December Birthstone

by | Feb 22, 2024 | gemstone designs

Navigating the array of dazzling December birthstones can feel like a treasure hunt where every gem is a tantalizing choice. It’s easy to get swept up in the sea of sparkling blues, but did you know that Topaz offers a kaleidoscope of colors beyond its classic azure hue? Fear not! Our carefully crafted article is your compass in exploring each stone’s distinct charm and significance.

Get ready to uncover the perfect gemstone ally that will add extra sparkle to your December festivities!

Key Takeaways

  • December features a variety of birthstones including blue topaz, tanzanite, blue zircon, and turquoise, each with its unique hue and significance.
  • Blue topaz is valued for its calming qualities and ability to be cut into many shapes; tanzanite is treasured for its rare violet-blue color and origin near Mount Kilimanjaro; blue zircon dazzles with exceptional brilliance; turquoise holds historical importance across cultures as well as protective properties.
  • Careful maintenance such as gentle cleaning without harsh chemicals and proper storage will prolong the beauty of December birthstones in jewelry pieces.
  • Historical and cultural significance enhance the allure of these gemstones with stories from ancient civilizations to modern times where they serve as symbols of identity and tradition.
  • When selecting a December birthstone, consider factors like color preference, clarity which affects sparkle and brilliance, physical properties that dictate durability, and carat size which influences the impact on appearance and cost.

Overview of Birthstones

The image shows a person admiring a dazzling blue topaz gemstone in a jewelry store.

As we transition from our introduction, let’s gently unfurl the enchanting tapestry of birthstones. Each month is paired with a precious or semi-precious gem that holds more than just shimmer and shine—it carries a legacy steeped in tradition, believed to endow luck and protection upon its bearer.

Woven into the fabric of various cultures, these stones have become heartfelt emblems of personal identity, taking center stage on everything from delicate rings to statement pendants and bracelets.

Imagine the rich red garnet warming January’s chill or May’s emerald mirroring the fresh bloom of spring—each birthstone tells a story through its vibrant hues and rich history.

In their sparkle lies not just external beauty but reflections of our inner qualities and cherished memories that transform simple ornaments into treasures passed down through generations.

And as we move towards December’s crisp skies adorned by blue topaz brilliance, let’s take a moment to savor how each stone is an heirloom in waiting, intertwining with the threads of our lives in ways uniquely our own.

December Birthstones: An Overview

A woman standing in a snowy landscape, wearing a turquoise necklace and various outfits, captured by professional photographers.

December birthstones are associated with the winter month and include blue topaz, tanzanite, blue zircon, and turquoise. Each stone has its own unique symbolism and significance, making them popular choices for jewelry during this time of year.

Blue Topaz

A model wearing a stunning Blue Topaz necklace standing in front of a serene lake.

We often marvel at the stunning shades of Blue Topaz, ranging from the pale Sky Blue to the deep London Blue. This gemstone captivates with its clear, icy hues reminiscent of a winter’s sky.

Heat treatment enhances its vibrant tones, ensuring that your birthstone jewelry not only looks exquisite but also holds up well over time on the Mohs hardness scale.

Blue Topaz symbolizes calmness and cooling—and for good reason. Wearing it can evoke a sense of tranquility in us, just like gazing into tranquil waters. Jewelers love working with this versatile stone because it can be cut into many shapes including emerald cut, pear cut, and brilliant-cut facets which all contribute to its exceptional sparkle.

It’s no surprise that pieces featuring Swiss Blue Topaz or Imperial Topaz become cherished accessories for those lucky enough to call them their own.

Tanzanite

A tanzanite gemstone set against the backdrop of the <a href=

Let’s dive right into the fascinating world of tanzanite, a gem that dazzles with its unique violet-blue color. Discovered in 1967 near Mount Kilimanjaro, this precious gemstone boasts a rarity that excites us as gem professionals and collectors alike.

Tanzanite is exclusive to Tanzania, particularly the Merelani Hills where it was first found. This makes each piece of tanzanite jewelry not just beautiful but also incredibly special.

Choosing tanzanite for an engagement ring or pendant means selecting something truly one-of-a-kind. Its striking color shifts from blue to violet depending on the lighting, thanks to its trichroic nature – making it a favorite among lovers of fine gems.

The International Gem Society (IGS) rates it softer than sapphire but still suitable for daily wear if set thoughtfully, such as in a protective bezel setting which can help preserve its vitreous luster over time.

Blue Zircon

A stunning blue zircon gemstone set against a backdrop of sparkling turquoise waters, photographed with different faces and outfits in a bustling atmosphere.

Moving on from the fascinating world of tanzanite, let’s delve into the wonders of blue zircon. Blue zircon is an intriguing birthstone with a rich history and striking physical properties.

