Opal is a mineraloid, a hydrated amorphous form of silica. It is the national gemstone of Australia. The most common varieties of opal are ‘Rainbow opal’, ‘Milk opal ’, ‘Resin opal, ‘Fire opal’, ‘Peruvian opal ’and ‘ Girasol opal’. Opal is found overwhelmingly in Southern Australian region, with the remainder mostly coming from Ethiopia, USA and Mexico. The Romans considered opal only next to emerald in terms of preciousness.
Opal is the birthstone for those born in October. Its name stems from the Sanskrit term ‘upala’ meaning precious stone. It is said to boost optimism, enthusiasm and creativity. It is also said to be beneficial for the eyes, hair, nails and skin.