Birthstones for the month of June: June is another month with multiple birthstone choices. Pearls, moonstone, and alexandrite are frequently used for June birthstones.
Pearls made their “debut” in the first century BC. Many ancient civilizations considered pearls as precious gems. According to the National Geographic, a bit of pearl jewelry was found in the sarcophagus of a Persian princess from about 420 B.C. showing that they were worn as adornment.
Although ancients thought pearls were “teardrops from heaven,” pearls are organic gems that grow inside the tissue of living saltwater or freshwater mollusks. The formation process begins when something irritates the mollusk inside its shell. Natural pearls form when the mollusk secretes nacre around the irritant. Typically, a grain of sand serves as an irritant.
Cultured pearls are formed in the same manner when a piece of mantle tissue (common for freshwater cultured pearls) or a mother-of-pearl shell bead (all saltwater) is implanted into a host mollusk. Since thousands of years of pearl fishing have depleted natural pearl beds, cultured pearls are raised in pearl farms.
Pearls have long been associated with purity, humility and innocence. Use a damp soft cloth to clean your pearls after each wearing.
Moonstone is a member of the feldspar group of minerals. The glow of the moonstone is called adularescence. -More- The best moonstones have a blue sheen and a colorless background. Hindu myths claim the gem is made of solidified moonbeams. Moonstone is often associated with love, passion and fertility; it is believed to bring great luck.
During the Art Nouveau era (1890s-1910s), jewelry designers used a lot of moonstone. Moonstone jewelry became popular again in the 1960s. New Age designers of the 1990s included moonstone in their jewelry. The best option for cleaning moonstone is warm, soapy water with a soft brush.
Alexandrite is a variety of chrysoberyl that changes its color in different lighting conditions. Alexandrite should look green to bluish green ( kind a a teal color) in daylight or fluorescent light, and exhibit an intense red to purplish color under incandescent light. The gem was named after Alexander II, who was the heir apparent to the throne. Although it is best to clean this stone in warm, soapy water, ultrasonic and steam cleaners are usually safe.
Here’s a link to an article about these birthstones and those for other months, too.