Tanzanite: The December Birthstone

Tanzanite, the December birthstone, is the rarest gemstone on Earth! Even more valuable than the Diamond, Tanzanite can only be found in one area in the world. Find out more about the Tanzanite below!


Maasai herders discovered this gemstone in 1967 in Tanzania, Africa. Originally thought to be the sapphire, these blue and violet stones were coined as “Tanzanite” by Tiffany and Co. Since tanzanite was only first discovered in the 1960’s, there is not much history, legend, or superstition about the gemstone. Today, tanzanite is the pride and joy of Tanzania and Africa as a whole.

Within a short period of time this gemstone has succeeded in achieving worldwide popularity. The factors for this major market are founded by the beauty of its color, its rarity, and durability. This stone is often called the “Heirloom Stone” since it is so rare and only mined in one place. Once this mine is empty, there will not be any more natural tanzanite, which makes it the perfect stone to pass down from generation to generation.

Given its beautiful color, rarity, and its popularity, the value of tanzanite is quite high. Tiffany's has one of the largest and most beautiful displays of tanzanite in the world starting at $2,000. The Smithsonian also has an impressive collection consisting of one stone of 122.7 carats and a rare cat's eye tanzanite of 18.2 carats.


Tanzanite rates a 6.5 on the hardness scale. It is a relatively soft stone, but given the proper care, it can last a lifetime.

The typical color of tanzanite is blue with a violet hue. In some lighter stones, the color is described as lavender. The color of the tanzanite is the most important factor in determining price. A tanzanite of a perfect blue is of greater value than a paler or darker stone of twice the size or carat weight.

Tanzanite also has color changing abilities! It can change from blue to violet depending on the lighting it is in. The color is caused by the amount of chromium present in the stone. It is also often found as a round or oval cut with few inclusions, but the larger the stone, the more inclusions will appear. 

Fun fact: being of very recent history, this stone has not been imitated or synthetically made.

Special Properties

Tanzanite changes colors when it is viewed in different lighting. This shifting of colors has been said to aid in realizing ideas and transforms self awareness. It is a stone for highly developed beings who have not yet recognized their strength. This creates trust and it helps to better come to terms with oneself. It is known to dispel lethargy and bring repressed feelings to the surface. It is also a wonderful tool to encourage recovery from stress. It strengthens the immune system, regenerates cells, and treats the heart, but it can also stimulate fertility. It is extremely beneficial to wear it directly on the body in contact with the skin and is recommended to wear for long periods of time.

Final Thoughts

Tanzanite is an incredibly rare gemstone that carries great significance in African culture and is at its highest peak of power during the month of December. Its value carries great weight in ethical mining and uniqueness as well!!

Click here for the December Birthstone Collection!


Have more birthstone questions? Checkout the blog post here!

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JSL Team :)