Moonstone vs. Rainbow Moonstone

Moonstone vs. Rainbow Moonstone, are they the same?

Hello, my name is Susan and I’m a self proclaimed rock hound. The wee collections scattered around my studio are proof positive that I’m addicted to rocks of all kinds. AND, I design jewelry. Hello. Dead giveaway.

rock collection

Remember those Hallmark calendars that had the lists of birthstones in the back? Yep, I always begged my mother for those calendars so that I could check out which stone matched the month. Back in the 70’s, you didn’t get 3 stone choices, it was one and done. My birthday was in June, and my birthstone was pearl. Which as a kid was suuuuuuper boring. And, pearl…not even a STONE! I always felt slighted. So, imagine my surprise when they (not sure who “they” actually are…the birthstone police? Hallmark execs? Kay Jewelers?) added alternate birthstones to the ever popular birthstone list. We then had traditional birthstones and MODERN birthstones. How clever. So, at some point my birthstone choices became pearl, alexandrite, and moonstone. A girl loves choices.

Well, now I can get behind that, because rainbow moonstone is pretty fantastic, right?? I mean all that flashy color in a typically translucent stone. Ooh, la la. Flashy like my moods. Then, of course, because I like to learn about the stones that I use, I discovered that moonstone, and rainbow moonstone may not be the same at all. In fact, depending on the resource, some people call rainbow moonstone — White Labradorite.

What??!

Does this mean, it’s not moonstone? But it’s called moonstone. This was very troubling. Everything I thought I knew was now in question. AND, most of all, can I even use this as my birthstone any longer?? Or am I a FRAUD!?

Now, here we are. I’ve collected information from a few good resources and now present you with Moonstone 101. Hopefully by the end of this post you will understand the differences between these two stones. My goal is to give us June babies the knowledge we need to make knowledgable choices going forward.

moonstoneMoonstone

According to the GIA (Gemological Institute of America) moonstone belongs to the feldspar group of minerals, orthoclase. The stone is known for its adularescence, which is a fancy term for an optical phenomenon that makes stones such as moonstone appear to be glowing from beneath their surface. Moonstone, often associated with love, passion and fertility, ranges in color from white to creamy yellow, peach and grey.

rainbow moonstoneRainbow Moonstone

The big question; is are these stones the same? The short answer is, NO. They are more like cousins. Rainbow moonstone is a type of plagioclase feldspar. The most widely known stone of that group being Labradorite. While rainbow moonstone is closely related to moonstone (remember that feldspar connection), they are technically NOT THE SAME. Rainbow moonstone is essentially translucent labradorite and often has black tourmaline inclusions. Here’s the best part. Although it is actually a variety of labradorite, people in the trade refer to it as rainbow moonstone despite the fact that it is NOT an orthoclase feldspar. Nothing like making the water all muddy for those of us that aren’t experts, right?

There you have it. Rainbow moonstone is not in fact moonstone. If you’ve made it this far in my little gemology lesson, here’s the fun part. It’s my birthday, and in the spirit of moonstone I’m showing you all some love with a birthday giveaway! Here’s how you can win.

1) Head over to my Instagram or Facebook page and follow me. On Facebook there is a pinned post, tag a friend in the comments.

2) Comment below with your birthstone and whether you like it or not.

Good luck!

109 Comments

  1. Emily
    June 23, 2020

    My birthstone is Opal for October!! I have always loved opal and now I’m trying to collect a ring with every type of opal I can find. I have normal opal, bolder opal, fire opal and Australian black opal so far. Stones with rainbows in them are always the best ☺️

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      I like the way you think, Emily! Maybe I’ll be able to see your collection the next time I’m in Madison!

      Reply
      • Emily
        June 23, 2020

        I will have an opal infinity gauntlet haha! And yes absolutely I’ll make sure I have them all on!

        Reply
        • Susan Collick
          June 23, 2020

          The geek in me loves the geek in you and this comment! lol!

          Reply
  2. Liz trebilcock
    June 23, 2020

    Sapphire, I like it 🙂

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      I always liked that one too. Super classic.

