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October Birthstone: Its Color, Symbolism and Meaning




October Birthstone: Its Color, Symbolism and Meaning

OOctober marks the end of summer and the beginning of the fall season, ushering in not only sweater weather and all things pumpkin spice, but also two new birthstones: opal and tourmaline. Each October birthstone is unique – and not just on a surface level. In the world of healing crystals, they are believed to be imbued with energetic powers that people can tap into regardless of whether they were born in the month of October.

To understand the unique properties of opal and tourmaline, Well+Good caught up with crystal experts Small rituals Brett Larkin and numerologist and certified crystal healer Joy Woodward about October’s birthstones.

Properties of opal, the October birthstone of transformation

Photo: Getty Images / Panchro Gelatin

  • Birthstone color: Iridescent
  • Chakra: All chakras
  • Origin: Varied

Opal is composed of silica and comes in two main varieties: common and precious opals, the latter of which is often associated with the month of October, says Woodward. According to Larkin, precious opals have a prismatic quality that distinguishes it not only from its counterpart, but also from all other gemstones. The intrinsic microstructure – made up of small, tightly packed silica spheres – allows the stone to bend white light into a kaleidoscope of colors, which change as the opal or the viewer changes.

This prism-like effect also makes precious opal so prized among jewelers it can come from all over the worldLike Brazil, Honduras, Mexico and the United States, the most valuable opals come from Australia, according to Woodward.

Birthstone meaning and symbolism of opal

Opal is a stone of joy, but it is also an “emotional enhancer,” says Woodward. Whether you are happy, angry or sad, opal can strengthen your current emotional state – as well as illuminate the emotional energies that may be lurking beneath the surface. This makes opal ideal for shadow work, she says, because the stone can help you identify your shadows – an important step in the healing process.

Furthermore, it can transform these energies and emotions into something positive. “It provides healing to the owner by increasing vibrations to achieve a higher sense of happiness,” says Larkin. Not only that, she says it can also bring harmony and balance to the owner. Like clear quartz, precious opal is connected to all seven chakras and works to “align everything” while “pulling out what needs to go,” says Woodward, just like negative energy and emotions.

Properties of tourmaline, the October birthstone of compassion and tolerance

A pink tourmaline – one of October's birthstones – against a white background.
Photo: Getty Images/Lermannika

  • Birthstone color: Pink
  • Chakra: Heart chakra
  • Origin: Varied

Tourmaline is a semi-precious stone that “comes in every color,” says Larkin. “Some of these stones can even change color, making them appear green under fluorescent light and red under incandescent light.” While each type of tourmaline is special in its own way, it is pink tourmaline that is typically associated with the month of October, says Woodward. “It mainly occurs in Brazil, but also in Madagascar, Russia, the US, Africa and Sri Lanka.”

Birthstone meaning and symbolism of tourmaline

In general, tourmaline symbolizes “joy, generosity and creativity,” says Larkin. “Tourmaline is also a stone of reconciliation by offering compassion and the ability to keep a cool head in difficult times.” As such, pink tourmaline shares some of these properties, but Woodward says it can also “wrap you in a loving energy, offering protection and freedom from worry and negativity.” In this way, you could think of pink tourmaline as a force field powered by love.

“I always like to think that when you have a pink tourmaline, you put yourself in a bubble of pink, sparkling light,” says Woodward. “It can repair cracks, tears and holes in your aura to give you that protection.” In the same way that tourmaline in general can help users cultivate greater compassion and keep a cool head, pink tourmaline can also help focus a user’s energy toward kindness and tolerance, while preventing impulsive reactions.

Since a loving energy is at the core of pink tourmaline, it also corresponds to the heart chakra. It can help you open up to receiving and giving love, says Woodward, as well as heal emotional wounds and old issues that can weigh heavily on the heart.

With this in mind, it is clear that opal and pink tourmaline have unique properties, but both can be beneficial to anyone looking to harness their energetic powers. They can be great stones for Libras and Scorpios born in October, and opal and tourmaline can even work synergistically to support these zodiac signs, Larkin says.

Consider Libra, for example. “While Libras have many strengths, including their passion for making sure those around them are happy, one of their main weaknesses is avoiding conflict, which leaves them feeling burned out,” she says. “However, opal’s ability to bring harmony, combined with the reconciliation properties of tourmaline, can help Libras face conflict in a healthy way, by allowing them to remain calm when having difficult conversations and solving problems.”

According to Larkin, indecisiveness is another Libra trait that October birthstones can help balance. “Libras can often be indecisive, so clarity and guidance from opal, on top of the wisdom of tourmaline, can keep them grounded and help them make decisions under pressure,” she says.

As for Scorpio, Larkin says they can temper the sign’s vengeful side. “Scorpios are known for being incredibly loyal, but their weakness lies in their strong personality, which can make them vengeful,” she says. “As opal is excellent for providing balance, this can help Scorpios stabilize their emotions and deal with them honestly rather than becoming angry, while tourmaline can help them find compassion in times of conflict and avoid they resort to extreme measures.”

Another Scorpio trait is stubbornness. They may hold on to feelings of anger or resentment when they are wronged. Opal and tourmaline can help overcome these feelings. “Opal’s harmonious properties and tourmaline’s ability to promote reconciliation can help Scorpios find forgiveness and make amends with loved ones,” says Larkin.

What are birthstones?

Birthstones are gemstones that represent a person’s birth month or zodiac sign. Their origins are believed to date back to Biblical times, and the first-century historian Flavius ​​Josephus associated the twelve gemstones on Aaron’s breastplate in the Book of Exodus with the months of the year and the twelve constellations. However, the custom of wearing an individual gemstone every month only began in Germany and Poland around the 15th or 16th century. Birthstones also appear to have their origins in Eastern culture. The Ratna Pariksha, a fifth-century Hindu text, linked specific gemstones to gods, celestial bodies and days of the week, while Vedic astrologers recommend certain gemstones to individuals based on their astrological birth chart.

In 1912, the American Council Association of Jewelers (currently known as the Jewelers of America) created a standardized list of birthstones in the United States. This list was updated by the Jewelry Industry Council of America and later by The American Gem Trade Association to include new types of birthstones for certain months of the year.

An overview of the birthstones for each month of the year

Looking for a crystal or gemstone that matches your birth month? Here is a quick overview of the birthstones for each month of the year:

Frequently asked questions about October birthstones

Why does October have two birthstones?

While opal is the original birthstone for October, in later years tourmaline became the second birthstone for the month, allowing people to choose an option that matches their preferences.

What is the birthstone for Libra?

The birthstone often associated with Libras born in August is peridot, while Libras born in October are typically linked to opal and tourmaline.

What is the birthstone for Scorpio?

Scorpios born in the month of October are typically associated with the birthstones of the month, namely opal and tourmaline, while Scorpios born in November can be linked to topaz and citrine.