So does real Quartz magnify? The simple answer is yes! It can be easy to accidentally buy glass instead of Clear Quartz from the wrong places, but some misinformation (can we call it fake news?) has been doing the rounds on the internet which is leading people to believe their Quartz palm stone, sphere, even towers and tumbles are fake because they magnify. A quick google search throws this up as the first result:
Google Result
The truth is that pretty much all crystals polished into any kind of curve, whether it be a tumble, palm stone, sphere etc will magnify due to their index of refraction. There are a lot more scientific in depth explanations available on the internet which you can go through if you're interested in the science, but it is in brief basic physics which states how much the light will slow down and "bend" when the light enters the material. Light is slowed down by any material it enters - glass, quartz, water, even air does it! The image below shows a Smoky Quartz palmstone from Madagascar magnifying the words of the incense packet behind it, due to it's curved top which is making the words magnify.
Smoky Quartz Magnifying
The only crystal this won't relate to is Satin Spar as the light is bouncing up through the fibres, through total internal reflection. The bending of the light is why people say don't keep a crystal (or glass!) sphere on the windowsill as it will focus the light (like when kids try and set fire to ants using a magnifying glass). Glass and Quartz have a very similar index of refraction, so will bend (magnify if curved) almost the exact same, if you had a Diamond it would magnify much more as it has a much higher index of refraction. 
A few common indexes of refraction, more on the Gem Society website if anyone is interested:
1.333 Water
1.544 Quartz
1.52 Glass
2.417 Diamond

1 comment

Zoe

Zoe

Thanks for this information, I know a few people that sell rose quartz and many thinks that its glass or plastic and the seller is getting banned for that. I also searched for this information and read that it should be glass if it magnifies. But I know that it is not true now.

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