Type of Dzi.
1.The Ancient & Antique Dzi
The longer the Dzi exist in this world, the more potent it becomes. Many antique Dzi which is rare and unique is only available in the Dzi Kingdom as it is very hard to obtain from them from Tibet and the Silk Route. The cosmic energy of these Dzis are strongest (its wisdom grows with time and generations) and can be as old as 1000 years of age. These gems come in different material, shapes and sizes depending on the ancient maker. The quality of these gems is very high and in the Himalaya, locals grind them into powder for medical consumption and also mixed in the paint for Thangkas and sacred statues. Some are used to adorn sacred statues and placed in the monastery for some time.
Little is known about how ancient gems are made as the tools are not as sophisticated (that's correct! they are all handmade by Tibetans since hundred or even a thousand year ago). Even after much persuasion, they hesitantly told us that all authentic antique dzi have their eyes and motives etched in with a volcanic temperature and only the highest grade ancient jadeite gem can withstand the high heat. No chemicals or foreign elements are used to make these gems. This kind of dzi will bring you lots of blessings.
Antique or vintage dzi comes with a weathering mark or better known as a scaly surface. It will also show signs of growing line forming a second eye on the dzi if it is blessed by a guru and purified. The surface can be matt, oily or has a waxy sheen but not too glossed. The milky white design or motif on the dzi comes from internally (cannot be scraped off) and NOT like it is hand-drawn. This type of Dzi has the highest value and very precious.
The higher prized gems can come in the form of red/black brown cinnabar dot dzi. There is also the dragon vein surface, eon aged surface, and rare motif collections. At this moment, the most sought after Dzis are the Golden Eye Collection.
2.The New Imitation Dzi vs The Tibetan
These Dzis are the most economical to wear. There are few categories and the highest quality ones still comes from Tibet. You can use the microscope to detect its flaws, texture and marks. They are grade (Grade 1, 2 and 3) by the age and quality of the stone. Tibetan new dzi normally have flaws in its design. If you want to get these Dzis make sure it is from an honest dealer who got them from the Himalayans, as the cost to get these dzis are higher and more difficult.
We are unable to obtain the whole process of hand-making this gemstone in Tibet (it is kept a secret and that is why the Tibetan original dzi are different from all others and can never be copied). From what we know, the materials used are earth stones mainly ancient Agate, Chalcedony, and Natural minerals.
It must be blessed and cleansed very thoroughly before selling them, only then you can feel the full effect.However, the precious collectors value for these Dzis are not yet existence and must be kept for a number of years before it can be considered as antique or old dzi.
3. The Real or Fake Dzi
There are also the FAKE or IMITATION dzi that has flooded the market over the years. Many unsuspecting people are hoaxing into buying cheap imitation dzi. This happens when the seller is sometimes not armed with enough knowledge to distinguish the real dzi from the fake ones. But with much information on hand, buyers interest are protected and will be able to detect fake Dzis.These are the reproduction made of stones, hard plastics, cement, glass, yak bones, and other replica materials. The design on the dzi looked painted on the outside, treated, usually too matte or too shiny and some will not have any weathering marks on them. A replica is a cheap synthetic or yak bone reconstruction, selling for only USD2 - 10 a piece in the Silk Routes, China, Taiwan and even in Malaysia. They may have the design features of real Dzi but they're complete imitations. Do not purchase this kind of Dzi.
4. The Imitation / Laser Dzi
The closest replications are the laser and glass Dzis. They are made of low-grade agate or chalcedony and are treated to get the motifs etched in. However, it is very difficult to differentiate the IMITATION / LASER dzi from real new Tibetan dzi as they look quite the same from the naked eye. They are made in some parts of Asia.