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What is White Buffalo?

What is White Buffalo?

Have you heard of White Buffalo “Turquoise”?

This stunning and rare stone features in a small selection of our Native American necklaces, bracelets, and rings here at Indian Traders – but it is not actually “turquoise” at all!

What is White Buffalo?

Resembling turquoise with its black webbing pattern, but white where turquoise has characteristic aqua-blue to teal-green and even yellow coloring, White Buffalo is a dolomite stone that cuts and polishes as turquoise does. Rather than developing in copper mines (which gives turquoise its notable coloring), White Buffalo grows alongside magnesium, which bleaches pigment from the stone.

The stone features unique color variations, from white to cream with grey or brownish highlights and spectacular black matrix veining. Every piece is unique.

A Rare Gift

The only location this stone is found worldwide is in Tonopah, Nevada, where it was discovered in the Dry Creek Mine in 1993. It is named for the Native American legend of the sacred white buffalo and the belief that the stone is as rare and pure as its animal namesake…

According to Lakota legend, a beautiful woman appeared to two Lakota men who were hunting wild game during lean times. She gifted them with sacred tobacco, teaching them to use it in prayer. As she retreated, she transformed into a rare white buffalo. Thereafter, and upon using the sacred tobacco, a large herd of buffalo appeared, ending the men’s hunger.

One of the rarest stones on the market, White Buffalo today symbolizes Native American culture.

White Buffalo Meaning

White symbolizes purity, innocence, forgiveness, and new beginnings. According to Native American belief, White Buffalo helps establish a connection between the physical and metaphysical worlds and holds power to bring great abundance to its wearer.

The stone is believed to be a powerful strengthener and energy purifier. It is worn as a protective amulet as it absorbs negative energy. As well as a beautiful adornment, it is worn to protect the lungs from airborne pollution, aid communication, and improve interactions with family, friends, and strangers.

Considered by many to be an “albino turquoise”, its higher price point is due to its scarcity and high demand.


White Buffalo vs Howlite vs Magnesite

Often misidentified, howlite is a stone that looks similar to turquoise. It is an absorbent white mineral comprised of calcium borosilicate hydroxide and, as with turquoise, it features streaks of black veined webbing. It is a porous stone found in irregular nodules and lends itself to being dyed.

Magnesite is also frequently mistaken as White Buffalo or Howlite. It is a calcite mineral composed of convex crystals of magnesium carbonate. It may be chalky-white, colorless, gray, yellow, orange, pink, or brown. It is found throughout the USA as well as in Brazil, Europe, Africa, and China. Like Howlite, it is often dyed to resemble turquoise.

It is important to know that up to 90% of turquoise found on the market is actually dyed howlite. Howlite is a softer stone than turquoise, scratching and flaking much more easily, and is less expensive to produce compared with natural turquoise. Turquoise is by far the premium option and its price reflects this.

Many sellers of “turquoise” jewelry are not even aware that their merchandise includes fake minerals.

ALL TURQUOISE JEWELRY AT INDIAN TRADERS IS GENUINE NATURAL TURQUOISE (unless clearly identified as otherwise). Our pieces are, unless otherwise stated, crafted by authentic Native American artisans and the source of the high-quality stones used is known.

We are delighted to offer several stunning pieces of White Buffalo jewelry here at Indian Traders – and we invite you to browse our range and shop for something rare and special.