Green gemstones symbolise new life, growth, and ambition and with its strong ties to nature, the colour green provides endless possibilities... from bold, enviably green stones to refreshing, minty green gems. Which sparkly stone will you choose?
Colombia, Zambia, Brazil, Zimbabwe, Afghanistan
Bluish green to slightly yellowish green. Top quality is a verdant green. The word emerald is derived from the Ancient Greek 'smaragdos' meaning green.
Emerald belongs to the beryl family. In this family there is another, less expensive, lighter green variety which is simply called green beryl. To distinguish between the two, most gemologists, gem labs and coloured stone dealers call a stone 'green beryl' when the colour is considered "too light" for it to be an emerald.
WHY YOU’LL LOVE EMERALD
The first known mines were in Egypt which date back to 3500BC and Pharaoh Cleopatra was known to have a passion for this rare bold green stone.
Colombian emeralds can include wonderful "three-phase inclusions" which consist of a tiny solid crystal, liquid and a gas bubble.
And - a nice fact for the rock stars among us - since an emerald is less dense than a diamond, a 1 carat emerald will be a larger stone than a 1 carat diamond...
HOW TO WEAR EMERALD
The stone actually has a poor toughness, is brittle and tends to be filled with a ‘garden of inclusions’. These can come in the form of liquid cavities with pyrite crystals and gas bubbles floating within the stone or hollow rain-like tubes, mica plates - creating emerald’s famed “jardin” - and so, emeralds must be treated with care.
For that reason, and given the long shape of its rough version, they are mostly cut into the traditional “emerald cut” whereby the corners are cut off in an octagon shape to protect the stone from chipping too easily. Still, the luscious green colour of emerald makes it a go-to jewel for special occasion pieces like a cocktail ring or dangling earrings.
⭐️ For summer, try an emerald cut jewel set in dazzling earrings, perfect for those glam poolside parties.
⭐️ For winter, let it sparkle in a pendant over (or under!) a sheer black top with blazer and let people stare in envy as the green hue takes them back to a beautiful summer day.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF EMERALD
Emerald is the most famous of the beryl gemstones. Legend has it that emerald was once used as a sort of truth "potion" - it was placed under the tongue and made the person talking reveal the truth. It was also believed to reveal the future and cure diseases like malaria and cholera.
The first known emeralds were mined in Egypt, dating all the way back to at least 330 BC - it is believed that some mines were active since as early as 3500BC! Cleopatra had a famed passion for emerald, using them in all of her royal adornments.
The Incas had also been using emerald in their religious ceremonies and jewellery for about 500 years before the Spanish explorers plundered their land. As the Spanish didn't value gemstones as much as gold and silver at the time, they traded the emeralds to European and Asian royalty (especially Indian royalty) who introduced its majesty to the rest of the world.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ Emerald is the gemstone for twentieth and thirty-fifth wedding anniversaries.
⭐️ Although there are other beautiful green-hued gemstones, emerald is the one that is always associated with the lushest of green landscapes. For example, the Emerald Isle (Ireland) and the Emerald City (Seattle, WA (USA)).
⭐️ Legend believes that emerald was one of the four precious stones that endowed King Solomon with power over all creation, given to him by God.
⭐️ Emerald is believed to relieve eye strain and sooth eye stress. This is why early lapidaries would look at a piece of emerald to relieve their eye strain and weariness after long hours of strenuous work.
(Fun Fact: also when I was in Bangkok studying gemology and looking through loupes or microspes for hours, our teacher would urge us in the break to go outside and... look at the trees and green plants! 🤓).
2. Tsavorite Garnet
Deep sparkling grass green to paler mint green
WHY YOU’LL LOVE TSAVORITE GARNET
Many prefer tsavorite garnets over other green gems because of their fantastic quality and beauty along with their hardness. It is also 200 times rarer in nature than emerald yet is still, generally, less expensive!
