Home Viral LOG I tried the viral ‘Tea Gems’ from TikTok that look like jewels...

I tried the viral ‘Tea Gems’ from TikTok that look like jewels but bloom into a glass of tea — they’re fun to use, but won’t be replacing my normal tea routine anytime soon

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  • Designed to look like crystals, “Tea Gems” transform in hot water into a delicious cup of tea.
  • I tried them after seeing them all over #TeaTok, the TikTok community for tea lovers. 
  • Their unique appearance makes them fun to use and a great gift, but they’re not practical for everyday use.

Tea is one of my favorite parts of every morning. And afternoon. Well, any time of day really. As a self-proclaimed tea aficionado, I’m always on the lookout for innovations when it comes to my daily cuppa. 

Being a regular tea drinker, tea-related content frequently populates my social media feeds, the most aesthetically pleasing of which is #TeaTok. This small but mighty online community is seriously passionate about tea. It was scrolling through #TeaTok that I came across a video for Tea Gems, a tea product mimicking the look of gemstones. They were like nothing I’d ever seen before. Take a look: 

Taylor, the creator behind Tea Gems, regularly makes videos showcasing the fun aesthetic of the little tea nuggets. After several viral videos from the @teagems account peppered my feed, I knew I had to try them out.

What are Tea Gems?

Assorted Tea Gems arranged in a circle on a plate

Tea Gems come in a variety of flavors that range from typical to inventive, including a toasted coconut flavor that was my favorite.

Lauren Arzbaecher/Insider


Each “gem” is around an inch in size and consists of a sugar-based “shell” that surrounds a tea bag. They are structured almost like a Tootsie Pop, a hard candy coating concealing a delicious center. 

Tea Gems are vegan, gluten free, and biodegradable, a combination that can be hard to find in tea products. I’ve switched to using loose tea and reusable steepers to cut down on waste, but most tea still comes packaged in bags that are individually encased in paper or plastic. I loved that Tea Gems have a lower environmental impact and also support a small business owner.

Review of Tea Gems

Hand holding 3 Tea Gems with plate of Tea Gems in background

Unlike a usual tea bag, Tea Gems add a fun visual element to the steeping process.

Lauren Arzbaecher/Insider


A unique part of the drinking process for me was admiring the beauty of the Tea Gems. Turning each of them over in my hands, I found new areas of visual interest the closer I looked. The black tea flavor had gold specs in it, which really made it look like the black star sapphire stone it was impersonating. Though they were gorgeous, the “gems” were hard to handle for more than a few seconds due to the stickiness of the coating.

The steeping process was fun to watch. Once the water was poured over the “gem,” it began bubbling as air inside was released and the coating began to dissolve. After a few minutes of steeping, the tea bag that was sandwiched between the coating revealed itself, floating to the top of the mug.

I overall enjoyed the flavor of all the Tea Gems I tried. Of the eight I sampled, my favorites were the pumpkin, black tea, and toasted coconut flavors. The black tea had a flavor profile similar to Thai iced tea, and the pumpkin tasted just like a pumpkin pie but in tea form. Other flavors were comparable to tea I’ve had in the past, but a select few, such as the coconut, tasted unique.

Cons to consider

Hand holding a spoon with undissolved sugar from a Tea Gem on it

The sugar “shell” of the Tea Gems did not always dissolve completely, and the sticky remnants had to be scooped out of the mug.

Lauren Arzbaecher/Insider


Water temperature is important when making any kind of tea, but I found it particularly important for Tea Gems. To get a smooth cup of tea, the entire coating has to be dissolved, which can be tricky depending on how hot your water is. With several flavors, the coating did not fully dissolve after it had been steeping for the recommended 5-6 minutes. The same problem occurred when tested in both ceramic and glass mugs and persisted even when I stirred the tea to try and aid in the dissolving. It was a bit taxing to scoop the undissolved sugar out along with the tea bag.

With the “gem” coating being sugar based, it also makes for a much sweeter cup of tea. I mainly didn’t mind the sugar level, but certain flavors, like peppermint and apple, tasted more like melted down hard candy than tea. If you’re sensitive to sweetness, Tea Gems might not be the right choice.

The bottom line

Two photo collage showing the process of a Tea Gem steeping in a clear mug

After steeping for a few minutes, the tea bag that was hidden inside the Tea Gem would pop out and float to the top.

Lauren Arzbaecher/Insider


I did enjoy Tea Gems, but didn’t find them practical for a daily cup; they’re more of a special occasion thing. The few flavors that I really loved couldn’t outshine the issues of not being able to control the sweetness level and having to scoop out the undissolved coating.

On the environmental factor, using loose tea and a reusable steeper is a much simpler way to enjoy a daily cup and still cut down on waste from non-biodegradable tea bags.

Though they won’t replace my current tea routine, Tea Gems would make a great gift for more casual tea drinkers, particularly for those who also collect crystals or gemstones.

Courtesy By INSIDER

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