crystal rings

The Reason Why Swarovski Expensive

Swarovski is well-known for its high-quality crystals that are perfect to adorn outfits with. However, many people wonder why they're so much more expensive than other brands. Swarovski is a brand that many people know and love. It's also a brand that many people are curious about why Swarovski is so expensive

Swarovski crystals are often seen as an extravagant purchase, but the truth is that there are many factors to consider when purchasing this type of jewellery. The cost of Swarovski crystals depends on a variety of factors including the size and cut of the crystal, where it was made, and how much gold or silver wire is used.  

What are Swarovski Crystals?

Crystals, like Swarovski crystals, are also known as lead glass. As the name implies, lead glass is when lead replaces some of the content of a more typical glass you would find in everyday life. Adding lead creates a glass with an increased refractive index. For our purposes, you can describe a material’s refractive index as the ability of the material to bend light as light travels through it. This bending of light, along with the faceted cut faces, is what allows gems to sparkle and gives gems the “fire” that we all look for. It is no surprise that diamonds naturally have an extremely high refractive index. Swarovski crystals are faceted lead glass beads produced by the Swarovski company.

The century-old name is an Austrian crystal manufacturer that has specialized in machine-cut crystals that boast precision and luxury since 1892. In the early 1960s, Swarovski developed a famous Aurora Borealis (AB) crystal with Christian Dior, adding an explosion of rainbow sparkles to the surface of the crystal. Since then, the brand has collaborated with many top-notched fashion designers, like Christian Louboutin, Chanel, and Louis Vuitton – countless of them. There’s even a Swarovski museum in Austria showcasing the company’s precious collection!

So are you trying to tell me that Swarovski crystals are just cut glass?

Well, they aren’t just any cut glass, but yes. By most definitions, Swarovski crystals, and all crystals used in jewellery, are basically a form of cut glass. But just because it is “only” cut glass doesn’t mean that it’s not special. By the same token, diamonds are just precisely cut minerals. With that said, we can answer one common question. Are Swarovski crystals real? Yes, they are real. They are real lead glass. But more likely when a person asks this question, they are actually asking “are Swarovski crystals precious gems?”. In this case, the answer is, no, they are not.

Swarovski crystals are non-precious lead glass meaning that the intrinsic value of the material is not very high. They do have a valuable brand name, however, which causes them to have higher prices compared to other crystal suppliers. At one point, Swarovski did have a noticeably higher quality crystal compared to other manufacturers. However, this is no longer the case and there are now many manufacturers of high-quality crystals. It is for this reason that we here at Alamode Fashion Jewelry tend not to use Swarovskis in our products. We still use them in some cases and we will certainly use them if a customer requests them, but in general, they do not look any better than any other crystal on the market.

How Is Swarovski Crystal Made?

 While Swarovski won’t reveal its secretive manufacturing process, we know that Swarovski crystals are made of quartz sand and natural minerals. The actual product is a form of man-made glass, with a 32% concentration of lead. Although lead is a toxic substance, wearing lead glass jewellery is not harmful to the human body. In fact, the presence of lead is what gives Swarovski crystals the extra sparkle and brilliance.

Swarovski’s patented cutting machine then allows for a technology-driven cut that creates a high refraction index in the crystals. The machine is so powerful and precise that it can create as many as 100 facets to mirror and bend light in various directions. 

After a complex cutting process, a Swarovski crystal is then polished to perfection. Some of the Swarovski products have special coatings. The AB crystals, for example, have a metallic coating that refracts light in a rainbow spectrum.

The combination of a secret chemical formula and the highest degree of precision-cut produces the world-renowned Swarovski crystals. The Swarovski crystals are more expensive than regular glass because of their fine materials and complicated manufacturing process.

The combination of a secret chemical formula and the highest degree of precision-cut produces the world-renowned Swarovski crystals. The Swarovski crystals are more expensive than regular glass because of their fine materials and complicated manufacturing process.

Swarovski Created Diamonds are 100% diamonds, only the origin is a laboratory, not the earth. Hardness, brilliance and fire are identical to mined diamonds.

Why is Swarovski Crystal so Expensive?

If Swarovski is more or less a glass, then why is it so expensive?

