What Are The Birthstones?

January: Garnet      April: Diamond     July: Ruby     October: Opal & Tourmaline

February: Amethyst    May: Emerald   August: Peridot   November: Topaz & Citrine

March: Aquamarine     June: Pearl & Alexandrite      September: Sapphire

December: Turquoise, Zircon, & Tanzanite

Dating back thousands of years, with origins believed to be from the breast plate of Aaron and the twelve gemstones representing the twelve tribes of Israel as described in the Book of Exodus; most of the history regarding the birthstones is a mystery. There are various beliefs related to birthstones, and some lists are different, even having fewer stones as in Vedic Astrology, which abides by a list of 9 stones related to 9 planets. Vedic Astrology is a whole different subject all together, and much can be learned from our own report on the subject within our section on Sapphire Lore

Natural Untreated Yellow Sapphire

 The assignment of gemstones to symbolize the birth month is believed to have begun in the 18th century; however the current list of birthstones was completed in 1912 by the National Association of Jewelers, with the relatively recent addition of Tanzanite as an option for December.  So, really when it comes down to it, birthstones are a sales tactic. With that new information, you may be saying, “well, now what?”

People like their birthstones, even if they know it’s a sales tactic, they like feeling a connection to their stone. The connection however doesn’t need to be associated with your birth month specifically. Why not revel in the connection you have to your favorite color? Why do you love the color green? You may love the color green, unknowingly, because long ago someone told you emerald was your birthstone, and thus you were connected to the color green. Or, perhaps you are a lover of the outdoors, or gardening. Or maybe you’re just Irish. Either way, though the green of a fine emerald is certainly an appealing hue; emerald is not the only option for green gemstones. That goes for any of the listed birthstones… What you like about your birthstone – the color, the brilliance, or whatever special properties it may have, can be accomplished or at least come close to being accomplished by one gemstone, and that gemstone is Sapphire.


The New Birthstones – (All Sapphires & Rubies) 


Now you might be asking yourself, “Is this guy telling me to forget birthstones, just so he can sell more sapphires?”  Yes, yes I am.  However I’m not saying forget about birthstones simply because the list is a meaningless sales tactic. As a gemologist and jeweler, I believe it is my ethical responsibility to inform my customer of the truth, and the truth is, as far as every day jewelry is concerned, that is, if you plan to wear your gemstone as an engagement ring, or are at all rough on your jewelry, or are wanting to make a better, wiser, and longer lasting investment of your money; there is no better option than a sapphire. “What about diamond?” you ask. Come on, let’s get real… When it comes to sapphires and rubies; diamonds are like the Baby’s Breath in a dozen roses.

Here’s the new list:

January: Natural Ruby or Red Rose Sapphire – Your old birthstone was red, now you have the same color, as well as a harder & more durable gemstone. May: Green Sapphire – Jackie O’ had an emerald engagement ring, but how much “heavy lifting” did she do. Today’s modern woman needs a gem that won’t shatter with one knock against their desk. September: Sapphire – now a lot of people assume that they have to have a blue sapphire for their birthstone. Then again, some may not even realize that sapphires come in virtually every color. What’s your favorite?
February: Purple Sapphire  – the color of amethyst, with the brilliance that makes amethyst jealous. June: Silver Sapphire cut en cabochon, or the rare Color Change Sapphire.  Pearls are soft and susceptible to damage. Alexandrite is either $40,000 per carat, or not as pretty as you’d like it to be. October: Star Sapphire, Star Ruby, or Color Change Sapphire – the old birthstone, Opal, owes its fame to its play-of-color. Opal is in a category of gems called Phenomenal Gemstones, which includes star stones and color change stones. October is sort of a mysterious month – embrace that why don’t you.
March:  Ice Blue Ceylon Sapphire – most Aquamarine is heated, we have plenty of rare untreated light blue sapphires to meet March Babies demand. July: Ruby. Perfect! November:  Padparadscha Sapphire – Before Padpapradshcas found popularity, people thought topaz was so amazing, they didn’t realize what they were missing.
April:  White Sapphire – add a diamond halo so she still feels spoiled, then she’ll get the fire, and the big gem, and your wallet’s not empty August: Lime Green Sapphire – don’t even get me started on Peridot. While jumping In the pool isn’t advised with any jewelry; the chlorine in your pool will literally eat your peridot. So, yeah, Sapphire wins again. December:  Montana Sapphires – because it’s about time those beautiful American sapphires get some recognition.