Emerald, the May birthstone, is said to activate the heart chakra and helps the wearer make choices from love and compassion. Like chrysoprase (an apple-green gemstone), it can help heal heartbreak and nourish emotions. As the gem of Venus, it was also considered to aid in fertility.
Many historians associate emeralds with Queen Cleopatra, the last Egyptian pharaoh. She was so obsessed with the jewels that she often adorned her robes, jewelry, and crowns with them.
The deeper and more vivid the colour of green, showing an intense bluish hue, the more valuable the jewel.
Emeralds, among the rarest of gems, are almost always found with birthmarks, known as inclusions but they do not detract from the value of the stone as other gemstones do.
Ruby, the July birthstone, represents love, passion, courage and emotion. It encourages enthusiasm, willingness to try new things, and the drive to see them through.
For centuries, the gem has been considered the king of all gems, adorned by emperors and kings throughout the ages and is said to bequeath good fortune on its owner.
Rubies come in a range of red hues from purplish and bluish red to orange-red. The brightest and most valuable colour is often "a Burmese Ruby”, which has a full red colour with a slight blue tinge.
They come from the corundum mineral (the same as sapphires), which is considered one of the hardest minerals on earth.
The ruby is known for its durability, luster, and rarity with large, transparent rubies even more valuable than diamonds.
Diamond, the April birthstone, has been admired and highly sought after for thousands of years.
The stone is said to attract abundance, strength, power, courage, fortitude, creativity, imagination, purity, harmony, faithfulness, innocence, increased feelings of self-respect and love. It is also believed that diamonds fill negative spaces in oneself with the purity of love.
They are made 100 miles beneath the earth’s and are the hardest gem of all.
Diamonds are regarded as the ultimate gift and a symbol of eternal love.
A diamond's worth is measured by the 4Cs - colour, clarity, cut, and carat weight.
While often considered a gemstone, the glowing, warm amber is not a stone, but fossilized tree resin, and is usually golden brown and translucent. It has been appreciated for its colour and natural beauty since Neolithic times.
It carries the energy of the sun, warmth, and wellbeing and helps nurture people recovering from illness, who are needing comfort.
Folklore claims that it can change negative energies into positive energy and lifts the spirits.
Topaz, the November birthstone, comes in shades of yellow, brown, honey, green, blue, red, pink and sometimes no colour at all. It is a stone that is often altered, creating colours not found naturally, or enhancing natural colours to be more vibrant.
The most valuable colour of topaz features an orange shade with pink undertones.
The ancient Egyptians and Romans associated this golden gem with the sun with protecting and healing qualities.
According to Wixon Jewelers, the name aquamarine speaks for itself, meaning seawater. The stone is said to help you speak with clarity and compassion, releases stuck emotions and old attachments and brings the energy of the divine feminine.
It was long thought that aquamarine has a soothing influence on married couples, making it a good anniversary gift.
Aquamarines are found in a range of blues, from a pale pastel to a greenish-blue to a deep colour. The darker the shade of blue, the more rare and expensive the gem.
Turquoise, the December birthstone, is one of the most highly sought after gemstones for both jewelry and crystal healing, according to Bead Age.
Like most blue gemstones, turquoise activates and balances the throat chakra. This is the centre of speech and self-expression and helps the wearer speak wisdom and truth.
It has graced the necks of Egyptian Pharaohs and adorned the ceremonial dress of early Native Americans.
It comes in an opaque, light to dark blue or blue-green gem with its finest colour being an intense blue.
Turquoise may also contain narrow veins of other materials and they are usually black, brown, or yellowish-brown in colour.
Opal, the October birthstone, is composed of silicon and water. It has long been associated with love and passion, as well as desire and eroticism. It is a seductive stone that intensifies emotional states and releases inhibitions, but can also act as an emotional stabiliser.
Unique as fingerprints, it was once known as the Queen of Gems because it encompasses all of the colours of other gems, including blue, green, red, yellow, pink and purple.
Australia’s Lightning Ridge is known for its rare and stunning black opals, which have taken the world by storm. The discovery of these opals in Australia led to the decline of European production. Australia is in fact, still the principal source of black and white opals.
The sapphire, the birthstone for September, gets its name from the Latin word "saphirus" and the Greek word "sapheiros" - both meaning blue.
Blue sapphire enhances intuition, mental clarity and spiritual power and is used to channel healing energies from the angelic realm or a higher source.
Blue sapphires were a holy stone to the catholic church and to Ancient Persians, who believed they made the sky blue with their reflections. They symbolize wisdom, virtue, good fortune, and holiness for royals.
In an engagement ring, a sapphire means faithfulness and sincerity.
You might also like: