The Gemstone Line-up: The Precious Three

When you think of coloured gemstones, chances are the first three that come to mind would be Rubies, Sapphires, and Emeralds. Known throughout the world as the “Big Three”, these precious gemstones can credit their fame due to their distinct and vibrant colours that are highly sought after, especially when it comes to rare and unique pieces across the world of jewellery. These classic and durable gemstones can last up to generations without ever going out of style - so you need not worry about having them replaced with a new one every decade or so, as they will always stay relevant through the times. The chemical reactions with different elements that are available in its surroundings take time to form the deeper colours of the gemstones, thus making them quite rare. Once these deeper-hued gemstones are found, they can be worth much more than its lighter-toned adversaries, which will cause their prices to soar. Their position as the top three stones are also due to the rarity of their sourcings, hence why these gemstones are considered well-esteemed, highly priced, and much desired.

While these precious gemstones are available for purchase based on quality and grade, some examples of extravagant pieces include tiaras from the British royal family’s collection such as The Greville Emerald Kokoshnik Tiara which is embellished with a centrepiece emerald rumoured to be 93 carats, as well as The Burmese Ruby Tiara that have been delicately placed to form an intricate floral pattern.

Here at HABIB, we place tremendous care towards all gemstones, from the Big 3 Precious Gemstones to the many other Semi Precious Stones by showcasing sophisticated and elegant designs that highlight the beauty of each and every piece. Whether you prefer a dainty piece, or something bold to make a statement, there will always be a precious stone to fit that mould - be it a single gemstone, or a vibrant mix of different varieties. With the opportunity to create your own rainbow-inspired jewellery, explore the colours and experience vivid necklaces, bracelets, earrings, as well as rings of every shape and size to suit your style.


While it is commonly thought that rubies hold its own category of gemstones, truth be told, they belong to the corundum family, just like sapphires. Rubies must reach a certain level of deepness to be considered as a ruby, or else it would be known as a pink sapphire instead. Second to diamonds, rubies are the hardest stones with a score of 9 out of 10 on the Mohs scale, proving its strength and durability in its usage as a jewellery gemstone. Sourced from several countries including Myanmar, Thailand, Tanzania, and Madagascar, each of these regional rubies boast slight differences against one another in terms of colour, with some having an almost purplish tint, and some others having an extremely deep red colour. As rubies tend to hold their colour at the base, they are best suited for pear and radiant cuts to better feature their vibrancy as compared with other shapes. Especially when a ruby is considered to be a Pigeon Blood Ruby, this is an extremely important element as it has a more intense shade of red that stands out from the rest.



This stunning gemstone is popularly known for its deep blue hue, but many often forget that sapphires come in a variety of colours, except for the deeper red tones which are considered rubies. As with the aforementioned corundum family, sapphires are precious gemstones that are formed from aluminium oxide which can contain other elements such as chromium, iron, and titanium, giving it a purple, blue, and yellow hue respectively. Sourced from countries like Sri Lanka, Cambodia, India, and Kenya, these stones again differ slightly from one another due to the chemical difference that causes them to carry various appearances in terms of colour and intensity. While the plethora of colours are an important aspect of these sapphire gemstones,  the way they are cut is also another skill that shines on its own, as there is a certain way of bringing out its light and colour. The cut needs to be the right one that suits the stone, because if it is not, then its true beauty will not be reflected, resulting in a dull look also known as a ‘window’.



Associated with love, rebirth and known around the world for their deep shade of green, emeralds make up the last of the big 3 gemstones. Coming from the beryl family, emeralds share the same family as aquamarines and morganites. Although this gemstone has a score of 7.5 out of 10 on the Mohs scale, it can still be extremely tricky to work with due to its molecular structure which makes it brittle especially during the cutting stage. Most of these mesmerising gemstones hail from Colombia and Zambia, with others sourced from Canada, Switzerland, and Australia. While the richer and deeper-coloured ones are the most sought out emeralds, the lighter-hued ones are often called green beryl instead, as to differentiate them. For emeralds, it is common to find them with inclusions - which are minerals that are trapped inside of the gemstones, which adds to the beauty of the stone. Those with lesser inclusions usually come with a fairly hefty price tag.

Fun fact: Dating back to the Ptolemaic dynasty, gemstones are known to be loved by prominent figures in the royal world, given as forms of love as well as power.

Big 3 Top Hits:

The emerald was actually Cleopatra’s favourite gemstone and it was part of most of her royal adornments. Rubies also had a prominent role in royalty in the middle ages with Archduchess Maria Anna of Austria fashioned a 6.89 carat ruby brooch that was given to her by her father. Sapphires on the other hand, gained more of its fame when Princess Diana opted for a 12 carat oval Ceylon sapphire ring for her engagement to Prince Charles back in 1981.

At HABIB, we have turned these breathtaking gemstones into delightful pieces that you can wear on the daily. There are some varieties of gemstones that can be valued at a higher price than the Big 3 such as Paraiba, Tanzanite, Tsavorite and more, depending on their beauty, rarity and durability. Visit our showrooms today and discover a variety of beautiful gemstones from smaller more delicate pieces, stackable pieces, to pieces large enough to make heads turn.