The stone of the moment seems to be Mahenge spinel. Years ago a deposit of neon pink and red stones was discovered in the Mahenge region of Tanzania, Africa. The color was neon and was arguably better than the best rubies. They say that the color of the first ones was best, and that the saturation level of them has been going down, but I haven’t seen the new material in real life, so I can’t speak to that particular rumor.
I particularly enjoy the hot pink variety, and am not really a red lover, so I don’t have any red spinels from Mahenge.
The larger of the two cushions has more red and not really any other orange modifiers, just pure pink/red, while the smaller of the two has almost a blue-purple modifier.
In natural lighting, these stones fluoresce red, making them appear even more saturated than they do indoors. They sort of wooed me away from the cool desaturated blue/green/purple world and into the super saturated market, where the prices are high and competition fierce.
Lately, I’ve been looking into prices on them because I’ve been attempting to find one for a long-time friend of mine who is really a diamond girl, but has been wandering into the realm of colored stones lately. Prices on these have at least doubled, and depending on where you look, have tripled since I bought mine a few years ago, so I feel really fortunate to have purchased these when I did. I don’t know who let the cat out of the bag, but these should have stayed top secret!
There is nothing quite as bright pink as a pink spinel from this region, and they are even more saturated than some of the nicest pink sapphires out there. I love trying to find them, but since their popularity shot up, I can’t justify the prices myself, but enjoy seeking them out for other people.