of mineral that already has a perfectly good name: that would be “lime green serpentine”.

My take on the whole trademarking of stones is here.

Healerite. Fake crystals trademarked crystals

Healerite. Photo generously provided by Crystalline Cohort, Carla Gitto.

See, I really don’t like when sellers do this sort of thing; someone takes a subgroup of an already known mineral, slaps a new name on it & trademarks it. 😛

“Healerite” is simply a yellow-green serpentine subgroup being relabeled & sold for $50/piece (depending on size) instead of around $6.00/lb as it should be at any gem show you go to. 

Subgroups are being trademarked all over the freakin’ place.  Something to watch out for!

Use your common sense here.

In other words… if it’s too good to be true, then yeah, it probably is.

**Please SHARE this info with other Crystal Family Members so that we all stay in-the-know and well-informed. No duping us with FAKE CRYSTALS!!!!**

If you choose to work with man-made crystals & you enjoy them just fine or it’s been working for you, I always say “keep on ‘truckin’”. Don’t change a thing!

I just want us all to have the knowledge first & then you can make an informed decision regarding how you choose to use these “stones”.

And as always, the moral of the story here is…Buyer Beware. Who are you buying from? Are they reputable? Do they know what they’re talking about? Are you doing your own due diligence & research? The best way to protect yourself is education.

Do you have any fake-out stories to tell? Please post in the comments below & help us all out!

Crystal Blessings,
new signature graphic

 

 

Comments 47

  1. This is great and thank you! I am a Chrystal Therapist and have been using crystals for energy work for years. I am stunned at the amount of fakes that seem to be flooding the market these days. I also help as an admin on a Facebook forum site. We are always being asked to identify crystals that people have purchased form Metaphysical stores or the worst case scenarios seem to be from Online. Its very disheartening when you have to inform them that the beloved piece is actually a fake. Its also very difficult when 2 or 3 people have the same pieces and still insist it’s not fake. I wish there was more we could do. But education is the key and we need to make sure everyone educated! Thanks again for being my go to girlie! Kathy

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  2. Once again I thank you for this clearly presented information. I do not have an extensive conscious understanding of crystals yet have recently been guided to prepare a series of healing oils incorporating crystals and sound and found it difficult to get good raw crystals, having followed your blogs I believe gave me the confidence to make appropriate and wise choices. so yet again many thanks I always enjoy your sharing. Jenny

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  3. Thank you for this one I am new to the crystal healing and am just learning about crystals. This one of fake crystals was great. Sad how people will do anything for money. I hope I will not be duped in the future. Thank you again for this article. Deb

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  4. Thanks for everything u do….I’m new to all this and my head is spinning trying to find reputibale people who are actually legit and not about making $$$$ I live in Baltimore so there’s not much locally here to buy hands on so I depend on the internet which it’s hard to see and feel and examine how u would in person but I’m trying lol. If u or anyone knows of some places online that are good starting points please let me know…. I’m Jaclyn meador on Facebook. Again thanks for all u do I’m learning so much and can’t wait to learn more ?????????????????

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  5. If you have been reading Hibiscus Moon’s blog posts it is not fake but the energy is slightly changed but it will work if you use it with the right intention

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  6. I love that you do this! I’ve been collecting crystals since I was a child ( 50 plus years ago ) and I’m seeing more and more dicey looking stones. When I go to rock and crystal shows I am surrounded by so much energy from the stones that I can become overloaded and it’s sometimes difficult to sense energy from a particular crystal unless it’s a real zinger. I don’t always know if I’m drawn to the energy or how pretty/unusual a stone is and it’s so disappointing to get home and realize that I’ve been duped. And buying online is sometimes like driving blind! Please keep exposing these fakes for us!

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      Maura, thanks so much. I’m doing my best. It’s hard to catch them all but I think our community is doing a really good job of shedding light on this & making the sellers realize that we are holding them accountable for getting educated on what they’re selling. If they don’t care enough about their product to find out more about it then perhaps they shouldn’t be in the biz of selling them.

    2. Maura, since Hibiscus didn’t mention it, Google “Grounding and Centering”, if you haven’t heard about it already. It’s a technique for dealing with all those yummy rocks that are screaming “Take me HOME !” at gem shows. As regards “fake” stones, while there are some unscrupulous companies out there, (the ones that do a LOT of trademarking common stones, and then jack up the prices) local gem shows with local dealers are usually very honest, with reasonable prices. SO Have Fun !

