Imagine the color where the sky meets the sea on a beautiful sunny day, and you will have found the most precious color of the aquamarine stone. Just like the name suggests, aquamarine stones are associated with the sea. The Egyptian pharaohs have donned this semi-precious gem in pursuit of everlasting youthfulness. Even Roman sailors carried them in their pockets as a talisman to ensure smooth sailing.
A word of warning if you’re shopping for this gem: The sublime blue hues of the aquamarine will have you mesmerized, so be prepared to splurge. The delicate shades are certain to complement any skin tone. Take a little inspiration from nature, and you’ll be dazzling for days.
|Aquamarine Color||Shades of greenish-blue|
|Hardness Scale||7.5 to 8 on Mohs Scale|
|Symbolism||Calm and Tranquility|
What is Aquamarine?
The name aquamarine is derived from the Latin words “aqua” meaning water, and “marina” meaning the sea. The different hues of the sea can be seen in each variant of the aquamarine stone. It’s not difficult to see why many call it “the sea in a stone.”
Aquamarine is a semi-precious stone that rates 7.5 to 8 on the Mohs scale. This scale ranks gems based on their hardness and scratch resistance. While aquamarine gemstones are durable enough to be worn as jewelry, we’d steer clear of all manual labor while wearing this gem to avoid damage.
What does the Aquamarine stone look like?
As with diamonds, gemstones derive their value from the 4 C’s: carat, color, clarity, and cut. This is the global standard for evaluating and grading the value of a gemstone.
Although picking out the perfect gem is a choice made from the heart, keep these factors in mind to ensure you get the best value from your choice.
The size of the gemstone is measured by weight in carats. You guessed it, the bigger your crystal is, the more money you will need to spend on it.
The more intense colored gems are usually over 5 carats.
The colors of aquamarines range from pale blue to turquoise or deep blue, all impacting the value of the gem. The color of a gem is determined by four components:
- Hue: the name of the color, in this case, blue.
- Saturation: the brightness of the gem’s color, which could be dull, strong, or vivid.
- Tone: the depth of the color ranging from light to medium or dark.
- Coverage: the consistency of the color throughout the gemstone.
These four factors create the overall color of the aquamarine and determine its value.
The deeper blue hues are considered to be the most valuable type of aquamarine. Luckily though, the more popular turquoise aquamarine is more reasonably priced.
The color of the aquamarine is dependent on the size of the stone. Larger stones often have a more intense hue, while the smaller gems are more pastel in color.
Some aquamarines are heat-treated to bring out their striking blue color. Not to worry, though, as this won’t affect the stone’s structure, and you won’t need to take special care of these gems.
Check our selection of the best blue gemstones for other options in the same color scheme.
The degree of transparency of the gem determines its clarity. The fewer inclusions, the better the gem is classed. This increases the value of the stone.
Usually, aquamarines are free of inclusions visible to the naked eye.
A properly cut stone will allow the other 3 C’s to shine brightly. Common cuts for aquamarine are the emerald cut, followed by the oval and pear-shaped cuts.
Aquamarine is a versatile stone. Many jewelry designers can create different cuts and shapes, letting their imaginations run wild.
History and mythology of the Aquamarine stone
Archeologists discovered remnants of aquamarine jewels dating as far back as 500 BC. Roman and Greek sailors held longstanding beliefs that the Aquamarine gem could protect them from rough seas. Fishermen often kept aquamarine amulets with them to ensure a good catch too.
Aquamarine was also linked to the apostle St. Thomas who was a well-known seafarer. Often referred to as the mermaids’ treasure, aquamarine gemstones are revered for their mythical properties of promised eternal youth and ability to heal the sick. This adds to the enigma of the sea stone.
Aquamarine’s meaning and symbolism
Aquamarine is associated with trust and eternal love, which makes it a great gemstone for a happy marriage. It also ensures calm communication and allows the wearer to express their inner feelings clearly.
Everything the aquamarine symbolizes is drawn from the sea. It is related to emotional and spiritual development.
Where does Aquamarine come from
Aquamarines are mined in many different locations around the world, the most famous being Brazil. The deep blue “Santa Maria” variety of aquamarine is mined in Mina Gerais, Brazil.
You’ll also find aquamarine stones in African countries such as Mozambique, Madagascar, Tanzania, Kenya, Malawi, and Nigeria. In Asia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, China, and Russia actively mine for aquamarine stones too.
The Aquamarine as a birthstone
You’ve probably noticed that there’s more than one zodiac sign for each month. To answer your question before you ask it: Yes, Aries, you can rock aquamarine too.
Find your birthstone by month
For those that follow wedding anniversary gift guides, aquamarine is the gem for the 19th-anniversary celebration. What a special way to honor a wedding anniversary with a stone meant to bring even more good fortune to married couples.
The Aquamarine gemstone family
Aquamarine is a gemstone of the beryl gemstone family and has a hexagonal crystal structure. Beryl gems are naturally occurring minerals.
Some varieties of beryl include the lustrous green emerald, pretty pink morganite, and golden-yellow heliodor. The trace amounts of iron deposits in the beryl structure give the aquamarine its scintillating blue color.
The radiant blue-green color of the aquamarine pairs gorgeously with diamonds. Although it is popularly combined with white gold and silver, many striking designs have seen the aquamarine working equally well set in rose and yellow gold.
If you’re in search of some famous designs to inspire your purchase, simply look up Princess Diana’s aquamarine ring. She had the piece commissioned herself and would often wear the emerald-cut ring together with a diamond bracelet. This particular ring was flanked by diamonds and set in yellow gold.
Check our ranking of the most expensive engagement rings to learn more.
The brilliant blue hues of aquamarine earrings and necklaces are known to draw attention to blue-eyed beauties. However, the different tones of the aquamarine make it versatile enough to be worn by anyone.
Frequently asked questions about the Aquamarine stone
Yes, aquamarine stones are valuable. The value of these semi-precious stones increases depending on their color. The most valuable color is dark blue to turquoise, which can cost upwards of $1,000 per carat due to its rarity. Read our aquamarine guide to learn more about the stone.
Many people believe that aquamarine is a talisman of good luck and offers the wearer protection. The stone is said to have powerful properties for attracting prosperity and abundance.
Aquamarine is the official birthstone for the month of March, so those born in this month often wear the stone to bring prosperity to their lives. The stone is known for holding the properties of the sea. People drawn to these qualities will benefit from wearing the gem. See our detailed birthstone by month guide to learn more.
The intense dark blue gem with green hues are naturally rare finds. These gemstones show fewer inclusions (flaws) which makes them the more expensive variety of aquamarines. For a more affordable option, look for the pale green-blue gem.