Fired agate beads are also known as crackled agate beads. The crackly appearance on the surface of majority of these gemstone beads is created by applying heat, hence the name "fired." Heat-treating agate with various colorants is also a common method of enhancing the color of agate, so other times, the name Fired agate simply refers to unusual or brilliantly multi-colored color-enhanced agate beads. These semiprecious beads do not offer the "fire" (or flash) seen in precious agate or opal, and fired agate is not related in any way to true fire agate from Mexico. Nevertheless, the crackled look or vividly colored appearance of these agate beads adds an attractive extra element to handmade jewelry!