It is often mistaken for cubic zirconia, but it’s important to note that they are entirely different gemstones. Blue zircons are natural gemstones with an intense brilliance and fire, celebrated for their vibrant blue hues.

This stunning birthstone holds myths and legends that tie back to its impressive color and sparkle. Furthermore, blue zircons boast impressive physical properties such as high refractive index and strong dispersion, giving them exceptional brilliance when cut and polished.

Turquoise

A photo of a turquoise jewelry set displayed on a velvet background with various models showcasing different styles.

Turquoise is a gorgeous blue-green gemstone that has been treasured for centuries. It has been used in jewelry and ceremonial objects by various cultures, including the Egyptians and Native Americans.

The mineral’s stunning color varies from sky blue to greenish blue, making it highly sought after in the world of jewelry. Turquoise is also believed to possess healing properties and is often associated with protection and good fortune.

In terms of care, turquoise is relatively soft compared to other gemstones, so it requires gentle handling. Avoid exposing turquoise jewelry to chemicals or heat, as this can cause damage.

Deep Dive into December Birthstones

A photo showing a variety of December birthstones on display, each with different styling and color.

Delve deeper into the symbolism and history of Blue Topaz, the meaning and origin of Tanzanite, the myths and physical properties of Blue Zircon, and learn about care & cleaning for Turquoise.

Each December birthstone has its own unique qualities that make it a special choice for those born in this month.

Blue Topaz: Symbolism and History

A blue topaz gemstone displayed among ancient artifacts in a museum.

Blue topaz holds symbolic significance in various cultures and beliefs, representing love, loyalty, and communication traits. The gemstone is associated with intelligence and serenity too.

In ancient times, blue topaz was believed to have healing powers and was used as an amulet for protection from harm. This stone has been associated with the zodiac sign of Sagittarius.

The history of blue topaz dates back thousands of years when it was revered by civilizations like the Egyptians and Romans. Over time, this gemstone has been linked with beliefs in improved mental clarity, increased focus, and enhanced problem-solving abilities.

Tanzanite: Meaning and Origin

A person admiring a Tanzanite gemstone in various outfits and hairstyles with a bustling atmosphere.

Moving on to the enchanting Tanzanite, this birthstone is renowned for its deep blue-violet hue and exceptional rarity. Discovered in 1967 at the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Tanzanite is found exclusively in a small area of the country.

The stone’s alluring color and limited supply have contributed to its mystique amongst gem enthusiasts worldwide. Reflecting elegance and sophistication, Tanzanite is believed to bring balance and wisdom to those who wear it as well as symbolizing spirituality and insight.

Amidst much fascination about its origins, Tanzanite has captivated many with its unique beginnings.

Blue Zircon: Myths and Physical Properties

A stunning Blue Zircon gemstone stands out in a natural environment.

Blue Zircon has a rich history filled with myths and legends. In ancient times, people believed that wearing blue zircon jewelry would bring wisdom, honor, and prosperity. This stunning gemstone was also thought to provide protection against evil spirits and promote good sleep.

With its brilliant luster and wide array of colors (including vivid blues), it’s no wonder Blue Zircon has been valued for centuries.

The physical properties of Blue Zircon make it a popular choice for jewelry today. It boasts an impressive hardness level on the Mohs scale, making it durable for everyday wear. Its exceptional brilliance and fire add allure to any piece of jewelry, attracting admirers with its radiant sparkle.

Furthermore, this gemstone is found in various cuts and sizes, offering versatility in design possibilities for jewelry makers worldwide.

Turquoise: Care & Cleaning

A photo of sparkling turquoise jewelry in a delicate box surrounded by soft pastel fabric.

Turquoise is a stunning December birthstone but requires proper care and cleaning to maintain its beauty and luster.

  1. Gently wipe the turquoise jewelry with a soft, dry cloth after each wear to remove any body oils or dirt that may have accumulated.
  2. Avoid exposing turquoise to harsh chemicals, perfumes, or lotions that can damage the stone’s delicate surface.
  3. Clean turquoise jewelry using mild soap and lukewarm water, and then pat it dry with a soft cloth.
  4. Store turquoise jewelry separately from other pieces to prevent scratching or damage.
  5. Periodically inspect the settings of your turquoise jewelry to ensure the stone is secure and undamaged.

How to Choose the Right December Birthstone

A woman is examining turquoise stones at a bustling gemstone market.

Consider the color and clarity, understand the physical properties, and learn about the historical significance of finding the perfect December birthstone. To learn more about choosing the right birthstone, read our full blog post!

Consider the Color and Clarity

A close-up photo of a sparkling Blue Topaz gemstone against a vibrant backdrop.