HOW TO WEAR TSAVORITE GARNET
Tsavorite's great hardness and brilliance make it one of the world's highest quality rare gemstones. It can be worn in a variety of jewellery pieces. Why not use it to build your dream custom ring?
⭐️ For summer, try pairing a set of sparkly green tsavorite earrings with a deep green sundress for a monochromatic chic look.
⭐️ For winter, perhaps an enviable, deep green tsavorite ring set with black gold to make the colour pop and draw all eyes in.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF TSAVORITE GARNET
Tsavorite was discovered in 1967 by a Scottish gemologist called Campbell Bridges, a consultant for Tiffany’s, whilst he was taking a walk in Tanzania. Apparently, Bridges was charged by a buffalo, and avoided the animal by diving into a gully. While looking around, he noticed some greenish rocks glinting in the sunlight.
Soon after, Bridges and Tiffany & Co introduced tsavorite garnet to the world. The name "tsavorite" comes from the place where it was first discovered: Tsavo National Park in Kenya, on the borders of Kenya and Tanzania. To this day, this area is the only source of tsavorite garnet.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ To some, tsavorite garnet is believed to be the stone of prosperity, bringing good luck in business, success and wealth to the wearer.
⭐️ Garnets are one of the few gemstones that typically do not receive treatments (i.e. they are not ‘enhanced’) in any way, and so their colours are fully natural. And so far, this variety also hasn’t been recreated as a synthetic (man-made) gemstone either. This makes it an incredible wild beauty!
⭐️ Garnet comes in 6 main mineral groups / species -- almandine, andradite, grossular, pyrope, spessartine and uvarovite -- and often they form chemical mixtures between 2 or 3 garnet species. This makes garnet one of the hardest stones to identify and always forms a nice challenge for gemologists… And tsavorite garnet belongs to the grossular family and is the green variety within that group.
Burma (today's Myanmar), Ceylon (today's Sri Lanka), Pakistan, Arizona, China
Peridot is one of the few gemstones that only occurs in one colour - olive yellowish-green. However, the intensity and tint of that colour depends on the iron levels in the crystal structure so the individual gems cut from the crystal can vary from yellow to olive to brownish-green.
WHY YOU’LL LOVE PERIDOT
This enviable gemstone has a soft, soothing hue perfect for anyone who loves being adorned by beautiful calming green stones.
HOW TO WEAR PERIDOT
Getting engaged? Peridot makes a stunning center-stone in an alternative engagement ring. Especially for those born in August who love to show off their birthstone.
⭐️ For summer, pair it with a deep green halter dress and a pair of golden heels.
⭐️ For winter, try a pair of chic metallic trousers to up your colour effect and glisten in green all winter long.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF PERIDOT
Most peridot was developed deep in the earth and brought to the surface by volcanoes. Early records indicate that Egyptians mined peridot on Topazios (today's St. John's Island), an island in the Red Sea. Some believe that Cleopatra's famous collection of emeralds might actually be peridot.
Another famed collection mistaken for emeralds is the 200-carat worth of gems found in the shrine of the Three Holy Kings in Germany's Cologne Cathedral - these jewels are now confirmed to be peridot.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ Constantly associated with light, peridot has even been referred to as the "gem of the sun" by ancient Egyptians. It was also rumoured to protect its wearer from night terrors.
⭐️ Some extraterrestrial peridot comes to earth on meteorites but this is extremely rare and it's highly unlikely that these peridot gems will be found in jewellery retail stores.
⭐️ The name peridot comes from the Arabic word "faridat" which translates to "gem."
4. Mint Tourmaline
Brazil, Mozambique, Nigeria, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka
WHY YOU’LL LOVE MINT TOURMALINE
If you’ve ever dreamed of adding instant polish to any of your outfits, this is your chance to get creative and make your own signature ring. It's the perfect jewel for maximum impact.
