All about pearls. The pearls are born from the Mother Oysters, with an iridescent lustre and a soft inner shine. The different types of Mother Oysters, their development zones and the types of cultivation are the keys to understand the great diversity of pearls we have.
Freshwater Cultured Pearl
They are grown in Japan, China, and the United States. It is obtained from freshwater molluscs that can produce four or more pearls simultaneously, of different colours and shapes. They require a cultivation time between 3 and 8 years.
Since the 90s, Freshwater Pearls have increased their quality. They are characterized by their high level of nacre, diversity of shapes, colours and sizes, reaching 16mm.
Japanese cultured pearl
They come from a saltwater oyster, and are grown in Japan. It is the pearl with the most difficult growth. Only about 5% of the pearls are of quality, with a size above 7 mm and almost perfect roundness. Its cultivation time is less than a year and a half. They are characterized by an almost perfect roundness and iridescence with varieties of white, pink and cream.
South Sea Pearl (Australian)
It is a magnificent and exceptional pearl. They are cultivated in saltwater of northern Australia and southeast Asia.
They stand out for the depth of their lustre and their silver iridescence, reaching sizes between 9 and 27.9mm. Growing times range from 3 to 8 years.
Tahitian black pearl
Cultivated in the salty waters of French Polynesia, they are not always black. They can be gray with very intense green, orange, magenta, gold or cobalt blue iridescences.
They are grown in temperate waters. Cultivation time is 2 to 3 years. Survival level of oysters is low. The vast majority of these pearls have significant imperfections, reason why those without defects reach high values. Its size ranges from 8 to 18mm.
Pearls in the shape of a hollow half sphere. They have a cultivation period of 6 to 24 months. Pearls attached to the shell, so it is necessary to release them by an operation and fill the hole with epoxy resin.
Mabe pearls easy to obtain and have a lower relative price. When it comes to beautiful pieces of high quality and/or a good size the price is usually higher.
They are artificial products, the result of a production process that generates identical products. An imitation can be identified by biting the sphere. The false ones slide through the teeth, while the authentic ones show a sandy finish.
Because nacre is an organic matter, it is exposed to modifications. The average life of a pearl is 100-150 years. But for the duration to become that, you have to take good care of them and following the steps below is essential:
- It is important to keep the pearls isolated from the rest of the jewellery to ensure they are preserved. Cases with silk, cotton or velvet interiors are best suited for preservation.
- Cosmetics, perfumes and hairsprays contain chemicals that can damage the lustre of the pearl. Even the body’s natural fats as well as perspiration can also damage the pearls lustre.
- It is better to put pearls on after applying makeup, perfume and hairspray.
- After use, you should wipe them with a damp cloth to keep them free from the harmful residues of these products. Pearls should be washed with mild soap periodically.
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