Ocean Jasper: Gemstone, Colors, Properties, Uses

Ocean Jasper is a rare and beautiful variety of jasper that is found only in Madagascar. It is characterized by its concentric orbs or spherical inclusions of different colors, which give it a unique and mesmerizing appearance. 

While commonly referred to as a jasper, Ocean Jasper technically falls under the umbrella of orbicular chalcedony. This means it's composed primarily of microcrystalline quartz with some additional minerals like feldspar and iron oxides.

Ocean Jasper was only officially discovered in 1999.

Ocean Jasper: Formation, Colors and Uses
Polished Ocean Jasper - Madagascar
Photo: Om Crystals

Ocean Jasper Formation

Ocean Jasper forms through a process called orbicularization, where mineral-rich fluids permeate volcanic ash and tuffs. These fluids carry different minerals, including silica, iron oxides, and manganese oxides. 

As the fluids interact with the host rock, they form concentric rings, resulting in the characteristic spherical patterns seen in Ocean Jasper. The specific colors and patterns depend on the type and concentration of minerals present.

Ocean Jasper is typically found in nodules and veins, and is often associated with other quartz varieties, such as agate and chalcedony.

Ocean Jasper: Formation, Colors and Uses
Rough Ocean Jasper - Madagascar.
Credit: Treasures of Light Crystals

Where is Ocean Jasper found

Ocean Jasper is primarily found in Indonesia and Madagascar, with Madagascar being the more common source of higher-quality stones.

The majority of commercially available Ocean Jasper, known for its vibrant patterns and high quality, comes from Madagascar. Specifically, it's found in the Analalava district of the Sofia region, near the villages of Marovato and Kabamby. While some Ocean Jasper can be found in Indonesia, the deposits are much smaller and the quality tends to be lower.

Ocean Jasper Colors and Patterns

Ocean jasper is typically found in shades of blue, green, brown, red, and yellow. It can also be found in white, gray, and black. Ocean jasper is known for its unique and beautiful patterns, which resemble the waves and ripples of the ocean. Some ocean jasper gemstones have patterns that resemble orbicular jasper, with circular or oval-shaped inclusions. Others have patterns that resemble stromatolite jasper, with layered or banded inclusions.


rough Ocean Jasper
Rough Ocean Jasper

Ocean Jasper Properties

Composition: Microcrystalline Quartz (Chalcedony) mixed with other minerals like Feldspar, Epidote, Chlorite, and Iron Oxides.

Color: A wide range of blues, greens, browns, reds, whites, and yellows, often in swirling patterns that resemble the ocean.

Luster: Waxy to matte, sometimes with a vitreous sheen on polished surfaces.

Crystal System: Microcrystalline, no distinct crystal form.

Streak: White to light gray.

Hardness: On the Mohs scale, Ocean Jasper ranks between 6.5 and 7, indicating moderate hardness.

Cleavage: Ocean Jasper typically lacks cleavage, exhibiting a conchoidal fracture pattern when broken.

Crystal Form: Usually massive, as nodules or rounded pebbles. May be found in botryoidal or banded forms.

Density: 2.54 - 2.70 g/cm³ (slightly denser than water).

Transparency: Ocean Jasper is typically opaque, with minimal translucency.

Fracture: Conchoidal to uneven.

Specific Gravity: 2.54 - 2.70 (slightly heavier than water).

Solubility: Insoluble in common acids.

Magnetism: Non-magnetic.

Fluorescence: Weak to absent under longwave or shortwave UV light.

Pleochroism: Weak, may be noticeable in green or brown inclusions.

Refractive Index: 1.53 - 1.54 (slightly higher than quartz).

Inclusions: Often contains inclusions of other minerals, which contribute to its color and patterns. Common inclusions include epidote (green), chlorite (green), iron oxide (red and brown), and feldspar (white and gray).

Ocean Jasper cabochon
Ocean Jasper cabochon

Ocean Jasper Uses

Ocean Jasper is a popular gemstone for jewelry, such as necklaces, bracelets, rings, and earrings. It is also used to make decorative items, such as carvings, sculptures, and cabochons. Ocean Jasper is also believed to have healing properties, and is often used in meditation and crystal healing.


Ocean Jasper's vibrant colors and distinct patterns make it a popular choice for jewelry. Craftsmen often cut and polish Ocean Jasper into cabochons, beads, and pendants for use in rings, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets.

Ornamental Objects:

Carved and polished Ocean Jasper specimens are frequently used in the creation of ornamental objects. Sculptures, figurines, and decorative items showcase the stone's intricate patterns and contribute to interior design.


Due to its unique appearance, Ocean Jasper is sought after by mineral and gemstone collectors. Specimens with exceptional patterns and colors are particularly valued within collector communities.

Metaphysical and Spiritual Practices:

Some individuals believe that Ocean Jasper possesses metaphysical properties, including promoting relaxation, nurturing positive energy, and enhancing spiritual well-being. As a result, it is used in meditation practices, energy work, and crystal healing.

Lapidary Art:

Artists and lapidaries use Ocean Jasper in various lapidary projects. The stone's hardness and distinctive patterns make it suitable for carving, cabochon cutting, and other lapidary techniques.

Interior Decor:

Ocean Jasper's aesthetic appeal extends to interior decor. Polished slabs or tiles are employed in creating unique countertops, tabletops, and other decorative surfaces.

Gift Items:

Ocean Jasper items, such as bookends, coasters, and paperweights, serve as unique and thoughtful gifts due to their natural beauty and individualized patterns.

Ocean Jasper: Formation, Colors and Uses
Ocean Jasper Jewelry

Benefits of Ocean Jasper

Ocean Jasper is believed to offer a number of benefits, including:
  • Emotional healing: Ocean Jasper is believed to help with emotional healing, such as stress, anxiety, depression, and grief. It is also believed to promote self-love and acceptance.
  • Physical healing: Ocean Jasper is believed to help with a variety of physical ailments, such as insomnia, headaches, and digestive problems. It is also believed to boost the immune system and increase energy levels.
  • Spiritual growth: Ocean Jasper is believed to promote spiritual growth and awareness. It is also believed to help connect with your intuition and inner wisdom.

Overall, Ocean Jasper is not only appreciated for its geological and mineralogical features but also for its beauty and versatility in various artistic and decorative applications.


See also:
Bumblebee Jasper
Howardite - Rattlesnake Jasper
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