Pink Tourmaline - A Passion for Woman

by Ian St Leon

Pink Tourmaline - A Passion for Woman by Jewels of St Leon. Three Raspberry Pink Tourmaline Gemstones.

Tourmaline comes in a rainbow of colours, from deep reds to stunning blues, lush greens and even jet black, some of these varieties of gemstones have been used in jewellery for centuries and possibly dating back thousands of years, but when it comes to pink Tourmaline, this is a relatively new discovery in comparison to many of the other shades.

This splendid gem has had a short life of remarkable and fascinating history and folklore tales. Its colouring is definitely something to behold, which is why many today adore this gemstone. Take a journey with us and learn more about this spectacular modern gemstone.

A History

Tourmaline, as a gemstone itself, has been around for centuries. Some variations have been around for thousands of years, like red Tourmaline, the darker shade of pink. Throughout history, it has been mistaken for Ruby or the famous story of the Spanish Conquistador who found a stunning green tourmaline in the 1500s and believed it to be an Emerald. This belief continued till Tourmaline was identified as a different gemstone variety in the 19th Century.

Tourmaline is derived from a Sri Lankan language known as Sinhalese; they called it toramalli, which means "mixed gems". The term Tourmaline was first used between 1750 - 1760. Pink Tourmaline was not popularly known until 1820, when a large quantity was discovered in Paris, Maine, USA. Nearly 72 years later, another large deposit was found near San Deigo, California, USA.

There are stories that native American Indians would use these stones in burial rituals or as gifts long before this. However, no written or documented history says that they traded or sold them, and they seem reserved for the passing of a loved one, elder or tribal chief.

The discovery of the California deposits greatly boosted this new jewel's popularity. American Gemmologist George F. Kunz took note and promoted this beautiful gem, but it was not Americans nor Europeans who were mesmerised by Pink Tourmaline; instead, it was the Chinese Dowager Empress Cixi (formally known as T'zu-hsi).

Her love for the pink variety was so great that she purchased vast quantities of the stone to be crafted into beautiful jewellery and other items including snuff bottles and carvings. Her love for the stone extended beyond her life and into death as she was laid to rest on a pillow crafted from a fine collection of pink Tourmaline in 1908.

After her death, the Chinese government continued to purchase much of the pink Tourmaline produced from the Californian mines until the Chinese government collapsed in 1912.

Around this time, the traditional October birthstone Opal was still considered bad luck in some parts of the world. The National Association of Jewellers wanted to standardise the birthstone list, and then the association added Tourmaline to the birthstone list. This was partly for commercial reasons and partly because it was relatively new; it did not carry this so-called omen of bad luck.

Since the change of the birthstone list, the popularity of Pink Tourmaline has grown and developed a devoted following. Tourmaline is known for its quality and durability when worn in various jewellery due to its versatility and stunning brilliant look. 

More deposits of Tourmaline were discovered in other parts of the world in the first half of the 20th Century, and these new mines yielded new deposits of Tourmaline, including new shades of the pink tones outside of the US. This semi-precious gemstone is now being mined worldwide, with beautiful examples of pinks, blues and every colour of the rainbow found, for instance, in Brazil, Madagascar and different regions of Africa.

Folklore and Superstitions

For a modern gemstone, there is a surprising amount of folklore surrounding Tourmaline. Much of this concerns the wide variety of colours within the Tourmaline family. One story believed to have originated in Egypt is that Tourmaline travelled along a rainbow and absorbed the colours as it travelled along the rainbow, and that is why it has so many colour varieties.

Like with other gemstones, colour has a lot to do with how the gem is regarded in relation to the mythology surrounding it and the powers or symbolism that this stone is said to possess, and Pink Tourmaline is no different.

Pink Tourmaline, even today is associated with compassion and wisdom, unconditional love and friendship. It is also believed to promote relaxation, peacefulness, and a joyful state of mind. Others associate it with good luck in contrast to the late 19th and early 20th Century rumours about the traditional October birthstone Opal.

Other varieties of Tourmaline also have many legends and folklore attached to them, including the stone's ability to channel magical powers. The belief comes from the South American Andes mountains, and it was said that Magicians would use Tourmaline to create magical staffs to channel their magic.