      Reply
  3. Debbi Stanley
    June 23, 2020

    My birthstone is diamond or white sapphire. Goes easy with any other color gemstone 🙂.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Absolutely! And of course, diamonds are a girls best friend, right??

      Reply
      • Debbi
        June 23, 2020

        Absolutely! And I related to your birthstone story as my kids are both June birthdays. When I went make a mother’s ring, I didn’t want to use pearl as I had a diamond I had I inherited that I wanted use in the middle of a three stone ring and my kids are boys.. I researched and used alexandrite and loved the outcome. I did grab a moonstone charm for my Pandora bracelet several years back in their honor too.

        Reply
  4. Kailey
    June 23, 2020

    My birthstone is opal and I like the white opal stones, not the pinkish ones 😊

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      I’m with you on that, Kailey! But I think my favorite is boulder opal. =)

      Reply
  5. Amy Taylor
    June 23, 2020

    My birthday is in December so the traditional stone is Blue Topaz which I’m okay with but I’ve always like aquamarine better. Lucky March birthdays! A newer add is turquoise which I never really liked that much until you started using it in your pieces. I love the way you use it as an accent. xo.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Oooh, yep. Blue topaz is ok, but LONDON BLUE is WOW! I’ll have to show you some of that one of these days. You’d like it Amy!

      Reply
  6. Michelle Manser
    June 23, 2020

    Garnet and I do love it… even though my birthstone should be turquoise! 🤣

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Yes! You and your turquoise habit, I’m right there with you!

      Reply
  7. Kathleen
    June 23, 2020

    My birthstone is amethyst. I like it and I love all of your jewelry. 😊

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      You say the sweetest things, Kathleen! <3

      Reply
  8. Laura B.
    June 23, 2020

    February birthday…. amethyst. 💕😎

    BTW… brilliant idea! need to steal this (haha)

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      You crack me up…

      Reply
  9. Robin Gilbert
    June 23, 2020

    I’m sure you know my birthstone but in case for some reason you forgot it is Garnet. I actually do like my birthstone as long as it doesn’t have to much of the orange color to it.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      I wouldn’t forget something like that! lol

      Reply
  10. Sara Armour
    June 23, 2020

    Mine is garnet…Not my favorite. Prefer moonstone! 😉

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      I guess the proper question then is, rainbow moonstone or moonstone? lol!

      Reply
  11. Diana
    June 23, 2020

    My birthstone is also pearl. As a kid I didn’t like it, but I like the moonstone, it’s pretty.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Me too! I always was jealous of August birthdays…peridot is just so happy!

      Reply
  12. Laura Gross
    June 23, 2020

    My birthstone is either Topaz or Citrine. I love the London Blue topaz even though it is a treated stone and not natural coloring. I am not a fan of Citrine.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      London blue is soooo pretty. I agree on citrine. I consider it a “helper stone”. It’s a fantastic warm contrast in small amounts.

      Reply
  13. Annie Kidwell
    June 23, 2020

    My birthstone is tourmaline – which I didn’t know, my birthday is in October. It comes in lots of colors, I really love the variety!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Oooooh, that is a good one Annie! My favorite is the rare blue color. Nothing quite like blue tourmaline.

      Reply
  14. Becky Thomas
    June 23, 2020

    My birthstone is amethyst. It’s not my fav but it all depends on how it’s used. I like it when it looks more natural like you use it but don’t like it as much when it’s really “fancy.”

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      I’m with you on this one! I love it mixed with lab and vesuvianite and apatite. (I call that my peacock color scheme)

      Reply
  15. Rayelene Umstead
    June 23, 2020

    I’m also a June b-day and never liked pearls or alexandrite, but I love moonstone – sapphire and amethyst too.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      …and a very Happy Birthday to you, Rayelene!

      Reply
  16. Darlene wojdacki
    June 23, 2020

    My birthday is June so I guess Moonstone would be my gem along with pearl. It is nice that it can be neutral.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Happy birthday to you, Darlene!

      Reply
  17. Vicki Smith
    June 23, 2020

    My birthday is in May so emerald is my birthstone which I have never liked as doesn’t go with my color choices

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Emerald is a tricky green. It looks great with metal, but has a tough time playing nicely with other stones. But, the upside for me is that I’m a State fan, Go Green!

