A Guide to the 3 Main Gemstone Types

The "Big Three" gemstones—ruby, sapphire, and emerald—are highly coveted and renowned for their beauty, rarity, and historical significance. In this blog, we'll explore the distinct qualities and symbolism of each gem, helping you make an informed choice for your next jewelry purchase.


  • Color and Rarity

Rubies are prized for their vibrant red color, ranging from pinkish-red to deep crimson. The most sought-after shade is often referred to as "pigeon's blood red." 

  • Significance:

Ruby is associated with passion, love, and vitality. In many cultures, it symbolizes power and protection. Rubies have been historically linked to royalty and are often featured in crowns and regalia.


  • Color Varieties

While sapphires are most commonly known for their deep blue color, they actually come in various colors, except red (which would be classified as a ruby). Yellow, pink, green, and padparadscha (a rare and prized pink-orange hue) are among the other color varieties.

  • Significance

Blue sapphires symbolize wisdom, nobility, and loyalty. They are frequently used in engagement rings, with one of the most famous examples being the sapphire engagement ring worn by Princess Diana and later passed on to Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge.


  •  Color and Clarity

Emeralds are green gemstones, and their color can range from a light, vivid green to a deep, rich green. Clarity is a significant factor in determining the value of an emerald, and inclusions are often tolerated to some extent.

  • Significance

Emeralds are associated with rebirth, fertility, and love. They have been treasured by various civilizations throughout history, including the ancient Egyptians and the Incas. Cleopatra was famously enamored with emeralds.

Common Features of the Big Three

All three gemstones are durable, with high hardness levels. Ruby and sapphire have a hardness of 9 on the Mohs scale, and emerald has a slightly lower hardness of 7.5 to 8.

The significance of the Big Three gemstones extends beyond their physical properties; it encompasses cultural, historical, and symbolic dimensions, making them some of the most treasured and sought-after gemstones in the world.

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