  7. Just to clarify my post was to Rose about heat treated citrine . Everyone works diffrently with diffrent crystals and i have had great success using heat-treated citrine what works for one will not work for all

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  8. this was awesome! thank you.
    i think too many people are gullible when it comes to online purchases. sometimes we really, really want ‘x’ to only cost a fraction of what it ought to cost and ignore our intuition.
    by being armed with your info., trusting my intuition, and buying where i can touch the stones and look into the vendor’s eyes i feel more comfortable and confident with my purchases. sometimes, though, i do have to buy online so i find a source who’s opinion i trust. your suggestion of earthegy.com has yielded some wooonderfuuul results! chrisy is a gem herself 😉

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  9. Hello,
    I’ll start by saying I really enjoy you and your knowledge of crystals and stones, especially your scientific knowledge. A lot of people are obsessed with Opalite, which is another synthetic that I believe is just glass. I’ve heard a lot of people feel relaxed with it. I was wondering some more of your thoughts on synthetic stones and crystals like Opalite. Maybe make a quick video?

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  10. I would like to thank you so much for taking the time to educate us on crystals and gems. Just to let you know I just came back from Dominican and I did purchase 5 pieces of Larimar and I have recently checked your blog on them and then sat down and studied mine I do have 3 pieces I would say they are real ones the other 2 not so much now. When I was there a gentleman was trying to sell me a yellow-green jade bracelet it was a plastic bead that was yellow on one side and green on the other side. I believe there is no jade that will be so perfectly divided in half as this one was so I told him it was a bead he said no no it was mined in the phillipins where Jade comes from. It was then the light bulb came on and my Niece was going to buy it I told her no its a fake to bit on it when he wasn’t look so I kept him busy and yup she hardly bit on it and it broke lmao. They will try anything so be aware of it if your not sure pass it up. Thank you again for your time.

  11. I’ve been surfing online more than three hours today, yet I never found any interesting article like yours. It is pretty worth enough for me. Personally, if all site owners and bloggers made good content as you did, the net will be a lot more useful than ever before.

  12. Hi the main culprit for trade marking stones including”Herlerite” is Robert Simmons, the author of The Book of Stones which happens to be one of my favourite books. I knew someone who ran a local wholesalers and she laughed when people would ask for Azeztualite…which is basically low grade milky quartz from specific locations. When Robert Simmons visited Avebury in England he acquired some flint from a crop circle…called it “Circle Stone” and charged a fortune to American customers. In some ways you have to admire his business know how but I wish we just called stones by their original names. Other than the renaming for profit I love his work and contribution to the crystal healing community. I think it’s up to us healers, teachers and collected to do our own research and know what we’re really buying so thank you for bringing this to people’s attention. Blessings

  13. It sounds like you have never worked with Healerite. Having worked with many varieties of serpentine, Healerite is WAY more profound than any other form of serpentine for its healing powers. It might be the most powerful healing stone on earth right up there with Vitalite and Kurnakovite. The stone restructures meridians and chakras unlike any stone I have ever seen. I have slept with the stone on numerous occasions, and I would find myself in a healing crisis. I would wake up coughing or in sweats and could literally feel toxins being pulled out of my body and a very strong vibrating energy running all throughout my veins. It has the strongest life force energy out of any stone I’ve seen, stronger than Agnitite.

    I have hundreds of stones, and this stone is in my Top 5 or 10, easily.

    I’m not for trademarking stones and I realize the name is just put there to generate revenue, but to compare this to serpentine is silly. This green stone from Washington state is one of the most powerful stones on this planet.

  14. Just discovered your site and have been devouring your articles about fakes! Not sure if you’ve mentioned it elsewhere, but I’ve recently learned that most citrine on the market is just heat-treated amethyst – and every seller I trusted sells it with no disclaimer! Some etsy shops even claim it to be natural from Brazil when it’s clearly a fake.

    1. Heat treated Citrine is probably the easiest one to spot because it has a orange/brown tinge to it. HM very likely mentions it on another “How to spot fakes” page but it’s also one of the most commonly known fake out there.

  15. When I was fairly new to crystals I bought some smoky quartz from a shop. Was so excited to get 2 large dark pieces, then discovered they were irradiated. So glad I took HM’s courses and learned how to identify fakes. I have had dealers, shops and individuals try to sell me pieces that were way over priced. Thank you for continuing to expose the fakes.

  16. I’m an avid collector of Larimar, both rough pieces and exquisite jewelry from around the world. Larimar can allow light through in some pieces. It’s not clear as glass is, but you can see more of the gorgeous hues of blue and green in Larimar when you hold it up to the light. Shine a flashlight, from your cell phone, through it. You’ll see what I mean.

