Gem Stones G - O

Garnet

With a hardness between 7 and 7.5, Garnet is rated “good” for everyday wear. Avoid exposure to heat and sudden changes in temperature. To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water, or clean in an at-home ultrasonic unit.

The most common garnet is known as a medium to dark red to orange brown. This is the garnet that is associated with January’s birthstone, and is less known as Mozambique Garnet.

A Rhodolite Garnet ranges in color from a medium to dark, raspberry plum color. Tinged by varying shades of purple and pink, the word rhodolite derives from a Greek word meaning “rose” or “rose colored.”

A Spessarite Garnet (sometimes called Mandarine Garnet) has a medium yellow/orange variation complementing citrine or golden topaz. Like other garnets, It is believed by some to alleviate depression and blood-related sickness.

A Tsavorite Garnet ranges from a light to medium yellowish green to a medium dark very slightly yellowish green. Is it named for the Tsavo National Park at the border of Kenya and Tanzania, where it was discovered.

Iolite

With a hardness between 7 and 7.5, Iolite is rated “fair” for everyday wear with care. Avoid exposure to heat, contact with chemicals, and protect from scratches and harsh blows. To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water.

From the Greek word ios, meaning violet, iolite acts as a natural polarizer. The Vikings used it to accurately scan the water on hazy days, just like fishermen use polarized sunglasses today.

Color ranges from a medium light to dark grayish purple, grape color.

Jade

With a hardness between 6 and 7, Jade is rated “fair” for everyday wear with care. Avoid exposure to heat, contact with chemicals, and protect from scratches and harsh blows.

 

To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water, or clean in an at-home ultrasonic unit.

Lapis

Lapis is rated “fair” for everyday wear with care. Avoid exposure to heat, contact with chemicals, and protect from scratches and harsh blows. To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water.

Color ranges from a medium to dark blue with some gold flakes of pyrite.

Mexican Fire Opal

Moissanite

With a hardness of 5 to 6.5 it is important to take care when wearing Mexican Fire Opal. Avoid exposure to heat, contact with chemicals, and protect from scratches and harsh blows. To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water.

Color ranges from a striking dark orange to a brilliant cherry red. It is the national stone of Mexico.

Moissanite was discovered in 1893 by Henri Moissan, a French Scientist. It was discovered in Arizona in a crater that was created by a meteorite. He first believed that what he had discovered was diamonds. Later it was determined the crystals were composed of silicon carbide.

Natural Moissanite is very rare. The majority available today is lab- created, meaning the properties and chemical makeup are all the same it is just created in a lab.

Marcasite

With a hardness of 6 to 6.5, Marcasite is rated “fair” for everyday wear. Avoid exposure to heat, contact with chemicals, and protect from scratches and harsh blows.

 

To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water. Typically the surface will oxidize over time. 

Moonstone

With a hardness of 6-6.5, moonstone is rated “good” for everyday wear. Avoid exposure to heat, contact with chemicals, and protect from scratches and harsh blows.

 

To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water.

Moonstone is a milky, transparent to opaque color with a medium dome.

Morganite

With a hardness of 7.5 to 8, morganite is rated “good’ for everyday wear. Avoid exposure to heat, contact with chemicals, and protect from scratches and harsh blows. To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water.

Colored light to medium light pink, moganite was discovered in Madagascar in the early 1900’s.

Onyx

With a hardness of 6.5 to 7, Onyx is rated “fair” for everyday wear. Avoid exposure to heat, contact with chemicals, and protect from scratches and harsh blows. To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water, or clean in an at-home ultrasonic unit.

Onyx was once thought to enhance confidence and authority and to guard the heart from romantic obsession.

Opal

With a hardness of 5 to 6.5, Opal is rated “fair” for everyday wear. Take care when wearing opal. Avoid exposure to heat, contact with chemicals, and protect from scratches and harsh blows. To clean, gently scrub with a soft toothbrush and a solution of mild dish soap and warm water.

Opal is the birthstone for October and was once thought to include the colors of all precious stones. Opals possess uncanny powers for a variety of cultures, such as a hypnotic talisman or instilling invisibility in powdered form.