Watermelon Tourmaline elbaite crystal gemstone healing metaphysical properties & meaning

bicolor gem of love & life

Watermelon Tourmaline

Watermelon Tourmaline Origin & Physical Properties

Watermelon Tourmaline is the variety of Elbaite Tourmaline crystals and gemstones that are a bicolored combination of green and pink colors. Sometimes these crystals form with a center of pink surrounded by an outer layer of green. These crystals are generally sliced and polished into gemstones. Watermelon Tourmaline exclusively belongs to the Elbaite species of the tourmaline mineral family,  a closely related group of mineral species that are all cyclosilicates. The red and pink color tones are caused by trace amounts of Manganese in their atomic structure, while the green portion of the crystals are caused by dispersed ions of iron within its crystal lattice.  Watermelon Tourmaline is often strongly pleochroic. This means, there is a play of color which shifts depending on what angle you view the stone. All Tourmalines belongs to the trigonal crystal system and usually forms in prismatic crystals with a trigonal cross section. Tourmaline is  one of few gem quality minerals that forms in the trigonal crystal system. Like other varieties, Watermelon Tourmaline has pyroelectric and piezoelectric properties. Simply by heating, or rubbing the stone it produces an electric polarization within the crystal. Elbaite Tourmaline has a hardness ranging from 7 to 7.5 Mohs, a vitreous luster and range from perfectly transparent to opaque.

Watermelon Tourmaline is a unique phenomena in the gem kingdom. Just like most Tourmaline species, it was formed in molten magma veins that penetrated the surrounding bedrock. Rich in a solution of water and minerals such as iron, lithium and manganese, over time Tourmaline crystals and other stones grew in their conducive environment. As bicolor Tourmaline crystals formed, they utilized the minerals that were most readily available. As concentrations of available minerals changed, it caused a shift in the predominant color in the crystal lattice.

Important new deposits of gem quality Tourmaline were discovered in Minas Gerais, Brazil in the later 80’s and early 90’s, giving rise to the surging popularity. Bicolor crystals and Watermelon Tourmalines captured the imagination of collector’s and jewelry designers worldwide. Since that time, other important finds in Nigeria, Madagascar and Afghanistan have also produced stunning multicolored Tourmalines.  Watermelon Tourmaline nearly always has inclusions and often has fractures within its crystal structure. This is perhaps due to the unstable environment that led to its formation. Slightly included multicolored Tourmalines can be incredibly valuable and it is likely that their price per carat will only rise.

Category Properties

Chemical Composition


Mohs Hardness 




Specific Gravity

3.06 (+.20 -.06)[1]

Refractive Index

1.62 - 1.64



Crystal System



Tranlucent to opaque


Green, pink, Yellow, Colorless


Pakistan, Australia, Brazil, Sri Lanka, Africa,USA


Heart (4th)





Metaphysical Effects

Soothes anger & Resentment, Peace, Joy, Rejuvenation, Love & Relationships

Watermelon Tourmaline Healing & Metaphysical Properties

Watermelon Tourmaline elbaite crystal gemstone healing metaphysical properties & meaning

Tourmaline History & Mythology

The family of closely related mineral species called Tourmaline is the most dynamic of all gemstones. From solid black crystals like Schorl, to incredibly transparent crystals, Tourmaline literally forms in every color shade one could imagine. Not only does it dynamically form in every possible color shade, it also often forms in bicolor, tricolor crystals as well in mosaic crystal patterns which are best exhibited after slicing the crystals into cross-section plates.  This dynamic gemstone family has a long legacy throughout many ancient cultures, and because of its myriad of color shades, it has also been confused with other gems in the past. Stunning Green Tourmalines were mistakenly identified as Emerald, Rubellite Pink Tourmalines were thought to be Rubies, and the list goes on. The modern name for the mineral group Tourmaline, comes from the Sinhalese words ‘tura’ and ‘mali’, meaning stone of many colors.

According to the ancient Egyptians Tourmaline passed through a rainbow on its journey from the sun, taking on all the colors of the rainbow before finding its resting place deep within the earth.

For many centuries, the piezoelectric properties of Tourmaline was well recognized. In the 1700’s Dutch sailors were the first tradesmen to bring Tourmalines to Europe’s shores from Sri Lanka and the called the stone ‘Aschetrekker’, meaning ‘ash pullers. The electric polarization within Tourmaline crystals made them a perfect tool to pull the ash from their tobacco pipes when cleaning them. Tourmaline rose to popularity in China, due to the last empress Tzu Hsi love of the stone. She had a huge collection of fine jewelry made with Tourmaline gemstones.

It wasn’t until the late 20th century that Tourmaline began to see a huge rise in popularity within the gem world. New discoveries of Rubellite, Green Tourmaline and Indicolite specimens in Brazil led to a new found obsession with this dynamic gem family. Later, important deposits of Tourmaline were discovered in Namibia, Madagascar and older localities such as those in Maine and California found larger demand in the market place. Today, Tourmaline is incredibly popular and the value of quality gemstones continues to rise.