Well, this is because of the production process and precision required in creating a Swarovski crystal. Swarovski uses only the finest materials, superior production, cutting and polishing to fashion faceted lead glass that is known around the world for its brilliance and value. According to Swarovski, “Cutting hard materials such as crystal and gems, in such a way that they have a hundred identical facets in several directions, is a very complicated task; each direction of the reflected light must first be calculated by computer, then this has to be simulated in 3D, optimized and finally converted into control programs for complex machinery.” There are a few reasons for this - one of which is the rarity of Swarovski's stones. They can only be found in mines in Austria and parts of Siberia, which means it's difficult to find an abundance supply like other brands may have access to. 


Swarovski Crystals Aren't Naturally Occurring

Crystals might occur in nature, but Swavorski crystals don't.

They're actually lead glass crystals created using quartz, sand, and minerals. In fact, they're about 32% lead. Why lead, you might be wondering?

As it turns out, lead helps maximize the refraction in the crystals. Colours are created using chemical coatings, but clear crystals are more difficult to produce since they cannot contain any impurities.


Thought Swarovski crystals are made from glass, which makes them impressive is the attention to detail that goes into cutting them.

Therefore, there is nothing simple about how these stones get made. It is also the cutting practices that increase the cost because they get a treatment similar to diamonds.

Swarovski Brand Is Over A Century Old

The Swarovski company was founded in 1895 in Austria by Daniel Swarovski and his partners. This was years after Daniel started his first business in jewellery (“A. Kosman, Daniel Swarovski & Co”), married his partner’s sister (Marie Weis) with whom he had three sons, and registers a patent for a machine that can cut crystal to perfection. All these events contributed to the future success of the Swarovski company.

 It Takes A Long Time To Make

The process of making Swarovski crystals is quite extensive. It is a long and equally complicated process that only Swarovski AG use.

To understand more of why the process is long, you have to keep in mind that creating crystals that have a higher refraction index compared to an authentic gem such as a diamond.

Swarovski Crystals

The high refraction is thanks to the use of the 32 per cent lead. The coating makes the colours reflect during the refraction process.

The Swarovski Secret Process

Only Swarovski knows the mixture of quarts, lead, sand, and mineral that goes into the crystal formation process.

What is clear is that for the crystals to come together, you need to have high-quality material.

Overall, the clearer a crystal it is, the harder it typically is to produce.

To achieve the sparkle you love, the creation of Swarovski crystals begins with a secret lead glass crystal recipe featuring a blend of quartz, sand, minerals, and about 32% lead, which helps maximize refraction in the crystals. The clearer the crystal, the more difficult it is to produce. The purity of the material is key. After creation, they are precision-cut with a patented electric cutting machine. Accurate and consistent, the cutting process adds as many as 100 facets to each crystal which mirror and bend light in various directions, providing a higher refraction index in the crystals. After this complex cutting process, the crystals are then polished to perfection and ready for sale with custom jewellery making supplies. Coatings may also be added during this process to refract light in different colour spectrums.

Consistency In Quality

The collaboration between man and machine means that the Swarovski crystals are consistent when compared to gems that occur naturally.

With these, you’ll find that they have scratches or bubbles and tend to lack brilliance. As they are, they wouldn’t meet the Swarovski crystals standards.

Swarovski Crystals offers jewellery and ornament crystals of all price and quality ranges. That’s one of the many reasons why the brand is so popular – it has something for almost everyone.

One thing you’ll note about Swarovski crystals is they are all consistent in both their quality and cut.

More importantly, however, every Swarovski piece tends to have a great quality/price ratio both in terms of its beauty and sparkle, as well as its durability. Because Swarovski manufactures their crystals from various materials such as quartz, sand, minerals, and lead, they can maintain an ever-present sparkle and durability that a lot of natural crystals lack.

Easier To Authenticate

One thing that is true about Swarovski crystals is they are also the same through and through.

The crystals are identical in both size and cut, which is a true testament to authenticity and artistry. What you’ll never find in Swarovski crystals is bubbles; if you do, then you’re dealing with a knockoff.

Other telling signs that you don’t have real Swarovski crystals is they have scratches on the surface, there is a dullness to it, and it has an oily sheen.

The authentic gems are both brilliant and clear, just as high-quality diamonds. You will also notice that the coloured crystals are all identical in tone.

Lastly, you want to get Swarovski crystals from authorized dealers.

Is Swarovski Worth It?

In this case, the answer is, no, they are not. Swarovski crystals are non-precious lead glass meaning that the intrinsic value of the material is not very high. They do have a valuable brand name, however, which causes them to have higher prices compared to other crystal suppliers.

