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August Birthstones - Peridot

The August Birthstone Has Three Gemstone Options

August Birthstones

In 2016, August joined June and December as one of three birth months represented by three different gemstones. The original birthstone for August was sardonyx, and then peridot was added, becoming August’s primary gemstone. The addition of spinel, which can be found in a variety of colors, gives August babies a plethora of options!

Three August gemstones to choose from

Buying fine jewelry can be a very personal decision. So it goes without saying that many people struggle to find that perfect birthstone that will fit the taste of the special person they love. Usually, there is only one gemstone to choose from in the birthstone realm, but in the case of August, there are three. At first, this seems to add confusion to the process but realistically your job just becomes much easier. For instance, in August, Spinel comes in a variety of colors. If the green peridot isn’t your jam, then you can simply choose the color that is.

And with a variety of gemstone options, the birthstone jewelry for this month gives rein to your imagination for the August child you love. These jewels differ by color, value, and symbolism. Also, some of them look better in earrings, while others deserve to be featured in a massive necklace. Finally, some are relatively cheap, while others have extreme value in the jewel market. So, how does one make the right choice? Let’s take a closer peek at your options.


Generally speaking, peridot is the top pick for August people. Its title is of Arabic origin and means “gem.” Throughout the years, people confused them with emeralds. Everybody made this mistake: from an average inexperienced buyer to Empress Cleopatra. At one point, the first peridots were found in Topazios (an island in the Red Sea, Egypt) so naturally, they were also confused with “Topaz”.

Peridot, however, is a unique jewel. It’s a variety of the mineral olivine and a national gemstone of Egypt. Also, the remarkable thing about peridot is that it always contains a shade of green color. Its intensity depends on the amount of iron in this gemstone. In the general range of green, the colors of peridot include yellowish, brown, and bright lime tones.

Throughout the years, Egypt and Myanmar were two key places to spot peridots in the world. In the 19th century, huge deposits of this August birthstone were found in Pakistan, with enormous 100-carat “Kashmir peridots.” These days, mining of peridots almost completely takes place in San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation, Arizona, United States. Its capacities are enough to satisfy the demand for peridots and make them affordable for any person born in August.


Spinel is the second option for your August person. From Latin, the word “spina” means thorn, establishing an association with the stone’s bright red color and fire. In nature, spinel can come in various tones: red, pink, orange, and even green. There are some very unique and beautiful color options that many people know exist, which are pastel pink and fiery orange. Keep your eye out for those!

Frequently, the red spinel is mistaken for a ruby. These gemstones of the same color are titled as relatives from the earliest times. For example, Ruby became a mother of spinel in Sanskrit writings. Other authors simply called spinel a ruby doppelgänger. Indeed, the August birthstone is one of the greatest usurpers in gemstone history.

Spinel Engagement ring
Spinel Engagement Ring

There are several places to mine spinel, including Tajikistan, Vietnam, Pakistan, and Tanzania. But the best reputation in the jewelry market has spinel from Myanmar.


This brings us to the third birthstone option for your August person. Within its structure, sardonyx consists of two chalcedony parts: sard and onyx. Thanks to these elements, the color of sardonyx generally ranges from yellow to brown. Its exact tone depends on the amount of iron in a gemstone. So, Sardonyx can come in other colors due to this, such as black, grey, green and white.

Sardonyx came from the Persian city of Sardis, situated in contemporary Turkey. In Roman times, sardonyx was the key ingredient in seals. Also, warriors put this gemstone in a ring as a talisman before any important battle. The image of Mars was carved on sardonyx to intensify the magic power.

Sardonyx is certainly an enchanting gemstone.

Sardonyx gemstone bracelet
Sardonyx Gemstone Bracelet

How To Care For August Birthstones

In terms of wearing and cleaning, each of these three gemstones requires a different approach. Here are some tips to reference when in need:

  • The hardness of peridot is around 6.5 Mohs. It is softer than many other gemstones but still durable enough to scratch other pieces of your jewelry. You should store it separately.
  • The common size for peridots is below 3 carats. That’s the reason why a necklace is the most popular option for wearing peridots. However, you can get remarkable 15 carats of this gemstone for an affordable price.
  • Spinel is a gemstone that is harder than a peridot, earning 8 points on the Mohs scale. This turns it into a great option for everyday wear in jewelry. Also, it cannot be damaged by chemicals.
  • If you want to wear spinel often, choose a ring or a necklace.
  • To clean your spinel jewelry, you’d better go with soapy water vs special cleaners. The latter can cause fractures on your gemstone.
  • Sardonyx is a choice for special occasions, not everyday wear. The top jewelry picks with it include magnificent necklaces, engagement rings, and earrings. Sardonyx is known for one of the greatest price-quality ratios, so you can choose a really huge gemstone!
  • With a relatively low degree of hardness (only 6.5 Mohs), sardonyx jewelry needs special care. While cleaning it, avoid ultrasonic cleaners and direct steam impact. Also, high heat can be dangerous for your sardonyx.

~ Tips courtesy of

Contact Gittelson Jewelers

It’s difficult for many jewelers to carry every birthstone option, so when looking for the perfect solution in-store, you may be disappointed. At Gittelson Jewelers, we typically source the perfect piece depending on what our customers are looking for. When it comes to unique gemstones and birthday gifts, we custom design these fine jewelry pieces to your vision and specifications.

If you live in Minneapolis, stop into the store. If you’re out of state or prefer to do things remotely, we’re happy to hop on the phone or take a Zoom call. Whatever works best for you. Schedule an appointment today.

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