Most of the pearls sold today are cultured pearls!
Pearls are a gift from the sea. Always in style, pearls are timeless. They have been around and valued since ancient Egyptian times when they were found by fishermen accidentally. Today the pearl industry is a multibillion-dollar business. Elegance and in some cases rarity have made pearls a traditional sign of wealth.
Types of Pearls
Natural Pearls are the most rare because they are formed by nature without intervention from human beings. They are formed around things such as a tiny grain of sand, a piece of coral or seashell. Today, true natural pearls are the most expensive. Natural pearls come in a wide variety of colors: pink, peach, mauve, white, cream, and some grays.
Cultured Pearls are formed like natural pearls. The difference is a foreign object is inserted into the oyster by man and the oysters are raised in a controlled environment on mussel farms. Most of the pearls sold today are cultured pearls.
Akoya pearls are Japanese cultured pearls. Akoya pearls are produced by Akoya oysters and are known for their high luster and rich color. Size depends on the oysters size. Akoya pearls are white, cream, pink, green, silver, and gold.
Mikimoto is a Japanese brand credited with producing the world’s first cultured pearl. Mikimoto Pearls are large pearls produced by large oysters in the South Seas of Australia, Indonesia and the Philippines . In general, the larger the pearl, the rarer and more valuable it is.
Freshwater Cultured Pearls are farmed in freshwater and grown in mussels. The foreign objects and the oysters used in making freshwater pearls are smaller than saltwater pearls. Freshwater pearls cultivating technique usually produce twenty or more pearls in one oyster, and it normally takes one and a half to two years to harvest. They come in these colors: white, champagne, cream, orange, pink, purple, lilac, mauve, blue and brown.
Saltwater Cultured Pearls are farmed in saltwater and grown in oysters. One pearl is grown per oyster. It takes more than two and a half years to get a good harvest. Thus, saltwater pearls are more expensive than freshwater pearls. Colors can be white, cream, yellow, gold, silver, rose and black. Burma , Indonesia, Thailand , and the Philippines in South East Asia; Australia and Tahiti in the South Pacific produce saltwater pearls. You can find the beautiful black pearls In Tahiti.
Caring for your pearls:
- Apply your make-up, perfume & hairspray prior to putting on your pearls.
- After wearing wipe your pearls with a soft cloth.
- Store pearls in soft packaging to avoid scratching.
- When traveling carry pearls in a jewelry pouch.
- Never wear pearl earrings or necklaces when getting hair colored.
- The color of pearls should complement your clothing.