The Ultimate Guide to Gemstone Jewelry: Types, Meanings, Care Tips and More

As one of the leading fashion accessories of 2024, gemstone jewelry is certainly having a moment, but its popularity is nothing new — people have been wearing precious and semi-precious gemstones for thousands of years, and there’s never really been a period when they were out of fashion. Still, there’s no doubt that interest in gemstones has risen considerably in recent years. They speak to modern fashion-focused customers for a number of reasons, namely:

  • They’re loaded with symbolism and meaning.
  • They’re unique, giving wearers a one-of-a-kind look.
  • They’re available in a range of colors and types.

Unraveling the Significance of Gemstones

You might be drawn to a specific piece of gemstone jewelry, but keep in mind that gemstones aren’t your usual jewelry decoration. There’s history, meanings, authenticity, and cultural significance to each gemstone. Having a solid understanding of the various types of gemstones and what they symbolize can help ensure you choose a gemstone that’s right for you. Plus, the more you know about semi-precious or precious gemstones, the more you’ll appreciate the magic of the jewelry you buy. 

Types of Gemstones

Gemstones are divided into two categories: precious gemstones and semi-precious gemstones. While precious gemstones are generally perceived to be more valuable, that’s not always the case — semi-precious gemstones can be just as beautiful! As we’ll see, there are only four precious gemstones. Everything else is automatically classified as a semi-precious gemstone. 

Precious Gemstones

Diamond

Diamond, the planet’s hardest natural material, has long been valued for its strength and beauty. 

Ruby

Appreciated for their rich crimson hue, ruby gemstones are not only exceptionally durable but also remarkably scarce, making them the perfect choice for crafting luxurious ruby jewelry

Sapphire

Sapphire is a hard, valuable gemstone that comes in a variety of colors, making it a versatile choice for crafting stunning sapphire jewelry pieces that range from vibrant blues to striking yellows and everything in between.

Emerald

Emeralds are known for their lush green color. They’re more fragile than rubies and sapphires, which adds to their beauty. 

Semi-precious Gemstones

Amethyst

Amethyst has long been valued for its beauty and power. It consists of a deep purple color and is thought to have healing properties. 

Aquamarine

A clear blue gemstone that belongs to the beryl family of gemstones. 

Citrine

A yellow-hue gemstone, citrine was first discovered in Bolivia in the 1600s.

Garnet

Garnet, January’s gemstone, comes in a variety of colors, with blue garnet the rarest.

Opal

Opal is a multi-colored stone that offers a dancing mesh of colors. 

Pearl

A spectacular gemstone with a long history, pearls are known as the ‘queen of gemstones.’

Turquoise

Turquoise is a beautiful, highly sought-after gemstone that symbolizes wealth and success. 

Meanings and Symbolism of Gemstones

History of Gemstones

As we said at the beginning of the article: gemstones have been treasured for a long, long time. Their history goes back thousands of years, and they’ve come attached with meaning essentially since the beginning. Even in Ancient China, certain gemstones were used to signify wealth and power. 

They were valuable to the Ancient Egyptians, too. Blue gemstones were popular with members of the ruling elite, who made them a focal point of their elaborate jewelry. In more recent times, the Victorian period saw immense gemstone popularity, particularly pink coral and ruby, which were used to protect from diseases and ignite passion, respectively. 

Common Meanings of Popular Gemstones 

It’s important to understand the meaning of gemstones before making a purchase. After all, it’s always good to know what kind of energy you’re bringing into your life! Some common meanings of popular gemstones include:

  • Ruby: Passion and Vitality
  • Opal: Mystery and Creativity
  • Amethyst: Spiritual Development
  • Aquamarine: Mental Clarity and Good Health
  • Emerald: Spiritual Protection, Good Health

Personalized Meanings Based on Birthstones

If you’re unsure of which gemstone you should purchase, then consider your birthstone. Each month is assigned its own special gemstone, allowing you to select the one that corresponds to your birth.  

Designer Birthstone Jewelry

Not all birthstone jewelry is created equal. While all gemstones have their own historic meanings, you’ll feel more attached to your gemstone — and draw more meaning from the piece — if it’s a stunning, quality-crafted jewelry item that has been designed to stand the test of time. 

Also, keep in mind that gemstones never really go out of fashion. They’re nearly as old as the earth itself, after all. By investing in a designer piece of birthstone jewelry, you’ll know that you’ll have a fashion accessory that, by incorporating a few care tips, looks just as stunning decades down the line as it does today. 

G Marie Luxuries Can Help You Find the Perfect Gemstone Jewelry 

Ready to get your hands on the perfect gemstone jewelry item? G Marie Luxuries is here to help. Our specialist team are experts in helping our customers find gemstone jewelry that looks like it was made specifically for them. 

Contact us to discover our exquisite selection of fine jewelry and to arrange a concierge appointment. We offer both in-person and virtual appointments to serve you regardless of your location.