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January Birthstone: A Guide To Garnet

What better way to start the new year than with a luxurious piece of garnet jewelry. January’s birthstone, famous for its rich color, has enough style to last the whole year! Read on to learn all about this glorious gemstone.

January birthstone jewelry

What Is The January Birthstone?

Garnet is the gloriously red gemstone that makes up January’s birthstone. Made up of a group of minerals, garnets come in a variety of colors, including the famous red (see more below). While the largest source of garnets today is Africa, the gemstone can also be found in India, Russia, and Central and South America.

The name Garnet has a multi-storied origin. The name can be traced to the Latin word for pomegranate, mirroring the rich red hue of the fruit’s delicious seeds. The name we know today derives from the 14th-century middle English word meaning dark red.

The Symbolism and Meaning of Garnet

The January birthstone is thought to symbolize perseverance, strength, loyalty, and friendship. Many believe that garnets have protective and calming qualities, and can even act as a dream catcher.

But wait, there’s more! It is also thought to bring health, wealth, and even happiness. Some even call it the energizer gemstone because it is believed to balance your energy.

What Color is the January Birthstone?

The Different Shades Of Garnet

While garnets are known for their intense red color, this gemstone actually comes in a variety of shades. From warm oranges to calm blues, and even greens, this gemstone actually has an eclectic color palette. The different colors of garnets can range from intense to opaque, depending on the gemstone’s light transmission.

A Brief History of the January Birthstone

Garnet has been popular for centuries. Dating all the way back to ancient Egypt, where the pharaohs would be entombed with their valuables, including garnet jewelry. People in ancient times are also said to have believed that garnets could restore relationships. Crusaders may have believed the gemstone could help keep them safe, and even guide them to victory.

Some even believe that garnet dates back to biblical times, with the legend that Noah used a garnet lantern to illuminate his ark. Garnets also show up in Greek mythology, where the gemstone is associated with faith and light.

After garnets were discovered in larger quantities around 1500, royal houses across Europe hopped on the garnet bandwagon.

Understanding Garnet’s Sensitivity and Fragility

Moh Scale

Garnets are considered quite durable, rating between 6.5 and 7.5 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness. This makes garnets a great choice for everyday wear, but take care if you are on the clumsier side, you should still avoid being rough with your gemstone.

Practical Tips for Cleaning and Preserving Garnet Jewelry

Make sure to follow the tips below to keep your January birthstone jewelry shining all year long.

  • Fill a bowl with warm water
  • Add gentle dish soap
  • Soak in water
  • Use a soft-bristled brush to remove any debris
  • Wipe off jewelry using a clean, wet cloth
  • Allow to air dry
  • Other options:
    • Use an ultrasonic cleaner as long as your garnet has no fractures
    • NEVER steam clean
  • Store your garnet pieces in soft fabric jewelry boxes or bags

What Are the Other January Birthstones?

In addition to garnet, rose quartz is a birthstone for January. Known for its cotton candy pink color, this secondary birthstone is thought to bring the wearer a sense of contentment and love.

Similar to garnet, usage of rose quartz dates back centuries. It is believed that in ancient Egypt and Rome, women used rose quartz for skin care purposes.

FAQs

Why is Garnet the birthstone for January? 

Just as January marks the beginning of a new year, pomegranate seeds represent birth and renewal. The connection garnets have to pomegranates make it the perfect stone to represent January.

Are there two birthstones for January?

Yes, in addition to garnet, rose quartz is a birthstone for January.

Is January a ruby or garnet birthstone?

The main birthstone for January is garnet. Rubies are the birthstone for July.

Who should not wear red garnet?

While we think everyone should rock this glorious gemstone, some believe that certain zodiac signs (Aries, Taurus, or Leo) should avoid wearing this birthstone.

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Sarah Axelrad

With over 10 years of experience writing and editing on a wide variety of subjects, Sarah is a veteran of the content world. Since joining James Allen, she has focused on all things diamonds and fine jewelry with the goal of educating and empowering consumers.

