Advice & Guides
Throughout history, people have adorned themselves in magnificent gemstones jewellery. Today, the most gorgeous jewellery collections use an abundance of bewitching gems that provide not only style, but sentiment. Deciding exactly which gemstones you want or need can be quite a task with so many to choose from. That’s why we’ve put together a guide on a selection of different gemstones, covering their historical legends, magical origins and beautiful meanings.
Agate can come in many different colours as well as lovely banded patterns, making this translucent gemstone very unique.
This gemstone works wonders for rebalancing your mind, body and spirit, warding away negative energy. Agate improves concentration and calms inner tensions, and also radiates a warm sense of safety and security.
Ametrine is a naturally occurring variety of quartz, and it is a beautiful mixture of amethyst and citrine with stunning tones of purple, yellow and orange. Its natural bi-colour combination means it’s sometimes referred to as trystine.
The harmonious and balancing energies of Ametrine provide magical healing properties and help towards vitality, inner strength, intuition and creativity.
An Amethyst, known for its beautiful deep purple tone, compliments both warmer and cooler colours, making it the ideal gemstone for both yellow and white metal. This stone was used in Egyptian times as a popular choice to be set into their fascinating jewellery. At one moment in history, this gem could only be worn by royalty. Today, however, Amethyst is readily available in all different shapes and sizes, making it one of the more affordable gemstones.
Thought of as a stone to protect against intoxicating powers by the ancient Greeks and Romans; February's birthstone Amethyst, also has a range of other intriguing qualities. Most potently though, it is famed for its calming nature, making it the perfect stone for mental and emotional well-being.
An aquamarine's dreamy blue appearance is unsurprisingly linked to the ocean due to the historical belief by sailors that it would protect them. Though most frequently a pale pastel colour, this gentle stone can appear in greenish-blue, as well as deeper blue shades, which are more rare, increasing the value. As this unique gem occurs less in nature, it means it is highly sought after, and rightfully so.
True to March’s birthstone, aquamarine has a springlike feel to it, symbolising youth, health and fidelity, and is linked to new friendships. This gem makes the perfect gift for an anniversary with its a glowing offering of affection and eternal love.
Citrine, French for ‘lemon’, is suitably yellow in colour to bright orangey-brown. Some of the most sought-after citrine gems have a clear, glowing yellow to red colouring. In ancient times, this gem was used as protection against evil thoughts. Citrine is one the most affordable and popular gemstones and is available in all different shapes and sizes, often making a great statement jewellery piece.
Today, citrine is associated with prosperity and success and is said to awaken creativity and imagination. This beautiful golden stone is a nod to vitality, new pursuits and fresh beginnings.
The most popular and romantic gem of all time barely needs an introduction. Since the 20th century, GIA created the first method for assessing the quality of a diamond, and now the diamond’s 4C’s are used to evaluate quality worldwide. A diamond's rarity and clear, sparkling appearance have captivated us all throughout history, being an admired stone of desire.
April’s birthstone: the diamond, symbolises innocence, eternity, purity and courage. Most iconically, though, it’s linked to everlasting love, making it the most popular choice for engagement and wedding rings.
The emerald, not only Cleopatra’s favourite gemstone, was used to honour the goddess of love and beauty in Ancient Roman times. The vibrant green hue of an emerald can be offset beautifully when set in both gold and silver jewellery. As the green gets deeper in colour, the value of the gem increases, with the most valuable containing a blueish complexion.
May’s birthstone, emerald suitably offers a spring-like feel and is naturally associated with renewal in the wake of winter. It also signifies growth, wisdom and patience, and is associated with love and considered to help fertility. This stone comes with a mystical quality, with the age-old belief that it enables the beholder to see into the future.
Garnet is available in a large array of colours, from vibrant green, and warm orange, to subtle pinks and purples. It originates from the Latin name ‘granatus’, meaning seedlike, however, it’s thought to mirror the appearance of a pomegranate seed. This gem continuously emits light, due to its high refraction index, and, in jewellery, will attractively radiate against yellow gold tones.
Garnet, January’s birthstone, is said to light up the night and protect against nightmares, meaning they’ve long been carried by travellers throughout history. It calms nerves and promotes energy, self-love and will-power to any wearer.
Like emerald and aquamarine, morganite is a form of beryl, often referred to as ‘pink beryl’. Morganite is a feminine looking gem with its soft pink, peach and fuchsia colours that will look beautiful set in white or yellow gold jewellery.
Its association with harmony, romance and love are mirrored in its charming pink hue, but most importantly, this stone is said to promote independence in women. So if you long for a beautiful, empowering ring, then express self-love and treat yourself!