    Respectfully,
    Lisa

    1. Another tid-bit on larimar… Is found in exhaust tubes of an ancient dormant volcano, can’t get much cooler than that. So would also like to add that it can have quartz like clarity in bands, mostly near the basalt edge. Have cut small tubes that look like icy fire, if that makes sense. And the high grade, is all in what you like honestly, but is transparent and has a little chatoyancy. Ive even found druze pockets with copper flakes. Every piece is extremely unique and I just cant get enough of it. And the good stuff does let ligght through. Almost all the opaque stuff I’ve worked with tends to fracture everywhere there is a color change, structure, density, or my luck, oh my! Not an expert, but working on my third kilo, straight from the DR. Any who, Love your work, and keep it up! Knowledge is power!

  17. Hello Hibiscus!
    Thanks for the great info…. just a note that Mystic Merlinite IS trademarked…. for whatever it is worth 🙂 We’ll be working with them in class tonight! 🙂

    Kindly,
    Haleya

  18. Hi,
    I love my crystals and had no idea there are so many fakes out there. I am so disheartened and don’t feel like I can trust anyone:(
    Where can I go to learn more about real ones.
    Would you recommend a good book for me to read?

    Thank you for your help,
    Maxine

  19. Amazing tips. Thanks.
    I am curious to also know how to know the difference of tangerine quartz and as you mentioned Congo Citrin quartz?
    I also see tangerine quartz from really orange to a cluster that only has orange on the base in the cluster. Are these true tangerine?
    I was sold a few years back red Lumerian seed pieces that were only stained when I rinsed them under water, they became clear. Keep up the great tid bits.

  20. I’m actually in Bavaro, Dominican Republic. There’s lots of sellers selling the rock Dominican Larimar(supposedly its genuine) Made into jewelry. What is a reasonable price to pay for it.

  21. I have been to the Dominican Republic and am going again n January 2019. I plan to get more marinara. I love it and got some the first time, but now I am a more avid crystal collector and know so much more. And with ur help! Thx

  22. I bought some of that green healerite from one of your ex-students who sells crystal now. When I googled the stone, there was a video with the author of the Book of Stones, giving praise to this new find and saying how the color alone is attracting so many people and on and on he went. How come?

  23. On the topic of larimar: high-end pieces are often translucent when held to a bright light, especially when cut into thinner pieces for jewellery. In fact, recent production has yielded some of the gemmiest larimar that the market has ever seen.

  24. I recently met a guy selling Healite, another trademarked stone supposedly from the cradle of life in South Africa. It is said to contain 5 minerals and bacteria which is responsible for the creation of life on earth. It looks suspiciously like “Healerite” a form of serpentine. What, if any, is the difference between these two trademarked stones?

  25. Some Larimar IS translucent, especially in slab form. Larimar is blue pectolite, but not all pectolite mined with Larimar is colored. So, some of the white translucency is just white pectolite, and not necessarily fake quartz. There IS fake Larimar out there, but the translucency test is not a reliable test. Otherwise, I enjoyed your article. Sorry for the necroposting. Thanks!
    JR/Rokking

  26. Hibiscus Moon – Although Many appreciate what it is you try to share and do; Larimar can, and is translucent in most all cases when light is held to it, or held back-lit. I find it rather disheartening that you are telling your mass followers on many posts and articles, that it cannot be as such, when it absolutely is.
    Light can absolutely pass through slices and tumbles of Larimar.

    And not all pectolite is vivid blue in colour; as some of the translucent white is merely white pectolite, and not “fake quartz” or “chalcedony” like you have said and stated in many places.
    Low grade Larimar can not only be translucent, but pale and also reddish brown in colour, which I have also seen you use as a basis for “fake” comparisons, when that too is unfortunately inaccurate.

    And some of the most beautiful A-plus grade Larimar of the most teal blue, is most usually *also* translucent when back-lit, or light held to its face.

    You telling everyone it is “100% opaque” is fully inaccurate, and heavily misleading and quite unfortunate.

    This below is from Gemdat/Mindat.
    And is completely back-lit and translucent. (Which *is* a feature of Pectolite/Larimar).

    This site is gemmologically accurate, and I do believe you should drastically change your informational output ASAP on this mineral, so as not to wrongfully teach your followers misinformation that is easily sourced correctly at proper gemological sites (not metaphysical ones).

    And to note: It is the FULLY opaque pieces, that are fake.
    NOT the translucent ones.
    Please do more research, for yourself, your shop/site, and also for proper teachings.

    People like to listen to you for whatever reason.
    So make sure you aren’t leading them wrongly in the process with misguided information such as this…
    Because the the “translucency test” you are spreading as being “fake”, is not a reliable test what so ever, at all.
    Period.

    In short?
    (PLEASE stop spreading this misinformation of “fake sourcing” Larimar, using this inaccurate and bunk methodology you are spreading as fact, when it is sadly not.)

    https://www.mindat.org/photo-385862.html

  27. Hi.
    A seller on ebay is selling larimar quartz. he tells me there’s a difference with the larimar stone.
    what do you make out of this ?
    Please send answer to my email.

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