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Birthstone Information


Genuine Birthstones / Simulated Birthstones / Lab Created Gems


Choose VVS1 to VS1 clarity diamonds, AA-AAA genuine birthstones when only the best will do. Choose sapphire, ruby, alexandrite, or emerald, fine quality Chatham lab-created gems, or Charles & Colvard created Moissanite for the best man-made diamond substitute in the world. Choose the finest synthetic birthstones on the market today including "Signity" machine cut birthstones and cubic zirconia for April's birthstone. We pride ourselves in giving our customers their choice of precious metals and the finest gems available for their mothers rings and family rings. As with all of our mothers rings you can mix genuine, synthetic or lab-created birthstones in the same Mothers ring to fit your budget.

We will not compromise on the high standard and quality of gemstones we choose to use. Be sure to e-mail our competitors and ask them what quality of diamonds and birthstones they use. Other competitors may use SI1 or SI2 clarity diamonds and A-B quality birthstones (this is typical and average). If they use SI3 or I1to I2 clarity diamonds, please don't waste your time as this may prove to be a disappointing gift. Remember you deserve to give yourself or your loved one only the best quality jewelry that she will be proud to own. For more diamond information check out our diamond info page.

What is a simulated stone?

A simulated gemstone can be any material that takes on the appearance of a genuine stone. Even obvious imitations such as glass or plastic can be accurately described as simulated stones. However, glass and plastic are soft compared to laboratory-grown gem material and therefore don't wear as well or take as high a polish. The simulated birthstones we offer are all genuine laboratory-grown gemstones (either corundum or spinel), augmented with trace metallic elements to take on the appearance of much costlier gemstones. These lab-grown birthstones look like natural stones because they are made of gem material. You will like these lab-grown birthstones for their attractive appearance and their affordability.




To view the birthstone history of a particular month, click on the applicable stone.

JANUARY
Garnet
MAY
Emerald
SEPTEMBER
Sapphire
FEBRUARY
Amethyst
JUNE
Alexandrite
OCTOBER
Pink Tourmaline
MARCH
Aquamarine
JULY
Ruby
NOVEMBER
Topaz, Citrine
APRIL
Diamond
(Lab - Moissanite)
AUGUST
Peridot
DECEMBER (#1)
Blue Zircon
DECEMBER (#2)
Tanzanite

Birthstone Table

Birth Month

Modern Birthstones

Traditional Birthstones

Mystical Birthstones

January

Garnet

Garnet

Emerald

February

Amethyst

Amethyst

Bloodstone

March

Aquamarine

Bloodstone

Jade

April

Diamond

Diamond

Opal

May

Emerald

Emerald

Sapphire

June

Alexandrite, Pearl, Moonstone

Alexandrite

Moonstone

July

Ruby

Ruby

Ruby

August

Peridot

Sardonyx

Diamond

September

Sapphire

Sapphire

Agate

October

Tourmaline

Tourmaline

Jasper

November

Yellow Topaz, Citrine

Citrine

Pearl

December

Tanzanite, Blue Topaz, Turquoise

Zircon, Turquoise, Lapis Lazuli

Onyx



Anniversary Stones Table

1st

Amethyst

17th

Pink Tourmaline

2nd

Garnet

18th

Aquamarine

3rd

Peridot

19th

Gold Beryl

4th

Blue Topaz

20th

Emerald

5th

Rhodolite

21st

Iolite

6th

Lapis

22nd

Spinel

7th

Zircon

23rd

Imperial Topaz

8th

Pearl

24th

Tanzanite

9th

Andalusite

25th

Imperial Jade

10th

Green Tourmaline

30th

Fancy Sapphire

11th

Turquoise

35th

Cat’s Eye Chrysoberyl

12th

Tsavorite

40th

Ruby

13th

Opal

45th

Emerald

14th

Kunzite

50th

Gold Sapphire

15th

Blue Sapphire

55th

Alexandrite

16th

Gold Topaz

60th

Diamond




JANUARY (Garnet)

The name Garnet comes from the Latin word Granatus, which means "seedlike" or "having many seeds" due to a garnet crystal's resemblance to pomegranate seeds. The color of red gems suggested blood to primitive cultures, and red garnets were thought to stop bleeding and cure inflammation. They were believed to have the powers to smooth discord between enemies and prevent bloodshed. Garnet is considered the gem of faith, constancy, and truth. It occurs in every color of the spectrum, except blue, and each of these colors are permissible to wear for the January birthstone. To date, there are no known enhancements for garnet.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 2nd-Garnet 5th-Rhodile Garnet 12th-Tsavorite Garnet
  • Astrological Sign: Capricorn (Dec. 22 - Jan. 19)
  • R.I.: 1.790 (+.030)
  • S.G.: 4.05 (+.25,-.12)
  • Hardness: 7-7.5
  • Toughness: Fair to Good
  • Care: Avoid abrupt temperature changes
  • Enhancement: none known
  • Principle Sources: India, Sri Lanka, Madagascar, and Brazil
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FEBRUARY (Amethyst)