When choosing a December birthstone, take the color and clarity into account. The color of the stone should resonate with personal preference and style. Blue Topaz comes in various shades, from pale sky blue to deep London blue. while Tanzanite is cherished for its trichroic nature which displays different colors from different angles.

Blue Zircon is admired for its saturated blue hues, and Turquoise is loved for its range of greenish-blue shades. Clarity also plays a crucial role in selecting a December birthstone, as it determines the stone’s brilliance and sparkle.

Understanding the significance of color and clarity helps in making an informed choice based on individual preferences. The hue of each December birthstone holds unique symbolism and appeal. Whether it’s the icy purity of Tanzanite or the vibrant allure of Blue Zircon.

Understand the Physical Properties

When selecting a December birthstone, it’s crucial to understand the physical properties of each option. Blue topaz, tanzanite, blue zircon, and turquoise each have unique characteristics that affect their durability and appearance.

Consider factors such as hardness, clarity, and any special care requirements associated with these gemstones before making your decision. Understanding these physical properties will help ensure that you choose the right December birthstone for your jewelry piece.

Learning about the physical properties of December birthstones can guide you in making an informed decision based on both aesthetic appeal and practical considerations. From the brilliance of blue topaz to the delicate beauty of tanzanite and turquoise’s unique matrix patterns. Each stone offers distinctive visual appeal while also requiring specific care measures to maintain its luster over time.

Learn About The Historical Significance

As we delve into the historical significance of December birthstones, it’s fascinating to explore how these gems have been valued and cherished across different cultures throughout history.

Blue topaz has been associated with strength and protection, while tanzanite has a rich connection to Maasai culture in East Africa. Blue zircon’s use as a protective amulet dates back centuries. And turquoise holds deep spiritual significance for Native American tribes.

Understanding the historical context of these birthstones adds depth and meaning to their beauty, making them not just stunning adornments but also powerful symbols of tradition and heritage.

The Role of December Birthstones in Jewelry

A woman wearing a December birthstone pendant poses for a portrait photo in different outfits and hairstyles.

When it comes to December birthstones, play a significant role in jewelry. From various shapes and cuts to carat size considerations, these gemstones make stunning additions to any piece of jewelry.

Whether it’s an engagement ring or dangle earrings, December birthstones add a touch of elegance and personal significance.

Shapes and Cuts

When selecting December birthstone jewelry, it’s essential to first consider the diverse shapes and cuts available. Popular shapes for blue topaz include oval, round, and pear-shaped cuts.

Tanzanite is often seen in cushion or oval shapes with brilliant faceting to enhance its sparkle. Blue zircon can be found in traditional round or unique trillion cuts, while turquoise is commonly shaped into cabochons to showcase its natural veining and color variations.

Jewelry featuring these December birthstones can be crafted with classic cuts like the princess cut or more intricate designs such as trillions and marquise cuts. The choice of shape and cut plays a crucial role in enhancing the beauty of these stunning gemstones. Making each piece unique and visually appealing.

Carat Size Considerations

Generally, when choosing a December birthstone, consider the carat size as it directly impacts the stone’s appearance and value. Thus, the larger the carat size, the more noticeable and impactful the gem will be in jewelry pieces.

For those looking to make a statement or create a focal point in their jewelry. Opting for larger carat sizes is advisable to achieve that desired effect.

It’s important to note that larger carat sizes can also come with higher price tags, so balancing size with budget is vital. Understanding how different carat sizes affect visual impact and cost can help individuals certainly make informed decisions when selecting their December birthstone.

Care and Maintenance of December Birthstone Jewelry

A person is seen gently cleaning their December birthstone jewelry with mild soap and water in a bustling atmosphere.

When it comes to caring for your December birthstone jewelry, it’s important to significantly follow specific maintenance tips. From cleaning your Tanzanite jewelry with mild soap and water to understanding the physical properties of Blue Topaz and Zircon. Proper care will ensure the longevity of your precious stones accordingly.

Cleaning Your Tanzanite Jewelry

To keep your Tanzanite jewelry sparkling, follow these easy cleaning steps:

  1. Gently wipe the tanzanite gemstone with a soft, lint-free cloth to remove any surface dirt or oils.
  2. Use a mild soap and warm water solution to soak the jewelry for a few minutes, then gently scrub the tanzanite with a soft-bristled brush.
  3. Rinse the jewelry thoroughly under warm running water to ensure all soap residue is removed.
  4. Pat the jewelry dry with a clean, soft cloth, making sure to carefully dry it around the tanzanite setting.
  5. Store your clean tanzanite jewelry in a fabric-lined jewelry box or pouch to prevent scratches and damage.