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Wedding Rings for Women: A Buying Guide

While popping the question, and the engagement ring that goes with it, can get the bulk of the attention, the wedding ring is just as important. A crucial part of the wedding ceremony and a symbol of your everlasting love and commitment, you want to make sure the wedding ring you choose is perfect.

From different delicious metals, sparkling diamonds and gemstones, and numerous styles, choosing the right wedding ring can be overwhelming. That’s where we come in! Read on to find out everything you need to know about getting the perfect wedding ring.

wedding ring buying guide for women

What Is A Wedding Ring?

So what IS a wedding ring? While the engagement ring is what you wear when you are intended to be married, the wedding ring is what you exchange during the ceremony and what you wear once you are officially married.

What Does A Wedding Ring Symbolize?

A wedding ring marks the love between you and your partner and is a symbol to the world of your commitment to each other that you wear and see everyday.

Your wedding ring is emblematic of your wedding vows, a beautiful reminder of the meaningful words you said to your partner on that special day.

The Difference Between A Wedding Ring And a Wedding Band

This one is easy, there isn’t one! Wedding rings and wedding bands are the same things. The terms are used interchangeably and both refer to the ring you exchange during your wedding ceremony to symbolize your commitment to your partner.

Wedding Rings For Women

Simple wedding rings

Many people prefer a simple wedding ring for women, such as a plain gold band style or a dainty wedding ring. This can be due to religious customs, personal style, or simply to match their engagement ring. This classic, clean style is also great if you have smaller hands.

Diamond Wedding Rings

A diamond wedding ring is the perfect way to increase the sparkle of your engagement ring and show off your personal style. Eternity rings are a great way to go if you love endless sparkle!

Just as the name says, eternity rings offer eternal shine through diamonds that go all the way around the band, giving you the ultimate bling from every angle.

If you opted out of an engagement ring or opted for a simpler engagement ring, then a diamond wedding ring is the perfect opportunity to add bling to your symbol of love.

Gemstone Wedding Rings

Gemstones are a great way to add sparkle and shine to your wedding ring while also getting a burst of color. Choose your favorite color, your birthstone, or maybe the stone of the month you got married in; whichever gemstones you choose, these are a great way to showcase your personal style.

Gemstone-Jewery-Trends-For-2023

Simple Engagement And Wedding Ring Combinations

Simply sparkling, if you sport a channel set or pavé engagement ring, a diamond wedding ring will seamlessly and flawlessly add the perfect amount of dazzle.

Prefer a more traditional look? Pair a wonderfully minimalist solitaire with a clean, cool wedding ring like these two, which were simply made for each other…just like you and your love.

No matter which style you prefer, James Allen has the matching set for you. Let us take the guesswork out of it!

Popular Metals Used In Wedding Rings

The choices when it comes to wedding rings for women are available in platinum, yellow gold, white gold, and of course, rose gold.

Platinum

Platinum is popular because it is strong, pure, and rare. It is also hypoallergenic, so it is a great choice for anyone with allergies or skin sensitivities. And while platinum carries a higher price point, it wears well over time, so it is a good investment.

White Gold

If you love the look of platinum but prefer a lower price point, or simply prefer to be adorned in gold, then white gold is the metal for you.

Yellow Gold & Rose Gold

Love gold but want some color in your band? Go for classic yellow gold! Want color but prefer something with a bit more romance? Rose gold is the perfect choice. Not sure if platinum or white gold is for you? Find out here!

Just like engagement rings, metals for wedding rings vary in popularity, and many factors must be considered. Make sure to take the following into consideration when choosing the metal for your wedding ring:

  • Matching to your engagement ring
  • Matching to your partner’s ring
  • Personal style
  • Budget
Wedding-Ring-Metal-Types-2

How to Wear Your Wedding Ring

Many cultures see women wearing their wedding ring on the ring finger, on the left hand. This originated in ancient Greece with the belief that a vein there that leads to the heart is the vein of love. However, in other cultures, women wear the wedding ring on the ring finger on the right hand.

