As Wedding Know How editors, we write about things that we love and we think you'll like too. We have affiliate partnerships and sponsorship and may generate some revenue from these at no cost to you.
One of the most beautiful gemstones for jewelry, moonstone has a luminous, sophisticated and dainty look for engagement rings.
But is it a suitable gemstone for a ring meant to be worn daily?
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of moonstone engagement rings, and explore a range of ring designs to inspire you.
What Is Moonstone?
Moonstone is a semi-precious gemstone, known for its luminescent glow and translucent appearance. It’s this special sheen that gives moonstone its name. Fun fact – the early Romans believed moonstone was made of solidified moon rays.
This sheen, referred to as adularescence, occurs because of the way light interacts with the stone, reflecting off the layers of feldspar minerals that its composed of.
Moonstone has been used in jewelry for hundreds of years. It can be made into most types of jewelry and with proper maintenance and care, works well as an engagement ring stone too.
Pros and Cons of Moonstone Engagement Rings
Although diamonds are, without doubt, the most popular gemstones for engagement rings, for a couple that want a different, bohemian and more natural look, the moonstone makes an excellent alternative. Here are the pros and cons of moonstone engagement rings:
- Moonstone is a versatile gemstone and suits a range of ring designs and styles.
- It has a celestial, almost mystical, look unlike any other gemstone
- It’s a great way to express your personality and style, as well as independence from accepted norms
- It complements all skin tones
- It’s a conversation starter
- Every moonstone is different from the next due to the way the stone is composed. This makes each stone truly unique.
- It’s one of the birthstones for June, making it an extra special engagement ring if your birthday (or other special event like when you got engaged or the month of your wedding) falls in June.
- Moonstone isn’t a highly durable stone, ranking only 6 to 6.5 on the Mohs scale. It sits somewhere in the middle – much softer than diamonds but much harder than pearls or opals. It can easily be scratched by everyday objects, so maintenance and care are important.
- It can shatter if dealt a hard blow as it has cleavage within the stone. Cleavage refers to the fault lines within a gemstone, which can make a stone prone to cracking and shattering.
Moonstone Engagement Ring Designs
Moonstone rings have a delicate and stylish look not often seen in an engagement ring. The stone goes well with any metal color, but has a delicate, chic look when paired with rose gold or yellow gold. For a more modern look, white metals are ideal.
Here are some of our favorite moonstone engagement ring designs and why we love them:
1- Floral Moonstone Ring: This lotus flower moonstone ring perfectly marries the gemstone with the metal, with both complementing each other. Although the moonstone is very small in this ring, the lotus design brings out its unique beauty.
Lotus Moonstone Ring by The Manerovs. Check Price Here.
2- Halo Moonstone Ring: The benefit of a halo ring design is that not only does it add sparkle to the moonstone but it also adds protection around the stone, effectively working as a buffer.
Halo Moonstone Ring by Blue Nile. Check Price Here.
3- Uneven Faceted Moonstone: While cabochon cut moonstones have their beauty, uneven freehand facets bring out a rustic, strong look from a moonstone. This is ideal for a statement style.
Partially Faceted Moonstone Ring by By Angeline. Check Price Here.
4- Gray Moonstone Ring: This design celebrates a less popular color for moonstones – gray. Paired with the diamond halo and the white metal, the overall design has a chic, confident and stylish look.
Gray Moonstone Ring by Sabrina Silver. Check Price Here.
5- Vintage Moonstone Ring: Moonstones have been valued for centuries and was especially popular during the end of the Victorian era (also known as Art Nouveau). While the design is plain and old-fashioned, the minimalistic beauty of the piece is undeniable.
Victorian Moonstone Ring by My Antonia Jewelry. Check Price Here.
6- Bezel Set Moonstone: The bezel setting is the most secure for moonstone engagement rings, completely protecting the edges of the stone.
Bezel Moonstone Ring by Mile Gem. Check Price Here.
7- Antique Inspired Ring: If a genuine antique isn’t what you’re after, an antique-inspired design can give you the perfect balance between old and new.
Antique-Inspired Moonstone Ring by PENNI Jewel. Check Price Here.
8- Side Stone Setting: Bring out the natural beauty of the moonstone with a side stone setting that adds sparkle and detail to the ring design.
By NY Fine Jewelry. Check Price Here.
9- Three Stone Moonstone Ring: Three stone rings are known for their meaningfulness. Pair a moonstone with two diamonds for a sparkling contrast.
Three Stone Ring by the Jewelry Master. Check Price Here.
10- Handcrafted Unique Designs: Moonstones go well with a range of designs, including rustic and bohemian styles.
Unique Ring Design by Dainty and Simple. Check Price Here.
11- Two-Toned Peach Ring: Peach moonstone in a rustic silver and gold toned ring setting creates a very non-traditional look for an engagement ring.
Two Tones Peach Moonstone Ring by Black Tree Lab. Check Price Here.
