The Trend: Opal Engagement Rings

Last blog we discussed the trend of Moss Agate engagement rings and their limited durability and wearability. This month, we are continuing to discuss how alternative engagement ring stones can be a great idea and a not so great idea. Next in the line-up is Opal Engagement rings. This one holds a special place in a lot of people’s hearts so I see it rather often. Let’s take a look at the qualities of an opal and why it is not an ideal choice for an engagement ring. 

Opals are a form of hydrated silica, meaning they are formed by water seeping down into the earth, collecting silica along the way, and settling in the pockets of air under the earth’s surface. When the water dissipates, we are left with Opals. Sometimes these stones have fossils and growths inside of them. Because they are created from water, most opals typically consist of 10-20% water. It can take up to six million years for an opal to form, much like a diamond. In this sense, opals are extraordinary and worthy of wear. Not only are they complex in their formation but in the colors that occur in opals. Depending on the type of opal, they can exhibit rainbows of magnificent colors. Many October babies hold their birthstone very dear to them and for good reason!

Unfortunately, opals are only 5-6.5 on the Mohs hardness scale, meaning it can be quite easy for them to crack, chip, or break. Additionally, because of their chemical composition, when an opal gets wet it absorbs the liquids. When the opal dries, this can cause the stone to become even more brittle and fragile. If you have ever owned an opal and noticed that over time and consistent wear, the color play becomes less vibrant and it becomes more of a dull milky color, this is typically from water damage. Opals can also be damaged from light. Over time, light and heat will affect the vibrancy and durability of an opal. If you really love the color play of an opal and would like something you can wear as an engagement ring, you could try alexandrite, sapphire, or of course, diamond. Alexandrite and certain Sapphires have the ability to color change creating an amazing effect you will be mesmerized by every time. Of course, with sapphires’ range of colors, you can choose whatever sapphire speaks to you!

Another thing that would really make your engagement ring stand out is a trend we are loving, geometric center stones! Hexagons, Kites, even Free-form and Fantasy cuts! Especially when choosing a colored gemstone for your center, these different cut styles make an engagement ring truly unique. We even have one in our case right now! (Pictured in the banner of this blog) Keep in mind: certain aspects of different cuts can create weak points in the stone so your setting style should be chosen carefully and with the help of a jeweler. Want an engagement ring with these unique attributes? Set up an appointment to view stone options and setting styles with us!


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Sami Meyers