Still, others wear it on either hand, but not on any particular finger. Ultimately, there are no hard and fast rules for this. Where you wear your wedding ring is entirely up to you.

Should You Get Matching Wedding Rings?

Once again, this is entirely personal to you and your partner. You may opt for a more simple, classic wedding ring while your partner may prefer something more alternative and modern. Or perhaps you want a ring that perfectly matches your engagement ring, while your partner wants a style all their own. 

Many couples now also shop for both engagement and wedding rings together. This can allow you to match your wedding rings to your engagement ring and each other. Matching wedding rings can be a beautiful way to symbolize your commitment, but don’t forget this is a ring you will wear every day.

So whether you match it to your partner’s ring, your engagement ring, or showcase your individual style, make sure it is a ring you love.

How To Find Your Wedding Ring Size

Here are a few easy ways you can find your wedding ring size:

  • Professional Jeweler: Visit a reputable jeweler and have them professionally measure your ring size.
  • Ring Sizing Kit: Use a ring sizing kit, available online or in jewelry stores, which provides a range of ring sizers for accurate measurement.
  • Existing Rings: If a ring fits well, place it on a ring sizing chart to determine the size.
  • Finger Measurement: Wrap a strip of paper or string around the intended finger and mark where it overlaps, then measure the length in millimeters.
  • Online Ring Sizing Tools: Many jewelry websites offer online tools to help you measure your ring size accurately at home.
  • Ring Size Chart Conversion: Convert the measured circumference or diameter into a ring size using a ring size conversion chart.

Simply click here to order your free James Allen ring sizer directly to your home. And hey, don’t worry! Even if you still get it wrong, James Allen will resize your ring once for free within one year of your purchase.

How Much Should Your Wedding Ring Cost?

Just like how much you should spend on an engagement ring, the amount you spend on your wedding ring is very personal. If you prefer a classic, plain metal band, then your costs will be lower. However, if your style is a blinged out eternity ring, then you will need to budget a bit more for all those dazzling diamonds.

Whether you choose to start with a classic and move to sparkle for an anniversary, there is no should here. The amount you spend will be related to your budget and style.

FAQs

Who buys the man’s wedding ring? 

Traditionally, the bride buys her groom’s wedding ring, and he buys his bride’s wedding ring. However, more and more couples are splitting these costs and avoiding the whole you buy him and he buys yours. Other couples make this a family affair. Maybe your family will buy your future husband his ring. Like so many things, who pays for the ring is a personal decision.

Can a woman just wear a wedding ring? 

Of course! You can wear whatever you want! And in fact, many women are hopping on this trend. Go for a glorious anniversary or eternity ring to get a wedding ring with all the bling.

Which hand do you wear my wedding ring on? 

Traditionally, many wear their wedding ring on the ring finger on their left hand, the same as their engagement ring. However, some cultures wear the wedding ring on the right hand, separate from the engagement ring. Where you choose to wear your wedding ring is entirely up to you. Just think about it before, so you are sure to get the right size.

Do you still wear your engagement ring after you get married? 

Most people wear their engagement ring together with their wedding ring. This is why so many women match their wedding ring to their engagement ring, even picking them out at the same time to ensure continuity in style. However, this is totally your decision. If you want to save your engagement ring for only special occasions, then you do you boo!

Conclusion

Buying a wedding ring can be a daunting process. Luckily James Allen is here to take the guesswork out of it. Whatever your style and budget, we have the ring for you! Choose your metal, choose your look, check your size, and rock a ring that shines as bright as you!

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Sarah Axelrad

With over 10 years of experience writing and editing on a wide variety of subjects, Sarah is a veteran of the content world. Since joining James Allen, she has focused on all things diamonds and fine jewelry with the goal of educating and empowering consumers.

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Blog Minimalist Jewelry A Beginners Guide Cover

Minimalist Jewelry: A Beginner’s Guide

Discover the jewelry minimalists are going crazy for to wear alone, stacked, or layered with other minimalist jewelry pieces that will remain trendy now and for years to come.

