Every birth month is connected to a different gemstone. Those lucky enough to have an October birthday get to enjoy the mesmerizing opal as their birthstone. Opals are known for the range of shimmering colors that dance across their surface and create a striking optical effect. October’s birthstone is popular in necklaces, rings, bracelets, earrings and more.
A Galaxy in a Stone
Opal was admired by many cultures throughout the ancient world, each giving it a unique meaning. In Arabic lore, opals fell from heaven in the form of lightning, while the Greeks believed they could protect against disease and bestow the gift of prophecy. Opal's shifting rainbow of colors has inspired writers to compare it to volcanos, fireworks, galaxies and more.
Opal's Birthstone History
When people first began wearing the stones connected to their birth months in the 16th century, opal was selected as the original October birthstone. The National Association of Jewelers also chose opal as the modern October birthstone in 1912.
Historically, opals have been revered throughout many cultures. They have been linked to the symbolism of luck, love and even a person’s ever-changing moods. This October birthstone is often found in Australia, Mexico, Ethiopia, Brazil and the United States.
October Birthstone Color
Opal gemstones offer incredible colors and unique sparkle. October’s birthstone sparkles with a soft or translucent base color that is accented by specks of color dancing throughout the gem. This phenomenon, known as play-of-color, makes every piece of opal gemstone jewelry extraordinary.
October Birthstone Meaning
Each birthstone has its own meaning and symbolism. Opals are associated with love, hope, faith, loyalty, purity and truth. Through its rainbow of colors, this gemstone is thought to reflect the mood of the wearer, to help release inhibitions and to enhance beauty. Some believe that opal symbolizes the virtues of all colored gemstones, making it one of the luckiest gemstones to wear.
Opal’s Ties to October
There are many zodiac gemstones that are tied to star signs. While opals aren’t directly tied to the zodiac signs of people born in October, they do represent some of their characteristics. Libras, the first sign in October, are known for their ability to fit into any situation. Social shape-shifting Libras are well-represented by the color-shifting-play offered by opals. The fiery passion of Scorpios is present in the glowing specks of color that punctuate many October birthstones.
The Lucky Birthstone
Ancient Romans valued opals as stones of good luck. Opals are especially lucky as the October gemstone and are believed to bring good fortune to people who were born in this month.
Gifting Inspiration for the October Birthstone
Celebrate a significant other, a family member or a close friend with a piece of opal jewelry that shows your appreciation. Our selection of opal birthstone gifts offers several options for many different occasions.
An Enchanting Statement of Love
An exquisite opal engagement ring makes an eye-catching, modern statement and can serve as a symbol of your love and devotion. Diamond accents or a full diamond halo bring out an opal's fire and a white gold band complements its kaleidoscopic colors.
Lavish Someone You Cherish
If a special someone's October birthday is approaching, you can't go wrong with an opulent opal necklace that showcases their birthstone. Our selection of opal pendants puts the gemstone's colorful sparkle on full display, in either a solitaire style or with small accent diamonds.
Gifts for Mom
An excellent option for your mom's birthday or for Mother's Day is a pair of elegant opal earrings. October's birthstone lends itself nicely to timeless styles that will pair easily with all of her favorite outfits.
Commemorate a Special Occasion
Important milestones like graduations, weddings, big promotions and the birth of a child deserve a gift that properly marks the occasion. An opal necklace or a pair of opal earrings make wonderful presents for commemorating significant life events.
Keep Your Opal Jewelry Looking Beautiful for a Lifetime
- Keep your opal jewelry in good condition with the right gemstone cleaning and care.
- Opal is a gem that needs a bit of extra care but can last for decades when well looked-after.
- Be sure to put it on last when getting ready and store it in a felt-lined jewelry box away from harder gems after taking it off.
- Maintain the beautiful play-of-color of your opal jewelry by giving it a regular cleaning with warm water and mild soap.
- We also offer free cleaning and repair services for gemstone jewelry that needs an expert touch to restore its brilliance.
October Birthstone Buying Tips
When buying the colorful birthstone for October, it’s important to purchase from trustworthy jewelers to ensure you’re finding a high-quality gemstone. There are several types of opals to choose from, each bringing its own unique variations on this gem’s iconic play-of-color. When buying October birthstone jewelry, consider these tips:
- 1Choose the color that best fits your budget. Rarer October gemstone colors, such as black opals, will command higher prices than more commonly found varieties of this birthstone.
- 2Maximize budgets by mixing gemstones. If a large opal is out of the budget, consider adding additional gems into the mix, such as white sapphire. This can create a dynamic piece that adds additional sparkle while keeping your budget in mind.
- 3Pick a setting that strengthens the opal. October’s gemstone can be more fragile than other birthstones, so choose a setting type that’s best to protect the stone. This may include a bezel setting or a halo of other gems to encase the opal.
Purchasing enhanced October birthstones is a great way to enjoy a durable gem with incredible paly-of-color. Enhancements may include colorless hardeners to improve the gem’s durability and color. More translucent October opals may also receive backings to improve rigidity.
Additional October Birthstone
While opal has long reigned as the true October birthstone, some people are beginning to consider tourmaline a significant stone for the month. Tourmaline jewelry is an increasingly popular alternative to opal that offers beautiful pink hues and lasting styles.
Learn More About Gemstones
Opal jewelry makes a magical gift for someone you love or an excellent addition to your own fine jewelry collection. Learn more about gemstones and jewelry options in our comprehensive gemstone guide.
Explore Education by Category
- Amethyst Engagement RingsAquamarine Engagement RingsEmerald Engagement RingsMoonstone Engagement RingsMorganite Engagement RingsOpal Engagement RingsPink Sapphire Engagement RingsRuby Engagement RingsSapphire Engagement RingsTanzanite Engagement RingsTopaz Engagement RingsAll Gemstone Engagement Ring Guides
Only at Blue Nile
When it comes to celebrations we strive to make your experience as brilliant as our jewelry with the perfect pieces for every occasion.
Visit a Showroom
Meet our personal jewelers, explore bestselling styles, pick up an online order, arrange to preview something from our online collection and so much more.
Schedule an Appointment
Book a fun and interactive appointment with a diamond expert and get up-close views of diamond and jewelry options from the comfort of your own home.
The highest-quality design at a great price.
Peace of Mind
30-day returns, diamond price-match guarantee and more.
The original online jeweler since 1999.
The perfect pieces for every occasion.