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All is Fair in Love and Gemstones

If you have siblings, you grew up with sharing and being fair with each other. And, if one of you wasn’t fair, oh boy, world war three ensued! Since I wrote about Spinel and Peridot being the birthstone for August, I thought it would only be fair to share about the little known third option, Sardonyx! (See my previous blog posts on Spinel and Peridot: and )

Sardonyx is actually the original birthstone for August and has a history that is over 4,000 years old! Historically, Sardonyx was used to carve cameos and intaglios because the different bands of colors enhanced the art. It also was the perfect material for Roman seals and signet rings because the hot wax did not stick to it. Roman women believed that Sardonyx had the power to harness love and attraction due to its red color, while Bishop Marbodius (11th century) said that it protected the wearer against incantation and sorcery.

Sardonyx is comprised of two different cryptocrystalline quartz materials, sard and onyx. It has layers or bands of sard and onyx in alternating patterns that are translucent to opaque. Although, most of it is generally opaque. The sard bands of colors range from brownish red to brown to dark orange, and the onyx is typically white or black bands. It isn’t faceted like Diamonds or Ruby, for example, but is fashioned more like turquoise when it’s not carved into a unique design. Some of the places Sardonyx is found are Brazil, Germany, Madagascar, Uruguay, and the United States.

Caring for Sardonyx is relatively easy, but you must know that Sardonyx is commonly dyed. Dying a gemstone means that heat from typical jewelry repairs and cleaning can damage the color. It is a 6.5 to 7 on the Moh’s Hardness scale meaning that it is prone to scratching which means you’ll have to be careful when wearing a ring.

Sardonyx jewelry is very unique because no two gemstones are alike! Each one has a different pattern of colors and band thickness making it the primary focus of the piece. I would love to help you explore Sardonyx with your special purchase or custom design! Angela Cisneros Jewelry Concierge brings back the joy and confidence of jewelry shopping, so that you can celebrate with ease! My by-appointment approach means:

  • One-on-one appointments (personal attention and no crowds!)

  • Discretion and privacy (surprises remain surprises!)

  • Expert help from a Graduate Gemologist with 24 years of experience (yep, that’s me!)

Book your FREE appointment with me today!

Photo credit: @metmuseum

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