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October Birthstone Guide


natural white opal gemstone image
white opal gemstone image

Oval Opal Gemstone

Heart Opal Gemstone

Pronunciation: Opal = OH-PULL

95% of the world’s Opals come from Australia! Lightening Ridge, Coober Pedy, Andamooka and Mintabe are four of the most prominent mining areas in Australia that produce this massive percentage. Opals come in a huge array of colors...it is the nature of this gemstone to produce different colors, because of its iridescent properties. The most common type of precious Opal, the White Opal, gets its name because of its translucent properties, which exist because this jewel is comprised of water! This particular jewel is found over and over as Opal rings and Opal bracelets. Very popular! Opal is the anniversary gemstone for the 14th year of marriage. Commonly known as the October birthstone, Opals are supposed to further enhance the positive characteristics for people born under the zodiac sign of Cancer. The Black Opal is recommended to those born under Scorpio, although an Opal necklace of any color will look terrific on any zodiac woman!

natural and genuine oval cut australian opal gemstone image

natural orange pear cut fire opal gemstone image

blue green oval doublet opal gemstone image

Oval Australian Opal

Pear Cut Fire Opal Gemstone

Oval Doublet Opal

Many Types of Opal Gemstones

Black Opals are the most valuable because of their unique dense background and contrasting vibrant colors. White Opals, commonly referred to as jelly or water opals are the most common found in opal jewelry. Doublet and triplet opals are unique in color and qualities. All opals are unique one of kind gemstones. If you crave more information about Opal gemstone types, mining, sources and history you can visit our opal gemstone jewelry page. Black Opals, Light Opals, Common Opals, Doublet Opals and Triplet Opals are all explained in detail.

Opal Gemstone Variations

History/Lore of Opal Gemstone

The name Opal evolved from Greek "Opallus" which means: to see a change in color. Early Greeks believed that Opals held the powers of foresight and prophecy. Some people believe that the Opal has therapeutic properties that rejuvenate their spirit and invigorate their mind. Today in Scandinavia, women still wear Opal hair bands to ward off the onset of gray in their hair, and to maintain their lustrous blonde locks. So take heed: get some Opal earrings, or an Opal necklace...Opal jewelry that will keep close to your hair.


The Opal is an amorphous form of silica, chemically similar to quartz , but containing 3% to 21% water within the mineral structure. Opals that are gem grade are usually 6% to 10% water content. On the Mohs scale, Sapphires are rated at a 5.5 for hardness. This is soft. (The Mohs scale of mineral hardness was devised by German mineralogist Frederich Mohs in 1812. He selected ten minerals because they were common or readily available and rated them. The scale is not linear, but arbitrary.)

Opal Gemstone Care and Cleaning

The best way to clean Opals is with soapy water. Opals are very heat sensitive, so room temperature water is best. Do not use steam cleaners or sonic cleaners, as they will damage your Opal jewelry.

Opal Gemstone Fame

Opals nearly killed off!? Queen Victoria intervened in the destruction of the 19th century Opal market when the famous writer, Sir Walter Scott, created a superstitious rumor that Opals were bad luck for people who were not born in the month of October. In one of the novels he wrote, the heroine had an Opal that burned fiery red when she was angry, and then it turned ash-gray when she died. Queen Victoria dispelled the curse by giving out Opal Jewelry as gifts at a royal wedding!

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