July's birthstone is the Ruby - quite literally a royal stone; in Sanskrit ruby is ratnaraj which translates to the "king of gems." The word ruby also comes from the Latin rubeus, meaning red. Rubies are formed from corundum, which is the same stone that sapphires are, while chromium is the trace element that lends the signature red ruby color to these rosy rocks. Rubies rank as a 9 on the Mohs hardness scale, making it durable enough for everyday wear for engagement rings or fine jewelry for all occasions. Only diamonds are harder than rubies.
Rubies command the highest prices of any gemstones with per carat prices increasing consistently and oftentimes breaking auction records. For exmaple, the most expensive ruby ever sold was a 25.59ct stone worth $32.4 million. On May 12, 2015, the ruby ring sold for $1,266,901 per carat, setting a new record at auction for a colored gemstone. These sanguine stones are most valued for their color with the finest rubies being a pure, vibrant red to slightly purplish red color. The purer reds command the most expensive prices in most markets. Lauren, Valerie Madison's staff gemologist, works to source only the finest and most unique rubies for our rings.
The most common shapes of rubies on the market are ovals and cushions and you can find that these shapes lend a lovely complement to our signature Valerie Madison settings such as the Luna, Marisol, or Eva. Shop all of our ruby pieces here for yourself or your loved ones born in July.