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Lava stone jewelry is an interesting subject for anyone who’s in the gemstone business. That’s because lava stone gemstones aren’t a homogenous type or group of gemstones like most others – they are instead a broad blanket term used for a range of gemstones and materials.
For jewelry lovers, lava stone’s typical black, porous look makes it suitable for a range of jewelry styles and uses. Lava stone is growing in popularity in jewelry use as they’re an affordable and unique material. Let’s take a look and what lava stone is and how you can wear it.
What Is Lava Stone?
“Lava stone” is not really an officially recognized type of gemstone. In fact, from a geological point of view, it’s not a gemstone at all.
Geologically speaking, the proper term for lava stones is volcanic rocks since that’s what people in the jewelry business call lava stones. The reasons why the term “lava stone” is so broadly used are because:
- It sounds a lot better than “volcanic rock”.
- It covers a lot of different types of rocks and stones.
Lava stone can easily be anything from silicic pumice to a solid mafic flow basalt.
Solid mafic flow basalt??
Various types of obsidian can also be called lava stone if the jeweler or seller decides to call them that. What’s more, the term is also often used for rocks that were never lava or have never had anything to do with lava such as sedimentary limestone, for example, only because they kind of look like they can be called “lava stones”.
Note, however, that we’re not saying all this to dissuade you from buying lava stone jewelry or to bash anyone who is using the term.
There is nothing wrong with either selling or buying jewelry made with gemstones that the seller is calling “lava stones”, as long as you are aware of what exactly you’re buying and you’re buying it at the appropriate price. If, however, the jeweler is trying to sell you a grossly overpriced piece and they are calling it “special lava stone jewelry” – then you’re getting scammed.
History of Lava Stone Used In Jewelry
Lava stone jewelry, like this bead bracelet, has been worn for centuries.
The concept of lava stone jewelry is as old as that of jewelry itself. For as long as people have been crafting necklaces, rings, earrings, and bracelets, they’ve used gemstones and materials that can be described as “lava stone” together with other precious and semi-precious gemstones.
Of course, most such lava stone jewelry pieces have almost never been regarded as highly as precious gemstone jewelry such as diamond rings or ruby earrings. Nevertheless, they have been a part of human history and jewelry from before our written history.
Types Of Lava Stone Jewelry
Lava stone jewelry can be as diverse as lava stones themselves – rings, earrings, necklaces, bracelets and other ornamentation can be made with various types of lava stones. While lava stone can be cut into various forms, the most popular are the porous black beads.
Most commonly, however, you’ll find lava stones cut in beads and used for bead necklaces and bracelets. Plus, because of its affordabilyt, all of these jewelry types can be bought at very low prices, sometimes even below $10.
You can find stylish lava stone jewelry like this pendant at reasonable prices.
Lava stone can also be crafted into stylish, modern pieces that can be very intriguing and unique. When crafted this way, lava stone jewelry look great for formal occasions and workwear. However, most lava stone jewelry is typically bohemian and casual in nature.
Because of how old the term is, lava stone jewelry is usually given a lot of spiritual properties and meanings. We’ll go over the exact symbolism and meaning prescribed to lava stones below, but for lava stone jewelry that means that it’s often advertised as and bought for spiritual and meditation purposes.
Lava Stone Bead Jewelry
Most commonly used for necklaces and bracelets, lava stone beads can also make for nice earrings. Keep in mind, however, that the durability of the lava stone beads is very important, especially if you intend to use the jewelry piece on a daily basis – lava stones beads are usually soft and easy to scratch or even crack.
Fortunately, they are inexpensive too so unless they have a special sentimental meaning to you, they are easy to replace.
Lava Stone Diffuser Necklaces
Also called aromatherapy necklaces or essential oil necklaces, these jewelry pieces use lava stone beads that have been diffused with essential oils. Simply put, they are meant to give you the pleasant scent of a specific essential oil wherever you go. A nice diffuser lava stone necklace can last a full day with just a couple of drops of essential oil.
Depending on the materials and the design, these diffuser necklaces can work in different ways. For example, a glass aromatherapy necklace traps the oils inside the glass and slowly releases them, dispensing their scent. Metal necklaces such as silver or pewter usually feature a small scented pad or a sponge inside of them which then diffuses the essential oil through tiny holes in the necklace.
However, lava stone and clay are the most popular materials for diffuser bead necklaces. With them, you’ll just have a drop or two of the essential oil inside the bead which then absorbs it and slowly diffuses it.
Lava stone earrings perfect as oil diffusers. See them here.
These are also perfect for people with allergies. For example, if you suffer from a runny nose, you can put some essential oils that help with respiratory health onto your lava beads and wear them throughout the day. This can keep you feeling refreshed and fight the allergies you have.
Lava stone diffuser necklaces are a common, inexpensive, and fun way to wear a pretty daily jewelry piece that gives you a lot of positive emotions and doesn’t cost much.
How To Care For Lava Stone Jewelry
Since most lava stones are soft and easy to scratch or break, they require a great deal of care if they are to last for any significant amount of time.
The only good way to clean most lava stones is to use warm and mild soap water with a soft piece of cloth.
Detergents of moderate toxicity will almost always harm and damage the stone, affecting its color and quality.
Additionally, their softness also means that storing them next to other pieces of jewelry is very risky and ill-advised. Other gemstones will very often scratch lava stones so keep them separated. Also, and this goes for most gemstones anyway – avoid playing sports or partaking in intensive physical activity with lava stone jewelry. Instead, take the jewelry off first as it’s very easily damaged.
Lava Stone Meaning And Symbolism
As some of the oldest jewelry materials known to man, lava stones have a lot of meaning and symbolism attached to them. However, because they can belong to so many different stone and even gemstone types, different lava stones can have different meanings.
In general, lava stone is said to alleviate anxiety, promote emotional tranquility and bring calmness and feelings of relaxation.
Lava stone is supposed to have very powerful spiritual effects on the human mind. It’s said to cleanse negative thoughts and emotions, as well as stimulate creativity. It’s also supposed to have a very potent dream work capabilities and even improve your day-to-day communications and interactions with other people.
A “grounding stone”, lava stonet is believed to strengthen the wearer’s connection with Mother Earth and give strength and courage in times of change and stress. It’s also supposed to provide people with guidance and courage in situations when they need them.
*Disclaimer: Jewelry Shopping Guide does not guarantee or validate any of the claims related to the metaphysical and alternative healing powers of this or any other gemstone. This information should in no way be used as a substitute for medical advice.
Where to Buy Lava Stone Jewelry
Lava stone is easy to find as it’s affordable and available. For a wide range of products and competitive prices, we recommend searching on Etsy or Amazon. Ensure that you are buying from a top-rated vendor with a proven track record and check the after sales records.