The month of October welcomes cooler days, warmer clothes and two dazzling birthstones: Opal and pink Tourmaline. These gems bring a touch of vibrant color to the season’s earthier, more subdued tones. As we transition fully into fall, October’s birthstones will help make your month glimmer with enchanting possibility.
It’s easy to get lost in an Opal’s infinite colors. Light diffracts throughout the stone, creating a kaleidoscopic effect unique to each gem. Only precious Opals display this “play-of-color” phenomenon. Common Opals include the milk, resin and wood Opal, which do not exhibit a play-of-color but can be just as beautiful.
Australia celebrates the Opal as the country’s national gemstone, but it also appears in places all over the world — and out of it. NASA discovered Opal deposits on Mars back in 2008, far from the Opal fields of Virgin Valley, Nevada.
In the Middle Ages, because Opals exhibit so many different colors, many thought that these gemstones could bestow great luck and even the power of invisibility upon the wearer. People also associate Opals with other magical powers, such as the evil eye and the gift of prophecy. Supernatural or not, Opals never fail to mesmerize with their extraordinary depth of color and shine.
Tourmalines do not exhibit as many colors as an Opals. However, Tourmaline gems come in so many different varieties that people often confuse them with other precious stones. In the 1500s, the very first bright green Tourmaline to be discovered was mistaken for an Emerald. Appropriately, the word tourmaline is derived from the word toramalli, which means “mixed gems” in Sinhalese.
Not only does the Tourmaline come in almost every color you can imagine, but this gemstone contains magnetic qualities as well. Heat or pressure activates its magnetism, which works better with yellow, green and blue Tourmaline varieties. Pink Tourmaline gems symbolize emotional power, easing stress and worry while promoting love and tenderness. The vibrancy of this gem provides a warm, cheerful contrast to cooler seasonal styles.