INNOVATIONS (con’t): COLORED GEMSTONES FOR ENGAGEMENT RINGS OR WEARING THEM JUST BECAUSE YOU LOVE THE WAY THEY LOOK!.

kate-middleton-03-500x375A popular trend in engagement rings (think of the ring that Prince William gave to his bride to be – Kate) are colored gemstones; gorgeous alternatives to the traditional diamond.

Are you interested in a colored gemstone but not sure which is right for you? If you have an active lifestyle, you’re probably going to want a gem that doesn’t scratch easily.  If so, google the ‘Mohs Scale’, a practical way to compare relative hardness of gemstones based on scratch hardness – each mineral can scratch the one below it on the scale, with the hardest, the diamond, as a 10.  Among the hardest stones, next to diamonds, are the Rubies and the Sapphires.

If you plan on wearing your engagement ring and wedding band every day, I would purchase only the hardest stones: diamond, ruby or sapphire.  After that you could chance stones with an 8 hardness on the scale  but I would not wear anything softer for everyday wear.  They are fine for parties and special occasions, or if the stones is set deep within the metal setting where it is difficult to bump it against anything.

I bought a Tanzanite ring on a vacation cruise.. I loved it but the first time I wore it, I chipped the stone’s edge.  I then had to have the stone recut. After that experience, I changed the design of the setting to insert the stone deep into the metal so the metal would protect the Tanzanite from any accidental bump.

You can understand now why diamonds are the preferred stone for engagements as they do not chip and break with everyday wear. However, as an alternative to the diamond,  I would suggest you consider the following gemstones:

STONE

HARDNESS on MOHS SCALE

DIAMOND 10
RUBY 9
SAPPHIRE 9
CHRYSOBERYL CAT’S EYE 8.5
ALEXANDRITE 8.5
TOPAZ 8
EMERALD 7.5  TO  8

*Don’t forget that diamonds now come in colors:  yellow, pink, brown for example.

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