I adore wearing gemstones, but not because they are mine. You can’t possess radiance; you can only admire it.Elizabeth Taylor.
Well, rightly said!
Gemstones are popular for their colour & brilliance. They are mostly worn as jewellery.
You might even know a few popular gemstones, such as diamonds, emeralds, rubies, and sapphires, but the world of gemstones is vast.
What are Gemstones?
A Gemstone is a piece of mineral crystal that is cut and polished. There are over 200 recognized gemstones. Most are minerals that are cut from naturally occurring crystals all over the world. You would hardly come across someone who does not know about gem stones meaning.
To qualify as a gem, the stone should be hard and tough to resist scratches, chipping, and have beautiful clarity and colour. Gems meaning elaborates how these jewels add a touch of enchantment and significance to the world of jewellery and gemstone enthusiasts.
Another characteristic of gemstones is their rarity, which adds to their value.
Gemstone Classification – Precious & Semi-Precious
In the mid-1800s, our ancestors classified gemstones as “precious stones” and “semi-precious stones”. Rarity, quality and provenance are the three main criteria to evaluate and classify gemstones.
Birthstones By Month
Gemstones that represent the month of a person’s birth are also known as birthstones. As an example, diamond is the birthstone for the month of April. So, people born in april have diamond as their birthstone.Here is a list of birthstones corresponding to each month. Just refer to it to find YOUR birthstone.
Mainly 4 types of gemstones fall under the category of “precious”.
These include Diamond, Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald. These stones are the most expensive and the most sought after, out of all the gemstones.
Birth month – April
It is the most common type of gemstone known. Made up of carbon, Diamond is the hardest gemstone. It rates 10 on the Mohs scale. Besides, Diamond is also 58 times harder than any other mineral on earth.
The incomparable lustre and resilience of this gemstone make it so desirable. Undoubtedly, they are popular for their purity and colourless sparkle.
Diamonds are also available in a wide range of vibrant colours. Further, the extent of their saturation determines their worth.
Birth month – May
The dazzling deep green colour is what makes Emeralds instantly recognizable. The darker the hue of green, the more valuable the gemstone is.
Emeralds are actually denser than diamonds which makes even a 1-carat emerald look larger than a 1-carat diamond.
Since high-quality Emeralds are rare to find, these are often treated with heat or water to improve their clarity, colour, and durability.
Birth month – July
Considered to be the second-hardest after diamonds, red-fiery rubies symbolize luxury.
These gemstones represent courage and passion. Since Ruby has the highest per-carat over any other coloured gemstone, it is also known as the “gem of precious stones” because they have the highest per-carat price over any other coloured stone.
Birth month – September
Remember the ‘Hearts of Ocean’ in the Hollywood epic, Titanic? These deep blue coloured diamonds are Sapphires.
Produced in a rainbow of hues, Sapphire gemstones can come in any colour, excluding red. This is because then people would recognize these as the ruby diamonds.
Madagascar is the leading producer of sapphires in the world today. However, many other nations also produce these gems.
All stones other than the four precious gemstones fall under this category. Though the list is endless, some of the common ones include amethyst, alexandrite, aquamarine, garnet, peridot, pearl, tourmaline, turquoise, moonstone, opal.
It might come like a surprise to you that some semi-precious gemstones are more priceless than a precious stone. Many natural pearls, for example, garner high prices, which is often more than a low-quality precious gemstone like sapphire.
Birth Month – February; Zodiac – Pisces
Amethyst Crystals come in different shades of purple ranging from light lilac to a mix of deep red/violet. The purple hues of this gemstone complement all settings and metal tones beautifully. Besides, the gemstone signifies devotion and peace.
Birth Month – June; Zodiac – Scorpio
Originally, Alexandrite was discovered in the 1830s in the Ural Mountains of Russia. But now can be found in Brazil, Sri Lanka, and East Africa. (Source)
Known as the very rare ‘colour-change gem’, Alexandrite changes its colour according to the light. In daylight, it appears bluish and mossy green. But it turns to a red gem with a warm raspberry hue in lamplight (emerald by day, ruby by night). The gemstone symbolizes increased creativity, imagination and intuition.
