Garnets are a group of silicate minerals that have been used since the Bronze Age as gemstones and abrasives. All species of garnets possess similar physical properties and crystal forms, but differ in chemical composition. Garnet species are found in many colors including red, orange, yellow, green, purple, brown, blue, black, pink, and colorless, with reddish shades most common. The mineral group shows a range of hardness on the Mohs scale of about 6.5-7.5.
Turquoise is an opaque, blue-to-green mineral that is a hydrated phosphate of copper and aluminum. It is rare and valuable in finer grades and has been prized as a gem and ornamental stone for thousands of years owing to its unique hue. The finest of turquoise reaches a maximum hardness of just under 6, or slightly more than window glass. The luster of turquoise is typically waxy to sub vitreous, and transparency is usually opaque, but may be semi translucent in thin sections. Color is as variable as the mineral's other properties, ranging from white to a powder blue to a sky blue, and from a blue-green to a yellowish green.