Jewel and gemstone baby names are the perfect way to commemorate just how special your little one is. After all, babies and gemstones have a lot in common if you think about it! They’re both valuable and precious, something you love to show off to admiring onlookers — and either one can seem like the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen.
Gems are prized for their durability and clarity, and have long been used to symbolize certain elements. Ancient civilizations revered gemstones and used them for religious, spiritual, even medicinal practices. They were thought to bring protection, health, love, and vitality, among other things. Like babies, they are highly valued … so a gemstone baby name is exceptionally fitting for the most valuable thing in your life.
You could go with traditional gemstone names like Ruby or Jade, which are instantly recognizable. But Ruby, for example, currently ranks at #22 out of the 1000 most popular baby girl names, according to the U.S. Social Security Administration – and Jade is at #88. If you want a gemstone baby name that falls a little bit outside of the norm, one that’s gorgeous and meaningful but not overused, we’ve rounded up a treasure trove of our favorites — so you can add a little extra sparkle to the light of your life.
A sapphire is a deep blue gemstone believed to symbolize good fortune, wisdom, and the ability to make good choices (which would come in handy many times in someone’s life!). And while you could use Sapphire as a name, which would be beautiful, we like the exotic elegance of Safira — derived from the Esperanto word safiro, which means sapphire.
Beryl is a rare mineral element that makes up a lot of different gems: emerald, aquamarine, and morganite, to name a few. It is thought to promote physical healing, protection, and enhancement of creativity. But what’s more, it also makes a beautiful name!
There is absolutely nothing wrong with naming your daughter Pearl; it is, after all, a vintage gem. But the Spanish and Italian cognate, Perla, is a gorgeous alternative with the same meaning. Pearls symbolize new beginnings, purity, and sincerity, which is why they’re often chosen for wedding jewelry.
There’s the name Jade (after the gem long associated with wealth and nobility) — and then there’s the beautiful Italian version, Giada. Bonus: it comes with the Gia as a cute nickname option!
The name Ruby is having a moment. According to data from the U.S. Social Security Administration, it’s currently #62 of the top 1000 most popular girl names, up from #105 just 10 years ago. But if Ruby is a little mainstream for your taste, you could go with Lali — which is the Georgian word for “ruby”, a gem valued for its beauty and said to symbolize passion and vitality.
There’s something lyrical and melodic about French names — and when your name is Bijou, which is literally the French word for “jewel”, it adds an extra layer of sophistication.
Margaret is a classic and perennially-popular girl name — in fact, it hasn’t fallen below the top 200 most popular girl names in the U.S. since 1920 (and that year, it was #4!). Derived from the Greek margarites, it means “pearl”. But if it’s perhaps a bit too mainstream or buttoned-up for your taste, try Marit on for size! It’s the Swedish and Norwegian version of Margaret.
While amber isn’t technically a gem, it’s still widely used in jewelry — and looks gorgeous when highly polished. It is said to have the power to remove negative energies and offer a sense of renewal to the wearer. The popularity of the name Amber peaked in the mid-1980s, and though it has fallen below the top 500 most popular girl names, it’s still being used. But a beautiful, more exotic-sounding version the name’s Italian cognate, Ambra.
The word onyx comes from a Greek word meaning “nail” or “claw”, which adds to this deep black stone’s mystical vibe. The stone itself is purported to bring protection and grounding. And as a name, Onyx ticks off two factors that are popular right now: it’s short and sweet, and contains a trendy X.
This gorgeous name is derived from a Japanese kanji meaning “jewel” or “treasure.” It was also the name of a Japanese empress.
Perhaps most popularly known as the name of Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s youngest daughter, the name Rumi is of Japanese origin and made from a combination of two kanji, respectively meaning “Lapis Lazuli” and “beautiful”. As a gem, Lapis Lazuli is said to symbolize wisdom, intellect, intuition, and courage.
There’s no denying the Old Hollywood-glam feel of the name Greta, which — like Perla and Marit — also comes from the Greek word meaning “pearl”. None of these are your favorites, but you like the meaning? There are actually tons of variations that mean the same thing: Maggie, Meg, Maisie, and Rita, just for starters!
Meaning “turquoise” (as in the gemstone said to bring luck and protection), Fairuza is a name of Persian and Arabic origins. It’s so rare in the U.S. that most people have only ever heard it associated with actress Fairuza Balk, whose father gave her the name because of the bright turquoise color of her eyes.
Meaning “emerald” in Spanish and Portuguese, Esmeralda may be best known as a character from Victor Hugo’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame. You can give your daughter this name to go by for formal occasions, and for everyday use, call her Esme for short.
Associated with the heart, life force, and friendship, the garnet stone comes in many colors, but red is the most popular and recognizable. Garnet makes a beautiful name — and lends itself well to the vintage-cool nickname Nettie.
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