Some buyers place a thin jadeite slice on a printed page and try to read the print through the gem. If the transparency is excellent, the viewer can see the print easily, even if the jadeite is dark green. Good transparency can sometimes compensate for lack of uniform color or low color saturation.
The best jadeite is semitransparent, meaning the text you can read through it would be slightly blurred. Because light penetrates below the surface, semitransparent jadeite has an alluring brilliance. It almost appears to glow, increasing the charm of a lush green or rich lavender hue. The least desirable jadeites are completely opaque or have opaque or cloudy patches that break up their transparency.