A crystal expert friend of mine, based in the US -- we were talking, & she said to be careful nowadays.
She buys from mineral exhibits/conventions/fairs, & old-time suppliers.
She now sees a lot of the color-enhanced stones that were manipulated by high heat exposure to appear another/more attractive color; or worse, to appear as a better-priced stone.
Ex. Topaz presented as aquamarines/sapphires.
The unscrupulous of course, will never say so.
There are a lot of stones that are, like some pearls, "pressed" or "reconstituted".
Stone materials are grounded, other cheaper ground stone materials are added + coloring; then molded into beads/whatever. Kaya pala, I am unattracted to certain "fine" specimens -- basta, something is. "off". There is too much uniformity in appearance & quality.
I learned most of what little I am sure of from viewing stuff at fine stores tht are really reliable ones.
These readily offer information if something is color-enhanced/pressed. Accdg to The Stone Market's part owner, as quoted by its store manager/SAs -- the demand for authentic/natural crystals went so high up this past year. Naging fashion accessory na kasi. Unfortunately, supply is low. So there.
(At Obelisk, they still offer readily info if something is "pressed". Their gorgeous new amber -- they right away declare as: "formed resin". So, ibig sabihin: pressed.)
What else did I earn recently?
At times, the unscrupulous pass off low-grade cheap opal as higher-priced MOONSTONE. Haynako.
BRONZITE , if authentic, has small gold short straws in them -- parang rutilated quartz but the straws are mas mataba, and short.
What else? Fine though not pricey agates: yellow, pink, white are passed off by the unscrupulous as jade
-- very much pricier.
The very good specimens of PERIDOT are passed off as expensive emeralds.
Man-made/fake diamonds are presented as tanzanites (very very pricey)
CORALS are all color treated coz natural (dead) coral all come in shades of white. Sige batuhin ako -- butmost corals in the Greenhills tiangge are "reconstituted" from not even coral materials.
To the hindi pa sanay, fish bone is passed off as ivory/tourquoise/coral even.
The way things go now, I woud be wary of local shops (sorry) -- but in every shop, you can surely find some authentic crystals -- but you must have the eye for it, and patience to really assess.
The US-based stores now appear to be more reliable -- they trade based on the supply vs demand and/or the "prettiness" of the stone -- que natural yan, reconstituted/pressed -- they label/describe it appropriately. Coz most buyers do not care. They are after the way it looks, never mind that it has no/different energy.
So, let us think out our purchases very well. We are perhaps better off purchasing the best we can afford, basta authentic.