Caring for Blue Topaz and Zircon

When it comes to caring for blue topaz and zircon, there are a few important considerations to keep in mind. Proper maintenance will ensure that your jewelry retains its luster and beauty for years to come. Here are some essential tips for caring for your blue topaz and zircon jewelry:

  1. Cleaning: Use a soft brush and mild soap to gently clean the surface of your blue topaz and zircon jewelry. Avoid harsh chemicals and abrasive materials that can scratch or damage the gemstones.
  2. Storage: Store your blue topaz and zircon jewelry separately from other pieces to prevent scratches. Consider using individual pouches or compartments in a jewelry box to keep them safe.
  3. Avoid exposure: Protect your blue topaz and zircon jewelry from prolonged exposure to sunlight, extreme temperatures, and household chemicals as these can cause discoloration or damage.
  4. Professional cleaning: Periodically have your blue topaz and zircon jewelry professionally cleaned by a trusted jeweler who understands the specific care requirements for these gemstones.
  5. Regular inspection: Inspect your blue topaz and zircon jewelry regularly for any loose stones or signs of wear. Promptly address any issues by seeking professional repairs when necessary.

Turquoise Maintenance Tips

To keep turquoise jewelry looking its best above all, here are some tips to follow:

  1. Avoid direct contact with chemicals such as lotions, perfumes, and hairsprays, as they can cause discoloration.
  2. After wearing, wipe the turquoise gently with a soft, dry cloth to remove any oils or dirt that may have accumulated.
  3. Store turquoise jewelry separately from other pieces to prevent scratching and damage.
  4. Do not expose turquoise to prolonged sunlight or extreme heat, as this can cause the color to fade.
  5. Periodically check the setting for any loose stones and have them tightened by a professional if necessary.

Exploring Other Birthstones: A Quick Look at the January Birthstone

A photo of colorful garnet gemstones arranged on a natural backdrop in a bustling atmosphere.

January’s birthstone is garnet. It comes in a variety of colors, with the most common being red. Garnets also come in green, orange, and pink hues. This gemstone also symbolizes trust and friendship.

Garnets are relatively durable, scoring 6.5 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale of hardness. In terms of jewelry trends, garnets are also often fashioned into classic cuts like rounds and ovals but can also be found in unique shapes like hearts and trillions.

When considering January birthstones for jewelry or gifts, keep in mind that they are not only attractive but also hold personal significance for those born in this month.

Conclusion

A woman wearing a stunning tanzanite necklace posing in festive holiday decorations.

In conclusion, December birthstones offer a range of enchanting options for those born in this festive month. Blue topaz, tanzanite, blue zircon, and turquoise each hold unique significance and beauty.

All in all, whether you’re choosing a birthstone for yourself or a loved one. The rich symbolism and characteristics of these stones make them a meaningful and stunning choice. Consider exploring the history, meanings, and care tips to find the perfect December birthstone that resonates with you or your recipient’s personality and style.

Celebrate December birthdays with an exquisite gemstone that reflects the spirit of the season.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are the December birthstones?

December has several birthstones including turquoise, zircon, and tanzanite. These gems come in various shades of blue and capture the spirit of winter.

2. Can you tell me about turquoise’s value in Native American culture?

In Native American culture, especially among Navajo and Pueblo peoples like the Zuni tribe, turquoise is highly treasured as an amulet or talisman and often used in beautiful jewelry like sterling silver brooches.

3. Why do some December stones have different colors?

While most December stones like lapis lazuli and London blue topaz show off brilliant shades of blue, others such as colorless zircon can mimic diamonds because they can be found with a diamond simulant quality known as “zirconium oxide.”

4. Are there any special cuts for December birthstones?

Yes! Gemologists might cut these precious stones into various shapes such as emerald cuts for aquamarines or round brilliant cuts typical for transparent gems to enhance their beauty.

5. How important is gemstone identification for December birthstones?

Proper gemstone identification ensures that you know whether your stone is a semi-precious silicate mineral like lapis lazuli or one of the finest gems such as alexandrite or rare tanzanites.

6. Besides being just a birthstone, what else makes turquoise special?

Turquoise holds significant worth beyond being a birthstone. It is deeply embedded in history from ancient gods to modern-day engagement rings and wedding bands due to its unique ultramarine pigments and versatile use in filigree jewels.

Diamond Date Night

Choose your music, pour a drink, enjoy some superb hors d’oeuvres and explore the most romantic way to buy a diamond. Learn how you can schedule a Diamond Date Night.

About the Author

Matt O'Desky

I grew up in Chicago where we always had a “Diamond District” – an area of town with a slew of buildings filled with dozens of private jewelry wholesalers and upstairs diamond dealers.

When I moved to Texas, and realized there were few if any private jewelers, and I knew what I should do: Deliver a far more personalized experience, in a far more relaxed and enjoyable environment than any department store jeweler could possibly offer.

And show my clients obviously better diamonds at clearly better prices.

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