HOW TO WEAR MINT TOURMALINE
This glamorous and unique green tourmaline would make a gorgeous engagement ring, especially for green-eyed ladies and redheads. In fact, this fashion-forward colour green can be easily worn by many different women. It also flatters lighter and darker-toned women with blue or darker eyes without any problem. Add a halo of small diamonds for some extra sparkle and be the belle of the ball.
⭐️ For summer, pair with a floral cocktail dress for an enviable, feminine look.
⭐️ For winter, try it with a pair of cool trousers and your black go-to winter jumper. This juicy, glamorous gem will warm up any cold-weather attire.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF TOURMALINE
In the 1500s, somewhere in Brazil, a Spanish conquistador came across a green tourmaline and assumed the vibrant jewel was an emerald.
Brightly coloured Sri Lankan tourmalines were brought to Europe by navigators from the Dutch East India Company in the late 17th century who gave the stone the name 'aschentreckers' meaning 'ash attractors' because it could attract dust and lint when charged with static electricity and so, they used it to clean their pipes after smoking.
This jewel's name comes from the Sinhalese word tourmalli whichs means "mixed gem" - a reflection of the early confusion between tourmaline (which comes in countless colours) and other gems they were mistaken for.
It wasn't until later, in the 1800s, that tourmaline became its own mineral species and also later became known as an American gem thanks to the writings of Tiffany's head gemologist George F. Kunz. He praised the production of tourmaline in the mines of California (where some of the first reports of tourmaline occurred in 1892) and Maine.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ Brazil has been the world's leading source of tourmaline for over 500 years.
⭐️ Green is the most common tourmaline colour. Chrome tourmaline is considered the top green colour with a deep grass green hue but neon mint is something different altogether... an incredibly modern and original colour choice for the fashion-savvy woman.
⭐️ Tourmaline has strong pleochroism meaning when viewed from different angles, it can show different colours or different depths of colour. Because of this, it can sometimes be cut to appear multicoloured.
5. Yellow-Green Chrysoberyl
Sri Lanka, Brazil, Myanmar, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Tanzania
Green, yellowish-green, yellow-green, yellow, pale green, olive-green
WHY YOU’LL LOVE GREEN CHRYSOBERYL
With a crisp colour blend of tangy kiwi and bright lemon, this gem will freshen your mood along with your overall look.
HOW TO WEAR GREEN CHRYSOBERYL
This is a very hard and durable stone that won't scratch easily and displays exceptional brilliance. It's a perfect center stone for a beautiful, alternative engagement ring.
⭐️ For summer, wear it day to night - from bikinis and sun hats to cocktail dresses and heels, this stone will sparkle under sunlight and moonlight.
⭐️ For winter, pair it with other deep greens to add a touch of brightness and lighter colour to your cold weather look.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF GREEN CHRYSOBERYL
Chrysoberyl's first discovery by geologists was in 1789. The fresh yellow-green gem became quite popular in Victorian and Edwardian eras and also in Spanish and Portuguese jewellery in the 18th and 19th centuries. Its popularity declined after that simply because the stone became more and more scarce.
Exquisite gems over one carat are rare, making chrysoberyl one of the most elusive gemstones known today. Chrysoberyl is a beryllium aluminum oxide and its name comes from the Greek words 'chrysos' meaning golden and 'beryllos' which refers to its beryllium content.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ According to lore, chrysoberyl is said to help with making important life decisions bringing the wearer a great clarity, keenness of perception, and more importantly, strength.
⭐️ With its hardness of 8.5, chrysoberyl is the third hardest of the gemstones just behind diamond and corundum (sapphire and ruby). And so, perfect for everyday wear!
⭐️ Alexandrite, a variety of chrysoberyl, is an amazing colour changing gem that appears green in daylight but appears red, mauve or brownish in colour under incandescent lighting (though to go from good green to red is extremely rare!).
Hopefully, you now have an idea of which green jewel is right for you!