Minimalist Jewelry

Whether you like plain and simple jewelry designs or you want to add a more minimalist edge to your style, we’re here to help you on your minimalist style journey.

Minimalist jewelry is and always will be a fashionable option for just about any event or occasion. We’ve looked at common mistakes made when trying to pull off this look and how we can make it easier for you to rock minimalist jewelry and still look effortlessly stunning. 

Here are our top tips to look out for when purchasing, pairing, and wearing minimalist jewelry like a pro.

What Is Minimalist Jewelry?

Essentially, minimalist jewelry is accessories with simple and unfussy designs that work subtly into your look. Simple fashion is the name of the game for people looking to buy and wear minimalist jewelry, but that’s not to say your overall aesthetic won’t make a statement. 

Often subtle jewelry can tie a great outfit together and give it the touch of sparkle it’s missing. Or it can add a hint of your personality to whatever you wear, night or day! 

Can I Wear Multiple Pieces of Minimalist Jewelry?

Minimalist jewelry doesn’t necessarily mean you only need one piece of jewelry. Definitely play around with different pieces that you can stack, layer, or wear on different parts of your body. 

Whether you like layering or stacking your jewelry, you can style your go-to minimalist designs in a way that doesn’t give off a cluttered look. 

However, don’t feel as though you need to wear multiple pieces of minimalist jewelry. A simple necklace, bracelet, and ring design can look incredible without the need to add more.

Does The Minimalist Jewelry Need To Be The Same Metal?

Playing around with different metal colors is your prerogative, and no one should say otherwise. 

You can mix and match your minimalist jewelry to your heart’s content, but do keep in mind that when you pair the pieces of the same metal color, it really does make a statement. What you want to avoid is over cluttering your look with too many different colors. So we suggest you stick with two metal colors max. 

Most people with warmer skin tones can pull off a darker yellow and rose gold metal combination. Whereas those with cooler skin tones look great in white metals like silver, white gold, and platinum. The key is to play around and see which metals look best on you. This can also vary for your day or night looks. 

Related Post: How To Choose The Right Jewelry For Your Skin Tone

Minimalist Jewelry: The Classics

When it comes to minimalist jewelry, invest in the essentials. Add a few classic pieces to your jewelry box for a chic minimalist style that works every time. Timeless jewelry pieces will always pass the latest trends. Whether it’s a pair of gold hoops or a cuff bracelet, you can wear these items to give your everyday look a contemporary spin. 

Classic or vintage jewelry can be bought for absolutely any occasion and will stand the test of time. They also make for the best gifts and are perfect for both casual and formal environments.

Blog-Minimalist-Jewelry-A-Beginners-Guide_cover

Minimalist Jewelry To Make A Bold Statement

The key to a minimalist style is an outfit that has one showstopping jewelry piece. Whether it be a sleek pair of thick huggie hoops or a chunky signet ring, a single jewel can keep you looking fashion-forward. Nothing screams minimalist chic more than one impactful piece of jewelry to keep all eyes on you.   

You’d do your best to get that big, bold look with one piece of jewelry by investing in solid gold pieces. Modern minimalist jewelry trends all point to yellow gold jewelry, a warm and versatile metal that looks good on any skin tone. 

Minimalist Jewelry: Simple, Yet Sparkling

Just because you’re going with minimalist jewelry doesn’t mean you need to lose your shine. Diamond jewelry is still the perfect choice for a polished and sparkling aesthetic, like diamond pendants or diamond tennis bracelets. Our only advice here will be to stick to one kind of metal if you wear more than one piece of diamond jewelry. 

If you’re looking for just a hint of sparkle, a modest bezel set or dome ring could be the perfect asset to your minimalist collection. 

How To Shop For The Perfect Oval Diamond Engagement Ring 

Keep Your Jewelry Box Light

Minimalist jewelry can serve you time and time again. Stick to a few flexible pieces you might wear for informal and formal occasions with any type of outfit. Here, we suggest starting with precious metals. These metals often appear as clean, sleek lines with smooth satin surfaces.

