How Much is Agate Worth? Different Types and Colors

how much is agate worth

Agate has been around for thousands of years. If you have a specimen and are wondering how much agate is worth, you are at the right place. In this article, we will look at the value of agate and its different types.

Agate, with its mesmerizing patterns and vibrant colors, has captivated the hearts of gemstone enthusiasts and collectors for centuries. It is a type of chalcedony that comes in a variety of types and colors.

Known for its unique banding and intricate designs, agate is not only a stunning addition to jewelry but also holds significant value in the world of geology and metaphysics.

What is Agate

Agate is a type of chalcedony, which is a form of microcrystalline quartz. It is characterized by its banded appearance, with concentric layers of different colors and shades. These bands are formed through the deposition of mineral impurities during the growth of the agate.

The colors and patterns in agate can vary widely, making each piece unique and distinct. Throughout history, agate has been used for various purposes, including jewelry, amulets, and ornamental objects.

Agate is often found in nodules within volcanic rocks or in the cavities of sedimentary rocks. Its name is derived from the Achates River in Sicily, where agate was first discovered.

These precious stones are found all across the US, and each state agate is valued differently.

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How Much is Agate Worth?

The value of agate is influenced by several factors, including its type, color, pattern, size, and overall quality. Let’s explore the worth of different types of agate to gain a better understanding of their market value.

1. Banded Agate

Banded Agate

Banded agate is perhaps the most recognized and classic variety of agate. Its distinctive bands, formed by layers of different colors and shades, create a visually striking appearance.

The value of banded agate is determined by the clarity and contrast of its bands. Pieces with well-defined and vibrant bands are generally more valuable than those with faint or muddy patterns.

Large, polished banded agate specimens are often used for decorative items, such as bookends and paperweights, and their value can range from a few dollars to several hundred dollars, depending on the size and quality.

How much is banded agate worth: Banded agate is currently priced at around $1 to $45 per carat depending on its quality.

2. Fire Agate

Fire Agate

Fire agate is another mesmerizing variety of agate known for its iridescence and play of color, resembling the flickering flames of a fire. The vibrant colors are caused by the interference of light as it passes through microscopic layers of iron oxide or limonite within the stone.

The value of fire agate is primarily determined by the intensity and variety of colors it exhibits. High-quality fire agate with strong, vivid colors can be quite valuable.  Small fire agates are commonly used in jewelry, while top-quality large specimens are priced at thousands of dollars.

How much is fire agate worth: Fire agate is currently priced at around $10 to $100 per carat depending on its quality.

3. Lace Agate

Lace Agate

Lace agate is characterized by delicate, lacy patterns that resemble intricate lacework. These patterns are often formed by dendritic or fern-like inclusions of manganese or iron. They have an intricate pattern of blue, white, and gray.

The value of lace agate is influenced by the complexity and beauty of its patterns. Cabochons of lace agate are popular choices for jewelry, and their value depends on the size, clarity, and intricacy of the lace patterns.

How much is lace agate worth: Lace agate is currently priced at around $5 to $50 per carat depending on its quality.

4. Moss Agate

Moss Agate

Moss agate is named for its green, moss-like inclusions, which can resemble landscapes, forests, or underwater scenes. The green coloration is typically caused by the presence of minerals such as chlorite or hornblende.

The value of moss agate is determined by the clarity and uniqueness of its moss-like inclusions. They are popular in jewelry items for their color.

Moss agate is also popular for use in decorative items and can be found in a variety of shapes, from polished spheres to carved figurines.

How much is moss agate worth: Small moss agate cabochons suitable for jewelry can range from $15 to $150 per carat, while larger, intricately patterned specimens may command higher prices.

5. Iris Agate

Iris Agate

Iris agate, also known as rainbow agate, is prized for its vibrant and iridescent colors. This variety of agate exhibits a play of colors similar to that of opals, creating a mesmerizing and captivating appearance.

The value of iris agate is influenced by the intensity and variety of its colors, as well as the overall quality of the specimen.

Small stones are often used in jewelry. Large and exceptionally colorful iris agate specimens may be sought after by collectors and can command premium prices.

How much is Iris agate worth: Iris agate cabochons are often used in jewelry, and their value can range from $5 to $200 per carat, depending on the size and quality.

6. Agate Fossil

Agate fossils are unique specimens that feature the preserved remains of ancient organisms, such as plants or animals, within the agate. These fossils add an extra layer of fascination to the already captivating world of agate.

