A birthstone is a precious or semi-precious gemstone which correlates with a person’s birth month. Traditionally, each month is associated with one gemstone, however, some months have multiple stones. Each gemstone comes with its own beautiful colouring, unique meaning and historical significance. Typically worn in rings, pendants and earrings, birthstone jewellery takes the guesswork out of choosing a gift for a loved one. And the best part is, you don’t have to be a gemstone expert to find a gift that is truly special. This guide will help you identify each month’s birthstone and help you learn about the characteristics of each stunning gem.
Choosing the Right Gemstone
You may prefer to wear your month’s birthstone, or instead select one based on your attraction to its colour or symbolic properties. An important consideration when selecting a gemstone is how it will be worn. If you’re after a piece of jewellery for everyday wear, it’s important to be aware of its durability. The Mohs scale of Hardness gives a good indication of how a particular stone can resist scratching or abrasion. As such, durability should be factored into your purchase decision to ensure that your birthstone jewellery won’t be damaged when performing everyday tasks.
This guide is in alignment with the International Gem Society’s birthstone chart.
January Birthstone (Garnet)
Garnet comes in a variety of colours however the most widely-known and available colour of Garnet gemstones is a deep red. Garnet ranges from 6.5 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale of hardness, making it a great choice for a pendant or earrings. Spiritually, Garnet embodies energies of fire, passion, creativity and strength.
February Birthstone (Amethyst)
Amethyst is the purple variety from the Quartz family and has a beautiful light violet to deep purple colouring. It’s a softer gemstone with a hardness of 6 on the Mohs scale, meaning it can be quite susceptible to scratching. Amethyst makes a great choice for a pendant or earrings, where it’s less likely to be exposed to wear and tear. Spiritually, Amethyst symbolises balance, peace and patience.
March Birthstone (Aquamarine)
Aquamarine is a beautiful blue semi-precious gemstone of the Beryl family with its colour ranging from a pale blue to a deep-sea blue. Aquamarine is quite durable, rating a 7.5 to 8 on the Mohs scale and as such, is a popular gem for rings, earrings, pendants and necklaces. Spiritually, Aquamarine is believed to be a stone of courage and protection and can provide mental clarity to the wearer.
Diamonds are one of the most sought-after gemstones in the world. Diamond rates a 10 on the Mohs scale of hardness and is renowned for being the hardest substance on Earth. Diamonds also have an incredible way of dispersing light which gives it its characteristic fire (sparkle). Spiritually, diamond is the stone of commitment, promise and faithfulness which is why diamonds are traditionally used in engagement rings.
Perfect for any kind of jewellery, Diamond jewellery is guaranteed to impress even the toughest of critics.
Emerald is a deep green gemstone which like Aquamarine, is part of the Beryl family. Emerald rates a 7.5 to 8 on the Mohs scale and is a beautiful stone for any type of jewellery. With proper care, Emerald can be enjoyed for generations. Spiritually, Emerald is thought to embody reflection, renewal, eternity, peace and balance.
June (Alexandrite and Pearl)
Alexandrite (June’s modern birthstone) is an extremely rare colouring changing (pleochroic) gem variety of the mineral Chrysoberyl. Depending on the viewing direction, it will exhibit green, red and orange colours. With a hardness of 8.5 on the Mohs scale, Alexandrite can be worn in every type of jewellery. Spiritually, Alexandrite is a symbol of self-confidence and is believed to bring good fortune, abundance and luck to the wearer.
Pearl (June’s traditional birthstone) is a lustrous, opaque gem which requires no cutting or polishing to obtain its finished appearance. Pearls come in many colours including white, grey, blue, pink, gold and black and have been thought to symbolise wisdom, purity, generosity and loyalty.
Ruby is a pink to deep-red gemstone and is a variety of the mineral Corundum. It is one of the most coveted of gems, particularly due to its beauty and hardiness. Rating 9 on the Mohs scale, Ruby is extremely durable and can be featured in all types of jewellery. Most popular when set in yellow gold, Ruby represents love, energy, power, passion, wealth and vitality.
Peridot is a bright, yellow-green to brown semi precious stone. One of the most attractive features of Peridot is its ability to show off its beautiful green colouring in both the sun and shade. Rating a 6.5 to 7 on the Mohs scale, Peridot is fairly tough but must be worn with care to avoid scratching or hard knocks. Spiritually, Peridot is connected with the sun and is believed to represent new beginnings, growth, prosperity and fearlessness.
Sapphire is a deep blue to violet gemstone and is a variety of the mineral Corundum (alongside Ruby). Sapphire is found in an array of colours including grey, black, pink as well as colourless. Adored for their beauty and durability, Sapphire ranks 9 on the Mohs scale. This makes Sapphire a great choice for jewellery items which are subject to wear and tear from daily life. Symbolically, blue Sapphire is believed to provide the wearer with mental focus, truth, sincerity and psychic awareness.
October (Pink Tourmaline and Opal)
Those born in October have the fantastic selection of both pink Tourmaline and the iconic Australian Opal.
Pink Tourmaline is known for its rich berry pink colour. It ranks 7 to 7.5 of the Mohs scale of hardness and is perfect in a pair of earrings or on a pendant. Spiritually, tourmaline is known to increase self-confidence, diminish fear and promote compassion in the wearer.
Opal has a unique difference to other gemstones due to its multiple colours, which can be seen from different viewing angles. Precious opals are typically white and feature spectral colours of red, orange, yellow, green, blue and violet. The hardness of Opal depends on its exact composition, however, ranges from 5 to 6.5 on the Mohs scale. With a poor to fair toughness, opal birthstone jewellery requires care when being worn to avoid scratches or breakages. Symbolically, Opal is representative of devotion and fidelity.
Topaz features a vivid sky-blue colour but is available in a rainbow of colours. Topaz ranks an 8 on the Mohs scale, making it a wonderful choice for jewellery. It’s this selection of desirable colours and a good level of hardiness which make Topaz one of the most popular gemstones on the market. Symbolically, Topaz is thought to be a stone of love and good fortune with some believing that it brings joy, good health and generosity to the wearer.
Tanzanite is the blue variety of the mineral zoisite and ranges in colour from blue to bluish purple to bluish violet. Since being discovered in high quantities in the 1960s, Tanzanite is now the second most popular blue gemstone (after Sapphire). Ranking 6 to 7 on the Mohs scale, Tanzanite is best worn everyday when set in pendants and earrings. When worn as a ring, special care should be taken to avoid scratches and strikes. Symbolically, Tanzanite is believed to boost self-expression, creativity, wisdom and communication in the wearer.
Discover Argyle Jewellers Range of Birthstone Jewellery
Birthstone jewellery is a fabulous gift idea for birthdays, Christmas, Mother’s Day and so much more. It simplifies shopping and helps you to find a gift that holds true personal significance. For an even more special gift this Christmas we recommend custom-designed birthstone jewellery made especially for them. Shop the range in-store or online today and take advantage of our Store to Door Concierge service for home delivered jewellery.