Amethyst comes from the Greek word "amethustos" which means "not drunk". Because of this it has been considered a charm against intoxication - especially if the drinker used an amethyst cup. Amethyst was also considered an aid to the brave, it would protect soldiers and bring them victory, and help hunters capture wild beasts.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 1st
  • Astrological Sign: Aquarius (Jan. 20 - Feb. 18)
  • R.I.: 1.544 - 1.533
  • S.G.: 2.66 (+/- .01)
  • Hardness: 7
  • Toughness: Good
  • Care: Normal
  • Enhancements: Heated to lighten color
  • Principle Sources: Brazil, Uruguay, and Namibia
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MARCH (Aquamarine)

Aquamarine comes from the Latin word for "sea water". It is the greenish blue to blue-green variety of the mineral beryl. Aquamarine was thought to have magical powers to convey insight and foresight by the people of the Middle Ages. Aquamarine was believed to help the wearer conquer all wickedness. It was also prescribed for eye trouble, respiratory diseases, and hiccups. Aquamarine is a symbol of happiness and everlasting youth.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 18th
  • Astrological Sign: Pisces (Feb. 19 - March 20)
  • R.I.: 1.577 - 1.5
  • S.G.: 2.66 - 2.8
  • Hardness: 7.5
  • Toughness: Fair
  • Enhancements: Heat to improve color
  • Principle Sources: Nigeria, Russia, Madagascar
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APRIL (Diamonds) / (Lab Created - Moissanite)

The term Diamond comes from the Greek "adamas", meaning unconquerable. Until the 19th century only men wore diamonds but, when Agnes Sorel, mistress of King Charles VII of France began wearing diamonds it became a fashion for women also. Diamonds were once considered a talisman against phantoms and nightmares. It was also supposed to give soldiers courage and virtue.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 10th and 60th
  • Astrological Sign: Aries (March 21 - April 19)
  • R.I.: 2.417
  • S.G.: 3.52
  • Hardness: 10
  • Toughness: Good
  • Care: Normal
  • Enhancements: Drilled to improve appearance
  • Principle Sources: Botswana, Russia, South Africa
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MAY (Emerald)

Emerald is a variety of the mineral species beryl. Other members of the beryl family include aquamarine, morganite, and heliodor (golden beryl). The earliest recorded mines were located in ancient Egypt. Emeralds occur in light to dark shades of yellowish green to green to bluish green. Inclusions are acceptable in emeralds, and stones of intense green color with little or no inclusions can command very high prices. Emeralds are frequently oiled to enhance their beauty. This process is routinely performed on stones with internal fractures that reach the surface. Today emeralds are found in Colombia, Zambi, Brazil, Pakistan, Zimbabwe, Afghanistan, Russia, and Australia. Emerald is the birthstone for the month of May and is designated for the 20th and 45th wedding anniversaries.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 20th and 45th
  • Astrological Sign: Taurus (April 20 - May 20)
  • R.I.: 1.577 - 1.583 (+/- .017)
  • S.G.: 2.72 (+ .18, -.05)
  • Hardness: 7.5-8
  • Toughness: Poor
  • Care: Avoid temperature changes, chemicals, and ultrasonic
  • Enhancements: Oiled with colorless oil to improve appearance
  • Principle Sources: Columbia, Zambia, Brazil, Pakistan, Zimbabwe, Afghanistan, Russia, Australia
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JUNE (Alexandrite) / (Alternative - Pearl)

Introduction:

While there has been much debate about the best source for Alexandrite, the uniqueness and relatively short history of the color-change variety of chrysoberyl has made it one of the most coveted gems to collectors and connoisseurs alike. Although very rare, Alexandrite is available in a wide range of qualities, but mostly in sizes around 1 carat or less. Availability has increased since the 1987 find in Minais Gerais, Brazil, and it has been estimated that by 1990 some 5,000 to 10,000 carats of Brazilian Alexandrite had been cut and brought to market. This is quite a large quantity for such a rare stone. The debate over Russian and Brazilian Alexandrite has dominated much of the press throuhgout the stone’s short history, and it is known that some dealers are very one sided about the origin of their Alexandrites. Sri Lanka is also well known for its supply of Alexandrites and produces quite a large sum of the total available.

