Opal Ring FAQ

Opal Rings FAQ

If you’ve ever searched online for opal jewelry, among your results, no doubt, have been opal rings. Perhaps a ring was precisely what you’d hoped to find…or maybe you weren’t sure exactly what you wanted — as long as you discovered some unique opal jewelry. Imagine your search yielded the opal ring of your dreams — there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. But before you buy your dream ring (or any type of fine jewelry), it’s prudent to educate yourself so that you can make an informed purchase.

In order to help you do just this, we created an Opal Rings FAQ that includes some of the most commonly asked questions about opal rings.

Q. Are Opal Rings Fragile?


Opals are soft stones ranging from 5 to 6.5 on the Mohs scale, and much like jewelry containing pearls or turquoise, they require similarly thoughtful care to enjoy a lasting existence. It’s important to factor in the way you wear your jewelry prior to purchasing an opal ring. If you’re particularly hard on your hands, you may want to consider an opal pendant or opal earrings instead because those pieces generally sustain less abuse than jewelry worn upon the hands.

Keep in mind, however, that opals have been revered for centuries and can be found in gorgeous antique jewelry pieces. Though delicate stones, many have survived for generations, and there are people who can and do wear them regularly without issue.

When buying an opal ring, we recommend making an informed decision about the piece; understand what you’re buying, how it’s made, and be realistic around your expectations for user wear.

Q. Can I Shower with my Opal Ring on?

We do not recommend showering (or swimming) with your opal ring on. Although water alone is not harmful to Australian Opals, other chemical agents used while showering can be. Removing your opal jewelry prior to showering also eliminates the risk of loss down the drain.

Do not Shower with Opal Jewelry

Q. What’s Important to Consider when Shopping for an Opal Ring?

Here are 4 key things to keep in mind when buying an opal ring:


  • Is the opal in a bezel setting that sufficiently insulates the stone?
    Opal Setting
  • If prong set, will the prongs act as buffers to protect the opal upon impact?
  • Are there surrounding gemstones that may help guard against damage to the opal?
    Opal & Gemstones


  • Is the opal stone sitting low in its mounting — or is it raised up high, exposed, and particularly susceptible to impact?

Stone Edges

  • What about the shape of the stone; is it likely to catch and become problematic?

Stone Depth

  • Consider the ratio of the opal’s size (diameter) to its depth. The broader the face of the stone, the deeper it should be (up to a point) to be structurally supported. In other words, opals that are wide and very shallow *might* be stable enough to be set into a pair of earrings or into an opal necklace, but they may not be suitable set into opal rings.


Q. What’s the Significance of Opal Rings?

  • Opal has been attributed with a wide range of meaning. There are those who believe in its healing and protective powers, aiding with vision and endowing prosperity. 
  • Others believe opal represents love and harmony. 
  • Some focus upon its elemental energy, associating the gemstone with water and recognizing it for properties linked to stillness, strength and purity.
    Clear Still Water
  • No matter which of these belief systems you subscribe to, opals are beautiful gems that can evoke your emotions. When selecting an opal ring, it may be helpful to blend what you believe about the stone with how it makes you feel.

Q. Do Opal Rings Look Better in Gold or Silver?

Does Opal look better with Gold or Silver?

Fact: the answer to this question is subjective.

Having said that, here at NIXIN Jewelry, we prefer gold opal rings to silver. There are a number of reasons why:

Cleaning: Silver oxidizes (tarnishes) much faster and more easily than gold. So when it comes to cleaning, silver opal jewelry requires more frequent cleaning - particularly if you like to keep it looking clean and sans-oxidization. That means exposing your opals to various cleaning agents more regularly.

Opals can be safely cleaned - but properly cleaning the silver, separately from the opal can take a bit more time and effort than does gold. To be fair, there are artisans who specialize in this combination (opal and silver) and do it beautifully.

Value: For the types of pieces we create at NIXIN Jewelry (one of a kind artisan jewelry), the cost of time and labor is the same regardless of the metal we opt to use. So if we spend 6 weeks (or 6 months) crafting a piece, we prefer to cast it in gold to best immortalize it. It makes more sense for the types of pieces we compose.

Malleability: We find that 14k gold is more malleable than platinum (a sometimes onerous metal to work), yet firmer than silver or 18k which show their wear more easily. So we tend to use 14k gold more often than any other metal.

