Gemstones Used in Jewelry

Gemstones have been used since ancient times as amulets, symbols of power and magic, energy and healing sources, and as adornments for utilitarian objects. Later, jewelry in general took on different meanings. A ring for example is used as the symbol of a married couple. For most people, however, wearing jewelry is a show of wealth.

Gemstones used in jewelry are mineral crystals which have been cut, polished, refined and set in metals to decorate the body. Gemstones are classified into 4 types, semi-precious and precious gems and rock and organic materials.

Semi-Precious Gems
These are gemstones cut from a mineral and then refined or shaped and then set in metal to create jewelry. There really is no significant difference between semi-precious and precious gems except in their market value. Pure forms of semi-precious gems fetch high prices that rival those of precious gems too. Some examples of semi-precious stones include amethyst, turquoise, garnet, tourmaline, and tanzanite.

Precious Gems

Precious gems are considered more valuable in most cultures and are often used in unique and expensive pieces. The precious gems are diamond, sapphire, ruby and emerald. That means all the others are semi-precious gems. How are they different from semi-precious stones? Precious gems are valued for their translucent quality especially when they are in pure form. That is why even if the colorless diamonds aren’t rare like other gemstones, they are coveted by a lot of people because they sparkle. Some jewelers, however, claim that the categories are based only on commercial value.


Minerals are formed from cooled lava and then they turn into crystals through chemical, pressure and temperature changes. Rocks on the other hand are a combination of these minerals so they don’t have a specific structure like the crystals. An example of a rock that is considered a gemstone is the lapis lazuli. Others which some jewelers don’t consider organic gems like coral and amber are sometimes classified as rocks.

Organic Gems

Sometimes amber and coral are classified as organic gemstones. Organic gems were part of living organisms like animals and plants. Other organic gems include pearls, ivory, and jet. A sub-type of organic gems are mineralized organic materials such as opal, fossil coral, chalcedony, petrified wood, pyrite, aragonite, and even dinosaur bone. They came from or were produced by living things.


Some of the common metals used for gemstone jewelry are gold, silver and platinum. Platinum is used for most diamond jewelry. There is also a distinction between the types of metals used for. The precious or noble metals which fetch high prices are platinum, gold and silver while all the rest are considered semi-precious or base metals. The combination of the gemstones and metals will affect the price of the jewelry you will purchase.

Top 3 Budget-Friendly Shopping Destinations in Singapore

According to a website survey, Singapore is in seventh place in the list of the 20 most expensive cities to live in the world. For Singaporeans, this is disconcerting to know especially if you are trying to make a living.


Because of this, we are determined to save up on expenses in any way. Luckily, when it comes to buying stuff we need and want, there are places where we can buy affordable clothes and other essential items without sacrificing its quality. Here are some top places to shop budget-friendly products in Singapore.

Mustafa Centre

The Mustafa Centre attracts different types of customers because of their wide array of different products sold at low prices. You can find anything from jewelry, household items, fashionable clothes, books and even groceries here. What makes it an even more amazing shopping destination is that it’s open 24 hours a day all year round.

Far East Plaza


If you’re a fashion aficionado looking for budget-friendly fashion items, then Far East Plaza may be the shopping venue for you. This budget shopping place sells hip and trendy fashion products depicting Korean, vintage and Hong Kong fashion. Most items range from $15 to $30. Beauty service shops like beauty salons, spas and tattooing services are also found in Far East Plaza.

Bugis Street

A home to more or less 600 shops, Bugis Street sells the latest fashionable items, from clothes, shoes, bags, and even accessories. There’s never a dull moment for fashionistas because products are most likely updated daily so you’ll never run out of items and new designs to purchase.


A Guide to Bugis Street Shopping

Bugis Street – as many old Singaporeans would attest – has definitely transformed itself from its not-to-savoury past. Today, the street houses the Bugis Street Flea Market, Singapore’s largest flea market with 800 stalls offering various products and one of the country’s most popular shopping destination. Aside from the array of items that can be found here, Bugis Street Flea Market also offers the cheapest products – whether they’re hand-me-downs or brand new ones.


Aside from the cheap hand-me-down and brand new products in the Bugis Street Flea Market, one can also find cheap foods here. In this street also lies stalls that offer different dishes from native Singaporean dishes to dishes from a fusion of Asian and European cuisine. Best yet, all of these can be bought at very cheap prices.

Another good place in Bugis Street that teenagers would surely love is the Bugis Junction. This is another shopping centre that hosts fresh and trendy products for teens and hipsters. If you feel hungry after your long hours of shopping, located in the basement of the mall are a lot of food stalls where you can find native Singaporean dishes and other gastronomic delights.


If you are not satisfied yet with the teens stuff you saw in Bugis Junction, you can walk to another place which offers teen oriented products—the Iluma. Iluma offer a wide array of products for teens. What made this place different from the Bugis Junction is the Film Garde. This place has a nine-screen Cineplex movie house. If you are a fan of films, you will find this place interesting. Nonetheless, if you only want some photo opportunities, you can pass by this place at night. The lighting of the Film Garde is worth the snap.

Before you leave, you can also pass by OG Albert Complex where you can buy different souvenirs including home decorations, more clothes and different travelling stuff. All of these can be found in Bugis Street, and can be located by taking the MRT.



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