History:

Named as a tribute to Czar Alexander II of Russia, Alexandrite was a prized gem among the Russian aristocracy. Alexandrite was found on his birthday in May of 1830 in the Ural Mountains of Russia and was held in high regard due to it’s color similarities to its host country’s military colors, green and red. It is reported that nearly all Russian Alexandrite was mined during the 19th century and is the most highly coveted of all Russian gemstones. Just as supply was beginning to be depleted on Russian material, large deposits were found in Sri Lanka (what was then called Ceylon). Finally, Brazil became a large contributor to the world supply of Alexandrites and the debates over what region supplies the best material began. Some dealers around the world were purists and prefered only the Russian material. It is known that Russian stones are referred to as having Siberian colors. Alexandrites color change between deep greens and dark reds are what is desired in an Alexandrite and can be found in both Russian, Sri Lankan and Brazilian stones. Generally it is found that in larger sizes, meaning closer to 10 carats, the Sri Lankan material carries the strongest of colors. However, Russian and Brazilian stones rank among the best available in the world. Today, most dealers accept all origins of Alexandrite and find that good material is available because of the newer Brazillian find.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 55th
  • Astrological Sign: Gemini (May 21 - June 19)
  • Principle Sources: Brazil, Sri Lanka, Russia

Technical Specifications:

Description

Alexandrite is the color change variety of the mineral chrysoberyl.

  • Chemical Composition: BeAl2O4
  • Appearance: –Transparent  –Daylight shows yellowish, brownish, grayish or bluish green; incandescent light shows orangy or brownish red to purple-red  –Changes color based on light source and may also show chatoyancy
  • Misnomers: None known
  • Typical Sizes: Melee sizes to 5 ct; faceted stones as large as 60 ct are known
  • Cut Styles: Faceted and cabachon

Identification

  • Optic Character: DR, biaxial positive
  • Refractive Index: 1.746-1.755 (+ .004, - .006)
  • Birefingence: .008 to .010
  • Dispersion: .015
  • Pleochroism: Strong, green, orange, and purple-red
  • Ultraviolet Fluorescence: Inert to moderate red (LW and SW)
  • Absorption Spectra: Two strong lines at 680.5 and 678.5 nm and weak lines at 665, 655, and 645 nm, partial absorption between 580 and 630, three weak lines at 476.5, 473, and 468 nm, and general absorption in the violet.
  • Cause of Color: Chromium
  • Specific Gravity: 3.73 (+/- .02)
  • Polish Luster: Vitreous to subadamantine
  • Fracture: Conchoidal
  • Luster: Vitreous to greasy
  • Cleavage: None
  • Indentifying Characteristics: Fingerprint inclusions, silk, color change
  • Known Enhancements: None

Durability Ratings

  • Hardness: 8.5
  • Toughness: Excellent

Alexandrite is sometimes mistaken for natural and synthetic corundum, natural and synthetic spinel, synthetic alexandrite, andalusite and pyrope garnet. There are also doublets available that could be mistaken for alexandrite. They may have good color change containing red garnet on top and red glass on bottom.

Care Tips:

Alexandrite is a tough and stable stone, and most care and cleaning methods are typically safe.

Cleaning Methods

  • Ultrasonic: Usually safe
  • Steamer: Usually safe
  • Warm soapy water: Safe

Stability of Stone

  • Heat tolerance: Stable
  • Light tolerance: Stable
  • Chemical tolerance: None

Recommended Uses:

Rings - Due to the durability and uniqueness of alexandrite it is most often used as a center stone for a ring. Expect to pay a little more for this hard to find stone, and it is recommended to protect the investment with a platinum mounting. Mix platinum and diamonds with a center stone alexandrite and heads will turn.

Earrings - Because alexandrite is a rare stone, it is not recommended for use in earrings. If, however, a pair of earrings is desired, it is recommended to use a smaller pair of matching stones. It will be dificult to find a matched pair of alexandrites and is more likely to be available in smaller size rounds. Earrings are also easily lost or misplaced and cost should be of concern when considering alexandrite for earrings.

Pendants - Pendants are usually made with larger stones or pearls and are not necessarily the best choice for alexandrite. Since availability is greater in 1 carat or less sizes an alexandrite pendant would look best if mixed with other stones such as diamonds. A three stone pendant with an alexandrite and diamonds would be unique and quite beautiful to alexandrite admirers.

