The worth or price of larimar depends on each individual market larimar is sold in with plenty of negotiation and middleman operations distributing the stone.
Prices can range anywhere from $140 to well over $2,000 for pieces and settings. The combination of unique form, color, rarity and geographical limitation all contribute to its high price, particularly pure blue Larimar.
However, watch out for substitutes and fakes; there are plenty of distractions that can catch an unwary buyer, particularly synthetic type stones.
How Much Is Larimar Worth? (EXPLAINED)
Larimar is not the most commonly known gem stone.
People have seen it in different settings and locations, but the name and stone in itself doesn’t stand out predominantly like a sapphire or an emerald.
However, this particular stone does have value and is prized for in terms of jewelry pieces and settings.
Originally, Larimar was thought to be particularly rare and only available from the Caribbean, specifically, the Dominican Republic.
A product of ancient volcanic activity, the stone was noted and discovered by a Peace Corps volunteer in the mid 1970s.
The stone is actually named after the volunteer’s daughter, Larissa.
Since its discovery, Larimar has been specifically mined and produced from only the Dominican Republic, but it does exist in other parts of the world.
However, given it’s unique style, coloring, sourcing and backstory, Larimar is particularly noted elsewhere in the world for its rarity.
In geological terms, Larimar is the result of silicate formation.
It is a variety of pectolite in blue-green coloring.
Pectolite itself can be found almost anywhere on the planet, but the Larimar version is extremely rare.
Ergo, it’s high demand and inherent value.
In terms of abundance, Larimar only exists in the Dominican Republic in any sizable amount that could be used for jewelry.
The stone is particularly hard but also small in nature, which makes it ideal for settings in necklaces, earrings and similar.
The clarity of the stone has a translucent nature to it, adding to the appeal.
Variations of Larimar have been located since the 1970s in other parts of the world.
Very small samples have been found in Canada as well as Alaska and Greenland.
Additionally, other samples of rare pectolite have been sourced in North and South Africa, the United Kingdom, eastern Europe and even Sweden, Russia and Japan.
However, because the amounts are so small, the Dominican Republic continues to hold the corner on the market as the primary and major source of Larimar, even today.
Larimar stones are valued and judged by three primary factors: color, clarity and cut.
The color with the best and most valuable stones in the Larimar family tends to be a very distinct light blue version, being created by the inclusion of copper in the mineral.
Solid blue is considered the holy grail of the Larimar variations since most tend to have some swirling of white in the coloring mix.
However, it is possible.
Dubbed “volcanic blue larimar,” the rarest version will easily peg the highest bids and sale prices.
At the opposite, low-end of the spectrum, very white or whitish Larimar will get the least amount of attention and demand and subsequently gets priced the lowest as well.
For clarity, Larimar has different shades of translucence from one stone to the next.
Most stones tend to be thick in density and opaque.
Where a stone has more clarity than normal, almost see-through, it’s price will go up along with the singularity of that type.
This trend is particularly notable the farther away the market is from the Caribbean as well.
The cut of Larimar stones tends to be in different forms.
On the hardness scale, it only registers between 4.5 to 5 (Mohs scale).
So, being very shapeable, Larimar often appears in everything from ovals to rectangles to complete beads and pear-shaped pieces.
In some cases, a stone may be cut to enhance the other factors above because a part of a subject stone appeals more than just leaving the stone whole and as a mix.
Cut stones also come either in singular form or in batches strung on a necklace or bracelet in smaller sizes.
Again, the rarest and most sought after version of Larimar is the naturally complete blue variation without any whitish swirls in it.
It doesn’t have to be entirely perfect.
Natural inclusions creating imperfections such as green or red spotting can also make a particular stone extremely valuable as well.
That said, the perfect, flawless blue Larimar is the top of the class and considered the premium version that commands top dollar in markets.
Anyone giving away the full-blue version at a discount should be suspected of pushing a substitute or non-Larimar type stone.
Part of the issue in understanding Larimar values has to do with its relatively young age in the jewelry world. As noted above, the stone is only a recent find from the mid-1970s.
How it was not discovered earlier is a question worth asking in a different article, but Larimar has only been on the jewelry stage a few decades at best.
As a result, the farther one gets geographically from its primary source in the Caribbean, the less people know about Larimar and how to value it.
Care and Valuation Over Time
Because Larimar is a relatively soft stone compared to other choices for jewelry, owners do have to use some preventative care to maintain the value of the stone in settings.
Its softness makes Larimar susceptible to scratching and even chipping.
This can happen most often if the stone is dropped or impacted against a harder material.
Larimar settings and collections should also never be washed with harsh chemicals or abrasives either. Instead, warm water and mild hand soap should be used, and if a brush is applied it should be a soft-bristle type as well.
Ultrasonic cleaners should definitely be avoided, and the jewelry should be removed before using household cleaning products such as Comet, 409 and similar.
Watch out for cosmetic chemicals as well, such as hairspray or perfumes.
Exposure to all of these factors will damage the stone and reduce its worth considerably.
There is no question that Larimar will continue to enjoy a high demand and price point in unique jewelry options and setting choices.