The general rule of thumb for jewellery holds. If you think looks nice then it is worth it to you! But maybe you are asking: should I pay more for this ring with a Swarovski than this ring made with a different crystal? I would say the answer is if you value the Swarovski brand name, then yes it is worth it to be able to say it is a Swarovski. If you primarily value just the look of the product, then no since it will most likely look indistinguishable from less expensive crystals.

A high number of Swarovski collectors are under the impression that collecting Swarovski Crystal collectibles are an investment. By definition, investors expect, the value to grow over time. Unfortunately, the idea that Swarovski is a good investment is far from being true.

What Makes Swarovski Special Besides Its Production Process? 

Swarovski’s precision cutting is unmatched by other manufacturers in the industry. The company also produces high precision optical instruments like telescopes and binoculars, abrasive tools, and even road lighting systems!

The company’s innovative culture has really shaped the brand’s image. There’s nothing Swarovski can’t design or create – from the giant crystal on top of the Rockefeller Center’s Christmas tree to covering any designer items with thousands of Swarovski crystals. In a sense, Swarovski has tied itself to luxury and creativity.

Frequently Asked Questions About Swarovski

Yes, they are real. They are real lead glass. Swarovski crystals are non-precious lead glass meaning that the intrinsic value of the material is not very high. They do have a valuable brand name, however, which causes them to have higher prices compared to other crystal suppliers.

As compared to other glass jewellery, Swarovski jewellery is made of extremely high-quality crystal glass. The high-quality crystals come from a very uniform structure which offers the Swarovski crystals amazing clarity.

Swarovski jewellery can be said to be one of the favourite jewellery for jewellery lovers. With such beautiful jewellery, you are likely to wear it often. When you wear them every day, their clarity will drop faster, and they will become less clear and attractive than when you just bought them.

While the composition of gold-filled and sterling silver ring designs withstand daily wear-and-tear, Swarovski crystals are best kept away from water. Larger Swarovski crystal stones, coloured crystals, and crystals with surface effects and coatings are best removed before contact with water, including hand washing.

Does Swarovski Jewellery Tarnish?

Like any natural crystal, Swarovski crystals are also subject to wear and tear – they need to be kept from any physical damage, they shouldn’t be exposed to too much direct sunlight for prolonged periods, and they should be carefully and frequently cleaned. 

This isn’t unusual, however, as any other crystal would need proper maintenance as well. What’s somewhat different in Swarovski crystals is their chemical coating which can tarnish more easily than some natural crystals if exposed to too much sweat or if it’s frequently sprayed with perfumes or washed with strong detergents. The same goes for a lot of other cosmetics and even suntan lotions. Keeping Swarovski crystals away from chlorine is also advisable but we trust you wouldn’t go swimming with your jewellery in any way.

In short, keep your Swarovski jewellery away from all outside chemicals and clean them frequently but carefully with warm and mild soapy water.

How To Tell Real Swarovski Jewellery?

With the popularity of the Swarovski brand, it’s natural that there are quite a lot of imitations in both online and on-location jewellery stores. Even big store chains won’t hesitate to offer fakes to their customers sometimes so you must always shop not only from big and famous but also from reputable vendors.

So, aside from shopping directly from Swarovski stores or from another trustworthy vendor, how can you tell a real Swarovski piece of jewellery from a fake?

The easiest way is to look from the classic Swarovski laser etched logo that’s present in a lot of their crystals. It’s a trapezoid-shaped logo that’s engraved inside some Swarovski crystals and stones such as Swarovski zirconia, all Swarovski Strass crystals, and others.

However, some Swarovski crystals such as the Bordeaux and Emerald Swarovski crystals don’t have this engraving because of their surface coating. For those crystals, you can check for the official Swarovski seal on the jewellery’s tag or sticker. It’s a 16-digit identification code that can be verified on the Swarovski site.

Why Is Swarovski So Popular?

Swarovski exists in a very well-chosen spot in the jewellery market. They offer excellent quality man-made crystals and gemstones that are very good at imitating natural diamonds and gemstones while coming at a fraction of the price. And instead of selling their crystals as low-price imitations, Swarovski has turned them into a brand in and of themselves and have established themselves as global leaders in the “high-quality yet affordable” jewellery range.


Hopefully, we were able to clear up some misconceptions about crystals and some of the stones used in fashion jewellery. It is true that Swarovski has a great brand name but that does not make it automatically better. While crystals might not be the best stone to use if visual quality is the main concern, they still have an important place in fashion jewellery.

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