Showing indicolite quartz
April 4, 2020

What is Indicolite Quartz – Properties and Varieties


Indicolite is a variation of elbaite, with indigo or neon-blue color variations. Elbaite is one of the 14 different tourmaline mineral types.  When someone asks the question “What is indicolite quartz ? ” , one can get confused as quartz is another family of gems. 

Tourmaline often crystallizes with quartz and often penetrates it. These sometimes referred to as tourmalinated quartz.  Therefore, “indicolite quartz” essentially means specimens of indicolite mixed with clear quartz. 

The name indicolite comes from the Latin word for a blue color plant “indicum”.  The name tourmaline comes from the Sri Lankan word “turamali” which is thought to mean “stone with mixed colors”.  Tourmaline is also a birthstone for October.

It is indeed a wonderful gemstone as it comes in a number of beautiful blue tones. I will discuss some valuable information about indicolite in this post including its properties, uses, colors and meanings.

Introducing indicolite quartz
image 1 : An indicolite crystal specimen -believed to be from Pakistan


What is indicolite quartz ?  – Properties of indicolite

Chemical and physical properties

Tourmalines are a family of aluminum borosilicates.  Different metal elements such as Iron, Sodium, Magnesium, Chromium and several others combines with aluminum borosilicates to give different colors. Red, Pink, Blue, Green, Brown and Black are some of the colors in the tourmaline family.  Tourmaline has a tiragonal crystal system and therefore the crystals have triangular cross sections. Crystals are long with rounded sides and striated parallel to the main axis.

Tourmaline has a hardness of 7 – 7.5 in the Mohs scale and has a strong pleochroism. Because of this, when you look at the stone or the crystal from one direction, the color can look lighter and darker from another direction.  This property is used by the gem cutters to get the maximum color to a cut and polished stone.

Indicolite Colors

What is the color of indicolite quartz ? Indicolite crystals or indicolite quartz are blue and it is common to find different tones of blue in the same specimen. Color variation can occur parallel to the axis or in cross sections.   

The blue color comes from a small iron percentage in the primary aluminum borosilicate molecular structure.  Some indicolite has a mix of green color as well. In fact, pure blue indicolite is hard to find and expensive. There is also an argument in the gem industry on differentiating between indicolite and blue-green tourmaline as blue-green tourmaline are more common and relatively cheaper.

There is no hard and fast rule on how to differentiate between indicolite and blue-green tourmaline and it depends on the personal choice.


Almost all indicolites in the market are heat treated to reduce darkness, increase transparency and to get that neon-blue color. Many sellers will not be disclosing this and it is always better to request for a valid certificate is someone is trying to sell you indicolite claiming it is to be an untreated stone.

Sometimes, cut and polished stones will be subjected to irradiation in order to improve the color.

Paraiba blue indicolite

The most expensive and also the benchmark of indicolite is referred to as “Paraiba Tourmaline” which was first found in the region called Pariba in Brazil.  Paraiba tourmaline was later found from Nigeria as well.

showing pariab tourmaline
image 2 : A paraiba blue tourmaline crystal specimen

In this video, a ring made with a massive Paraiba Tourmaline is shown and they claim that it is the biggest Paraiba Tourmaline ever found.  (I can not independently verify that claim, but it is indeed and awesome piece of Paraiba Tourmaline.)

A bit of history

Egyptians believed that tourmaline got its wide range of colors by traveling over the rainbow.


The Dutch imported the tourmaline in 1703 from Sri Lanka and they used it to pull ash from the pipes as tourmaline become electriacall charged by rubbing or heating. They also used it to wrap the stone in silk and keep it against the cheeks of feverish children in order to put them to sleep.

Tourmalines became popular as a gemstone only in the 1870’s and since then it has gained popularity. It was believed that tourmaline can protect the wearer from curses, evil eye and danger.

Sources of indicolite

Indicolite quartz is usually found in a number of countries around the world. However, the famous sources are Brazil, Namibia, Kenya, Afghanistan, Malawi, Pakistan, United States, Kenya, Nigeria, and Madagascar. Recently fine Indicolites are found in the Kunar province of Afghanistan. It is extremely hard to extract indicolite from mines in countries like Pakistan and Afghanistan due to climatic issues.

This tourmaline comes in variety of shades that includes both blue and green stones. Blue gemstones are very rare among all and usually green tourmaline is sold in combination with blue stones, because this is a famous mixture to be used in jewelry.

Uses of Indicolite

Indicolite will help those who are facing sleeping problems. Keeping it under the pillow or on a nightstand will help get a peaceful sleep. It will even help to get rid of bad dreams.

The stone is known to give you energy to do more and love your work. Using it will be a good idea if you are looking for a job that matches your passion. It is also a good amulet if you are into social service.

Indicolite may also help those who are suffering from speech impairments to overcome those.

Indicolite Physical Healing Energy

(Note – Please note that below information should not be used as professional healthcare advice. You should try these methods in addition to the normal medication)

Indicolite (Blue tourmaline) helps to keep the needed water levels in the body and also removing waste from the bladder and kidneys.

It will also help to relieve complications in the lungs (or breathing in general) and the immunity system.

Blue tourmaline elixir is used to treat burns and avoid scarring.

Migraines and headaches is a very common issue now a days and dark blue tourmaline is good for those.  Dark blue tourmaline is also used in treating for problems in the brain and eyes.

Industrially, Indicolite is used in television and radio frequency tuning circuits as it can withstand high frequencies.

Emotional Healing Energy

Indicolite can help you get rid of grief and sorrow. If someone is suffering from memories of childhood tragedies, indicolite can help them overcome those.

Spiritual Energy

Those who believe in universal power and spiritual healing use this stone to absorb and reorganize the energies from higher dimensions. Indicolite will help to connect these energies with the desired person.

By placing indicolite on the throat and third eye chakras, re-balance in communications between the physical body and the ethereal body can be achieved.

Here is a great video I found which shows cutting and polishing of an indicolite.


Wrap Up

The purpose of this post was to answer the question “ What is indicolite quartz ? ”.

I touched upon the properties, benefits and variations of the stone along with some additional interesting information.

Hope the post was useful for you and please let me know your thoughts in the comments section and ask any questions you have.


4 thoughts on “What is Indicolite Quartz – Varieties and Properties

  1. Hey, nice post. Good source of information about Indicolite. Even if I haven’t heard about it before, now it starts to be interesting and I will wait for more posts. It is funny how Egyptians believe that it has that colour range because it travelled over the rainbow, hilarious.


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