November babies are a lucky bunch because the November birthstones, citrine and topaz, come in a dazzling array of colors and are relatively affordable. So November babies, go ahead and drop hints about a beautiful piece of birthstone jewelry in the color of your choice! With a wide range of hues and styles, there are plenty of options to choose from. For the low-down on everything you need to know about these richly-colored citrine and topaz gems, read on.
Where are topaz and citrine found?
From the mountains of Russia to Finders Island, Australia, topaz is found all over the world. Pakistan, Brazil, and Sri Lanka are some of the leading sources of topaz. And fun fact: Topaz Mountain in Utah was named after its abundance of the mineral!
Like topaz, citrine is found across the globe, as it is a variety of quartz. And quartz is the most abundant mineral on earth.
Why does November have two birthstones?
The idea of birthstones traces back to ancient times with the 12 stones of the High Priest’s breastplate mentioned in Exodus. For a while, it was common practice to wear one stone each month throughout the year. In 1912, the Jewelers of America wanted to standardize the birthstones. Modern birthstones are based on what is easiest to sell in large quantities. This is why November has two birthstones. Topaz was the original birthstone, but citrine was later added as a more affordable option.
Facts About Citrine: Health & Wealth in Rich Colors
Citrine is a quartz gemstone found in golden shades ranging from pale yellow to deep brownish orange. As one of the more affordable gems, citrine makes for a good choice if you want an eye-catching ring or pendant with a larger gemstone. Citrine appears frequently in Edwardian and Art Deco engagement rings.
This gem is also known as “healing quartz,” because legend has it that citrine promotes vitality and energy in whomever wears it. And, according to the Chinese feng shui philosophy, citrine creates wealth and abundance. While we can’t guarantee health and wealth will be gifts with purchase, we do think Fire Citrine™ Stud Earrings make an excellent birthday present for passionate November-born Scorpios.
The name for “Citrine” comes from the Latin root for “lemon,” and it’s no wonder that this sunny and golden stone has been thought to be a healing crystal that brings happiness, health, energy, and prosperity. For hundreds of years, citrine has also thought to ground and remove negativity — so this is the perfect gemstone for those seeking good vibes only!
Facts About Topaz: Symbol of Love in Favorite Hues
Topaz is a hard silicate mineral which gets its color from impurities or defects in its crystal structures, which turn it gorgeous shades of yellow, blue, red, green, brown, violet and pink. Topaz can also be colorless, and colorless topaz is often heated to create blue gems (most blue topaz isn’t natural—the color is created through treatment). The most valuable and expensive shades of topaz are deep orange with pink undertones called Imperial topaz, named after the Russian czars of the 19th century, and yellowish brown hue called sherry topaz.
The topaz birthstone symbolizes love and affection, and is said to bestow strength and intelligence on the person who wears it, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, and a gift of blue topaz is said to be a promise of love and fidelity.
Topaz and Citrine’s Famous Fans
Both of the November birthstones have a royal advocate in the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton (who was born in January, but maybe garnet isn’t her favorite?). If you glimpsed her engagement photos with Prince William you may have assumed that her glittery pavé drop earrings were diamond, but they were actually made of white topaz (the “Hope Egg” design by Links of London). The Duchess also has a favorite pair of cushion-cut citrine drop earrings by Kiki McDonough, a popular British (but of course) jewelry designer, and has appeared in white topaz and blue topaz earrings by McDonough. We think topaz and citrine are a perfect fit with the Duchess’s down-to-earth elegance, because they’re nearly as dazzling as more expensive precious gems but with a more sensible price tag.
Citrine has also had bursts of popularity in the Victorian Era, when queen Victoria added citrine elements to her collection of royal jewelry. In the golden age of early Hollywood, global stars like Greta Garbo and Joan Crawford famously wore glamorous citrine pieces.
Topaz and Citrine Care and Cleaning Tips
Although topaz and citrine are both hard stones, their shape can often lead to chipping. When wearing topaz or citrine jewelry, try not to knock it against hard surfaces, and keep it stored away from other stones. Also, don’t allow the jewelry to come into contact with harsh chemicals, including hand lotions and sanitizers.
To clean, soak the stone in a water solution and mild dish soap for 10 to 15 minutes. Then, gently remove any remaining dirt with a soft cloth and pat dry.