Everything you need to know about Sunstone Gemstone

In the mineral family, sunstone is classified as a feldspar. Sunstone occurs naturally as both an orthoclase and a plagioclase feldspar. Included hematite or goethite in a sunstone causes the stone to shimmer in gold to brown tones because of the mineral's parallel orientation to the light.

Sunstone Gemstones round and square


Whether composed of oligoclase or labradorite, these stones are highly regarded as a cabochon material. In addition to the aforementioned, moonstone, non-phenomenal orthoclase, phenomenal and non-phenomenal labradorite, and amazonite belong to the feldspar group of gemstones. Moreover, Oregon Sunstone is gaining popularity as a natural, untreated American export.


Sunstone and moonstone share the feldspar mineral family, but that's about where the similarities end. In contrast to the fiery sunstone's aventurescence, the adularescence of cold moonstone variations provides a softer, gentler glow. Aventurescence, sometimes known as "schiller" among devotees of sunstones, is the iridescent sheen produced by flat, reflective inclusions.

It's safe to say that the feldspar family is the most numerous. However, not all of them appear in jewellery. Subtle differences in chemical composition among feldspars give rise to a diverse range of gemstones with distinctive colours, patterns, and textures.

Sunstone Gemstone rough unpolished


Feldspars rich in potassium and feldspars rich in calcium and sodium make up the two primary groups that comprise the feldspar family.

Two distinct feldspar types include potassium. Gemstones like moonstone and orthoclase sunstone are both types of orthoclase, while amazonite is a type of microcline. Some jewellery uses a standard, unremarkable variety of orthoclase feldspar. Its colour is often a clear yellow, and it has facets.

There are a few different types of plagioclase feldspar, each with its unique composition that includes a balance of calcium and sodium. Labradorite and oligoclase are two examples of gem-quality feldspars.

Two types of feldspar share the name "sunstone," both of which belong to the more prominent feldspar family. Sunstone is a popular gemstone known for its radiant yellow colour, not its chemical composition. Until recently, this sunstone kind was the most well-known, but that's starting to change.

However, not all sunstones are aventurescent, despite their standard yellow, orange, or brown body colour. Depending on the magnitude of the inclusions, the phenomena will manifest themselves in different ways. 

A slight reddish or golden glow can appear on any base colour due to tiny inclusions. The more extensive inclusions produce the most dazzling and eye-catching reflections. It's possible to find hematite, copper, or some other mineral in a sunstone.


Absorption Spectrum Birefringence Cleavage
Not diagnostic 0.007-0.011 Perfect two directions
Colour Crystallography Dispersion
Red, green, yellow, and peach body colours. Triclinic 0.02
Formula Fracture Identifying Characteristics
Orthoclase - KAlSi3O8
Oligoclase and labradorite - solid solution between NaAlSi3O8 and CaAl2Si2O8
Conchoidal, uneven, splintery reddish or golden platelets with metallic lustre
Lustre Mineral Mohs Hardness
Vitreous Spinel 6-6.5
Optic Sign Optics Phenomena
Biaxial - Biaxial (-). 2V = 82°. Aventurescence, schiller.
Pleochroism Refractive Index Specific Gravity
None 1.537-1.550 2.62-2.67
Transparency Variety of Wearability
Transparent Feldspar Poor



Sunstone was an extremely rare, valuable, and obscure gemstone in the early 1800s. However, the discovery of sunstone in Norway, Siberia, and other places helped to increase the stone's popularity and make it more affordable. 

There were tales of sunstone discoveries in the early 1900s in the Warner Valley desert in the U.S. state of Oregon. Likewise, there were claims of sunstone discoveries in the early 20th century in the Warner Valley desert in the U.S. state of Oregon. Therefore, there's a chance that local indigenous people were the first to collect sunstones from Warner Valley.

Sunstone Gemstone


Native American folklore claims that blood from a mighty warrior shot by an arrow fell over fragments of Oregon sunstone. His warrior spirit was transferred into the stones by the blood, imbuing them with sacred power and giving them a reddish hue. 

The Jacksonville, Oregon, museum features sunstones and other Native American artefacts. Moreover, several mining claims in Oregon currently generate enough of this rare mineral to serve high-end jewellery designers, mass marketers, and carvers.

Stone Sizes

The weight of cabochons made from Norwegian and Indian materials can often exceed 100 carats. However, the readily accessible material only permits the cutting of smaller stones. This is because rough is frequently broken and cracked.

Sunstone Gemstone size


Stone Care

Sunstones may be cleaned without risk using warm, soapy water. However, keep steam and ultrasonic cleaners away. Moreover, you should avoid bleach-containing cleaning products since hydrochloric acid reacts severely with feldspars.

Sunstone Gemstone care



1. What is a sunstone crystal good for?

Sunstone is known to lift spirits, provide spiritual and emotional comfort, and inspire those who stand in its glow. Also, it may help patients with SAD regain their equilibrium and reduce the symptoms of rheumatism.

2. Is sunstone a real gem?

The only site in the world where gem-quality sunstones may be found in Oregon. This gem is never altered or changed in any manner, unlike other gems. Instead, some Oregon sunstones contain millions of minuscule copper platelets, known as schiller, that emit light.

3. Is sunstone safe to wear?

Sunstones are benign. Therefore, wearing one won't have any negative impact on you.

4. Why is sunstone so expensive?

The availability of translucent Oregon sunstone allows for substantially higher sales prices. The market value of a transparent orange sunstone is significantly more than that of a translucent stone. However, larger stones, especially those over one carat in weight, command higher prices than their smaller counterparts.