Color: We’re almost always partial to the warmer tones of 14k yellow and rose gold in combination with the colors Australian Opals have to offer. In fact, some of our favorite pieces are rose gold opal rings. Though we will sometimes use 18k gold for its rich hue if we feel it better compliments a stone’s palette. On rare occasions when we want to achieve a cooler aesthetic for a design, we use white gold (rather than silver). You can learn more about gold on our blog.

Q. Can you Wear Opal Rings Every Day?

You can — but whether or not you should, varies based on the specific wearer and ring.

Be realistic with yourself; are you careful with your jewelry? In particular, with your rings? Do you partake in low impact activities? And is the opal in your ring set in a protective manner?

If so, daily wear may be just fine.


Are you rough with your jewelry? Prefer not to think about it? Maybe you’re even a little clumsy? Do you like to leave your jewelry on all the time - even while playing sports or gardening? Is the opal paper thin or set extremely high in profile?

If you answer “yes” to any of these questions - or others that could leave your opal susceptible to damage - then you may be better suited not wearing it daily.


Q. Are Opal Engagement Rings a Good Idea?

Given the soft nature of the stone, it’s best to decide how you want to wear your engagement ring prior to opting for opal as your center stone. If you don’t want to put much thought into your ring, a harder, more durable stone will be a better choice for everyday wear.

If you are gentle on your hands and willing to take appropriate precautions, you could consider an opal engagement ring.

Here at NIXIN Jewelry, we do love Opal Rings, though we generally shy away from promoting our pieces as opal engagement rings, but rather as works of art to be conscientiously appreciated.

Opal Ring

Q. How Long Will Opal Rings Last?

Opals have existed and persisted for millions of years. So in examining their outlook, it’s less a question of how the opals will fare…and more a question of how well they will be cared for. We cannot underscore enough, that user wear is highly linked to opal outcome. If you are exceedingly concerned about this, selecting a harder stone is probably the best choice for you. No gems - not even diamonds - are foolproof, even they do break…but durability is a sliding scale linked to the piece you own and the way you wear it.

Broken Diamond

While there is no guarantee or fixed duration of time an opal ring will last, with proper care, they can last a lifetime and be handed down as family heirlooms.

Q. How Do You Care for Opal Rings?

Know what kind of opal ring you have. Is your stone a solid opal or a doublet? If solid, is it an Australian Opal or Ethiopian? These factors change HOW you should care for your ring.

  • Avoid chemical exposures
  • Avoid physical impact
  • Store protected so other jewelry won’t scratch it
    NIXIN Gift Bag
  • Avoid extreme temperatures/temperature changes

Q. How Do You Clean Opal Rings?

If your opal rings are made with SOLID AUSTRALIAN OPALS, water alone will not harm your stones. It’s important to know what other materials (gems, metals, etc…) are in your ring, and be aware of what types of cleaning products and treatment they too can tolerate.

Australian Opal Rings can be cleaned with a mild detergent in lukewarm water using a soft bristle toothbrush. Rinse in a bowl of warm, clean water (not in the sink), gently pat dry with a soft microfiber cloth, and let air dry.

Alternatively, we offer NIXIN Jewelry Cleaner that is specially formulated to use safely on Opals and most other gemstones and metals. It is available for purchase on site in both a Foam at Home preparation as well as a Jewelry Cleaning Pen that’s easy to take with you. (*Pro Tips provided for usage)

NIXIN Opal Cleaner

Q. Where to Buy an Opal Ring?

You can always visit a local brick and mortar to ring shop in person. For some, that will be the best option. Particularly if you prefer to see fine jewelry in person to feel sure about it.

But these days, the internet provides for so many more options than were once available to us. We are no longer limited to a gas-bearing radius to find the treasures we dream of.

This allows for a tremendous range of choices - the hardest part is often selecting just one…and also, feeling confident in the online vendor we’re buying from. That’s why it’s important to us to make NIXIN Jewelry a safe and trusted place for you to buy Australian Opal Jewelry.

Here at NIXIN Jewelry, Owner and Designer, Nicki Gluckman, designs each and every piece of jewelry you see. Her creations are largely one of a kind, and they carry unique stories that set them apart from other opal designs. Their stories unfold in their descriptions and within the emails that go out to her INSIDERS.

Opal - World in Hands

More than just opal art, her pieces are an experience that she is excited to share with you. When you purchase a piece of opal jewelry from her, you have the opportunity to engage with her directly. It’s a very personal experience.


So if what you desire in an opal ring is a piece of truly unique opal jewelry, paired with a personalized shopping experience, we invite you to come explore our selection of opal rings. We might have just what you were looking for.

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