Sapphires: Although sapphire means blue in Latin, sapphires can be found in a rainbow of colors. Kings once believed these stones offered protection form harm and envy. Sapphires are calm and relaxing. Until the discovery of extraordinary stones in Kashmir in 1880, Sri Lanka (formerly known as Ceylon) was the standard bearer of sapphire. The Kashmir supply was essentially exhausted by 1930, leaving Sri Lanka as the location of the most beautiful sapphires. In the 1990's Southern Madagascar became one of the top sources of good to fine quality sapphires. Sapphires are also mined in the US (Montana), Australia, Thailand, Cambodia and Northern Madagascar, however these locations don't produce as fine a sapphire and are mainly used to supply "commercial grade" sapphires to the industry. They come other colors such as red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple and pink. Colors other than blue are referred to as "fancy sapphires". Sapphires are the traditional gift for the fifth and forty-fifth wedding anniversaries and the birthstone for September.Enhancements: Although cutting is the most basic enhancement method necessary to display the beauty of a gemstone, there are many fascinating methods by which man has demonstrated his ability to draw maximum color, luster, clarity and brilliance from natures earthbound treasures. A basic understanding of these enhancement techniques will add to your appreciation of the beauty, durability and value of the gemstone jewelry you already own, or plan to purchase in the future. Most sapphires are treated with heat after being mined. Heat treatment of sapphires is a permanent, industry accepted treatment requiring no additional care over that of unheated sapphires. There are other treatments used to enhance the color of sapphires which are not industry accepted, may not be permanent, and therefore not sold by our company. Approximately, 99% of sapphires used in jewelry are heated, leaving 1% which are unheated and considered very rare. You should assume that the sapphires sold at MyJewelrySource are heated unless stated otherwise.Buying a Sapphire: All in all, sapphires can be considered the ideal colored gemstone. Besides excelling in color selection, sapphiresexcel in durability with a rating of 9 on the Mohs scale of hardness. Sapphires in sizes of 1 carat and over are considered to be important. Some inclusions are accepted although certainly not as many as with ruby or emerald. Nearly all of the sapphires at MyJewelrySource.com are eye clean and most important, all are pleasing to the eye. We offer a wide range of colors from a traditional Ceylon blue, to rich lustrous royal blue, to many styles with pink, orange, and yellow sapphires. Care of Sapphires: Since sapphires are tough and durable, they can withstand most cleaning methods. While steaming and ultrasonic cleaning will not damage the gemstone, these methods are not recommended by MJS as they may loosen the setting, and subsequently, stones may fall out. Your jewelry may be cleaned with a soft-bristled brush or a cloth with plain or soapy water. Sapphires must not be put in boiling hot water. Avoid exposure to hairspray, perfume and chlorine, which can dull gemstones.