Birth Month – March; Zodiac – Pisces, Aries
Aquamarine gemstones resemble all the possible colours of the ocean – “aquamarine” translates into “water of the sea”. These gemstones look their best with white toned metals and can be used as both centre stones or accent stones. They truly offer both beauty and versatility. Aquamarine is the birthstone of March, and they have a soothing effect due to their tranquil colour.
Birth Month: June; Zodiac – Cancer
Humans have always admired and even worshipped pearls. Women love wearing gemstone necklaces made of beautiful pearls. Do you know natural pearls are rare and hard to extract from the Ocean’s depth? For this reason, humans produce pearls using the technique of culturing freshwater and salt molluscs. Also, Pearls are the only gemstones in nature to be formed inside a living organism.
Birth Month – January; Zodiac – Aquarius
What do you visualize when you hear the term “garnet”? You might see a deep red hue stone just like a pomegranate seed. Garnets are minerals formed in rocks and come in a variety of colours ranging from deep red to light green. These are also rare stones and change colour in different lights.
Birth Month – August; Zodiac – Leo
These gemstones are incredibly rare. Why? Peridots are the only gemstones to be created deep within the earth and brought to the surface through volcanoes. Peridot comes in various shades of green and brown. For those who desire earthy, or citrus tones prefer Bright Lime Green and Olive-Green Peridots the most.
Birth Month – October; Zodiac – Libra
The gemstone is not as popular as the other gemstones. However, its quality is worth a consideration. Tourmaline can be obtained in blue, pink, green, purple, orange, yellow, red, brown, black, or even colourless.
Birth Month – November (yellow), December (blue); Zodiac – Scorpio
Available in many colours, Topaz is mostly connected to warm shades such as yellow, brown and orange. The gemstone signifies friendship. Of the many, pinkish-red, orange and purple Topaz are the rarest.
Coloured Diamonds – Gemstone Based on Colours
Natural fancy coloured diamonds have been in the limelight for the past few years. Having been adorned by popular stars like Beyoncé, coloured diamonds are today on the top of everyone’s shopping list.
Often coloured diamonds are mistaken to be synthetically coloured stones. But in reality, these are naturally occurring stones and are available in a variety of colours including pink, orange, yellow vibrant red, brilliant blue, muted yellow, green, violet, grey, brown, and even black. In all, coloured diamonds in 27 base colours resulting in over 200 colour combinations. Did you know which is the second hardest gemstone? The second hardest gemstone is moissanite. It is a rare mineral that was first discovered in 1893 by French chemist Henri Moissan.
You might be surprised to know that coloured diamonds are rare as there is one carat of colour diamonds for every 10,000 carats of colourless diamonds. Further, no two stones are exactly the same. (Source).
Among the many, red diamonds are the rarest and hence most expensive coloured diamonds. Even Purple and Violet diamonds are also extremely rare and hence pricey. Blue and Green diamonds are considered as Chameleon Diamonds as they change colours when exposed to heat or light. The most popular colours of diamonds are Pink and Yellow. The Yellow diamonds are also known as the Canaries.
Let us know more about coloured diamonds.
The Blue colour symbolises the sky and even reminds us of seawater. This colour also signifies peace, truth and youth. Blue gemstone, when worn by a woman, signifies politeness, jealousy in love, and vigilance. But when worn by man represents noble thoughts and wisdom. With blue representing calmness, it can make the wearer give off significant vibrations and feel open to communication.
Gemstones include Sapphire, Agate, Apatite, Aquamarine, Tanzanite, Zircon, Topaz, Spinel, Tourmaline, Rainbow moonstone, Paraiba Tourmaline, Lolite, Fluorite, Kyanite.
Red means courage and vitality. A woman in red shows traits like pride, obstinacy, and haughtiness. But a red stone on man denotes lordship, nobility, command, and vengeance. Further, Red gemstones are also known for their beautiful fiery eye-catching quality. Often women wear red stone jewellery on special occasions.
Gemstones include Red Ruby, Garnet, Spinel, Andesine, Zircon, Red Beryl, Tourmaline, Red Jasper.
Green gemstones are popular for their lushness that lasts forever. The green colour is a symbol of nature, well-being and fertility. Hence, the wearer who wears Green diamond feels a need for change, expansion, and welcomes new ideas. Moreover, it also symbolises wealth
Gemstones include Peridot, Emerald green, Garnet, Tsavorite Garnet, Tourmaline, Apatite, Demantoid garnet, Chrome Diopside, Jade, Aventurine, Green Sapphire, Prehnite, Ruby Zoisite.