      Reply
  18. Susan
    June 23, 2020

    Mine is diamond…not a fan!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Plain diamonds have nothing on the colored ones! Blue and green raw diamonds are WOW!

      Reply
  19. Susan Moore
    June 23, 2020

    Mine is diamond…not a fan!

    Reply
  20. Becci Longstreth
    June 23, 2020

    My birthday is June 29 and I have never loved the June options….until I discovered moonstone! It’s still not my favorite (that belongs to Aquamarine) but I do have a ring now that is moonstone.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Happy early birthday to you!

      Reply
  21. Sarah
    June 23, 2020

    I’m an Emerald birthstone. I have always loved the raw green color of it, and I’m actually pretty happy it’s my birthstone!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Green is always good!

      Reply
  22. Chrissie
    June 23, 2020

    Happy Birthday!
    My birthstone is garnet. I like it when it’s rough cut.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      So many different shades of garnet…my favorite is green.

      Reply
  23. Sharon
    June 23, 2020

    Sapphire, I like it, but I prefer…. labradorite 😜 and watermelon tourmaline 💕

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Did you know that rainbow moonstone was a form of lab??? I was so surprised!!

      Reply
  24. Patty Eaton
    June 23, 2020

    My B stone is Ruby for July! I’ve always been happy with it although at some point learned that it isn’t always deep red. But either way, it always made me feel special for having it!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Ruby can be very pink. That surprised me too. I really love the raw ones…they make me happy. 🙂

      Reply
  25. Bernadette Lois
    June 23, 2020

    Mine is October Opal !
    I do like it, but I like some other stones better – like Labradorite !

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Opals look amazing with labradorite!

      Reply
  26. Emilie Aubuchon
    June 23, 2020

    I’m a garnet girl.
    Its alright. Just bold.
    I’d prefer a more neutral color but have come to appreciate it with age. The boldness, that is :

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 23, 2020

      Have you seen the different colors that garnet comes in? There is a shade for every mood I swear!

      Reply
  27. Sandi
    June 24, 2020

    My birthstone is Ruby and I love it. I liked them so much, we put them in my wedding ring.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 24, 2020

      I love that you bucked the traditional diamond and added the ruby to make it all your own. I think that is starting to trend more and more.

      Reply
  28. Angelle Batten
    June 24, 2020

    Topaz and I never really liked having a yellow birthstone which is the only color I thought it came in. After reading your post I just did a search and apparently not only does Topaz come in other colors, I have the choice of Citrine as well. Still yellow/gold. Hmmm. Funny thing is I have rough citrine crystals that I am drawn to for meditation and the yellow feels uplifting when I hold them. ☀️

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 24, 2020

      Yes! It is surprising when you discover a stone you always thought had only one shade, but it really has several. There are a ton of stones like that. =)

      Reply
  29. Kristin K.
    June 24, 2020

    Sapphire is my birthstone and I’ve always loved it! My daughter is a June baby so I agree with you, Susan, that it’s fantastic June has two choices in addition to pearl for its birthstone because I am not a big fan of pearls! (Especially since I love personalized jewelry & have a couple of pieces with my kids’ birthstones.)

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 24, 2020

      Sapphire is always a good one. Another stone that has a variety of shades if you get tired of blue!

      Reply
  30. paula wright
    June 25, 2020

    My birthstone is ruby and I don’t wear red so it isn’t a stone I enjoy.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 25, 2020

      I totally understand that, Paula! That’s the way I felt about June for a long time. So after some reading, apparently you can be a gemini or a cancer baby in July and those actually each have different stones too. Maybe you’ll be able to find one you like from that?

      Reply
  31. Natalie L
    June 26, 2020

    I’ve always loved my June pearls & have some DC beautiful freshwater necklace and lovely earrings. I don’t have Alezandrites but like it! That’s the Gemini twins coming out haha!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      Pearls and turquoise, fits you perfectly!

      Reply
  32. Noelle Wright
    June 26, 2020

    My December birthstone is blue zircon which never really spoke to me. But I just looked it up to confirm only to discovered turquoise is also considered my birthstone. WHAT?? All these years and how did I not know this?! I adore turquoise and have always been partial to the less ‘shimmery’ stones.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      Turquoise is your stone, Noelle!!! That’s perfect for you!

