Is my selenite real or fake?

Selenite is a soft, translucent stone with a distinctive moon-like glow. Sometimes it's confused with Satin Spar or quartz. However, confusion between natural stones is not as problematic as between a real Selenite and an artificial imitation. Because of its popularity, some shops sell fake Selenite made of plastic or modified glass because the natural stone’s cost is higher. With a simple scratch test, you can tell the difference between real and fake Selenite.

Typically it can be troublesome to determine a mineral’s authenticity at home. However, when it comes to Selenite, a few simple tests can help you differentiate an authentic Selenite from a fake one.

How to distinguish a natural selenite from a fake one?

1. Observe the stone’s appearance: fake Selenite generally looks too perfect. Usually, it’s completely transparent with no impurities or fractures, which real Selenite has. Natural Selenite has some impurities or small ground particles that come from the environment the mineral developed. Each natural Selenite is unique and imperfectly beautiful.

2. Verify the stone’s temperature: another way to determine whether your stone is a Selenite or an imitation is the temperature. Selenite acts as a thermal insulator, so it should be warm when touched. It is most likely a glass or plastic imitation if it feels cold to the touch. However, if it feels warm but can’t scratch it with your fingernail or a sharp object, it is most likely fake. Another simple test is to heat a needle above the fire and gently touch the stone; if it melts, it is undoubtedly a plastic imitation.

3. Perform a hardness test: Selenite is a soft mineral. You can scratch it with a sharp object or your fingernail. If you can pierce through its surface, it is most probably a natural Selenite and not a glass or plastic imitation. Selenite has a very low hardness on the Mohs scale and is prone to scratches.

4. The safest way to purchase authentic Selenite is from a reliable source that can prove the authenticity of the mineral.

Your Selenite is most likely fake if:

  • Looks too perfect with no inclusions or cracks
  • It has too much color saturation - vivid purple, red or blue
  • It's too transparent
  • It has a rainbow effect on the surface