Bracelets - Not a recommended choice due to cost and availability. Bracelets generally consist of many matching stones and it will be extremely difficult, if at all possible, to find a quantity of matching alexandrites.

Source Map:


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JUNE (Alternative - Pearl)

Pearls have long been prized around the world. Ancient texts show high regard for these gems of the sea. Pearls have always decorated crowns and robes of queens and kings. Native Americans adorned themselves with pearls fished from coastal waters and inland rivers. Without cultured pearls, the beauty of pearls would not be available to most consumers today. True spherical cultured pearls came only in the late nineteenth century after long efforts by Japanese researchers. Cultured pearls are available in a wide variety of sizes, shapes and colors. Cultured freshwater pearls have become increasingly popular in recent years. Available in spherical and irregular shapes, these pearls are both affordable and attractive.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 8th
  • Astrological Sign: Cancer (June 21 - July 22)
  • R.I.: 1.52 - 1.66
  • S.G.: 2.60 - 2.78
  • Hardness: 3 - 4
  • Toughness: Good
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JULY (Ruby)

Ruby comes from the Latin word "ruber" which means red. An ancient Indian language called Sanskrit used the word ratnaraj meaning "king of gems" to describe this beautiful stone. Ruby is the red variety of the corundum family. There are many legends about the ruby. It was believed that the wearer of a ruby was blessed with health, wealth, wisdom, and outstanding success in affairs of the heart. According to an ancient verse of uncertain origin, "The gleaming ruby should adorn, All those who in July are born, For thus they'll be exempt and free, From lover's doubts and anxiety." Ruby is the birthstone for the month of July and is designated for the 40th wedding anniversary. Rubies are routinely heated to eliminate purple and brown overtones and to improve clarity by reducing cloudiness caused by rutile needles.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 40th
  • Astrological Sign: Cancer (June 21 - July 22)
  • R.I.: 1.762 - 1.770
  • S.G.: 4.00 (+.03)
  • Hardness: 9
  • Toughness: Good
  • Care: Normal
  • Enhancements: Heated to improve color and appearance
  • Principle Sources: Burma, Thailand, Kampuchea, Sri Lanka, Kenya
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AUGUST (Peridot)

Peridot comes from the Arabic word faridat which means gem. In the 18th century, the French were the first to call this yellowish-green stone peridot. Peridot was called Topaz up until the 18th century. As early as 1500 B.C. the Egyptians used peridot as a gem, and it was considered the "gem of the sun". It was believed, to develop its full strength as a talisman, it had to be set in gold. Legend tells us that miners searched for peridot crystals at night, as moonlight made them easier to see. They would mark the location and come back in the daylight to dig them up. Peridot is the birthstone for August and is designated for the 3rd wedding anniversary.`

  • Wedding Anniversary: 3rd
  • Astrological Sign: Leo (July 23 - Aug. 22)
  • R.I.: 1.654 - 1.690
  • S.G.: 3.31 - 3.48
  • Hardness: 6.5 - 7
  • Toughness: Poor
  • Care: Avoid Sudden temperature changes
  • Enhancements: none known
  • Principle Sources: US, Australia, Brazil, Burma, China, Egypt, Kenya, Mexico, Norway, Sri Lanka
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SEPTEMBER (Sapphire)

Sapphire is a variety of the mineral species corundum. Sapphires occur in all colors of the rainbow with the exception of red, which is ruby. The name sapphire is derived from the word sapphiros, which was actually used for lapiz lazuli in Roman times. Sapphires are commonly heated to improve color and reduce cloudiness that is caused by rutile inclusions. Sapphire is the birthstone for the month of September. Blue sappire is designated for the 15th wedding anniversary, golden sapphire for the 50th, while fancy sapphires (all for colors except blue) are given for the 30th year. Today, sapphire is mined in Australia, Sri Lanka, and Thailand. Other producers are Burma, Kampuchea, Kenya, and Tanzania.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 15th-Blue Sapphiree, 30th-Fancy Color Sapphire, 50th-Golden Sapphiree
  • Astrological Sign: Virgo (Aug. 23 - Sept. 23)
  • R.I.: 1.762 - 1.770
  • S.G.: 4.00(+.10, -.05)
  • Hardness: 9
  • Toughness: Good
  • Care: Normal
  • Enhancements: Heated to produce or intensify color, make color uniform, or to lighten stones
  • Principle Sources: Australia, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Burma
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OCTOBER (Opal)

