Healing Crystals Co.

Sardonyx: Complete Guide (2024)

sardonyx gemstone

In this post, we reveal everything you need to know about sardonyx, including its meaning, properties, types, colors, and uses. Let's get started!


A warm welcome into the mesmerizing world of Sardonyx, a gem shrouded in mystery and historic allure. In this guide, we unravel the secrets behind sardonyx stones, delve into their age-old relevance, and even explore the powers it is believed to possess. Brace yourself for this one…

 In this article we discuss the following:

  • Sardonyx Meaning
    • What is Sardonyx?
      • Sardonyx Pronunciation
      • What does Sardonyx Look Like?
      • What does Sardonyx do?
      • What Color is Sardonyx?
      • Sardonyx Birthstone
      • Sardonyx Healing
    • Botswana Sardonyx
    • Sardonyx in India
  • Sardonyx Properties
    • Sardonyx Metaphysical Properties
    • Sardonyx Healing Properties
  • Types of Sardonyx
    • Raw Sardonyx
    • Natural Sardonyx
  • Sardonyx vs Other Stones
    • Sardonyx vs Onyx
      • What's the Difference Between Sardonyx and Onyx?
    • Sardonyx and Peridot
    • Sardonyx vs Agate
    • Sardonyx and Tiger Eye
    • Sardonyx and Smoky Quartz
  • Sardonyx Color
    • Green Sardonyx
      • Green Sardonyx Meaning
      • Green Sardonyx Chakra
      • Green Sardonyx Healing Powers
      • Green Sardonyx Metaphysical Properties
    • Black Sardonyx
      • Black Sardonyx Meaning
      • Black Sardonyx Benefits
      • Black Sardonyx Properties
    • Yellow Sardonyx
    • Purple Sardonyx
    • Red Sardonyx
      • Red Sardonyx Meaning
      • Red Sardonyx Benefits
    • Brown Sardonyx
    • Blue Sardonyx
      • Blue Sardonyx Meaning
    • White Sardonyx 
    • Pink Sardonyx
    • Orange Sardonyx
  • Sardonyx Jewelry
    • Sardonyx Ring
      • Sardonyx Engagement Rings
      • Sardonyx Men's Ring
      • Red Sardonyx Ring
      • Sardonyx Signet Ring
      • Antique Sardonyx Ring
    • Sardonyx Necklace
    • Sardonyx Bracelet
    • Sardonyx Pendant
    • Sardonyx Earrings
      • Sardonyx Stud Earrings
      • Sardonyx White Gold Stud Earrings
    • Sardonyx Cabochon
  • Sardonyx Uses
    • Sardonyx Guitar
    • Sardonyx Sphere
    • Sardonyx Glasses
    • Sardonyx Beads
  • Sardonyx for Sale
    • Sardonyx Price per Carat
    • Sardonyx Guitar for Sale

Sardonyx Meaning

Attempting to define sardonyx is not an easy task, but we’re going to do our best. Its name is derived from the Greek words "sard" and "onyx", which is said to be representative of power and protection. From this we can already tell that the sardonyx definition indicates an early awareness of the abilities of this healing stone — dating as far back as ancient Greece!

What is Sardonyx?

Sardonyx stone is primarily composed of microscopic quartz crystals and belongs to the chalcedony family. Alternating bands of color that give this gemstone a memorable appearance, and are formed by layers of parallel, fibrous quartz. The most common colors found in sardonyx are brown and white, but variations can include black, red, and yellow — more on each color later!

Sardonyx Pronunciation

The correct pronunciation of sardonyx is "sar-duh-niks". The emphasis is placed on the second syllable, "duh", while the "o" is pronounced like “u”. If you want to pronounce sardonyx correctly, it is important to note that the emphasis should not be placed on the first syllable, "sar".

What does Sardonyx Look Like?

As mentioned, sardonyx is characterized by bands of alternating colors. Its appearance varies depending on formation and inclusions, but the most common combination would be brown and white bands. Sardonyx crystal holds a naturally smooth and polished surface, which radiates a refined finish right from the moment of extraction.

What does Sardonyx do?

Sardonyx gemstone is believed to possess various metaphysical properties, all of which we’ll dive into in the next section. In short, it is said to enhance courage, strength, and stamina, empowering the wearer to overcome challenges. Remember we said it was derived from the Greek word for power? Stay with us and let’s go deeper. 

What Color is Sardonyx?

