We all love the sparkle and shine of Crystals, but how many of us know the details that make one type of crystal different from another? What does "AB" stand for and how is it different from "Shimmer"? Here is a handy guide to explain some of the bestselling crystal effects so that you can make the best choice possible for your next project.
When a colour has no effectin or on it, it is the standard version of that colour. Classic Crystal (Foiled) is where the glass is completely colourless and you can see straight through to the silver foiling on the back. The foiling is reflective like the back of a mirror and helps the colour in the glass shine to its fullest potential. A great example of this can be found under the Preciosa Flatback Crystals collection.
Crystal AB is short for ‘Aurora Borealis’, also known as the Northern Lights. This effect has an iridescent coating that covers the top of the crystal making it shimmer like the rainbow, predominantly in hues of pink. The AB effect can look different depending on the brand, if you are unsure you could try our Preciosa Crystals Sample Service or buy our Crystal Comparison Kit.
The Shimmer Effect is very similar to AB but is more subtle and tends to shine in tones of yellow and blue. These tone variations can build up to make a big difference on large projects and knowing all your choices will help you choose the right effect for your intended look. Shimmer colours can be found in our Serinity and Swarovski Crystals range, please apply online if you would like to gain approval to continue buying Swarovski crystals.
Some crystal colours will have an “Unfoiled” or “Transparent” option, where the silver foiling on the back is not present. Unless the colour of the crystal is opaque (like Jet) this means you will be able to see through to the colour behind it. This can be useful when you want added sparkle but no colour, like gems on a bridal veil or in jewellery making when you know the back of the stone will be visible.
This coating gives a chrome metallic finish, making it best for when you want a look that shines like actual gold instead of gold coloured glass crystal. Popular examples include Preciosa Flatback Crystals in Aurum.
This effect has a layer of coloured lacquer on the back of the crystal instead of silver foiling. This gives a bold solid colour and is the secret behind the Royal and Electric colours from Serinity Crystals.
An explanation and visual examples of crystals colours and effects can be found on the Bluestreak Crystals TikTok social media channel below: