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​How to Identify Real Amber from Imitations?

To be sure that you are buying jewelry made from real Baltic Amber (other types or fakes doesn’t contain Succinic Acid, which is responsible for health benefits) you can use most common methods for testing this natural resin are listed bellow:

  • Visual test:  inclusions (Flora or Fauna) and irregularities in shapes and sometimes combination of different colors are a sign that you are likely looking at real amber.

  • Static test: rubbing amber on some wool for about 20 seconds creates static. If no static is produced after rubbing - it doesn't attract the hairs or small paper pieces - then you might have a piece of fake amber.

  • Weight: genuine amber is lightweight and warm to touch, not cold and heavy like glass.

  • Salt water test: loose amber beads can be tested in salt water.  25g salt add to 200ml water in a glass and drop your amber into it. Real Amber should float in this water easily while majority of fakes will sink fast.

  • UV test: genuine amber gently glows (with light shade of blue or green) under UV light in a darkened room.

  • Heat and Smell test: when heated, amber produces a sooty, but pleasant, slightly sweet, pine-tree smell. Fort he test you can use heated very thin sewing needle. By this dangerous test you must be very carefully to avoid destroying the test subject!

  • Marks test: seams and mold marks indicate that it is plastic.

  • Acetone test:  apply a drop of acetone to the surface of the test subject and then let it evaporate. Real Amber will have no response.

Which colors has real amber?


Amber color range includes variations: from perfectly clear to opaque and from white to black. Common colors on the transparent side include light yellow, dark yellow, orangish yellow, red, reddish brown and milky. Warm golden-yellow color is probably the most common color for transparent amber.


Common colors on the opaque side include white, egg yolk, red, butter scotch, brown and near-black.


Much less common natural colors include blue-green spectrum. It is common however, black plastic coating on the back side of yellow amber is used to give the amber green color.

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