This type of jewelry is a staple of simple elegance and is easy to throw on at a minute’s notice. Take a pair of simple stackable rings or a medallion necklace, for example; put them on, and you’ve gone from casual to polished in an instant.

Plus, it’s a long-term investment in quality and style you’ll get to cherish and wear any time you want.

Related post: Minimalist Jewelry: Back To Basics

Spice Up Your Minimalist Jewelry With Gemstones

A pop of color may be just what the fashionistas ordered. If your outfit of choice happens to be a simple white, beige or black ensemble, gemstone jewelry will serve as your ideal accessory. 

What we love about gemstones is their ability to look fabulous in whichever fine jewelry piece you prefer. Their color will give you the extra finesse your outfit needs to make a statement; your options are endless, from gemstone rings to a chic gemstone necklace or bracelet. 

As a minimalist rule, it’s less complicated to stick to your favorite type of gemstone and avoid unnecessary mixing and matching.

Blue Gemstone Ring

Avoid Complicated Designs

Minimalist jewelry can be fun and explorative, from asymmetric lines for abstract simplicity or perfectly symmetrical pieces that give you a sleek look. Try to avoid designs that are too intricate and move towards more opulent jewelry with clean cuts and smooth surfaces.

You don’t want to take away from the curated minimalism that comes with uncomplicated jewelry designs.

Buying A Piece of Minimalist Jewelry For Someone Special

If you’re thinking about getting a piece of jewelry for someone special, but you want it to be affordable and not over the top, minimalist jewelry is the way to go! 

We all like adding accessories to our jewelry boxes that we know we can wear every day no matter the occasion, so trust us when we say your gift will be appreciated and worn often!
Go for a simple stackable birthstone ring, a plain medallion necklace, a simple pair of hoop earrings, or a cuff bracelet to let them know you care and that you have great taste in jewelry.

FAQs

What Is Minimalist Jewelry?

Minimalist jewelry is simple, clean, and unembellished, focusing on basic designs and materials.

How Do I Style Minimalist Jewelry?

Wear one piece for a touch of elegance, or layer multiple pieces for a modern look that complements your style.

What Materials Are Common In Minimalist Jewelry?

Common materials include sterling silver, gold, rose gold, and gemstones like diamonds and pearls.

Is Minimalist Jewelry Suitable For Special Occasions?

Yes, it’s versatile. Delicate pieces can add elegance to formal events when chosen thoughtfully.

Closing Thoughts

We at JamesAllen.com hope you enjoyed this article as much as we loved writing it. Our archives are brimming with fun and helpful tips about fine jewelry. Learn how to match your personality and style with the jewelry of your dreams. You can find our selection of reads below. 

If you have any questions about our products or want to design your own earrings or pendants, contact one of our 24/7 customer service agents.

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Jessica Thomas

Jessica is a seasoned content writer with four years of experience and a qualified gemologist. She enjoys educating new shoppers on the best practices for buying jewelry.

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Cover Image Amethyst Jewelry Amethyst February Birthstone Blog

The February Birthstone: Amazing Amethyst

Don royal purple with the February birthstone: amethyst! This unusually-hued gemstone will make any wearer into an instant queen.

 

February Birthstone

Amethyst jewelry is the go-to purchase for February birthdays and Valentine’s gifts. The February birthstone is stunning yet graceful, rewarding those bold enough to wear it with plenty of turned heads!

What is the Birthstone for February?

It’s amethyst! Amethyst is a violet type of quartz, the crystalline mineral silicon dioxide. This is a great jewelry gemstone, as it’s not only gorgeous, but also sufficiently resilient to withstand day-to-day wear. It rates a 7 on the Mohs Scale of Hardness, indicating that it’s pretty difficult to scratch. Amethyst is a jewel that’s ready to keep up with your active lifestyle.