We mentioned above that sardonyx typically displays alternating bands of brown and white. However, its color often varies with different specimens. In addition to brown and white, sardonyx can also exhibit shades of black, red, yellow, or even a combination of these colors. The specific coloration depends on the composition and impurities present in the stone.

Sardonyx Birthstone

Sardonyx birthstone is considered to be representative of August, and is also associated with the zodiac sign Leo. It is believed to bring extra benefit to anyone born in this time period. August birthstone sardonyx is also thought to enhance motivation and provide a sense of stability and protection for its wearer if they are an August or Leo baby. 

Sardonyx Healing

In addition to metaphysical properties, sardonyx is said to have various healing properties, too. Some include promoting physical strength, improving stamina, and aiding in the healing of bones and joints. But we’ll take a closer look at each benefit in the upcoming section, so keep reading!

Botswana Sardonyx

Botswana, which is located in southern Africa, holds some of the most abundant sardonyx mines on the planet. Sardonyx rock is specifically found in the areas of the Ghanzi and Kgatleng districts of the country.

Sardonyx in India

Sardonyx mineral is also found in India, primarily in the state of Maharashtra. The town of Jalgaon, specifically in the region known as the Ajanta Caves, is also known for its rich deposits of high-quality sardonyx. The stones are typically mined from local riverbeds.

Sardonyx Properties

As promised, let’s take a closer look at the various metaphysical and physical healing properties of these fantastic stones. Note that when we refer to metaphysical healing, we are typically referring to sardonyx magical properties or benefits that can be felt, but not seen.

When we refer to the physical healing properties of a stone, we’re talking about benefits that can be tangibly experienced by the human body or inner systems. 

Sardonyx Metaphysical Properties

As we touched on earlier, sardonyx is associated with strength, courage, and protection. Those who work with this stone often report its ability to enhance self-control, discipline, and determination. Sardonyx is also believed to promote stability, bring happiness, and attract good fortune to the user. It can be used to foster harmonious relationships and promote feelings of tranquility and confidence when relating to others.

Sardonyx Healing Properties

When it comes to the physical body, sardonyx can have a grounding and stabilizing effect on the body, mind, and emotions. It may work to boost stamina and energy levels, providing much-needed support during times of physical or mental exhaustion.

Sardonyx is also said to work closely with the immune system, and assist in speeding up the healing of compromised bones and other bodily tissues. Additionally, some attest to its ability to help balance hormones and alleviate symptoms related to menstrual issues.

Types of Sardonyx

When looking at types of sardonyx, most people are going to turn first to the different colors that these specimens can occur in. We’ll look at those in due time, but for now there are two categories we’d like to explore: raw versus natural sardonyx. 

Raw Sardonyx

Raw sardonyx, or sardonyx rough, simply refers to uncut and unpolished sardonyx gemstones. It is the natural state of the mineral before it is shaped and finished into a polished gemstone that can be used for jewelry.

Raw sardonyx is preferred by some collectors, as it retains its natural texture, colors, and patterns, often featuring the distinct banding that this family of rocks are known for. 

Natural Sardonyx

Natural sardonyx, on the other hand, can refer to both polished or unpolished variants of the stone. The word natural is simply pointing to sardonyx that formed naturally within the earth, and is thus not man-made. Natural sardonyx is that which is composed of layers of sard and onyx. All raw sardonyx is natural, but not all natural sardonyx is raw — got it?

natural sardonyx

Sardonyx vs Other Stones

Depending on the final formation of a sardonyx stone, there are a number of other crystals that sardonyx can be confused with, especially to the untrained eye. We’re going to dive into a few of these and highlight the key differences that can help to keep tricksters at bay!

Sardonyx vs Onyx

Yes, sardonyx and onyx are both types of chalcedony, but they have some notable differences. Onyx is actually more commonly used in jewelry, while sardonyx is more often used for carving cameos or small decorative objects.

What's the Difference Between Sardonyx and Onyx?

Both stones are forms of cryptocrystalline quartz, but they differ in appearance and composition. Sardonyx often contains layers of sard, a reddish-brown variety of chalcedony. As we know, sardonyx has bands of red or brownish-red (sard) and white (onyx), whereas pure onyx simply has bands of black and white or gray.

Sardonyx and Peridot

This isn’t all that common, but some people may confuse sardonyx and peridot due to their similar hues in certain cases. While sardonyx has a reddish-brown base, some variations can actually resemble the yellowish-green color of raw peridot. As we know, sardonyx is a type of quartz, while peridot, on the other hand, is a mineral belonging to the olivine group.

