When selecting jewelry for their wedding day, most brides choose to wear one or more of the four precious gemstones: either diamonds, sapphires, rubies, and emeralds. These four precious gems are popular in bridal jewelry for good reason. They’re not only gorgeous and durable, but also incredibly meaningful. Each precious gemstone carries a meaning that’s as unique as its beauty and history. On top of that, precious gemstones are timeless. This means that a bride can enjoy wearing precious gemstone bridal jewelry long after celebrating the big day. 

In addition to being important, bridal jewelry can be a bit of an investment. So, picking out the right gemstone for your jewelry can feel like a major decision. However, if you’re not quite sure which precious gemstone is right for your wedding jewelry, we’re here to help! Below, we’re taking a closer look at diamonds, sapphires, rubies, and emeralds to help you find your ideal wedding day gem. 


Round diamond stud earrings, pictured here in traditional yellow gold, are the most popular type of bridal jewelry. 

Diamonds are the most popular center stone option for engagement rings, so it’s probably unsurprising that they’re also the most popular gemstone choice for bridal jewelry. It’s easy to understand why diamonds are so often a bride’s pick. Diamonds are elegant, beautiful, classic, versatile, and highly brilliant. In fact, they’re the most brilliant (meaning, sparkly) of all the precious gemstones, so they’ll shine from quite a distance. 

An elegant diamond pendant necklace is an ideal accent for a wedding dress with a lower neckline. 

Other advantageous attributes of diamonds include their meaning and incredible durability.  Diamonds symbolize eternal love, purity, and strength, giving them a meaning that’s perfectly suited to bridal jewelry. In terms of durability, diamonds simply can’t be beat. Diamonds are not only the hardest gemstone, but the hardest material on earth. This impressive durability makes diamond jewelry an excellent choice for everyday wear and a perfect choice for heirloom pieces. 


The stone at the heart of this delicate blue sapphire pendant symbolizes fidelity and wisdom.

The sapphire is a gemstone that comes in a rainbow of colors, but one variety is far more popular than the rest: the blue sapphire. Blue sapphires, loved for their lush and deep color, were once the most common center stone choice for engagement rings due to their meaning. For thousands of years, blue sapphires have been a symbol of fidelity, sincerity, wisdom, and good fortune. While blue sapphire engagement rings are less common today than they were in years past, they’ve had a recent resurgence in popularity, which can probably be chalked up to the ongoing influence of Kate Middleton’s sapphire and diamond ring, which once belonged to Princess Diana. 

Prong set and bezel set blue sapphire solitaire stud earrings provide a simple and gorgeous option for your “something blue.”

Blue sapphires are a lovely choice for gemstone engagement rings and all types of bridal jewelry. They’re beautiful, meaningful, regal, and quite durable, as they’re just a bit less hard than diamonds. Blue sapphire jewelry is also a chic option for a bride’s “something blue.” A pair of blue sapphire studs or a delicate blue sapphire pendant would be a lovely compliment to a white gown.  


Round ruby stud earrings will add a romantic touch to a bridal look. 

Rubies and sapphires are both made of the same mineral, corundum, but the ruby’s incredible color has put it in a category of its own. The rich, deep red hue of the ruby has captivated people for centuries. In ancient times, kings and queens coveted rubies more than any other stone and, in the modern era, rubies are still among the most prized gems. 

Due to their color, rubies are thought to represent love and passion, making a ruby a powerfully romantic choice for an engagement ring. Because they were so loved in ancient times, rubies also impart an antique quality to jewelry. The rich history, lovely meaning, and stunning color of the ruby makes it a wonderful choice for those who embrace romance and aren’t afraid to stand out from the crowd. 


A diamond halo adds dazzling sparkle to these white gold halo emerald stud earrings

Last but not least, we have the emerald. Emeralds come in only one color: a magnificent, lush green that’s unmatched by any other gemstone. Emeralds are most loved for their mesmerizing color, but they’re also loved for their meaning. This gorgeous gem symbolizes hope and renewal. Emeralds are also often associated with royalty, as many royals (including Cleopatra) have famously favored the gem. 

Emeralds tend to be more popular for earrings and necklaces when compared to engagement rings. Since these colored gemstones are a bit fragile due to their chemical structure and inclusions, they aren’t the best choice for everyday rings like engagement rings. Many jewelers would say that emeralds are best used in pieces like earrings and necklaces, where they can shine safely. For bridal jewelry, we particularly love emerald stud earrings. Emerald earrings are a gorgeous, eye-catching choice for any bride and they’re especially flattering on brides with green or hazel eyes. 

A Note On Semi-Precious Stones 

The four precious stones are the most popular options for bridal jewelry– but does that mean you should never choose semi-precious gemstones for wedding jewelry? Not necessarily. There are various reasons you may want to wear a semi-precious stone on your big day, including price, sentiment, and style. 

Budget concerns are perhaps the most common reason people choose to wear semi-precious stones on their wedding day. For example, perhaps you want to wear a pair of one carat diamond stud earrings with your bridal look, but don’t have room for them in your budget. In that case, you may want to go for a pair of moissanite stud earrings, which can provide a similar look for less. 

Other common reasons for wearing semi-precious bridal jewelry include sentiment and style. Every gemstone has its own unique meaning and appearance. If the sentiment and look you want isn’t encapsulated by one of the four precious stones, you may want to search out a semi-precious option with the right qualities for you. Also, if you want to wear your birthstone on your wedding day, but you weren’t born in April, May, July, or September, you’ll need to go semi-precious. All the other birthstones (and their alternate options) are semi-precious stones. This includes garnet, tsavorite, amethyst, aquamarine, bloodstone, pearl, moonstone, alexandrite, peridot, spinel, opal, tourmaline, morganite, blue topaz, citrine, zircon, tanzanite, and lapis lazuli. 

At the end of the day, whether you want to choose precious gemstones or semi-precious gemstones for your wedding day look is entirely up to you. What really matters is that you love the jewelry you wear on your big day, no matter if it’s precious or semi-precious.