Teal Sapphire VS Salt & Pepper Diamonds

Teal Sapphires vs Salt and Pepper Diamonds – Engagement Ring Choices for the Alternative Millennial Bride

Millennial couples now want a non-conforming wedding and selecting an unusual gemstone for the engagement/wedding ring is a memorable way to achieve that. To break the status quo regarding diamonds being the standard engagement ring gemstone, uniquely coloured gemstones like teal sapphires and salt and pepper diamonds are now being sought after. 

Teal Sapphire VS Salt & Pepper Diamonds
                                               Teal Sapphire VS Salt & Pepper Diamonds

Combining blue and green and symbolizing love and commitment, teal sapphires are quickly becoming the go-to gemstone choice for engagement rings. Salt and pepper diamonds, another up and coming engagement ring choice, take the “flaw” of inclusions, that almost every diamond has, and use it to give an exclusive experience. Salt and pepper diamonds have their name due to the black and white inclusions that give them that specific smoky, speckled appearance. Let’s understand these two gemstones in detail.

Teal Sapphires:

Teal sapphires, a comparably cheaper gemstone to diamonds, are a strong durable contender in the gems arena. They are found in Australia, Montana, Nigeria, Madagascar, Cambodia, and Thailand. We delve deep into the origins of teal sapphires here. Depending on the content of iron or vanadium, the colour of the teal sapphire will differ in various ways. Their colours can be 50% blue 50% green, or just 15% green, or some with a bit of yellow.

Mermaids dont exist, Sapphires Do

 The ones that are half and half of blue and green are the most eyed upon and are called “Mermaid sapphires”. With sapphires, the bluer the stone is, the higher their value seems to be. The colour and size of the stone are the two factors that primarily decide the price of both teal and mermaid sapphires. 

A stunning step cut oval 6.11 carat mermaid sapphire
                                                             Mermaid Sapphire

Salt and pepper diamonds: 

Salt and pepper diamonds have the same carbon composition as regular diamonds except for the black and white inclusions that arise due to levels of heat and pressure. The inclusions give them a natural and organic look. Inclusion and Composition of salt and Pepper Diamod

Salt (white) and pepper (black) diamonds can be colourless, grey, or black. Each different, their appearance and colour depend on the inclusions in them. Due to inclusions in salt and pepper diamonds, they tend to offer a mesmerizingly unique less-shiny speckled appearance in comparison to clear diamonds.  The inclusions can give anything from a beautiful swirly pattern to a magical galaxy-like design inside the diamond. The price of these stones does not increase with carat size, unlike traditional diamonds. They are perfect for those millennial brides who want a dark gemstone on their engagement ring and attain a distinctive look.

Salt and Pepper diamonds, with a variety of inclusions.
                                       Salt and Pepper diamonds, with a variety of inclusions.


The main difference between teal sapphires and salt and pepper diamonds, other than the fact that both are completely different gemstones, is the colour. The colour choice is up to a personal preference for either deep blue-green marine hues or a smoky greyish colour range. To consider the hardness factor,  teal sapphires score a strong 9 on the Mohs scale of hardness, and that’s right behind that of diamond’s 10.  Teal sapphires offer a more unique glorious mysterious look, while salt and pepper diamonds are preferred by those who want a more untraditional colour choice.


Sourcing is one of the most important, if not the most important factor when buying the gemstone for your engagement ring. Where the gem comes from, how environmentally taxing it was, and how ethically it was sourced, need to be transparently available pieces of information. 

  • Ethical sourcing of salt and pepper diamonds:

While diamonds have that tag of “possible unethical sourcing” attached to them, most salt and pepper diamonds are known to be sourced in possibly the most ethically superior way i.e. lab-grown. Since the naturally sourced ones require a significantly lesser earth displacement thus involving less mining, fewer resources and less time, salt and pepper diamonds are considered more conflict-free. Research suggests that nearly 6-10% of couples nowadays consider ethical sourcing an important factor while selecting their engagement rings. And the numbers are expected to rise as the younger generations are more environmentally aware.   

  • Ethical sourcing of teal sapphires:

Mechanical mining is used to source most teal sapphires in Montana and Australia. This makes sure the supply chain system has accountability. There is documentation at every step which makes transparency in traceability possible. Montana has become immensely popular for teal sapphires in United States of America. The strict mining regulations imposed there leave no doubt that the stones are ethically sourced. 


The colour teal is a huge up and coming trend in gem colours, which is why teal sapphires are becoming increasingly popular. Teal sapphires in round or oval shapes are perfect for elegant engagement rings. Because of the way these specific shapes would make the stone move, they are best at showing off the gem’s deep hues in both colours. Heidi Klum’s 3-4.5 carat teal sapphire engagement ring is a perfect example of how elegant the gem can look. 

Klum’s 3-4.5 carat teal sapphire engagement ring

From the diamond family, but cheaper than diamonds, salt and pepper diamonds have the best of both worlds for the couple-to-be-wed that wants an alternative yet conventional gemstone for their engagement ring that just so happens to be an affordable choice. The irregular patterns in them and the illusions the inclusions create are what make salt and pepper diamonds an underrated diamond choice.

With time and changing generations, choices and trends evolve. The youth of today do not want to opt for conventional expensive options when there are just as beautiful but eco-conscious, affordable uniquely coloured options out there. This is why teal sapphires and salt and pepper diamonds are growing rapidly to become popular choices for both consumers and the gemstone community. 

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