Tuesday, October 11, 2011

October Birthstones - Opals & Pink Tourmaline

October has two birthstones, Opal and Pink Tourmaline.

The traditional October Birthstone is the Opal which many people refer to as a rainbow gemstone since many colors are reflected in a good-quality opal stone.  The stone is a non-crystallized silica which is a mineral found near the earth's surface.  It is a soft stone, formed when layers of the silica combined with water were deposited into the cracks and cavities of bedrock. It contains varying amounts of water within it that determines the appearance.

This beautiful Opal gemstone is highly prized by collectors and can often be found in the crowns and jewelry collections of royalties. Most of the opals that are of jewelry-making quality are mined from the beautiful country of Australia.

This gemstone can contain up to 30% water so it is a delicate stone that must be protected at all times from extreme heat, extreme cold and from water. You should remove all opal jewelry before showering, bathing and/or swimming. If you accidentally get your opal jewelry wet you should remove it as soon as possible and towel it dry with a soft cloth. In addition, you want to keep harsh chemicals away from all opal jewelry so do not apply cosmetics, perfumes, body products or hair products while wearing your jewelry. Store your lovely pieces in beautiful lined jewelry boxes for safekeeping.

Opals are usually set into lovely settings of gold and silver and you can find beautiful color variations from blue to brown and even black. All of these colors have the most gorgeous color variations combined in the stone so you can wear your opals with any type and color outfit.

Most Opals are set into rings and drop pendants, but you can find a lovely selection of watches and amazing necklaces too.  Another favorite are dangle earrings. Many times jewelers will set the opals with diamonds surrounding the stone for an elegant and regal look.

If you are not a fan of opal jewelry, October has an alternate birthstone which is the Pink Tourmaline.  This too is a beautiful stone that you can wear in many different ways. On a scientific note, when heated, this gem takes on a static electric charge and it can attract light weight objects giving it a seemingly magical property. Once considered the "stone of the muse" it was believed to inspire creativity in the wearer. Pink varieties of Tourmaline range from pastel pink to ruby red and are mined in Brazil, Afghanistan, Burma, and India.

If you are an October birthday girl, select beautiful Opal or Pink Tourmaline jewelry pieces and wear them with pride!

by Gregg Nosaji, Contributing Editor for ChasingTreasure.com, online retailer of jewelry boxes, jewelry armoires and jewelry related gifts. Gregg is an event consultant and writes about gift ideas and special occasions.

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