July Birthstone: All You Need To Know About Rubies
Known for their vivid red hue, rubies have been worn in jewelry designs for centuries. The sparkling and eye-catching stones were treasured by the likes of ancient Indian and Chinese and medieval Europeans—and all the way through to the present day, these iconic gems have a place as one of the world’s most valuable jewels.
The Meaning of Rubies
The most distinct feature of a ruby is its bright red shade, and this vibrant color also inspired its meaning. Because red is thought to be the color of love and passion—and is also the color of the heart—rubies have come to represent those two emotions. As rubies are also the color of blood, they are thought to symbolize life itself and promote energy, good fortune, and healing.
Rubies were first discovered in Myanmar. Over the years, this area became a region known for the beauty, size, and quantity of its glowing rubies. Nearby Vietnam is also known for its ruby production, along with Thailand and Cambodia. Rubies are also found outside of Asia in places like Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, and Sri Lanka.
Qualities of Rubies
Rubies are known for their red color, which is a result of chromium in the stone. The exact red shade, however, can range from a bright red to a dark, deep hue with tints of either blue-purple or red-orange. The most sought-after rubies, however, are a saturated deep red with a blue tint—this color is known as “pigeon’s blood” and rubies of this color usually originate in Myanmar.
While rubies are incredibly valuable, they are also durable. Second only to diamonds in hardness, rubies rank at a 9 on the Mohs hardness scale. Though they are hard, they are not invincible—rubies have a tendency to chip or crack, so they should still be handled with care.
The 4 Cs of Rubies
Cut: Rubies are cut into many different shapes. Like with all gemstones, the size and shape of the rough stone often determine which cut is best. Rubies are often found in round, oval, and cushion-cut shapes, making them a wonderful option for rings or pendants. Rubies can also be found in emerald-cut, pear, or marquise shapes, though these are rarer because this cut requires a larger carat weight.
Clarity: Almost every ruby has some inclusions. The number and size of the inclusions often impact the value of the stone. Similarly to diamonds, the more inclusions a ruby has, the less brightness and brilliance. Rubies often have inclusions called “needles” that are slender imperfections in the stone. Occasionally, these needles can intersect and create a star-like effect, giving the stone a unique look in the light.
Color: Like with other colored gemstones, the color of a ruby has the strongest impact on its value. The stone must have a vibrant, true red shade to be considered a ruby. Gems that are too light can be instead classified as pink sapphires, while those that are dark and muddy lose their value. Though the color of rubies is often a personal preference, the most valuable shade is the deep, “pigeon’s blood” color that is incredibly sought-after.
Carat: Carat, like with all other gemstones, refers to the weight of the stone. As with most stones, the larger the ruby, the more valuable it is. Because rubies are very rare, their price increases substantially as carat weight goes up.
A ruby’s distinctive hue makes it the perfect gemstone for jewelry. Use the stone as a brilliant accent piece for special occasions, or wear them every day to infuse a pop of color into your ensemble. No matter how you choose to wear your ruby jewelry, find a piece that perfectly represents you and your personal style at Finer Jewelry.
Finer Custom Jewelry is disrupting the status quo in the fine jewelry space. With over 30 years of combined experience, they are moving away from the mass production and commission-based structure of traditional jewelry stores and instead personalizing the process. Their clients are their top priority. No matter if you’re searching for the perfect ruby jewelry to give a loved one or want to design a custom creation for yourself, you can find it at Finer Custom Jewelry.