A Helpful Guide to Choosing an Alternative Birthstone

| 5 min read

Birthstones are some of the world's most personal, meaningful and precious stones. They are what most gemstone and jewellery collections are built on, and many people gravitate towards them due to their personal connections.

Everyone has a gemstone that represents the month in which they were born. This makes birthstones ideal stones to start with when building a gemstone or jewellery collection, and they also make for meaningful gifts for family and friends.

Over time, multiple lists of traditional, modern and alternative birthstones have been created – but how did they come about in the first place?

THE BREASTPLATE OF AARON & THE BIRTHSTONES WE KNOW TODAY

Although gemstones have been around for much longer than humans, it wasn't until recently that the current birthstone list came to fruition. Historically, the significance of birthstones was thought to have started with the Breastplate of Aaron, a plate worn by the High Priest of the Israelites that contained 12 different gemstones.

Birthstone necklaces

But, as there was never a definitive list of these stones and different countries had their own traditions, it was only in the 20th century that it was decided what these 12 gemstones should be. In 1912, the American National Jeweller's Association compiled a new list which is the one that most of us know today:

JanuaryGarnet

FebruaryAmethyst

MarchAquamarine

AprilDiamond

MayEmerald

JunePearl & Moonstone

JulyRuby & Onyx

AugustPeridot & Spinel

SeptemberSapphire

OctoberOpal & Tourmaline

NovemberTopaz & Citrine

DecemberTanzanite, Zircon & Turquoise

Some people love and cherish their birthstone, but if the stone that represents your birth month isn't one you prefer, don't worry! You have a choice, because there are a whole host of alternative birthstones out there that represent other areas of life, such as the day of the week you were born, your star sign or your favourite season.

So, if your traditional birthstone isn't for you, explore the other options available to you with our alternative birthstone lists!

ALTERNATIVE BIRTHSTONES - ASTRAL STONES

Amethyst Jewellery

Zodiac stones are often called Astral stones because they relate to the 12 astrological signs. As your star sign is also determined by the time you were born, some people's birthstones and zodiac stones may be the same. But, as zodiac signs span more than one month, your zodiac stone may differ.

Aquarius (January 21 – February 18) - Garnet

Pisces (February 19 – March 20) - Amethyst

Aries (March 21 – April 20) - Bloodstone

Taurus (April 21 – May 20) - Sapphire

Gemini (May 21 – June 21) - Agate

Cancer (June 22 – July 22) - Emerald

Leo (July 23 – August 23) - Onyx

Virgo (August 24 – September 22) - Carnelian

Libra (September 23 – October 23) - Chrysolite

Scorpio (October 24 – November 22) - Beryl

Sagittarius (November 23 – December 22) - Topaz

Capricorn (December 23 – January 20) - Ruby

ALTERNATIVE BIRTHSTONES – DAYS OF THE WEEK

Birthstone Rings

If the gemstone for the month you were born doesn't appeal to you, it might be helpful to explore the gemstones for each day of the week – each day even offers you a choice!

Monday – Pearl or Moonstone

Tuesday – Ruby, Emerald or Star Sapphire

Wednesday – Amethyst or Star Ruby

Thursday – Sapphire or Tiger's Eye

Friday – Emerald or Alexandrite

Saturday – Diamond, Turquoise or Labradorite

Sunday – Topaz or Sunstone

ALTERNATIVE BIRTHSTONES – HOURS OF THE DAY

Birthstone Jewellery

It's widely believed that the date and time you were born can say a lot about you, so it's only fitting that there is a gemstone assigned to the hour of the day that you came into the world.

The following gemstones are associated with each of the 24 hours in a day, and are wholly different from the traditional birthstone list.

1amSmokey Quartz | 1pm – Zircon

2amHematite | 2pm – Emerald

3amMalachite | 3pm – Beryl

4amLapis Lazuli | 4pm – Topaz

5am – Turquoise | 5pm – Ruby

6am – Tourmaline | 6pm – Opal

7am – Chrysolite | 7pm – Sardonyx

8am – Amethyst | 8pmChalcedony

9amKunzite | 9pmJade

10am – Sapphire | 10pmJasper

11am – Garnet | 11pm – Lodestone

12am – Diamond | 12pm – Onyx

ALTERNATIVE BIRTHSTONES – SEASON STONES

Birthstone Rings Many people have a favourite time of year, and some feel that a particular season resonates with them.

The alternative birthstone list based on seasons is understandably a lot shorter, but it's perfect for those who love and want to pick from the 'Big Four'.

SEASON STONES

Spring – Emerald

Summer – Ruby

Autumn – Sapphire

Winter – Diamond

STILL CAN'T CHOOSE?

These are just a few of the alternative birthstone lists out there, and the vast number of options can be overwhelming. So, if you don't know how to decide on your next gemstone purchase, try choosing your stone based on:

  • Your favourite colour(s)

  • Their overall beauty

  • The gemstone's intended purpose, such as a durable stone to be worn in jewellery or a stone that can be exposed to light and displayed in your home

  • Their metaphysical properties, and whether you connect to a particular gemstone

Our full collection of gemstone jewellery expands far beyond these alternative birthstone lists, so make sure to explore our range of natural, authentic gemstones to find the perfect stone for you.

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