The History of Amethyst

Amethyst isn’t only good in the form of birthstone jewelry. This gemstone takes its name from the ancient Greek belief that it could protect its bearer from poison and drunkenness: a- (not) + methysko (intoxicating). Not only was amethyst worn as talismanic jewelry, but it was also carved into cups to prevent over-tipsiness.

With all due respect to the ancient Greeks, we disagree. Amethyst is positively intoxicating!

Amethyst February Birthstone

How to Style Amethyst

Purple can be a tricky color to style, and a trickier one to style well. When it comes to amethyst, it looks best when paired with certain colors of clothes.

  • similar shades of purple
  • neutral shades: black, white, gray, silver or gold.

As for who can wear amethyst, everyone’s in luck. Amethystian purple hedges both cool and warm tones, and as such it complements any complexion. Jewelry-wearers of the world, rejoice! This is your sign to rock amethyst jewelry.

Who Wears Amethyst?

Perhaps because of its royal connotations, but most certainly because of its beauty, amethyst is a solid favorite among red carpet celebrities. And as you can see, stars like Diane Kruger and Zoe Saldana are also fans of pairing their jewels with purple fabrics. 

Diane Kruger- Amethyst February Birthstone
Zoe Saldana - Amethyst February Birthstone

The Value of Amethyst Birthstone

Amethyst is valued primarily by the quality of its color rather than its carat weight. Meaning that you can score a heftily-sized gemstone for a much more reasonable price than other jewels. 

Amethyst Stone Meaning

The February gemstone is also rife with meaning. In the past, Tibetan Buddhist monks considered it holy and carved prayer beads from it and English royalty reserved it for themselves due to its sacred properties. And amethyst became the February birthstone thanks to the legendary St. Valentine, who donned an amethyst ring as he performed illicit marriages; this eventually led to the modern-day practice of gifting amethyst jewelry on Valentine’s Day. Modern-day lore claims that it is a powerful protective stone with cognitive and emotional stimulating properties.

Amethyst Rings

Deck your digits with a purple ring or two (or three), so you can punctuate every gesture with lavender. Choose a small stone for everyday wearing and stacking, or pump up the purple and go crazy with an oversized amethyst cocktail ring.

Petite Amethyst
Birthstone Ring

“Perfect in every way. I chose this for my 9 year old daughter, and she was beyond bedazzled with it. The metal and the gemstone are beautiful.”
– Johanna T.

Doubled Amethyst
and Diamond Ring

“A beautifully designed ring! The few diamonds on the ring next to the amethyst are a subtle compliment overall.”
-Marcin B.

Amethyst Earrings

Frame your face with two delicate purple gemstones. Amethyst earrings look particularly lovely on wearers with blue and brown eyes. And of course, they’re absolutely plum-colored stunning on those with violet-colored irises!

Cultured Pearl
and Amethyst Earrings

“The earrings were well made and delicate. My wife loved it as a birthday gift.”
– Felipe S.

Oval-Cut Amethyst
Stud Earrings

“This was a gift for my daughter-in-law and she was very happy.”
– Josette B.

Amethyst Necklaces

A single amethyst worn around the neck is known to protect its wearer from boring jewelry choices. Flaunt your unique personal style with a unique purple gemstone, set in precious metal.

Amethyst Birthstone
Necklace

“The birthstone necklace was stunning; the perfect birthday gift for my wife; she was mesmerized by it.” – Jonathan O.

Victorian Diamond
and Amethyst Necklace

“I bought this to celebrate the birth of our daughter and my wife loves it!” -Jason K.

The February Birthstone: Purple Reign

If you’re a February baby, or you’re looking for the perfect February gift, you are in luck! Amethyst is strong, affordable, and complements every complexion. Take your pick of any of the amethyst fan favorites listed above. 

January Garnets * February Amethysts * March Aquamarines * April Diamonds * May Emeralds * June Pearls * July Rubies * August Peridots * September Sapphires * October Opal * November Citrines * December Blue Topaz.

Read up on more birthstone beauties

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Rachel Hoar

Rachel is an unabashed linguistics fanatic who can identify the ancient Greek root of any word. She promises not to spray you with Windex.

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