This article is part of our Birthstone Rings series, where we share the beautiful and varied ways our customers have featured birthstones in their rings.
For those with June birthdays, the month offers a menu of birthstone options. These stones are so different and have such distinctive appearances that the choice is often largely about appearance. And all three can be wonderful choices for a ring's center stone. But there are a few important considerations if you're open to all three options.
First, we recommend looking at each gem's wearability rating. While alexandrite boasts an excellent wearability rating for a daily-wear ring, moonstone is quite delicate, and pearl is easily scratched and is a risky choice for a center stone. So, while pearl may be a beautiful birthstone for a necklace or a pair of earrings, we generally recommend considering another option for a birthstone ring. Moonstone is more durable, though also likely to scratch and require replacement over time. On wearability alone, we recommend alexandrite for daily wear in a ring.
Beyond wearability, the next biggest consideration is cost. Natural alexandrite is rare and carries a high price. It's among the most expensive gems we work with, especially for those interested in a strong color change. Oh, did we forget to mention that alexandrite changes color when viewed in different lighting conditions? But not every stone exhibits the color change to the same degree, so those natural stones that are substantial in size and demonstrate a strong color change are often quite expensive. Most of our customers choose the much more affordable alternative of lab-created alexandrite, with natural stones appearing when a smaller gem is appropriate for the design.
So, what do we recommend? If you're open to all options, we'd suggest lab-created alexandrite for your June birthstone ring. A good balance between affordable prices and durability for a lifetime of wear, not to mention a distinctive and beautiful gem. But if you have your heart set on moonstone or pearl, we'll never talk you out of that — we love the pearl and moonstone rings we design for our customers, and we don't hear regrets from those customers who chose them.
We'll start with our recommended June birthstone: lab-created alexandrite. We take our photos with very bright lighting, so we almost always see the blue-green side of the alexandrite's color. Under softer, warmer lighting (e.g. think of candle light, though incandescent light sources can absolutely do the trick), the stone reveals its red or purple tones.
This engagement ring's design uses marquise cut tanzanite to create a flowing curve around the alexandrite center stone. It's a perfect pairing, with the violet blue of tanzanite accentuating different parts of the alexandrite's changing color spectrum. The setting uses subtle bead detailing to highlight the elegant curves of white gold.
Next up: a timeless halo setting. A lab-created pear cut center stone gives a beautiful curve to the center setting, and surrounding it with a halo of diamonds helps to add sparkle and highlight the alexandrite's color. The halo is designed to angle out from the center stone, so the diamonds will sparkle when viewed from above and from the side.
This customer told us she was looking for an open, airy look with a fantasy feel. She loved the look of curvy designs and Celtic and Elven elements in designs we explored together. Our designer took that great guidance and created a look whose open curves have a bit of the feel of wings framing a delicately suspended pear cut alexandrite center stone.
Before we look at the ring's design, note how the color of this alexandrite differs from the gem above? Nearly identical lab-made alexandrite pears, but the lighting in our photos varies a bit, so this one shows hints of the stone's purple color. It's a really cool gem. As for this ring's design, it takes us far from the unique and modern look above, drawing its design from the ornate beauty of centuries passed. Intricate, milgrain-lined curves frame the center stone and curve down into the band, with diamonds adding pops of sparkle.
And here's a natural alexandrite in an understated three-stone setting, with Celtic inspiration reflected in the trinity knots on either side. Small emeralds surround the alexandrite center stone, complementing the color.
Not into alexandrite? You might find moonstone a bit more to your liking. While it's more delicate, moonstone offers a look that can't be found in another gem. It displays a phenomenon gemologists refer to as adularescence, which causes moonstone to have a characteristic shimmer, almost as if it has a blueish glow from just beneath the surface. The combination of a clear-to-milky color with a bit of colorful glow is loved by many. In this ring, we combined it with a unique halo design our customer envisioned: marquise cut amethysts framing the center stone with beautiful color, and diamonds rounding out the halo for a pop of sparkle.
For the bold, there's nothing quite like a pearl ring. It's a unique look, both because of the pearl's milky, lustrous appearance and because of its spherical shape. For those comfortable with its durability risk, it creates an incredible occasional-wear ring. This customer's ring design started from a photo of a ring they thought was almost right, but needed just a few adjustments. The resulting look frames the pearl with a wide open 18k rose gold design reminiscent of leafy flower stems leading up to the pearl "blossom."