Garnet is a name used to describe a diverse group of silicate minerals that include almandine, pyrope, spessartine, grossular, andradite, mozambique and uvarovite. The deep wine red color of almandine garnet results from iron and chromium and the name “garnet” tends to apply to this variety. Garnets can display different colors in different types of light and occasionally will showcase faint four-rayed asterism.
Garnet is quite a durable stone, rating a 7 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale. The Mohs hardness scale is a qualitative scale of hardness ranging from the numbers 1-10, 1 being the softest and 10 being the hardest. These numbers characterize the scratch resistance of minerals by using harder materials to scratch softer materials.
Garnets are found in metamorphic and igneous rocks. They form under extremely high temperatures and pressure. Garnet deposits are found in Africa, India, Russia, South America, Madagascar, Pakistan and the United States.
To keep your Garnet stones clean and sparkly clean them with warm soapy water and a soft brush. Rinse the stone well after washing it. Ultrasonic treatments may be used for most garnets, except the demantoid variety. Steam cleaning garnets may cause color changes from the heat. Protect garnet from sharp blows, extreme temperature changes, and harsh chemicals.