Sardonyx vs Agate

This one is a little more tricky. Sardonyx and agate are both varieties of that chalcedony quartz family. The key difference between them lies in their banding patterns. Sardonyx displays parallel bands, while agate typically displays concentric or irregular bands.

Additionally, sardonyx typically has a more uniform and distinct banding compared to agate.

Sardonyx and Tiger Eye

It’s easy to confuse sardonyx and tiger’s eye stones due to their similar banding patterns and colors. Both gemstones form parallel bands, and both fall within the brown hue spectrum. This similarity in appearance can easily lead to confusion.

Sardonyx and Smoky Quartz

Both sardonyx and smoky quartz hold shades of brown, with smoky quartz often exhibiting a smoky gray-brown hue that might resemble the reddish-brown color of sardonyx when viewed with the naked eye.

In certain cases, the absence of distinct banding in smoky quartz and the overlapping color range can contribute to the confusion. Take care when assessing each of these stones!

Sardonyx Color

We’ve emphasized the reddish brown color range of sardonyx, but the truth is that this mineral can present in a whole range of other tones! Let’s dive into a few of them below:

Green Sardonyx

As with most green-presenting crystals, green sardonyx is typically caused by the presence of iron minerals within the gemstone. When iron impurities come into the picture, they can give sardonyx a greenish hue.

This can range from a pale green to a deeper green coloration. The intensity of the green color will vary depending on the levels of iron content within the stone.

Green Sardonyx Meaning

 When crystals take on a new color hue, they also tend to embody a range of new metaphysical properties that correlate with that color. Green sardonyx is said to bring benefits in the forms of growth, healing, and abundance. Additionally, green sardonyx is said to enhance communication, self-expression, and overall well-being.

Green Sardonyx Chakra

Like most green stones, green sardonyx is associated with the heart chakra. This is the chakra of love, compassion, healing, and emotional balance, and green sardonyx's color resonates with the energy of this energy center, helping to open and activate it. Working with green sardonyx can enhance the experience of love and forgiveness, and foster a deeper connection to one's emotions.

Green Sardonyx Healing Powers

When we work with green sardonyx for physical healing, this stone is very much connected to the immune system, working to boost overall vitality and wellness. It is also said that sardonyx can aid in detoxification, assisting the body in eliminating toxins and promoting a healthy digestive system. Green sardonyx is said to specifically benefit the skeletal system, providing support for bones, joints, and cartilage.

Green Sardonyx Metaphysical Properties

Taking it into the deep spiritual realm, green sardonyx remains a stone of intense protection, warding off negative energies and promoting a sense of security no matter what is unfolding around you. Additionally, all green crystals are said to attract abundance and prosperity toward a wearer, supporting a prosperous and fulfilling life.

Black Sardonyx

Black sardonyx is a thing! In this instance, it gets its color from the presence of highly consistent black layers within the stone, typically formed by the inclusion of onyx or other black chalcedony.

Black Sardonyx Meaning 

Black sardonyx works with the root chakra located at the base of the spine, and works to bring grounding, stability, and a sense of security. Working with black sardonyx can assist in grounding oneself, promoting a feeling of safety, stability, and a strengthened connection to the Earth.

If you are going on a long-haul flight, for example, it’s a good idea to carry black sardonyx on your person, to keep your energy grounded throughout the journey. 

Black Sardonyx Benefits

It goes without saying that just about any black crystal can be used for protection and grounding energy. The black color is also usually associated with resilience, strength, and self-control. Black sardonyx is said to be the stone to pick when you need help to overcome challenges, or simply some extra determination.

Black Sardonyx Properties

Let’s talk physicality for a second: It is believed that black sardonyx can be used to support the musculoskeletal system, aiding in bone strength and healing. Additionally, black sardonyx is thought to have potent cleansing and detoxifying properties, assisting with the elimination of toxins from the body when used correctly.

Yellow Sardonyx

Yellow sardonyx gets its color from the inclusion of iron oxide minerals. These impurities can range in concentration, resulting in variations of intensity and shade of yellow in different specimens of natural sardonyx. Not an uncommon occurrence, we might add!

Purple Sardonyx

On the contrary, purple sardonyx is a relatively rare variety. The purple color is caused by the presence of trace elements, typically manganese or iron. These elements can create different shades of purple, from light lavender to deep violet, depending on their concentration levels.

