Opal earrings make an ideal and colorful gift for your queen. Opals are also known as “The Queen of Gems”. William Shakespeare specifically addressed the gem as “The Queen of Stone Crystal” in one of his plays. Opal earrings are not only for the Queen in your life; they are also an amazing present for people who are born in October. In addition to that, opal earrings can be a unique gift for your 14th wedding anniversary. People also love opal engagement rings. If you are tired of giving rings and necklaces to your partner, a pair of earrings would be a brilliant alternative. Since they have existed long ago, they were associated with different beliefs and powers.
Opals are widely available and it comes in varied colors. Each of their colors is associated with different astrological signs, although, you do not always have to symbolize something to get an opal jewelry. It is a stone that looks stunning on any jewelry. You may find the common opal colors easily like white, green, and blue. They also come in rarer varieties with red and black colors. When you look at an opal gem, you would not only see its color but also find some sparkling glints and specks. These glints and specks typically show rainbow colors. The stunning play of colors can be seen on opals but not all opals have this ability. Opal is not a mineral and it does not have any crystalline structure. It is a gem that is formed with silica and water. It is more comparable to a gel structure that hardened into a rock. The New York Times even labeled it as “Opal: Delicate Beauty in a Watery Orb“. You do need to be more knowledgeable about them before getting an opal earring. Buying an unfamiliar thing can be a daunting task buy with the help of our guidance; you should be able to make the best and wisest decision in buying them.
Types of Genuine Opal Earrings
Opals may look simple but they actually have different types. Jewelry makers have created numerous terminologies for opals. Since they come in various colors and they have tons of synthetics and imitations. They have unique names to distinguish them from each other. A huge percentage of opals around the world are mined in Australia while the second largest producer of opal jewelry is Mexico. You do not have to be an opal connoisseur before to buy one although it would be great if you know some terms and knowledge. When talking about genuine and natural opals, you ought to know about the different types you may encounter. There are natural opals, black opals, white opals, boulder opals, matrix opals, fire opals, crystal opals, and Potch opals. Let us learn more about the differences of these genuine opals.
Natural opals are mined from the ground. They are sold the same way they are found. They do not undergo any cutting or setting procedure. You would probably not need to get a natural opal. They are more intended to be sold to jewelry manufacturers and opal collectors.
Black opals are the rarest and most expensive type of opal. They are even labeled as the Rolls Royce of opals. They are also known as the best type of opal in the world mainly because of their dark body tone. Speaking of dark, black opals are not literally black in color but they have a darker shade. They are more expensive not only because they are rare but because they carry a more dramatic appeal. They play colors more dramatically which can best be described by the appearance of burning and flashing colors from within. We mentioned earlier that opals have a stunning characteristic to play with colors. Imagine those colors but with more impressive flashes.
Crystal opals are the types of opals that are transparent or translucent like crystals. They tend to reflect a fair amount of rainbow color too. They are also rare and expensive. In terms of price and rarity, they are placed next to the black opals. Since crystal opals are transparent, they can best be paired with any color.
White opals are also known as milky opals. If black opals are rare, white opals, on the other hand, are extremely common. They are also an affordable option for your opal earrings. Since they have a white or milky hue, they are not as bright as other variations. They also do not refract colors well like black opals do. But you can still find high-quality white opals that are more captivating than normal.
Boulder opals are formed with siliceous ironstone concretions which are also popularly known as a boulder. Well, where would it get its name but from the thing that it is made from right? They are particularly formed in the thin veins that exist on ironstone backings. This is also the main reason why they have the desired darker color of a black opal. However, since they also have ironstone content, they are generally priced lesser. The ironstone backing does make the price lesser however, it also makes the stone more durable. In fact, boulder opals are considered as the hardest type of opal. You also should be careful in buying boulder opal earrings. Some sellers include heavy ironstone backing to the karat weight of the opal so they can sell it for a higher price. Boulder opals can somehow be compared to its cousin, the black opal. These opals are obtained from the mines of Queensland in northern Australia.
Fire opals are unique with their red-orange color. They do not play colors like other opals but they are popular for fashion accessories. They are obtained from the mines of Mexican highlands.
Potch opals are the typical opals you can find that do not have the ability to play colors like their relatives. They are more affordable because they are not as refractive as black opals.
Matrix opals are natural opals that have been diffused through a host rock. They typically only diffuse in thin layers.
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Other Types of Opal Earrings
Synthetic opals are gems that are created in a laboratory. They are engineered to have the same chemical composition and structure as natural opals. How can you tell if an opal is natural or man-made? Simple, synthetic opals seem to appear more glass-like than natural opals. They also have a more regular and precise color pattern.
Imitation opals are fake opals that are made from other materials but look like opals. They may be made from plastic or glass. If you are on a budget, then imitation opal earrings are perfect for you. You can enjoy the beauty of opal at a low price.
Doublet opals may be a stone or another low-quality opal that has a thin layer of natural opal set on a backing. When opals are too thin to be used as a jewelry stone, they are used to coat other stones instead. This does not mean they are not a good option. In fact, when a thin layer of opal is added to another stone, their color becomes better and enhanced.
Triplet opals are similar to doublet opals. They are created by coating a stone with a thin opal layer. The only difference is that there is an additional layer of quartz or glass that is added as a third layer in order to protect the fine natural opal layer.
How to Maintain Your Opal Jewelry
When you get a pair of opal earrings, it is important for you to know how to care for them because they are fragile. Since they are soft, they are prone to breaking or accumulating scratches. In order for them to last longer, you should take care of them like a baby. We mentioned earlier that opals contain varying small amounts of water. When this water evaporates, it leaves you with an opal gem that has lesser luster. Your opal could even accumulate crack because of that. This is the main reason why you should always place your opal earrings in locations where there is mild temperature. Given that opals do not deal with extreme temperatures very well, you should never wash an opal earring with hot or warm water. In the same way, you should not expose an opal earring to extremely cold temperature. Speaking of cleaning, we suggest that you use a damp soft cloth in cleaning the earring. You can also use a mild cleanser. Please avoid using harsh chemicals like bleach. You should also avoid using abrasive cleaning agents like a brush to your opal earring as they can cause scratches or breakage. When storing your opal earrings, it is best to place then, inside a small soft bag. Although, it is best recommended to only store them for short periods as they have the tendency to dry out and crack. We suggest you wear them as regular as possible because the moisture on your skin prevents them from drying out and cracking. But if you get tired of wearing them and you really want to store them for a longer time, you can place them in a re-sealable plastic bag. These tips apply for genuine or natural opal earrings. If you plan to get the affordable doublet or triplet opals, please do avoid submerging them to water as it can cause more damage than good. The adhesive that protects the outer layer of the gem will dissolve thus; it will result in a murky appearance.
Whether you are wanting to get opal earrings for birthday and anniversary or simply desiring to make the queen of your life smile, the stunning options for opal earrings here will surely draw a smile on their faces. It does not matter if you get the affordable synthetic opal earrings or the luxurious natural opals earrings, they can all exhibit the amazing beauty of different colors in one stone.