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Article: October Birthstones: Tourmaline and Opal

October Birthstones: Tourmaline and Opal

Those born during the month of October are fortunate to have both tourmaline and opal as their birthstones. These gems are two of the most versatile of all the birthstones—tourmaline’s colour depends on the chemical makeup of the particular stone and opals refract light in a multitude of shades. With a wide variety of different colours and shapes to choose from, these gemstones can cater to anyone’s tastes. Here is some more information about October’s birthstones, Tourmaline and Opal.


Unlike other gemstones, tourmaline is not made out of a single mineral. Rather, it is the result of a complex mixture of different minerals, each with its own chemical and physical properties. This natural combination of elements means that tourmaline can come in a variety of colours, depending on the chemical makeup of each gemstone. Tourmaline is often a deep blue, but can range from brown to yellow, green, red and pink.

The name tourmaline comes from a Sinhalese word meaning “stone of mixed colours.” It can be found worldwide. The main North American deposits can be found in Maine and California. Black tourmaline is said to shield the wearer against negative energy, and provide protection from toxins and pollutants.


The name opal comes from a Greek word meaning “to see a change in colour.” Unlike other gemstones, opals can display a variety of colours depending on how they reflect light. This kaleidoscopic ability makes opals one of the most interesting and sought-after gemstones. Opals usually have either a black or white “body colour,” or main background colour.

Opals originated in Australia, where seasonal rain created silica deposits between layers of rock, resulting in opal deposits when dried. Opals require special care, and can become cracked in extreme temperatures. Opal is believed to bring the wearer prosperity and good luck.

If you or someone you love is born during the month of October, tourmaline and opal jewelry make great birthday gifts. Browse the full online catalogue to see all the pieces available from Marlow Design, and contact us today to design your own custom birthstone jewelry.