White Nephrite Jade: A Dive into Quality and Value!

Publié par Baikalla Jewelry le

We recently had a customer call in and ask about white nephrite jade specifically and asked how to know what is good white nephrite jade, what are the quality of white nephrite jade to look for when investing in a piece of jade! In this article, we will go into a deeper dive into the quality and what to look for in white nephrite jade! (And note, a lot of it is the same as jade in general! But with a couple other things to look out for!) 

Check out this youtube video we did on this topic!* 



Nephrite Jade Overview: 01:24  

Some of you might know there are two types of jade: Nephrite and Jadeite Jade. And we will be talking about nephrite jade specifically in this blog post and even more specifically, white nephrite jade.

So with white nephrite jade, just like jadeite jade, the quality factors are pretty similar, you still want smoothness in texture and less inclusions and you want the richer and vibrant colors in colored nephrite jade such as green (nephrite jade also comes in MANY different colors), but for white nephrite jade, the top of the line quality is known as "Mutton Fat Jade".

This is a helpful comparison to see the difference between jadeite and nephrite jade. 


  • Chemical Composition: Sodium aluminum silicate (NaAlSi2O6).
  • Crystal System: Monoclinic.
  • Hardness: Between 6.5 to 7 on the Mohs scale.
  • Density: Ranges from 3.3 to 3.4 g/cm³.
  • Colors: Comes in a variety of colors, including shades of green, white, lavender, yellow, blue, black, red, orange, and gray.
  • Transparency: Ranges from translucent to opaque.
  • Luster: Vitreous (glass-like).


  • Chemical Composition: Calcium magnesium iron silicate (Ca2(Mg,Fe)5Si8O22(OH)2).
  • Crystal System: Amphibole.
  • Hardness: Between 6 to 6.5 on the Mohs scale.
  • Density: Ranges from 2.9 to 3.1 g/cm³.
  • Colors: Predominantly shades of green, ranging from light to dark. Also found in white, gray, and less commonly in yellow, brown, and black.
  • Transparency: Typically, translucent.
  • Luster: Waxy to silky.

Mutton Fat Jade: 02:41

Mutton fat jade is a high quality variety of nephrite jade. With a lot of the jade coming from He Tian City in China. These pieces are characterized by the mutton fat-like texture, it being very smooth and color needs to be very white in particular. Luster of mutton fat jade is typically a waxy, silk like versus jadeite jade which is a more  vitreous, glass-like luster. 

Mutton Fat Jade: Browse Here*

Quality Factors to look for overview: 05:02

For white nephrite jade, there will be many different shades of colors in nephrite jade. (Click the time stamp in the title to watch the video explanation). But essentially just like diamonds, goes from color less (DEF color) all the way to fancy yellow. The top quality nephrite jade AKA mutton fat jade will be the very white color and the ones that are a little bit green ish to yellow are going to be the less expensive ones. 

But over all the quality factors of white nephrite jade are the same as the 2 T's and 4 C's of jadeite jade. With the exception of transparency and translucency because that's just how nephrite jade is. 

Final thoughts: 06:03 

Smooth texture, minimal inclusions, and vibrant colors remain crucial, yet for white nephrite, the crème de la crème is dubbed "Mutton Fat Jade." Hailing from He Tian City in China, these pieces boast a smooth, mutton fat-like texture, emphasizing a waxy, silk-like luster distinct from jadeite's glassy sheen. As we delve into the nuances of white nephrite, it becomes apparent that, much like diamonds, color variations exist. The apex of quality, the very white Mutton Fat Jade, stands out amidst a spectrum of shades, offering enthusiasts a refined choice in the realm of jade.


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