The Birthstone For January is Garnet

The Birthstone For January is Garnet

The first month of the year, and first in our blog series of birthstones.  January features the Garnet as it's birthstone, read on as we explore the properties and history of the precious gemstone Garnet.
Overall, garnet is a versatile and beautiful stone that can be worn in many different forms of jewellery, and holds a rich history and cultural significance. It's a perfect birthstone for January and makes for a great gift for loved ones born in that month.
9ct gold oval garnet and diamond stud earrings
9ct gold garnet diamond earrings 

Garnets are a group of silicate minerals that have been used since ancient times as gemstones and abrasives. There are many different colours of garnet, including orange, yellow, green, purple and even colourless, but the most common and well-known colour of garnet is deep red, which is why it is often associated with the colour of a January birthstone.

Garnets are also known for their durability and toughness, making them a great choice for everyday wear. They are rated a 7 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness, which means they are suitable for use in rings, bracelets, and other jewellery that is subject to daily wear and tear.

The refractive index of garnet is typically between 1.7 and 1.9, which means that it bends light as it passes through. This property is what gives garnet its characteristic brilliance and fire as a gemstone.

gold vermeil garnet crystal stud earrings
Gold vermeil garnet crystal stud earrings from our Birthstones Collection
The name "garnet" comes from the Latin word "granatum," which means "like a seed," likely in reference to the red colour and round shape of pomegranate seeds.

Garnets have been used for thousands of years for a variety of purposes, including as gems, abrasives, and even as a traditional medicine.   Symbolically, garnet is said to be a symbol of truth, faith, and love. It has been believed to be a stone of protection and is said to bring the wearer good health, wealth, and happiness. It was also used in the middle ages as a protective talisman when travellers embark on a journey.

Red garnets are typically the most valuable, but there are other coloured varieties that are also highly sought after. For example, green garnets, known as "demantoid" garnets, can be more valuable than diamonds of the same size and quality.

 Teardrop garnet stud earrings
Garnets are typically found in metamorphic rocks, as well as in certain types of igneous rocks . Garnets can also be found in some sedimentary rocks, such as sandstone.  It is widely distributed around the world, and can be found in every continent.  However, the most well-known garnet mines are the ones located in New York, USA and India.


Back to blog