January Birthstone: Garnet

Here is to 2018 and all of our January babies! Your precious birthstone is the ever beautiful Garnet! A complicated gemstone, garnets come in many species and color varieties. The most common garnets are the reddish brown Pyrope and Almandite garnets. A trade term for the attractive red color is either African or Mozambique garnet. These gemstones are singly refractive which make it easier for gem cutters when fashioning jewelry. Other garnet varieties, such as tsavorites or demantoids are a lovely green color, however demantoids have golden horse hair like inclusions that add to the gems beauty and value. Rhodolite garnets, closely related to the common red garnets, are more of a beautiful raspberry red hue. The final two more recognized garnet species are Spessartite and Hessonite garnets; spessartites were more of a collectors gem until the last decade when more sources were discovered, while Hessonite is still a bit of a rarity. These two gem’s color ranges are pale yellowish-orange through bright orange to dark orange red for Spessartite and almost always orangish-brown for Hessonite garnets. Because of their abundance, garnets haven’t been made commercially or synthesized. One of the most interesting things about garnets is that they are found across all continents and are used as an indicator for the presence of diamonds. Very often, if a garnet deposit is found, there is a great chance that diamonds are also present as they have similar formation patterns.