Various colours have also been associated with curing depression, improving the mind, body and spirit or providing creativity to people with artistic flair, who would wear it in jewellery or as a talisman.

The gorgeous Pink Tourmaline gemstone brings harmony and peace to those who own and wear it, not because of some special powers within the stone, but because it is a lovely gemstone to own and wear.

Colours and Variations

Tourmaline comes in a variety of colours, two stunning colours are pink and green.

When it comes to Tourmaline, there is a variety of colours and tones, but this is also true when it comes to a single colour. We have a habit of thinking that a gemstone has a single colour variation, but this is not true; in fact, they can be many and varied within a single colour hue due to saturation and intensity of the individual colouring.

Pink Tourmaline has a wide range of colouring variations, including a light pastel pink through to the more vibrant hot pink and into the darker raspberry pinks, which feature a reasonable pink to red colouring with medium to dark tones.

But wait, there is more, as Tourmaline can also include more than one colour in one stone, known as particoloured. This combination is particularly spectacular with Pink and Green Tourmaline. They can be pink on one end and green on the other, or you can get what is known as watermelon Tourmaline, which is green on both ends and pink in the middle for a magnificent effect.

When choosing the colouring of these elegant jewels, everyone has an opinion, but we think it is an individual choice. While one person may prefer a vivid hot pink, another may prefer the deep richness of a raspberry pink stone.

Jewellery with Pink Tourmaline. 

Sterling Silver Pink Tourmaline Circle Necklace from Jewels of St Leon

Tourmaline is a gemstone used in jewellery for centuries, though at the time, they were not known as Tourmaline but mistaken for rubies, emeralds and other precious stones. The perfect example is in 1777, when Gustav III of Sweden, after visiting Catherine II of Russia (Catherine the Great), presented her with a magnificent gift of a raspberry-coloured ruby pendant. The gemstone is known as the "Ceaser Ruby" pendant, 145 years after Gustav III gave it to Catherine II; noted mineralogist A.E. Fersman found that it was not a ruby but a raspberry-coloured Tourmaline.

You may be asking yourself, is Tourmaline a good gemstone for jewellery?
The simple answer is yes.


Pink Tourmaline is highly desirable in jewellery for its brilliance under natural and artificial light. Pink Tourmaline, in particular, is ideal for a softer and more feminine look and feel. Tourmaline is durable and can be worn daily as a ring, pendant, or earrings, or you could wear a combination of all three.

Like any gemstone and fine jewellery, we recommend that it is cared for so that the jewellery and gemstone will last you a lifetime and future generations can also enjoy wearing it.

Interesting Facts

  1. The Dutch discovered that if you rubbed or heated Tourmaline, it would draw dust and ash to the gem (We do not recommend this). They would use them to remove ash from their pipes. This phenomenon is due to Tourmaline's unique structure, which can build up a small electrical charge.
  2. Pink Tourmaline was once associated with the Philosopher's Stone by Alchemists. The Philosopher's Stone was believed to be able to change base metals into precious metals and to hold or create the elixir of life.
  3. Though larger quantities of Pink Tourmaline were not discovered till the 1820s, throughout history, Pink Tourmaline has been traded, with fine examples making their way into Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Europe, usually mistaken for other precious jewels.
  4. In 2019, the Gemmological Society of Great Britain confirmed that a carving of Alexander the Great was on Tourmaline. It has been confirmed that this carving dates back to his reign (circa 334-323 BC).
  5. The deeper reddish variety of Tourmaline is also known by the name Rubellite.


Pink Tourmaline, whether a single tint, particoloured or watermelon, is an alluring gemstone for those who love a quality stone with a rich colour. Ideal for jewellery with its durability and versatility, you can wear this jewel day or night in rings, earrings and pendants for a radiant style appropriate for all occasions.

The feminine shades of pink Tourmaline stand out in a crowd and are especially suited for spring and summer, where it can shine bright instead of being hidden under layers of clothes. This gem demands to be shown to one and all.

There is a lot of meaning to Pink Tourmaline in October. It not only represents the eighth wedding anniversary and is the modern birthstone for those lucky to be born in this month, but it is also associated with breast cancer awareness throughout October.

Adding one or two pieces to your jewellery collection is a must if you love quality bright gems in jewellery and want your piece to stand out with meaning and passion.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.