      Reply
  33. Diane Hachigian
    June 26, 2020

    Ruby is my birthstone and I love Susan’s creations!!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      You say the sweetest things!

      Reply
  34. Kay Thomas
    June 26, 2020

    Hi Susan! My birthstone is ruby and sure, the genuine stones are pretty (and expensive). It lost it’s appeal when I learned that you actually have to ask if a piece contains a lab-made ruby. I’d so much rather any REAL semi-precious stone.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      Learning about stones is a never-ending process, Kay! I totally understand that first hand. If something doesn’t look real, chances are it has been enhanced in some way. I love my vendors because they always give me the 411 on the ins and outs of the trade.

      Reply
  35. Karen B.
    June 26, 2020

    I’ve never liked my August birthstone, Peridot. I’ve just checked out the GIA site, and will be exploring the other two options, Spinel and Sardonyx. Thanks for the info!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      Spinel has so many different color options, Karen. Everything from a dusky blue-grey to rose tones and pale yellow/white(clear).

      Reply
  36. Emily Fricks
    June 26, 2020

    I’m a December birthday and no, I’m not a fan of my birthstone. I think it’s Blue Zircon, although I’ve heard of others as well. I much prefer my daughter’s peridot birthstone.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      Turquoise is another fave for December, Emily!

      Reply
  37. Paula Ellis
    June 26, 2020

    I’ve always worn amethyst as my birthstone with pride. But I am now curious what my alternate birthstone would be for February.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      Well, not to disappoint you, but amethyst is the modern and traditional stone for that month Paula. But, bloodstone is the mystical stone for February. It’s unusual, and not something I work with typically. Reminds me of a jasper.

      Reply
  38. Jen Cheetam
    June 26, 2020

    Mine is the Zircon for December but guess there are other stones possibly associated with December as well (?). I always liked my birthstone for it’s beautiful bright blue color💙. I loved wearing it on a necklace as a kid😊.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      I just learned that December has 3 stones (I thought only 2)! Turquoise and tanzanite are the other stones for December, Jen. Both great choices!

      Reply
  39. Laura Friedrich
    June 26, 2020

    My birthstone is Ruby. I like it.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      I especially love rubies with turquoise. =)

      Reply
  40. Carly Plescia
    June 26, 2020

    I am born in December so my birthstone is turquoise. Or, that is what I always thought. I looked it up online and found out that Zircon and Tanzanite can be added to the list. I am super excited about Tanzanite because I have a beautiful necklace and ring in tanzanite.! I love the beautiful intense blue color.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      Tanzanite was a new one for me! I knew about the other two, but that one was a surprise. 😊

      Reply
  41. Stephanie Kaza
    June 26, 2020

    Mine is garnet for January. I never liked it as a kid; red was my least favorite color. But now I love the deep richness of the color. I’m always on the hunt for the perfect piece of jewelry with a garnet stone. I’m not even sure what I’m looking for, but I haven’t found it yet.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 26, 2020

      Stephanie, I hear that. I think the biggest disappointment for me was finding out how hard it was to find that deep red in a ruby. So many of the natural stones with no treatment are more on the red-pink end of the scale. That said, I’ve come to really love the raw rubies. Something about the lack of polish and the rougher shapes. They really appeal to me.

      Reply
  42. Lisa Angus
    June 27, 2020

    My birthstone is diamond….who doesn’t love diamonds 🙂 Though….I love the color green so it wouldn’t hurt my feelings if I had been born in August because I do love peridot.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 27, 2020

      dude…have you seen green diamonds? ugh, they are are so pretty they make my stomach hurt!

      Reply
  43. Melanie
    June 27, 2020

    Opal and it is my favorite stone 🙂

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 27, 2020

      You are going to LOVE my Tuesday release. Lots and lots of opal. =)

      Reply
  44. Shelly
    June 27, 2020

    April is Diamond.
    I suppose I like it…🤷🏻‍♀️ It’s made from compressed coal… I think Santa stocking lol
    Now days they can create diamonds in a lab that are identical to earth diamonds which kinda makes them seem not so special anymore… 🤔 but whatever 😂
    ❤️U

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 27, 2020

      Raw blue diamonds are my favorite. I love that they are imperfect, but in a color that defies what my brain thinks a diamond should be. <3 u 2!