Opal, known as the Queen of Gems in ancient times, due to its intriguing array of fascinating opaque, colours of that in all other gems. While some prefer the mystical flashes of blues and greens, others fall in love with the vibrant reds and yellows, all of which are visible on every twist and turn.
October's birthstone, Opal, has been used to aid childbirth, and enhance memory, and also symbolises creativity, hope and innocence, as well as confidence and faithfulness.
The pearl was once believed to be the hardened tears of joy from Aphrodite, the goddess of love, making it the purest of all. A pearl is set apart from other stones, being formed within the soft tissue of a living shelled mollusc. Naturally, those from the wild are the most valuable, due to their rarity. This pure white stone was hugely popular in the 1920s, often worn as string necklaces, and today is both classic and contemporary.
A pearl is not only June’s birthstones, but is often worn to calm a restless mind, and also allows the wearer to succeed in creative work.
Known to the Hindus as ‘king of gems’, the ruby is believed to protect its beholder from evil and is today still one of the most valued gemstones. If it wasn’t for its sizzling red colour, a ruby would be considered a sapphire, due to it being a special form of the mineral corundum. Much of what makes this gem so appealing is its red luminescence that's absorbed from natural light and remitted after.
Ruby is July’s birthstone, and its blood-like colour is linked to love, health, and physical strength, and in ancient times these stones were embedded into drinking vessels in order to reap the health benefits.
Pink sapphires are ever increasing in popularity since their Madagascan discovery in the 1990s. They come in different shades, from pale pink to vivid magenta, with deeper hues being more valuable. Pink sapphires have become popular in engagement rings, with brides favouring the feminine and unique colour.
These specific sapphires are said the hold special power, carrying good fortune and intense love, while symbolising sincerity, loyalty and trust.
Quartz comprises the largest family in the mineral kingdom. It’s often described as ordinary but extraordinary, as well as colourful but also clear. Prized for their beautiful icy appearance, clear quartz can be crystal clear, have a cloudy hue or be nearly opaque. There are many other quartz that are popularly used in jewellery, such as rutilated quartz, smokey quartz and rose quartz which famously represents love.
This magical crystal is known to be the ‘master healing crystals’, offering some of the strongest purifying powers. It’s said that quartz can help you to gain a better understanding of yourself when it comes to everyday life stresses.
The Sapphire is most thought of as a beautiful deep violet-blue gemstone, often being referred to as the ultimate blue gemstone. Sapphire actually comes in almost every colour of the rainbow. Historically it’s recognised as a shield against evil and poisoning and is a favourite amongst priests and kings for its symbolism of purity and wisdom. In fact, it was thought that the brighter the sparkle, the more honest the wearer would be.
Sapphire stone is said to remedy blood and cellular conditions and calm an overactive body, as well as increase wisdom, serenity and loyalty.
Coming from only one place on earth, the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzanite is without a doubt a truly unique gemstone. With its combination of exotic blue and rich overtones of purple, it is a gemstone that many dream of. It comes in many shapes and sizes, as well as a range of ‘velvety’ shades that can be worn in all types of jewellery.
Tanzanite is December’s birthstone and has been discovered to be one of the most spiritually valuable crystals. It radiates calming and soothing properties, making it ideal for working environments, as well as being a great gem for direction in a career change.
Topaz is most commonly a yellow, golden colour, though it’s available in many colours including red, blue, pink and pale green. This golden gem was idolised by the Romans and Egyptians as they believe the sun god gave it the power to heal and protect. Blue topaz, was once the rarest, but today is the most available due to our ability to enhance colour.
Topaz is November’s birthstone and is believed to make the beholder unseen to danger, making it a highly protective stone. It’s also a healer of both the mind and body, aiding physical pain while encouraging inner peace.
Tourmaline can come in many beautiful colours including, black, cranberry red, forest green and more. It’s also known as a bi-colour or tri-colour gem, showcasing more than one colour at a time, such as a ‘watermelon tourmaline’.
Pink tourmaline is stunning set in jewellery, and boasts friendship and unconditional love, radiating the strongest love of all the tourmalines. It is a calming stone that inspires confidence, combats pessimistic emotions, and promotes wisdom and compassionate characteristics.
There are many intriguing origins and beautiful meanings behind gemstones, so you may decide to choose a gemstone piece that resonates with your needs, or you might have fallen in love with one's appearance. At Browns, we offer a wonderful range of gemstone jewellery, from sparkling diamond show-stoppers to enchanting morganite pieces oozing femininity. Don’t forget, we’re here to help find the right gemstone jewellery piece, so don’t hesitate to get in touch or pop into your nearest store.