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One of the most noticeable and fascinating features of the alexandrite gemstone is the stone's color changing properties. Depending on the type of lighting the alexandrite stone can display anywhere from a bluish-green color to a deep red with a hint of purple. It is because of this optical sensation as well as the rarity of the stone that makes Alexandrite such a valuable type of gemstone. Alexandrite is similar to chrysoberyls, however it also contains chromium in addition to the iron and titanium. It is this impurity that is the reason behind the stone's ability to change colors. This type of stone was created millions of years ago and could only be created in a certain type of geological condition. This is a factor in the rarity of the Alexandrite stone.
Since the stone's discovery in Russia the only other location that Alexandrite has been found is near Sri Lanka as well as Brazil. However, the colors found in these stones from Sri Lanka are not as preferred as those found in the Russian based stones. It was the discovery of the stones in Minas Gerais Brazil in 1987 that brought back another wave of the Alexandrite stone. While these stones do not have as strong of colors, there is clearly a color change.