Real Vs. Fake Citrine: How to Spot the Difference

Is your citrine real or fake? 

It can be a bummer to discover that one of your precious crystals may be a fraud and citrine is namely easy to fake. Fortunately, it’s usually just a baked version of another crystal, usually Amethyst though sometimes it is forged from glass.

Either way, once you know how to tell the difference, you’ll be able to spot a fake citrine a mile away.

What is Citrine Used For?

Working with authentic citrine can have a tremendous impact on your confidence, manifesting abilities, motivation, creativity, mental and emotional well being.

Real Citrine crystals can be used to energize and recharge your goals--financial and physical.

This beautiful crystal can also negate negative energies and vibrations that look like anxiety, depression, fear, worry, and doubt. Are you activating your creativity and life expansion with a genuine Citrine? Here’s how to know for sure.

Signs of a Fake Citrine Crystal

One of the most common fake Citrines is a baked Amethyst. Now, Amethysts are a powerful crystal, but in completely different ways. The energy is more ethereal and spiritual.

While Citrine specializes in making magic for us here in the 3D physical realm and is meant to enhance our human experience. 

baked citrine

Citrine is a quartz crystal (like Amethyst), making it especially easy to replicate using glass.

Glass that has been set and colored to resemble citrine are made in molds, making them unnaturally perfect in shape with slightly rounded edges. They can look almost like hard plastic with very little variation in color patterns. 


fake citrine

(Fake citrine tumble stone)

There may even be internal cracking that occurred when setting the glass, along with potential gas bubbles. Another subtle, but fun way to tell the difference is the temperature.

When holding a real Citrine crystal in one hand and a fake in the other, the genuine crystal feels cooler than the glass, which is absorbing heat from your body.

A more obvious distinction of a fake Citrine (heat-treated Amethyst), are remnants of purple from the Amethyst that can be spotted throughout or at the base of the crystal.

Once baked, the Amethyst can become a bright, artificial-looking yellow. This varies greatly from the deep tones found in natural citrine.

Signature Real Citrine Characteristics

The more time you spend with and around crystals you’ll be able to intuitively tell when something is off energetically and correctly suspect a fake one.

( Gem grade faceted citrine - non treated) 

When it comes to signature features of authentic Citrine, you’ll notice rich, deep, and vibrant hues of smoky yellow, golds, and even cool-toned browns within a natural citrine cluster. Natural Citrine will be slightly more expensive than heat-treated/fake Citrine.

(Authentic Kundalini Elestial Citrine) 

A real Citrine, generally, will not have a pure white base. There will be color throughout. It may have smooth fault lines that usually run horizontally. And often no bubble or infractions will be inside the crystal. 

In genuine citrine, this happens naturally in the earth over time. In heat-treated citrine, it happens in an oven. So, your heat-treated citrine is still citrine, just with the process sped up outside of the geothermal ground.

From these pictures, you've likely got an idea on how to tell the difference. Here are some more ways:

  • Heat-treated citrine has large portions of white, and the color is concentrated at the top.

  • Sharp, white borders around the bottom of a druse  (lots of tiny crystals on one rock base), or geodes, are sure signs of heat-treated citrine. Citrine isn't found in geodes naturally.

  • Genuine citrine has a  fairly uniform color from base to tip.

  • Genuine citrine is pretty  clear inside even when raw, where as with heat-treated citrine, you cannot see through the crystal.

  • Genuine citrine generally has smooth, horizontal fault lines.

  • Heat-treated citrine is kind of crumbly, since the oven temperatures can weaken the integrity of the amethyst.

Does it Matter?

Depending on how energetically sensitive you are to crystals, it can matter greatly what you’re working with.

An Amethyst that’s been baked won’t generate the manifesting capabilities or resonate confidence and creativity the way a real Citrine crystal will. Similarly, the lack of crystalized geometry in glass might make energy fall flat though it can still be a beautiful reminder of any intention you’ve put behind them. 

However now you know the difference and have the power and freedom to choose which Citrine you take home.