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July’s Birthstone: Why We Love Ruby Red,

Forget red, red wine. We’ll take rubies any day.These incredible gemstones have a deep mystique, perfect for July babies, that bridges the Cancer to Leo gap. Not only does July’s birthstone seem to glow from within, but it’s also totally stunning.Think fine jewelry, from engagement rings (yes, you can have a colored gemstone ring!) to fancy earrings to delicate gemstone necklaces. Want to make rubies your own in a modern way that doesn’t feel like it was ripped from granny’s closet? We’ve got your back. Here’s why we adore this captivating gem, and how you can wear it.

What’s With Birthstones, Anyway?

They’re nothing new to the jewelry game, but birthstones are still kind of mysterious. They’ve been around for who even knows how long, mixing with ancient traditions, religion, and evolving cultures around the globe. Many say they originated from the twelve gemstones in the Biblical Breastplate of Aaron, and the concept evolved through the Middle Ages, where each stone was linked to a month or zodiac sign. In the 20th century, the American National Retail Jewelers Association created a standardized list dictating which gems they considered good luck for each month.

A collection of birthstones against a white background
There’s something about birthstones that we just can’t get enough. Their vibrant colors, their storied past, their undeniable beauty…more please!
A cushion cut ruby is held between diamond tweezers
A chicken/ egg situation solved! It appears that the color ruby came after the naming of the stone-at least, in terms of specifying this particular shade of red.

What is July’s Birthstone?

And thus, we ended up with rubies in July. Not only a super passionate gem, rubies also carry tons of historical and emotional importance across cultures. Derived from the Latin word “ruber,” meaning red, many love rubies for their deep, vivid color. What’s more, they often display subtle hints of purple. Known for their exceptional hardness—second only to diamonds—rubies are both stunning and durable, making them perfect for everyday wear.

What is the Spiritual Meaning of Rubies?

If you wanna get a little more nerdy about this very cool gemstone, dive into this. In ancient India, people revered the ruby as the “king of precious stones”. Their deep red color symbolizes life force and vitality, aligning with the belief that these gemstones hold the power to protect and bestow blessings upon their owners.

Beyond that, ancient texts and legends often celebrated rubies for their supposed supernatural abilities. People thought they could predict misfortune, cure diseases, and ensure health, wisdom, and success. Common beliefs about the protective and healing properties of rubies made them highly sought after. Often, royalty would sport the ruby from their royal regalia and religious artifacts to harness their supposed benefits. Additionally, the association of rubies with power and youthful energy made them popular for warriors. Especially, the belief was that they could endow courage and vigor to any wearer.

An emerald cut ruby against a navy blue background
Looking for an ultra colorful engagement ring? Consider pairing a central ruby stone with twinkling topaz side stones for an undeniably cool red and blue look.
A bezel set emerald engagement ring
Both emerald and onyx rank highly on the Moh’s scale but they do require some extra TLC to keep them squeaky clean and secure.

Are There Alternative Birthstones for July?

It’s a question we hear often, particularly as cultures cross and mix with various belief systems. What are alternative gemstones for July’s birthstone? And while rubies remain the most recognized and popular choice, some modern interpretations include carnelian, citrine, garnet, and onyx. 

Not a fan of those? No problem, there are also different zodiac birthstones you could delve into, including emerald and moonstone for Cancer babies and onyx for Leos. Essentially, you should go for whichever holds the most meaning and beauty for you. Just a reminder, remember to take the Moh’s scale of hardness into consideration when choosing your alternative July birthstone.

What Are the Colors of July?

Beyond the patriotic red, white, and blue, July is still predominantly represented by the color red. The deep, vibrant red of rubies symbolizes passion, love, and vitality, making it a fitting color for the height of summer heat. Red is often associated with warmth, energy, and strength, reflecting the peak of the summer sun.

Beyond the primary red of rubies, July can also be associated with secondary hues that are sometimes found in ruby varieties. These include shades of pink, purplish-red, and even orangish-red, each with its own charm. These colors, while less common, give you lots of richness to choose from when creating or buying birthstone jewelry.

A ring stack including a blue topaz Asscher cut engagement ring
This 4th we tip our hats the only way we know how: via dazzling blue topaz, ultra-white diamonds, and ruby red designs.
July's birthstone, the ruby is bezel set in a gumdrop stud earring
Rubies offer a special pop of color that we just can’t get enough of. Looking to design your own unique earring set? Reach out to us at and we can make your dream earrings a reality!

Where Does July’s Birthstone Come From?

