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How to Buy Pearls

  • Colors

    Pearls are a symbol of good luck, timeless elegance and youth. They provide optimism, well-being, health, longevity and strength. They have a unique property: the more you wear them, the more they shine ... pearl is a living organism. Main colors represent::

    • White Pearl: Purity, truth, fertility, innocence, simplicity, faith, sincerity, sincerity.

    • Pink Pearl: Health, love, generosity, strength, passion, energy, commitment, happiness.

    • Lavender-Purple Pearl: Wisdom, love, elegance, creativity, wealth, complexity, motivation, passion.

    • Green Pearl: Balance, wealth, justice, luck, generosity, hope, harmony, beauty, peace.

  • The Procedure

    Growing pearls is a work of love. Exact details vary from farm to farm and from species to species. For example, oysters can be harvested and the period of care before pearl is implanted varies. In general, the implantation process is as follows:

    Oysters are cleaned and a skilled craftsman performs a quick and accurate "surgery" to implant a bead core of organic material (often mother-of-pearl). The core of the beads takes a little mantle from another mollusk. The mantle is an organ that produces the oyster's shell, using minerals from the oyster's food. The material created by the mantle is called nacre. The formation of a natural pearl begins when a foreign substance slips into the oyster between the mantle and the shell, which irritate­s the mantle. The oyster's natural reaction is to cover up that irritant to protect itself. The man­tle covers the irritant with layers of the same nacre substance that is used to create the shell. This eventually forms a pearl.

    So a round pearl is a foreign substance covered with layers of nacre. Not all pearls turn out so well. Some pearls form in an uneven shape -- these are called baroque pearls. When pearls are ready to be harvested, pearl farmers remove the oysters from the water. In most cases, the oysters are transported to harvesting facilities. Harvesters open the oysters, remove the pearls and, in some cases, prepare the oysters to create more pearls. This is an extremely delicate process, and one that requires gentle hands to ensure that pearls, are not damaged in the process.

  • Types of Pearls

    Variety of pearls makes them even more unique. These sea gemstones vary in luster and color, depending on the type of oyster that produced them. Here's a guide to understanding the wide range of pearls.

    Freshwater Pearls:

    They are mainly produced in the lakes and rivers of China which is a pioneer in this genre. Freshwater pearls are grown in mussels, not oysters. Ten to fourteen freshwater pearls can be grown in mussels. Perfect round freshwater pearls are extremely rare.

    Akoya:

    Awarded for their brilliant shine and rich color, Akoya pearls are a traditional symbol of elegance and beauty. Produced from Akoya oysters in Japan, they are the most popular of all pearl types. Depending on the size of the mother oyster, they range from 3-10 mm. Akoya pearls are typically white, some may possess golden or silvery-blue undertones.

    Black South Sea:

    The stunning color of these natural black pearls is produced by oysters in the waters of Tahiti, French Polynesia and Okinawa. Sizes start at 8mm, in round and other shapes. Although the main color is black, the rich, dark colors vary from gray, silver, green to shades of green or blue colouring.

    White South Sea:

    These treasures are typically the largest and most expensive variety of pearl. Part of their mystique is the fact that they are grown in the infamous “coral triangle” – a section of treacherous water that lies between Australia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. South Sea pearls range in size from 8-20mm, with pearls larger than 15mm going for tens of thousands of US dollars. Depending on the type of oyster they form in, they can be a silky white (similar to an Akoya), a sleek silver, pastel pink, or a rich gold.

  • How to Buy Pearls

    Genuine pearls (natural or cultured), with the exception of high quality pearls, have many defects due to their formation. Since pearls are formed by a natural process in an oyster, it is very difficult to find perfect pearls. Most pearls have some surface spots (blemishes) that indicate a genuine pearl.

    You can immediately recognize a genuine pearl. Rubbing a real pearl on your tooth, you should feel a sandy texture, like writing on a blackboard.

    Each pearl is unique, like a fingerprint. This makes it special and that is why there are some rules for their classification. Find out what these rules are in "Pearl Quality Factors".

  • Pearl Quality Factors

    Luster:

    Luster the amount of light that a pearl reflects both from its surface and from the deep reflection of its inner light. The better the quality of the pearl, the higher its luster. We provide high quality pearls with strong luster. Within a pearl type, when other quality factors are equal, the higher the luster, the more valuable the pearl.

    Surface:

    Like colored stones, most pearls never achieve perfection. Some might show abrasions that look like a series of scratches on the surface, or a flattened section that doesn’t affect its basic shape, or an irregular ridge that looks like a crease or wrinkle. If surface characteristics are numerous or severe, they can affect the durability of the pearl and severely depress its value. Surface characteristics have less effect on the pearl’s beauty and value if they are few in number, or if they are minor enough to be hidden by a drill-hole or mounting.

    Shape:

    Round is the most difficult shape to culture, making it the rarest cultured pearl shape and—if all other factors are equal—also generally the most valuable. There are exceptions, though. Well-formed pear, oval, or baroque (irregularly shaped) cultured pearls are also prized by pearl lovers.

    Color:

    Natural and cultured pearls occur in a broad range of hues. There are warm hues like yellow, orange, and pink, and cool hues like blue, green, and violet. Pearls have a wide range of tone from light to dark. Pearl colors tend to be muted, with a soft, subtle quality. Pearl color can have three components. Bodycolor is the pearl’s dominant overall color. Overtone is one or more translucent colors that lie over a pearl’s bodycolor. And orient is a shimmer of iridescent rainbow colors on or just below a pearl’s surface. All pearls display bodycolor, but only some show overtone, orient, or both. Both Akoya and South Sea are considered the top qualities of pearls. While color choice is a matter of personal preference, always look for rich color, evenly distributed throughout the pearl.

    Size:

    While size does not affect the quality of pearls, it does affect the price. Large pearls are more difficult to cultivate and their rarity makes them more valuable. Pearls are measured in millimeter increments relative to the diameter of the pearl.