Moonstone Engagement Ring Meaning
The moonstone is believed to help people calm down and relax and to cope with emotions and stress. It’s also a stone that is thought to put you in touch with your feminine side, promotes healing and enhances intuition. It’s use in engagement rings has significance for a couple in that it’s believed to promote good fortune, love and success.
Choosing the Best Moonstone
If you’ve decided that you want a moonstone engagement ring, here’s how to pick the right moonstone:
The most popular color for moonstone is colorless or semi-transparent with a clear, blue adularescence (called blue sheen) that can be seen from all angles of the stone. These types of moonstones are the most valuable and sought after.
Ideally, the moonstone shouldn’t have any secondary colors like yellow, brown or green tints as these bring the value down.
However, there’s no right or wrong answer here. Because moonstone comes in a range of colors, you can choose from yellow, orange, peach, pink and many others. Pick the color that suits your preferences and style best.
Moonstones are typically translucent but can also be either opaque or transparent. The best moonstones are transparent with few inclusions.
If there are imperfections within the stone, this can disrupt the beauty of the adularescence. Moonstones can sometimes blemishes known as centipedes (tiny tension crack flaws).
For the best look, choose a clear moonstone with excellent clarity. Translucent moonstones also look beautiful, with a soft milky glow but opaque moonstones don’t display the beauty we’ve come to associate with these stones, so it’s best to avoid them.
Moonstone is typically cut en cabochon, which shows off its adularescence and the color to the best effect. Cabochon cut moonstones should be domed, without a flat top surface, as it’s this curve that accentuates the sheen on the stone.
Faceted moonstones, like this rose cut moonstone ring tend to hide any flaws and adds brilliance, depth and texture to the stone’s smooth surface.
In terms of shape, moonstones are often cut into rounds and ovals, but square cuts, cameos, intaglios and other fancy cuts and carvings are also popular.
Moonstones aren’t a rare gemstone and come in a variety of sizes, but high-quality stones don’t often come in larger sizes. In general, moonstones up to 5 carats are the most commonly used in jewelry.
Treatments and Enhancements
Moonstones are sometimes color enhanced to make the stone appear more attractive and while this is a common treatment, it’s important that your retailer discloses this to you. Apart from this, most moonstone is natural.
The main moonstone imitation is opalite, which is a synthetic type of glass that can look very similar to moonstone. It even has a blue sheen visible under light.
However, there are ways to tell moonstone from opalite – opalite typically has tiny bubble inclusions and it also changes color from white to blue depending on the background it’s viewed against.
Moonstone vs. Rainbow Moonstones
Rainbow Moonstone Ring by Delezhen. Check Price Here.
Rainbow moonstone is very similar to moonstone but isn’t quite the same thing. It’s the transparent version of labradorite, and also displays a sheen over its surface. The difference is that this sheen is often iridescent, showing a variety of colors – hence the name rainbow. It’s very similar in appearance to moonstone which is why the gemstone world has accepted it as an ‘adopted’ moonstone.
However, to reiterate, if we’re being technical about it, rainbow moonstone is actually labradorite. Some people prefer this gemstone over traditional moonstone, because of its more unique colors.
Cleaning and Caring for Moonstone Rings
Depending on your lifestyle and how hard you are on your rings, a moonstone engagement ring may not be the best choice for you. If you use your hands a lot for work or are exposed to chemicals and detergents, moonstone rings can quickly get damaged.
In this case, some actions to take are to remove the ring when working, opt to hang it around your neck on a chain as a pendant and have the stone set in a protective setting.
It’s always a good idea to take off the ring when engaging in physical activity or working with chemicals. This includes activities like using household detergents, swimming in chlorinated pools and doing sports.
Never put a moonstone in an ultrasonic cleaner, as the intense vibrations can cause the stone to crack. The best way to maintain your ring is to simply use warm water, a mild soap and a soft toothbrush or cloth to wash the ring.
Keep moonstone rings away from harder materials like diamonds or sapphires and always store separately. Also, opt for a protective setting like a bezel or halo, which provide an extra layer of protection for the stone.
Where to Buy Moonstone Engagement Rings
Moonstone engagement rings are not as commonplace as diamond rings, so finding the right one at your local store can be difficult. We recommend searching online for the best prices and variety of designs.
Always ensure that the retailer provides clear images and/or videos of the exact gemstone because as each moonstone is different, you’d want to see the exact stone your buying (not just a sample photo of a moonstone). Purchase from a reputable seller with a solid returns policy. For valuable moonstones, some retailers will offer an authenticity report as well.
For moonstone engagement rings, we recommend the following platforms:
Ideal if you’re after a handcrafted, artisan ring or a genuine vintage piece. There’s a wide range of moonstone engagement rings so take your time to sift through and find the right one. Communicate with the seller about any concerns you have and always check customer reviews.
Amazon offers a range of moonstone engagement rings often by the same retailers that also offer their products on Etsy. Ensure you carefully check each product and ask any questions from the seller.