A helpful guide to gemstones
Jul 02, 2020
With radiant colors and a variety of stunning cuts, gemstones are always an elegant and distinctive choice when it comes to jewelry. Prized since antiquity for their remarkable beauty and durability, they’re always incredibly wearable and make a perfect choice for everyday wear.
What is a gemstone?
Gemstones are minerals that have been chosen for their beauty and durability, which are then cut, polished, and fashioned into a piece of jewelry. By definition, a mineral must be created inside the earth, differentiating it from ‘organics’ like pearls and amber, which are created by living organisms.
Precious stones VS. semi-precious stones.
To separate the two categories, several factors are taken into account, including quality, rarity, and provenance. Technically speaking, only four gemstones are currently considered “precious”: emerald, ruby, sapphire, and diamond. Traditionally, these four precious stones have been the most expensive and sought after stones in the world, making them the most prized. Every other gemstone that isn’t one of these elite four precious stones is considered to be semi-precious. The list of semi-precious stones is long and includes the commonly known: alexandrite, agate, amethyst, aquamarine, garnet, lapis lazuli, moonstone, opal, pearl, peridot, rose quartz, spinel, tanzanite, tourmaline, turquoise, and zircon.
Buying for color or birthstone?
Gemstones are not only beautiful symbols of passion and love, but they also represent months of the year as precious birthstones. When choosing a gemstone, always make it personal and meaningful. Whether connecting your birth month with rare and stunning gemstones or selecting a meaningful gift for a friend, spouse, or family member, there is no right or wrong when it comes to choosing the perfect gemstone for yourself or that special someone.
A helpful guide for finding your precious birthstone:
How to distinguish the quality of gemstones.
The quality of gemstones depends on a few key ingredients, including color, clarity, cut, and size, and like a spice in a dish, gemstones add a dash of beauty and enhance any jewelry collection. At Estella, we work with an array of both quality gemstones and precious metals to ensure only the finest and most enduring materials find their way to you - whether it be that gorgeous new gemstone necklace or gemstone bracelet that puts the perfect finishing touch on that outfit you’ve been dying to wear.
The value factor - How are gemstones priced?
So, just how are those gemstone rings or gemstone earrings priced? Gemstone prices depend upon the quality, color, clarity, cut, size, and rarity. Color includes the hue, tone, and saturation, whereas clarity refers to the relative degree to which a transparent gemstone is free of internal or surface characteristics (ie, inclusions and blemishes). Cut refers to how well the symmetry, proportions, and polish are executed. When it comes to size, a gemstone is generally expressed by its weight, measured by metric carat, which is 1/5 of a gram. And lastly, rarity refers to how rare stone is, meaning that minerals that occur in only a few locations or in very small deposits are considered to be the rarest on earth. When considering a gemstone purchase, we recommend always keeping your budget in mind as a rule of thumb.
Caring for your gemstones.
Both precious and semi-precious stones must be cleaned frequently. The good news is that you don’t need any special appliances or cleaners to clean them. A simple mixture of mild detergent and warm water will be more than sufficient. Simply scrub your gemstones using a soft-bristled brush and always avoid scrubbing too hard to avoid scratching the stone. After cleaning, rinse the stone and dry it gently with the help of a soft, lint-free cloth. Always rinse your gemstone jewelry in a bowl of water as a sink poses a risk of losing gems.