Red Sardonyx

Natural sardonyx tends to have a reddish hue, but vibrant red variations are also available, and these are formed primarily from the inclusion of iron oxide minerals, such as hematite or goethite.

Red Sardonyx Meaning

Like black sardonyx, red variations will also work closely with the root chakra, promoting one's connection to the Earth and providing a sense of flaming red resilience to all who can harness this stone’s color energy.

Use red sardonyx to ground and strengthen your root energy center, and don’t be surprised when a more anchored feeling of safety and security in life arrives. 

Red Sardonyx Benefits

One of the greatest benefits of red sardonyx is the way it works with the body’s circulatory system, promoting healthy blood flow and cardiovascular health. Additionally, red sardonyx has those same detoxifying properties as its black counterpart, working hard to support the immune system.

Brown Sardonyx

Brown is the most common shade of sardonyx, and gets its color primarily from the presence of hematite or goethite. Lower levels of these elements would influence a more red variation of sardonyx, while higher levels tend to push the rock more into the brown realm. 


Blue Sardonyx

The blue color in sardonyx is caused by various factors. Most commonly, blue is the final effect of trace amounts of cobalt or copper present in the stone. Each specimen of blue sardonyx will hold different levels and variations of these elements, leading to vastly different shades of blue, which has been a great thing for the jewelry making industry!

Blue Sardonyx Meaning

The blue color in a crystal universally represents calmness, communication, and clarity. Blue sardonyx is thus believed to enhance one's ability to express oneself effectively and communicate with clarity, as the stone will work closely with the blue chakra, also known as the throat. 

White Sardonyx 

In the presence of pure white chalcedony, one can expect a pure white sardonyx! Chalcedony is the form of microcrystalline quartz and the main component of all sardonyx stones. It’s actually the absence of impurities or pigments that results in the final white coloration.

Pink Sardonyx

When manganese oxide impurities are present, we get the pleasure of pink sardonyx! The alternating bands of pink sard and white chalcedony will create a unique banding pattern in the final stone, making a distinctive specimen that collectors are always eager to get their hands on!

Orange Sardonyx

Orange sardonyx is also the result of hematite or goethite within the stone. Like red or brown, orange is merely an in-between hue that can occur when specific levels of these inclusions are displayed.

Sardonyx Jewelry

We mentioned earlier that regular onyx is usually preferred within the jewelry making world, but with that said, sardonyx is relatively durable and has a rating of 6.5 to 7 on the Mohs scale. This makes it suitable for everyday wear in jewelry pieces such as rings, pendants, and bracelets.

Sardonyx Ring

Sardonyx is a great stone for rings. Hardness aside, its attractive bands of color make it an appealing choice for hand jewelry, providing a unique and eye-catching addition to any collection. Today, there aren’t many ring styles that one can’t get sardonyx set into — it’s becoming a widespread and versatile stone indeed!

Sardonyx Engagement Rings

Talk about sardonyx elegant! Sardonyx is proving to be a unique and meaningful choice for engagement rings that can withstand the test of time and symbolize commitment. The stones are a lot more affordable than high-end gemstones, but nonetheless as aesthetic. 

Sardonyx Men's Ring 

Sardonyx is considered to be a unisex stone. Its versatile and neutral color bands make it suitable for both men's and women's jewelry, and that includes men’s rings! 

Red Sardonyx Ring

Depending on individual beliefs and cultural interpretations, a red sardonyx ring will symbolize several things. In general, red is associated with passion, love, and strength.

Gifting someone a red sardonyx ring may symbolize these feelings toward that person, but it could also simply represent protection, thus empowering the wearer. 

Sardonyx Signet Ring

Signet rings have a flat, broad surface on the top that can be engraved or adorned with a decorative design. Historically, signet rings were used to seal documents (as you may have seen in the movies!), and the engraved design on the gemstone or metal would leave an impression in wax or clay. Sardonyx signet rings can have a personal or family emblem engraved, making them a symbol of identity, heritage, or status.

Antique Sardonyx Ring

When it comes to vintage sardonyx jewelry, you’ll need to know where to shop! Antique sardonyx rings can be challenging to find, as they are not as common as modern jewelry. We recommend some dedicated searching at local antique markets, estate sales, or specialized antique jewelry dealers, if there are any near you!

Sardonyx Necklace

Since sardonyx is a stone that works with the heart chakra, the best way to wear it is technically a necklace! Necklaces suspend the stone near the energy center itself, thus allowing it to work day and night, bringing in all of the physical or metaphysical benefits on offer. 

