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January Birthstone Spotlight: Garnet

January Birthstone Spotlight: Garnet

Posted by Lianna Mills and Craig Roberts on Jan 21st 2021

We're kicking off the year with a feature on January's birthstone, garnet. Though it is widely known as a deep red gemstone, garnet can occur in several different colors! Let's take a closer look at this versatile gemstone.

Orange Garnet Pendant

Garnet History and Lore

In ancient Rome, garnets were used in signet rings that served as wax seal stamps.

Garnets were highly prized gemstones in ancient Egypt, and many pharaohs were buried with garnet jewelry.

Historically, when searching for potential diamond finds in South Africa, finding garnets were regarded as a strong indicator of diamonds nearby.

Victorian Garnet and Pearl Ring

Garnet Characteristics

Garnets form in metamorphic rocks as a result of extreme heat and/or pressure. Garnet can occur in a variety of different colors: deep red, green, orange, purple reds, color change, etc. Green garnet, or tsavorite, occurs in nature more rarely than red garnets. Russian demantoid is an exceedingly rare species of garnet. It has a vibrant green color and often displays fibrous, blonde-colored inclusions called "horse tail" inclusions. Rhodolite was discovered in North Carolina. It is a garnet with purple-red hues, and it was named after the rhododendron flowers that are native to the mountain area. Blueish garnet is also a rare find. Its body color can change from a purplish-pink color to violet, depending on the lighting. Garnet has a hardness of 6.5 - 7.5 on the Mohs Scale, making it suitable for a ring stone. 

Solitaire Rhodolite Ring

Garnet Information

Hardness6.5 - 7.5
ColorAll colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, pink, colorless
TreatmentNone
Top Countries of OriginBrazil, India, Kenya, Madagascar, Russia, Sri Lanka, Tanzania

Tsavorite and Diamond Ring

Garnet Care

Garnet jewelry should be worn with care to avoid scratching the stone. Mild dish soap and a soft brush are recommended for cleaning garnet jewelry. Jewelry with this gemstone should not be left in an ultrasonic cleaner for an extended period. 

Shop our garnet jewelry online.