Before I get into this hopefully somewhat informative post I just like to point out that I love to work with both the moonstone cabochons also the Opalite bead. Both are in their own way beautiful and have a similar bluish mystical glow. The real moonstones are also more expensive.
So without any delay, I am going to come right to the point.
Let's start with the real thing...the MOONSTONE and how the moonstone got it's name? Moonstones are named for their (blue moonlight colored flash) that resembles somewhat the crescent and waning phases of the moon. The name “moonstone” was given because the floating light resembles the glow of the moon through a thin cloud cover. This illuminating gem is looked upon and admired by all. A moonstone can easily be identified.
What is the flash of a moonstone?
Moonstone is the popular name used for gem-quality feldspar that exhibits the phenomenon of adularescence. Adularescence is a soft glow of light that appears to float just below the surface of a polished gemstone, usually a cabochon or a bead.
Now to the Sea Opal or Opalite Beads. These beads are beautiful cut glass beads. They are beautiful glass beads but they are not moonstone beads. All run under the name Opalite which is a trade name for synthetic opalescent glass and various opal and moonstone simulants. Other names for this glass product include argenon, sea opal, opal moonstone, moonshine bead.
Opalite beads are also called Luminescent - Opalite Luminescent Glass which is also a common name for the Opalites in jewelers term. As you can see on this picture they have an even blueish luminescent glow.
Like demonstrated with this Men's Rustic Wire Wrapped Pointed Crystal Leather Necklace the moonshine beads or Opalite Glass comes in various glass bead forms like pencil sticks.
I hope you enjoyed this informative read. I use both the genuine moonstone with it's very distinctive blue hue and the Opalite glass as a less expensive version. I would love it if you leave me a comment, if this post was helpful to you.