For those lucky enough to celebrate a birthday in the month of October, they get to choose from either the magical opal (modern birthstone) or the traditional tourmaline (specifically, pink tourmaline). Between these two October birthstones and the myriad of color spectrums they offer, you can definitely find a gem to suit anyone’s personal taste, then set in your preferred jewelry.
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The tourmaline is a semi-precious gemstone that is known for its vast variety of colors. As October is, however, the month of pink everything, the pink tourmaline is normally the preferred choice of Tourmalines. Pink tourmaline comes from a variety of crystalline boron silicate minerals, also known as rubellite. It has a sister stone that comes in the shade of blue, the Paraiba tourmaline. Comparatively, pink tourmaline has graced the market for a longer period of time than Paraiba.
Opals, known significantly for their dramatic play of color, or shifting hues depending on light, are as magical as everyone claims them to be. Opal too comes in a rainbow variety of shades, ranging from whites to blacks to greens, giving us a huge collection to choose from. Opal comes from a hydrated amorphous form of silica, and due to its amorphous form, it is known as a mineraloid.
Now that you’ve got a little sneak peek into the world of October birthstones, let’s learn a few more things.
1. Pink Tourmaline Birthstone
Rubellite or Pink tourmaline is a variety of tourmaline that gets its gorgeous pink hues due to the presence of aluminum or iron that provides different intensities of pink shades. Pink tourmaline is one of the rarest gemstones in the world and the most sought-after variety of tourmaline.
It ranks 7.5 out of 10 on the Mohs scale of hardness making it fairly durable, and versatile in nature. Due to its high durability, pink tourmaline can be molded into exceptional jewelry which can be used in the day-to-day routine.
Tourmaline is mined all over the world. Countries such as the USA, Africa, and Brazil are the major producers of these vivid gemstones. The clarity in a high-quality pink tourmaline is often praised, as it’s comparable to that of a diamond. GemsNY has a huge variety of this rosy October birthstone in all shapes and sizes.
Some of the varieties (or species, as they are often termed) of Tourmaline are well known all over the world.
Schorl Species: Brownish black to black variety of tourmaline falls under schorl.
Dravite Species: Dark Yellow to Brownish Black tourmaline
Elbaite Species: The bright color variety of tourmaline falls under elbaite
Facts about Tourmaline
- Tourmalines are sometimes called the “Cyolenese Sri Lankan Magnet”. Due to their pyroelectric characteristics, they can both attract and repel hot ash.
- The term tourmaline is derived from a Sinhalese word “Toromalli” which means something small taken from the earth
- Tourmalines also possess the characteristics of being Dichroic. This means that when the gemstone is held at different angles, its shades can vary in intensity or change overall appearance, due to lighting.
2. Opal Birthstone
Is any gem prettier than Opal? ‘The Queen of Gemstones’ is one of the most beautiful stones ever found; with its scintillating play of color and sheer range of hues, it is one of the most desired gems to date.
Opal is a hydrated amorphous form of silica which in itself is a form of mineraloid. This magnificent gemstone is a result of deposits at low temperatures in between the fissures of any kind of rock.
On the Mohs scale of hardness, Opal ranks from 5.5 to 6 out of 10 making it a rather soft gemstone in comparison to other colored stones. Even though it qualifies to be set into fine accessories that can be used every day, regular care must be taken to increase their life.
Opals can be found all around the world. Australia, Brazil, Mexico, Ethiopia, etc. are some of the major producers of these beautiful October birthstones.
As opal comes in an array of colors, there are different varieties of it that one should know about.
This variety of opal is generally transparent or translucent, with warm shades of colors like orange, yellow, or red.
This variety is often confused with fire opal. They are transparent to semi-transparent milky quartz and also display asterism. A true Girasol opal reflects a bluish-green or neon-ish glow depending on the lighting.
These are the semi-opaque to opaque opals with blue-green shades.
There are way too many different types of opals for you to not find one that suits your style.
Facts about Opal
- Opal has been found on Mars. Only a few gemstones have been found in outer space and opal is one of them
- Queen Victoria had a very large collection of opals and it was believed to be her favorite gemstone.
- Opal is also known as the national gemstone of Australia. Australia is the major producer of opals, 95%-97% of the world’s supply comes from the land of kangaroos.
GemsNY is a bespoke jewelry store in New York that believes in redefining luxury. We have a vast collection of tourmalines that you can make your own jewelry from! Even though Opals are something that we do not trade-in, we can definitely source it on special request. You can get your dream gemstone/jewelry, just like you imagined it! Explore our tourmaline jewelry collections here.