The value of agate fossils is determined by the rarity, size, and quality of the fossil inclusions. Small agate fossils can be found for a few dollars, while larger and more intricately preserved specimens may command higher prices.

How much is agate fossil worth: Agate fossil’s price ranges from $5 to $9 per carat.

7. Turritella (Shell) Agate

Turritella (Shell) Agate

Turritella agate, also known as shell agate, is recognized for its fossilized snail shell inclusions. These tiny, spiral-shaped fossils create unique patterns within the agate, adding a natural and organic element to the stone.

The value of turritella agate is influenced by the size, clarity, and abundance of the fossilized shells. Cabochons of turritella agate are popular for jewelry, especially in designs that highlight the distinctive shell patterns.

How much is turritella agate worth: Prices of Turritella (Shell) agate can range from a few dollars per carat for common varieties to over $20 per carat for high-quality specimens with well-preserved and visible shell inclusions.

8. Petrified Wood Agate

Petrified Wood Agate

Petrified wood agate is a fascinating variety that results from the replacement of organic material (wood) by silica over millions of years. The resulting agate displays the intricate patterns and colors of the original wood, often with a polished and glossy finish.

The value of petrified wood agate is determined by the size, color, and quality of the preserved wood patterns. Large, polished slabs or cabochons of petrified wood agate are sought after for use in jewelry, ornamental objects, and lapidary art.

How much is petrified wood agate worth: The rarest pieces of petrified wood agate sell for over $100,000 while the smaller pieces usually go for around $50.

Prices can vary widely depending on the rarity and visual appeal of the specimen, ranging from a few dollars per carat for common varieties to several hundred dollars per carat for top-quality, well-preserved specimens.

Factors That Determine the Value of Agate

There are plenty of factors that determine the value of agate gems in general.


The color of agate plays a crucial role in determining its value. Vibrant and intense colors are generally more desirable and valuable. A few colors like deep reds in fire agate or vivid greens in moss agate, can command higher prices.

Similarly, Iris agate, with its iridescent and rainbow-like colors, is particularly sought after by collectors.


The intricate patterns within agate, whether banded, lacy, mossy, or fossilized, contribute to its aesthetic appeal and directly impact its value. Well-defined and aesthetically pleasing patterns are highly sought after, as they enhance the overall visual appeal of the agate.

Transparency and Clarity

The transparency of agate can influence its value. Clear and transparent agate varieties with minimal impurities are generally more valuable.

While some agate varieties, like moss agate and lace agate, are often translucent, others, such as banded agate, may exhibit varying degrees of opacity.


The size of an agate specimen can significantly impact its value. Larger pieces, especially those with unique and well-defined patterns, are often more sought after and can command higher prices.

Quality of Finish

The quality of the finish, especially in polished agate cabochons, is an essential factor in determining value. A smooth, glossy finish enhances the visual appeal of the agate and increases its desirability.


Rare or unusual agate varieties, such as certain types of fire agate or agate fossils with exceptionally preserved specimens, can command higher prices due to their scarcity.


The geological source of agate can impact its value. Some locations are renowned for producing agate with specific characteristics or colors, and agate from these regions may be more highly valued.

For example, fire agate from certain areas in the southwestern US is more sought after by collectors for its vibrant colors.

Also, take a look at the best spots for Alaska Agates.

Market Trend

Trends and collector demand can influence the value of agate. If a particular type or pattern of agate becomes highly sought after in the market, its value may increase due to increased demand.


While natural agate is more valuable, some agates are treated with heat or chemicals to enhance their color and beauty. These agates are less valuable, as natural stones command a higher price.

How Much is Agate Worth FAQs

What color is the most expensive agate?

The rarest of agate types by color is purple. However, dendritic agate, also called the plentitude stone is the most valuable type of agate.

What is the most desirable agate?

Blue lace agate is the most desirable agate for its delicate light blue color and gorgeous white veins running throughout it.

What do raw agates look like?

The most obvious tell of an agate is banding. True agates are always translucent as they let some light pass through when you shine on them, and they have thin visible layers on them.


Now you know how much is agate worth. agate is a gemstone that offers a diverse range of colors, patterns, and geological features, making each specimen unique. Understanding the factors that contribute to the value of agate allows collectors, enthusiasts, and buyers to make informed decisions.

As with any gemstone or mineral, the market value of agate is subjective and can be influenced by a combination of geological, aesthetic, and market-related factors.

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