Sardonyx Bracelet

That said, if it’s specifically physical benefits that you’re looking for, then we recommend wearing sardonyx on your wrists as a bracelet or beads! The wrists are the most direct path into the bloodstream, and this means that wearing crystals on this area will work to deliver the healing properties throughout the body without much effort from the wearer. 

Sardonyx Pendant

Did you know that a sardonyx pendant can be used as a pendulum? Sardonyx pendants have wonderfully balanced weight, making them perfectly suitable for pendulum uses.

Sardonyx Earrings

Sardonyx earrings are actually not as common as other gemstone earrings, simply due to other gemstones being better known at this point in time. Sardonyx is far less commonly used compared to stones such as diamonds, rubies, or sapphires. That said, sardonyx earrings can still be found, particularly in jewelry stores that specialize in unique or less common rocks!

Sardonyx Stud Earrings

While trends can vary, sardonyx stud earrings have seemed to withstand the test of time. Stud earrings as a whole tend to be a timeless and classic choice for many people. And sardonyx is a stone that adds a touch of elegance and intrigue to just about any outfit.

Sardonyx White Gold Stud Earrings

Sardonyx white gold stud earrings are a stunning choice for those who prefer the combination of a versatile gemstone with the timeless appeal of white gold. A white gold setting effortlessly provides a sleek, modern look that complements the banded appearance of sardonyx crystals.

Sardonyx Cabochon

Sardonyx cabochons are used in jewelry making. They are the smooth, polished, dome-shaped gemstones that get set into rings, necklaces, earrings, and bracelets.

Cabochons are particularly popular in modern jewelry, as they showcase the beauty and unique patterns of the stone. That said, sardonyx cabochons can also be used for decorative purposes, such as inlaying into furniture, boxes, or other craft projects!


Sardonyx Uses

Jewelry isn’t the only thing that sardonyx is useful for. Read on for more everyday items that make use of this interesting rock, and why:

Sardonyx Guitar

This is something that will come up time and time again on the Internet, and no doubt lead to endless confusion. To set the record straight once and for all, there are no guitars that are physically made out of sardonyx stone.

Rather, sardonyx was an electric guitar brand that was popular during the 70s. There were only a handful that were ever made, and the guitars became highly sought after when John Lennon used one to record his last ever album. 

Sardonyx Sphere

Like a crystal ball, a sardonyx sphere refers to a spherical-shaped gemstone carved from real sardonyx. These spheres are mostly used for decorative purposes, crystal healing, or as collectible items. The unique banding patterns of sardonyx are easier to appreciate in all their glory, when cut into a spherical shape.

Sardonyx Glasses

Another internet misconception that is doing the rounds. Sardonyx glasses are not reading glasses carved out of sardonyx stone… make no mistake! In actuality, sardonyx was the name given to a fictional cartoon character from a show called Steven Universe. This character famously wore glasses; ones that her eyes were attached to! 

Sardonyx Beads

Like any crystal, one can purchase this stone in bead form, to be used in a number of crafts. Crystal beads are created by shaping and polishing a stone into small, spherical or oval shapes with a hole drilled through them, allowing them to be easily threaded. 

Sardonyx for Sale

If you’re in the market for sardonyx, you’re in luck! Despite more rare variations, this is a relatively easy to find gemstone with a variety of purchase options. The best places to buy sardonyx would be jewelry stores, online retailers, and gemstone shows and exhibitions.

Online retailers like Amazon and Etsy seem to offer a wide selection of sardonyx gems, but it's important to research the seller's reputation and read customer reviews before paying a cent!

Sardonyx Price per Carat

If you’re intending to buy sardonyx, here’s what you need to know when it comes to pricing. The price of sardonyx will vary depending on color, quality and size. On average, sardonyx falls within the range of around $5 to $20 per carat. However, higher-quality specimens go for much higher prices, well exceeding $20 per carat.

Sardonyx Guitar for Sale

While it is less common these days, it is still possible to find sardonyx guitars for sale, although they may be more specialized or custom-made instruments. To find a sardonyx guitar for sale, we recommend scouring online platforms like eBay, to find makers who may still offer these guitars.

As always, it is advisable to research the seller's reputation, carefully examine the specifications and condition of the instrument, and consider factors such as price, craftsmanship, and authenticity before making a purchase.

Did You Enjoy This Article?

Thank you for reading! If you enjoyed this article, you might also like the following articles: Seraphinite: Complete Guide and Rhyolite: Complete Guide.

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