When it comes to sourcing the finest natural rubies, you’re going to look to some exotic locations around the globe. The finest rubies come from Myanmar’s Mogok region, renowned for their breathtaking color and clarity. Vietnam’s Luc Yen region also produces stunning rubies, celebrated for their deep, rich reds. Mozambique has emerged as a significant source in recent years, particularly from the Montepuez mines. Other notable sources include Thailand and Cambodia, where the rubies from Chanthaburi and Pailin shine with exceptional beauty. East African countries like Kenya, Tanzania, and Madagascar contribute to the world’s ruby treasure troves, each offering unique hues and qualities. 

But the magic of rubies doesn’t stop at natural stones. Enter the world of lab created rubies, a brilliant and ethical alternative that’s making waves in the jewelry industry. These gems, created through advanced scientific processes, are virtually indistinguishable from their natural counterparts in terms of chemical, physical, and optical properties. Lab created rubies, like lab grown diamonds, are not only kinder to the environment, reducing the impact of mining, but they also ensure a conflict-free origin. Plus, they’re easier on the wallet, offering the same fiery beauty at a more accessible price. Whether you opt for a naturally sourced ruby or its lab created twin, you’re choosing a gem that will be beautiful and meaningful as a gift.

What Is the Best Way to Care for Rubies?

Once you’ve got a ruby in hand, you’re in luck! Rubies are quite hard (they’re a 9 on the Mohs scale), so they’re durable enough for daily wear. To maintain their beauty, you can gently clean them with warm soapy water and a soft brush. While ultrasonic and steam cleaners are generally safe, caution is advised for treated stones, especially those that are glass-filled or dyed.

An emerald set ruby engagement ring with baguette side stones
It’s always worth it to understand exactly the ways in which your engagement ring has been treated. Especially as specific treatments require specific types of care.
A Marquise cut engagement ring with two ruby side stones
Many couples are requesting a super romantic touch to their wedding bands – their birthstones on the inside of the band and up against their finger. Talk about cheek to cheek and skin to skin!

How to Incorporate July’s Birthstone Into Your Jewelry Collection

If you’re looking to incorporate rubies into your engagement ring, there are various ways to do it. You can center its color by making a ruby your center stone, either as a solitaire engagement ring on its own or with gemstone or diamond accents. Even a diamond halo would beautifully set off the color of your gemstone. Many people prefer to also keep a diamond at the center and use ruby side stones to incorporate just a little bit of the hue. Incorporating birthstones into your engagement ring makes it even more special and personal. 

Rubies also work really well in other jewelry, whether it’s a band, a solitaire pendant, or classic stud earrings. Always look for high-quality gemstones from a reputable jeweler and ask about disclosure of any treatments to ensure you’re getting what you’re paying for.

Looking for Another Birthstone?

The marketing behind birthstones is purposeful so as to include readily-available gemstones that you shouldn’t have too much difficulty in finding. There are some alternative birthstones, such as Tanzanite in December or Alexandrite in June, that are more rare and you won’t find at just any jeweler. And most months of the year do have dual birthstones or alternative birthstones you can choose from, with examples below:

  • January Birthstone – Garnet
  • February Birthstone – Amethyst
  • March Birthstones – Aquamarine, Bloodstone
  • April Birthstone – Diamond, Rock Crystal
  • May Birthstone – Emerald, chrysoprase
  • June Birthstones – Pearl, Moonstone, Alexandrite
  • July Birthstone – Ruby, Carnelian
  • August Birthstones – Peridot, Spinel, Sardonyx
  • September Birthstone – Sapphire, Lapis Lazuli
  • October Birthstones – Opal, Tourmaline
  • November Birthstones – Topaz, Citrine
  • December Birthstones – Turquoise, Zircon, Tanzanite

Many of these gemstones and birthstones are also available in a wide variety of colors. Sapphire, for instance, come in every color of the rainbow. Garnets come in many colors too. And diamonds even! Don’t get too stuck on what you associate with a traditional birthstone. Instead, look for jewelry that captures your style and holds beauty to you.

An aquamarine Marquise engagement ring with diamond side stones
Ruby got you seeing red? There are other gemstones to choose from like this stunning Marquise cut aquamarine three stone engagement ring.

Seeing (And Buying) Red

Rubies are totally timeless and special and make an excellent birthstone for all of you July babies with their versatility and beauty. If you indulge in one, you’ll enjoy its passionate appeal and vibrant color for a lifetime. Explore our jewelry collection to find pieces that can be customized to include ruby gemstones, or start designing your custom ruby engagement ring today with our style quiz.

No matter which month you or your loved one was born, choosing birthstone jewelry or your favorite colors is a totally personal thing. Our expert design consultants and gemologists can help you mix and match to suit your style, and source just the right birthstone gem for you. Want to incorporate your whole family’s birthstones into a piece? We do that too! 
Drop us a line at and our team will work with you on budget, style, and stones to create the perfect birthstone jewelry of your dreams!

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