Three classic shades include Violet, purple and lavender. The hues present in these stones appear passionate and exotic. Purple symbolises mystery, magic, royalty and good judgement. One feels calm and energetic with purple. Moreover, Gemologists also believe it to bring balance in life by eliminating obstacles.
Gemstones include Fluorite, Chalcedony, Spinel, Amethyst, Tourmaline, Purple Sapphire.
It is the most common gemstone of all and hence very high in demand. The one who wears a yellow gemstone feels creative and is full of intellectual energy.
Gemstones include Yellow Sapphire, Fire Opal, Agate, Tourmaline, Citrine, Sphene, Orthoclase, Beryl, Chrysoberyl, Zircon, Quartz, Spodumene, and diamond.
In recent years, the Black gemstone has experienced immense popularity with huge consumer purchases. This has been of great interest for men, particularly. Its solid tones look very desirable and trendy. This colour represents earth, stability, and death. It is also popular for its mysterious shade.
Gemstones Include Diamond, Agate, Tourmaline, Onyx, Sapphire.
Some of the Orange gemstones are nature-born, while others result from heat treatment. The colour symbolizes vitality, power, and even endurance. It also has powerful healing capabilities. Those who wear Orange gemstones experience an increase in their creativity. Also, it also tends to boost stamina or energy when feeling low.
Gemstones include Zircon, Sapphire, Spessartite Garnet, Sapphire, Imperial Topaz, Tourmaline, Moonstone, Citrine, Star Moonstone, Andesine.
While many forms of White Gemstone exist, white diamond is probably the most expensive. White diamond signifies purity, cleanliness, and kindness. It also makes the wearer feel clear-headed.
Gemstones include Moonstone, Diamond, Zircon, Topaz, Sapphire, Jade, Quartz.
The thing with Gemstones jewellery is that you get a wide variety of options. Be it in their colours, setting or ring, you have got a long list to choose from. While your choice matters in most of your decisions, choosing a gemstone based on your Zodiac is a special consideration. A lot of people do not understand the meaning of stones and crystals. You must seek an astrologer’s advice before buying a Zodiac-based gemstone.
Natural and synthetic gemstones are similar in their physical properties and chemical composition. The only difference is in the way they are born or produced. Natural gemstones are born in nature and humans do no alterations. However, synthetic gemstones are manufactured and grown in laboratories within strictly controlled environments.
Since the words Sapphire and blue go hand in hand, it would be right to say that blue Sapphires are the most popular. However, yellow Sapphires have gained popularity recently because they are a cheaper alternative to pricey yellow diamonds.
The red diamond is the most expensive gemstone, costing over $1 million per carat. Acquired in 2011 and sold for $8 million, the famous 5.11ct Moussaieff Red Diamond is the most expensive gemstone. Also, it is the largest red diamond in the world.
Four famous gemstones known for their beauty and rarity are:
Diamond: Diamonds are renowned for their brilliance and are one of the most sought-after gemstones in the world. They are prized for their exceptional hardness, fire, and scintillation.
Ruby: Rubies are prized for their deep red colour and are considered one of the most valuable gemstones. They symbolize passion and are often associated with royalty.
Sapphire: Sapphires come in various colours, but blue is the most well-known. They are prized for their rich blue hue and durability. Sapphires are also associated with wisdom and royalty.
Emerald: Emeralds are known for their vivid green colour. They are valued for their beauty and rarity. Emeralds have been treasured throughout history and are often associated with growth, rebirth, and love.
The first rarest gemstone can vary depending on availability and market demand. However, one of the rarest gemstones in the world is considered to be Alexandrite. Alexandrite is known for its remarkable colour-changing properties, shifting from green in daylight to red under incandescent light.
The hardest-known gemstone is the diamond. It ranks as the hardest mineral on the Mohs scale, which measures the scratch resistance of minerals. Diamond has a Mohs hardness of 10, making it extremely durable and able to withstand scratches and abrasions better than any other gemstone.
Gemstones are typically evaluated and graded based on color, clarity, cut, and carat weight. Color refers to the hue and intensity of the gemstone, while clarity measures the presence of internal or external flaws. The cut refers to how the gemstone is shaped and faceted to maximize its brilliance and sparkle. Carat weight is a measure of the gemstone’s size.