Opal takes its name from the Latin word "Upala" meaning "precious stone". Pliny, a learned Roman scholar, described opal as having "the fire of the carbuncle, the brilliant purple of the amethyst, and the sea-green color of the emerald, all shining together in incredible union." The Romans believed opal was the symbol of hope and purity. They called opal "cupid paederos" (child as beautiful as love) and thought the wearer safe from disease. The Arabs believed that opals fell from heaven in flashes of lightning and thus acquired their marvelous play-of-color. Ancient Greece also believed the opal had the power of giving foresight and the light of prophecy to their owners. To help preserve their beauty, opals should be treated with care due to their fragile nature. Opal is the birthstone for the month of October and is designated for the 13th wedding anniversary.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 13th
  • Astrological Sign: Libra (Sept. 23 - Oct. 22)
  • R.I.: 1.45 S.G.: 1.25 - 2.22
  • S.G.: 1.25 - 2.22
  • Hardness: 5 - 6.5
  • Toughness: Poor
  • Care: Avoid heat, chemicals, and ultrasonic
  • Enhancements: None Common
  • Principle Sources: Australia, Brazil, Mexico
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NOVEMBER (Topaz)

Topaz get its name from the island Topazios in the Red Sea. Topazios is a Greek word meaning to guess. This suited the island well as it was often obscured by fog, making it dufficult for early navigators to find. The ancient Greeks believed topaz bestowed strength to its wearer. It was worn as an amulet to ward off enchantment, dispel sadness and strengthen intellect. Topaz was believed to assure beauty, fidelity and long life. Until the late 16th century all yellow stones were called topaz. Topaz occurs naturally in many colors; yellow, orange, brown, red, pink, light blue, pale green and colorless. The blue shades (sky, swiss and london) are very popular in jewelry today. Sources include Brazil, Mexico, Pakistan, the US, Sri Lanka and Russia. Some of the yellow, orange and brown topaz are heated to produce pink or red. All blue topaz is irradiated and/or heated to attain its blue color. Topaz is the birthsone for the month of November. Blue topaz is designated for the 4th wedding anniversary while imperial topaz is given for the 23rd.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 23rd-Imperial Topaz 4th-Blue Topaz
  • Astrological Sign: Scorpio (Oct. 23 - Nov. 21)
  • R.I.: 1.619-1.627 (+.010)
  • S.G.: 3.53 (+.04)
  • Hardness: 8
  • Toughness: Poor
  • Care: Avoid heat, chemical, steam, ultrasonic
  • Enhancements: Blue-irradiated and heated to produce color
  • Principle Sources: Brazil, Nigeria
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DECEMBER #1 (Blue Zircon)

Zircon represents the December birthstone. In the Middle Ages, zircon was thought to induce sleep, promote riches, honor, wisdom, and drive away plagues and evil spirits. The Kalpa Tree, a Hindu symbolic offering to early gods, was described by Hindu poets as having leaves of zircons. In the 1800's blue Zircon was widely used in Victorian Jewelry. Antique shops are a large source of finding Zircon in 5 carats and larger.

  • Wedding Anniversary: 7th
  • Astrological Sign: Sagittarius (Nov. 22 - Dec. 21)
  • R.I.: 1.810-1.984
  • S.G.: 3.90-4.73
  • Hardness: 6-7.5
  • Care: Avoid abrasives
  • Enhancement: Heated brown crystals turn colors under certain conditions
  • Principle Sources: Kampuchea, Sri Lanka, Burma

DECEMBER #2 (Tanzanite)

News Update – Tanzanite Joins Exclusive Birthstone Club!

By now you’ve probably heard the news: the AGTA, in concert with industry professionals, has named Tanzanite an alternative birthstone for the month of December, joining Turquoise and Zircon.

The royal blue/purplish stone was introduced to the world by Tiffany and Co in 1968, and named for the African country of its birth, Tanzania, the only known source of the gemstone in the world.

You might think it odd that anyone can simply declare a new birthstone, but it’s not as far fetched as it sounds. Most associations of gemstones with particular months developed over centuries, but new developments occurred in 1912, when Alexandrite was added by jewelry industry leaders, and a more modern list was assembled in the 1930s and 40s, by a group of jewelers in the Midwest.

The latest addition was agreed upon by the AGTA, GIA, AGS, ICA, and JA.

As a relative newcomer to the jemstone scene, Tanzanite has not had as much opportunity to be surrounded by rich traditions and lore, as have many of the more ancient and legendary gems, but already it is being associated with generosity and friendship, and the tendency to uplift the spirit and open the heart. In addition to being the new birthstone for December, Tanzanite is also the gemstone which represents the 24th wedding anniversary.

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