If you are interested in expanding your jewelry collection with some unique pieces, hematite rings may be the option you are looking for. Here is what you need to know about the fascinating gemstone, hematite.
The History of Hematite
Hematite is an oxide of iron that is part of the trigonal crystal system. It can be found in soils and rocks in varying shades of black, steel or silver-gray, brown, reddish-brown, or red, and has a luster that ranges from earthy to semi-metallic to metallic.
Due to its characteristic reddish pigment, its name is derived from tαἷμα (haima), the Greek word for “blood”. The English name can be traced back to the Ancient Greek term haimatites lithos, which literally translates to “blood-red stone”.
Hematite varieties exist, including iron rose, kidney ore, specularite, and the widely sought-after rainbow hematite, a mix of hematite and goethite with a multi-colored, iridescent shine.
Hematite has been found and mined on every continent, but most ore is produced in Brazil, Russia, India, China, Canada, Ukraine, South Africa, and The United States. It is widely used to make red pigment, iron, and jewelry.
Hematite is most commonly used as a pigment mineral, and dates as far back as the prehistoric era, when it was used to create cave paintings, or pictographs dating back to 164,000 years ago. It has been prized by many cultures throughout history.
The Greeks associated this stone with Ares, the God of War (or Mars, the Roman equivalent) Greek and Roman soldiers would rub hematite stones on their bodies to protect them in battle and increase their chances of surviving any wounds inflicted. Native Americans also believed that war paint made with hematite pigments would make the wearer invincible. Ancient Egyptians embellished the tombs of rulers with medallions and talismans crafted out of hematite and added the stone to jewelry for its anxiety-relieving effects.
As a gemstone, hematite was often used in mourning jewelry during the Victorian Era. Certain types of hematite were used as gilding in jewelry and in the creation of intaglio engraved hematite rings. It was a popular stone for men’s jewelry during the mid-century, but not for engagement or wedding jewelry.
Hematite’s Association with Negative Energy and The Metaphysical
Hematite has long been regarded as having spiritual and metaphysical properties. It is known as a “grounding stone” that provides stability and protection. It also helps to promote balance, healing, and clarity and protects its wearer from external forces or negative energies.
There are plenty of physical, mental, and emotional healing properties. Due to its high iron content, hematite has long been associated with blood, and unsurprisingly, it is considered one of the best gemstones for the promotion of healthy circulation in the body.
Hematite, also known as “The Stone of the Mind”, is also believed to boost one’s confidence and self-esteem, enhance memory, relieve stress and anxiety, and imbue its bearer with endurance, optimism, and courage. It serves as a powerful tool for spiritual growth and healing as its low-frequency vibrations may help the individual work through trauma and damage.
The Spiritual Meaning of Hematite Rings
Wearing hematite jewelry is a great way to stay connected with its energy on a daily basis. If you are looking to reap the benefits of hematite, rings are a great place to start.
Not only are they convenient and easy to bring with you, hematite rings also provide an accessible source of protection and balance. By coming into direct contact with the skin, they are able to improve circulation and cleanse your body of negative energy.
If you buy a hematite ring with the intention to make use of its cleansing abilities, it is recommended to wear it on your left hand as it connects you to your higher chakras. Given that the hematite is a protective stone that resonates with the root chakra, your base or center of stability, wearing it properly can stabilize the body and mind.
Do Hematite Rings Break?
One of the most popular metaphysical properties of hematite is its ability to defend and protect the wearer from negative energies by absorbing them. Many believe that a hematite ring breaks after absorbing all the negative energy it can on your behalf. It may also mean that it is done with its work in your life and that your time with the stone is complete.
The broken pieces of your ring can be cleansed and gifted to others, be it family or friends, who could potentially benefit from its grounding and healing qualities. To prevent an excessive build-up of energy, hematite rings must be frequently cleansed.
However, breakage can also occur as a result of temperature fluctuations, either from the wearer’s body or the external environment. Improper storage can also result in hematite rings becoming more fragile and brittle.
A Stunning Statement Piece
Regardless of whether you intend to buy hematite rings for their purported metaphysical purposes or not, they are an excellent option for anyone looking for an aesthetically pleasing yet generally inexpensive stone.
Black and dark gray stones are the most popular hematite varieties used in jewelry-making. Its silvery, mirror-like sheen makes for a fascinating and eye-catching collector’s item that evokes class and elegance. The darker hue also gives hematite rings a masculine appeal, making it popular among men.
As it commonly occurs as an opaque gem, hematite is rarely faceted and is typically cut into smooth and polished cabochons. Want to make a statement or add some dramatic flair to your wedding bands? Hematite rings are the way to go.
The variety of settings and metals these rings can be accented with makes them even more versatile; they work for any style or occasion! Whether you are in the mood for a round, oval, triangular or square shape, or beads or tumbled stones, hematite can be cut and polished to your specific preferences.
Popular pairings include hematite with white metals that enhance its sleek black and silver luster. There are also simple sterling silver settings that complement hematite’s metallic sheen, making for a more contemporary look. Those who prefer traditional, romantic looks can take the opulence up a notch with hematite surrounded by glittering diamonds and sapphires.
Try not to invest too much in a hematite ring as it should not be expensive, and you may have to replace the stone at some point in time due to its softness and lack of durability. Hematite rings should be outfitted with protective settings and worn with tender loving care. Even then, exposure to shocks and hard blows should be minimized.
They are hence most appropriate for those who are extra careful with their jewelry and do not intend to wear it often, especially if they have an active or physically demanding job or lifestyle.
Is This Hematite a Fake?
As with all gemstones, it takes a discerning eye to spot the difference between genuine hematite and a cheap imitation.
You may have seen jewelry made of magnetic metallic-looking beads being marketed as natural hematite. These are synthetic versions known as hematine, hemalyke, or hemalike that are easily and cheaply manufactured. They are extremely affordable and come in a wide variety of shapes and cuts.
It may be hard to distinguish the genuine articles from the fakes using appearance; it is nearly impossible to tell them apart. However, the magnetic properties of real hematite are extremely weak or non-existent. The counterfeit versions are usually highly magnetic and are nothing more than novelty items.
Another way to determine its authenticity is by conducting a streak test. Scrape a piece of hematite across unglazed porcelain and it should produce a reddish-brown streak, a characteristic shared by all specimens of hematite. You can also rub the stone with sandpaper. The mineral powder produced should have a reddish hue.
If the prices of hematite rings are astonishingly cheap, the pieces being sold are likely to be fakes. Do your research, read customer reviews, and vet the retailer’s sales and return policies before making a purchase. Always inquire about the origin and quality of the stone.
Ultimately, your best bet would be to purchase hematite jewelry from a trusted and reputable dealer.
Caring for Hematite Jewelry
Hematite measures around 5.5 to 6.6 on the Mohs hardness scale, making it susceptible to scratches and external damage. The best way to clean hematite jewelry, especially hematite rings, is by using only mild soap and water. Refrain from using ammonia or ultrasonic cleaning machines.
Take your ring off when engaging in activity that could potentially cause an impact on the ring, including cleaning, physical activity, or cooking. Hematite gems and jewelry must not come into contact with detergents and household chemicals, including cosmetics and perfumes. They should be stored separately in a fabric-lined jewelry box or cloth pouch away from other metals and gemstones.
Hematite rings are stunning pieces that make excellent additions to jewelry collections. What are you waiting for? There’s no better time to take the plunge and purchase the hematite ring you desire.