October – A Month With Two Birthstones – Opal and Tourmaline
A birthstone is a special gem or stone that is linked to the month of your birth. All 12 months
have different birthstones associated with them, however, if you are born in October you
are extremely lucky as you have two birthstones. These are Opal and Tourmaline. Both
stones are very beautiful and full of personality and vibrant colour.
The Meaning Of The Opal Stone
The Opal stone is the more traditional birthstone for October and was originally found in
India. In Sankrit is was called upala which translates to “precious stone”. In ancient Roman
times, this was then called opalus, shortened to Opal. Opal stones are famous for their
rainbow hue and changing colours, a magical phenomenon known as a “play-of-colour”.
The Meaning of the Tourmaline Stone
The Tourmaline stone is the newer of the two stones. The word Tourmaline comes from the
Sinhalese word tormalli which means “stone with mixed colours”. This stone like the Opal is
a variety of different colours mixed together. Very few gems can match just how dazzling
this stone is with its array of vibrant colours.
Where is the Opal stone found?
The Opal stone can be found in many different places. Australia with its hot climate and vast
fields are one of the most productive spots, however, it can also be found in Ethiopia, Brazil
and Mexico. Central Europe and The United States have also produced many stones, as well
as areas in Peru, Turkey, Houndras, Indonesia and Madagascar.
Where is the Tourmaline Stone found?
This stone is most commonly found in Brazil, but can also be sourced in Afghanistan, Kenya,
Pakistan, Mozambique and Madagascar. In the United States, California and Maine are also
important producers of the Tourmaline stone.
Why Do People Wear A Birthstone?
The Opal stone with its dramatic colours, has for a long time inspired many a poet and
writer. Many have compared the colours to fireworks and galaxies. Bedouins are said to
have believed that the Opal stone held lighting and fell direct from the sky during
thunderstorms. During ancient Greek times, they believed the Opal stones bestowed the wearer with prophecy and protected them from diseases. Europeans, however, believed the Opal stones
to bring you purity, hope and truth.
The Tourmaline stone was believed to be very mystical and inspire artistic expression with
its “colour palette for every mood”. The tourmaline stone is often mistaken for other gems
because of its wide variety of colours. The Black Stone is said to protect the wearer and give
them more self-confidence. If you were to wear the pink version, you are said to be
compassionate and gentle, and full of love. The green tourmaline stone promotes great
strength, courage and stamina.
How To Look After Your Precious Stones
The safest way to keep your Opal Stones clean is by washing gently with warm, soapy water.
Other cleaning products could damage the stone, as it is sensitive to high heat and sudden
dramatic changes in temperature.
The Opal stone rates at 5 to 6.5 on the Mohns scale of hardness, meaning it is more fragile
and easily scratched so should be properly stored on its own, away from other jewellery.
The Tourmaline stone rates at a higher 7 to 7.5 on the Mohns scale, so it’s much harder and
durable and more suited to everyday wearing. The Tourmaline stone is also best cleaned
with warm soapy water but is stable enough to withstand light and most chemicals,
however, can be affected by high temperature so care should be taken when wearing.
It is always recommended you get professional advice about the best way to store and look
after your jewellery.
Both of these stones are very beautiful with lovely combinations and characteristics which
means when it comes to picking a piece of jewellery you will have even more choice.
As well as a birthstone the Opal is also given to you on your 14 th Wedding Anniversary and
the Tourmaline on your 8 th Wedding Anniversary so can make a perfect gift on these special
Whether you wear this as a birthstone, anniversary present or just a treat for yourself you
will have a wide variety of different colours, designs and looks to choose from with these
two stones. You will be spoilt for choice and are guaranteed to end up with an amazing
statement Jewellery piece with whatever stone you choose.