      Reply
  45. Karyn
    June 27, 2020

    I’m February—amethyst— which is nice, because I like purple! I struggle though to find something REALLY different in that birthstone that I LOVE.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 27, 2020

      Amethyst is tough…I lean toward stones that are more earthy, but amethyst wants to be refined! Looks amazing with labradorite.

      Reply
  46. Kristine Foate
    June 27, 2020

    My birthstone is turquoise.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 27, 2020

      A December baby! Lucky you, you get zircon and tanzanite to choose from too! (and zircon comes in 2 colors that I know of…)

      Reply
  47. Suzi Frank
    June 27, 2020

    I’m ruby, never been that crazy about it but my Son’s is October which is pink tourmaline so I wear his instead. Its a mothers perogative to steal her child’s birthstone.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 27, 2020

      Absolutely, Suzi! My girls all have good ones, so I just trade at will. =)

      Reply
  48. kimberly
    June 27, 2020

    Like you, my birthday is in June. I didn’t care for the pearl either for my birthstone- especially in my teens. I I felt better knowing the 2nd choice Alexandrite was an option but later found that a true one changed colors-
    emerald by day. ruby by night…rare & too expensive to get. Overtime, I grew to like pearls.
    I never knew Moonstone was a 3rd choice I had until I read your news blog.
    If I had known it then, my heart would have gravitated towards it.
    I like the illuminating glow and it is one that I can appreciate.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 27, 2020

      Happy birthday, Kimberly!

      Reply
  49. Melody
    June 29, 2020

    Hi Susan & Happy Birthday 🎉🎈

    Turquoise is my stone as I’m a “day after Christmas baby“ and it turned out perfect because
    I love that holiday and equally love the stone….both blue & green!!! It fits me better than a gem stone…Just lots of silver and turquoise here and there makes me happy. Oh, and I love your new collection!!! 🙂 My mom & I miss seeing you on the circuit but I’m guessing it’s been nice to spend some time with your family…I hope you are all
    well & safe. Interesting times we are living in….I know we will all get thru it. Keep that smile
    brightening those around you & hope to see you soon!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 29, 2020

      Thank you for the birthday wishes, Melody! Give your mom a hug for me!

      Reply
  50. Connie Dyson
    June 29, 2020

    Amethyst

    I love my birthstone!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 29, 2020

      But labradorite is your spirit stone! 😘

      Reply
  51. Michele Cassatta
    June 29, 2020

    My birthday is August which makes my birthstone Peridot. Admittedly, I was not a fan as a kid and young adult. Over the years I have grown to love it! It looks nice with my complexion so I think I can pull off the jewelry. I have two rings but no other jewelry to speak of that contains peridot. I’d love to add more…..hint hint Susan.

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 29, 2020

      I gotcher back girl! =)

      Reply
  52. Kimberly Hempton
    June 30, 2020

    My birthday is August and my birthstone is peridot. I have never appreciated it – but really because I don’t gravitate to green jewelry. I am typically a bit bolder in taste than the peridot and appreciate the more natural looks of stones that are not completely uniform. I really love oxidized silver, brass and copper more than specific stones – but @daisychains adds a beautiful stone combination that surprises me every time! If you are looking for a true artisan with an eye for beautiful and unique combinations – look no further!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 30, 2020

      Thank you Kimberly! ❤️

      Reply
  53. Kristin Burns
    June 30, 2020

    My bday is October, so your boulder opals are gorgeous & perfect for my special month!💗 The Moonstones are amazing too. Thank you for creating such beautiful pieces of jewelry. I love it in the morning when I decide which of your creations I’m going to wear that day. They make me very happy!

    Reply
    • Susan Collick
      June 30, 2020

      Boulder opals are a perfect stone for your birthday, Kristin!

      Reply
  54. Anna
    July 2, 2020

    My birthday is in June and I love moonstone. Such a beautiful stone. Love the jewelry you make with it!

    Reply

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