June Birthstones: Pearl and Alexandrite
Folks born in the month of June are quite fortunate. Not only is June the month that brings us perfect weather – it is also represented by two fascinating gemstones. Each of these stone is completely different from the other — and each is beautiful sight to behold.
Pearl is the primary birthstone for June. A wonderfully organic gemstone – created for us – by creatures of the sea. A pearl is formed when an irritant – such as a piece of sand or small parasite – enters a mollusk’s (oyster, clam or mussel) shell. The mollusk then begins secreting substance called “nacre” to trap the irritant. After many years, a pearl is then formed.
Finding a natural pearl can be quite rare – so people started inserting irritants into the shells of mollusks. Then – after a few years – they harvest the pearls. These are referred to as cultured pearls and they make up a large percentage of the pearls on the market today.
Alexandrite is an alternate birthstone for the month of June. It was discovered in 1834 and named after Russian tsar Alexander II. It has a very interesting characteristic as well – it is a color changing gemstone. It was first identified as an emerald, because it was discovered outside an emerald mine. In daylight, it can appear green or bluish green — but in incandescent light, it takes on a red or purplish red color.
It is an extremely rare stone because it requires very specific geological conditions to form. The more distinct the color change — the more rare and valuable the stone. Most of the alexandrite you see on the market today is synthetic.
How would you wear your pearl or alexandrite jewelry? Leave your feedback in the comments section!