In this blog article we are focussing on the Tourmaline stone. They are an alternative birthstone for October, together with the Opal stone, and traditionally a 8th wedding anniversary gift. This gemstone comes in a wide variety of shades, including bi-coloured stones and specimens that change colour when viewed from different angles.
They have been appreciated and valued for centuries, even though people may not have known what they were. This is a very colourful gemstone family and it is for sure one of our favourite natural gemstones.
Its name comes from the Sinhalese word ‘tura mali’ meaning ‘stone of mixed colours’, a name that was formally given to many of the colourful stones being first found in Sri Lanka. According to an ancient Egyptian legend, 'Tourmaline', on its long journey up from the centre of the Earth, passed over a rainbow. In doing so, it assumed all the colours of the rainbow. That is also a reason why it is still referred to today, as the 'gemstone of the rainbow'. Modern Greeks refer to this gemstone as ‘watermelon’ since it resembles the green outside of the fruit, turning to red in the inside.
Watermelon tourmaline is green on the outside and pink in the middle.
Surprisingly however, the most common colour found for this stone is black. 95% of all Tourmalines found in nature are the type called ‘schorl’, which are brown or black in colour, and also known as ‘Iron Tourmaline’. These dark stones are not viewed as attractive though, and are rarely used in the gemstone jewellery. It is in the other 5% only that is the most wanted varieties.
The rarest and most expensive Tourmaline stone is the blue and green ‘Paraiba Tourmaline’, first discovered in the state of Paraiba – Brazil, in only 1989. It has a unique glow which has been described as ‘neon’ or ‘electric’. The colour comes from copper, which had not previously been seen in any other of its type, and manganese. Other varieties of this stone have since been found in Mozambique and Nigeria. Because of how rare they are, finer specimens can be worth tens of thousands per carat.
The Watermelon Tourmalines is the most commonly used stone in jewellery due to its beautiful mix of colours. It has unique zones which are a reddish pink in the centre, and an olive green outside. The colours are mostly caused by traces of iron and manganese in their structure. Good samples of Watermelon Tourmalines are highly sought after by collectors, and are usually shaped into an emerald cut, because the longer the cut, the more dramatic the colour change appears.
Tourmaline meaning and healing energies are nearly as variable as their colours. However, there are a few elements that run true through all varieties, which is based on the Aluminium borosilicate component they all contain.
Tourmaline properties have been associated with many positive benefits over the years by crystal healers. It has been said that this stone acts like a detoxifying agent, promoting relaxation of the body and mind. Tourmaline stone is also believed to promote inspiration and happiness, reduce fear, and build self-confidence among its wearers. It is also used to balance yin-yang energies, as it is considered a physical bridge to the spiritual. It is said to clear negative energy or transforms it into good, which then strengthen the body and spirit.
Melissa: Tourmaline long necklace. Check also our Melissa Tourmaline bracelet to make a set.
If you are looking for gift ideas for a loved one, this is probably one of the best you can find. These stones are fascinating, and the colourful and intrinsic markings found on each one of this particular gemstone, make any piece of jewellery luxurious, yet fun.
Check out our range of bespoke Tourmaline jewellery and find genuine high graded gemstone designs that showcase these fabulous natural stones at their best!