First time pearl jewellery shopping can leave you frustrated with a lot of confusions and chaos. Shopping for the perfect pearl jewellery is not easy.
Pearl Grading System
If you are shopping for a pearl necklace, you will have a wide variety of options to choose from. If you take some time out and do research, you will find that there are many different types of pearls and different grades used to distinguish them.
Pearls are basically graded based on their size, shape, lustre, surface and nacre quality and colour. These grades might vary depending on the type of pearls. When it comes to pearls, you can either opt for natural pearls which are extremely rare and expensive or cultured pearls cultivated through pearl farming.
Understanding the Different Types of Cultured Pearls
In cultured pearls, the most common ones that you might come across include:
- South Sea Pearls
- Akoya Pearls
- Freshwater Pearls
- Tahitian Pearls
South sea pearls are one of the rarest cultured pearls. They are available in white or gold colours and are farmed in Philippines, Australia and Indonesia. They are known for its unique lustre and have thick nacre. Their sizes can vary from 8mm to 20mm.
Akoya Pearls are cultivated from the Akoya oyster and is a common pearl used for a variety of pearl jewelleries. Akoya pearl sizes range between 1mm to 11mm. These are farmed in China, Japan, Thailand, Australia and Vietnam and are available in neutral colours of white, grey with green or silver overtones.
Freshwater pearls are known for its baroque shapes. These are farmed in China, Japan, and US. These unique shaped pearls are available in natural pastel colours such as pink, blue and lavender. Their sizes range from 1mm to 15mm.
Tahitian pearls are black pearls, but the colours can vary from white, grey and peacock green. These are one of the most expensive cultured pearls and are farmed in Japan, Thailand and Philippines. Pearls grown in French Polynesia are called Tahitian pearls. Sizes range between 8mm to 18mm.
When it comes to necklaces, the length does matter. Short ones might look good on casual wear whereas long strands will do justice to formal wear.