If you are thinking of buying pearls, then this is the guide for you! If you want to know more about pearls, such as how they are made, what they mean symbolically and how much they cost, I am here to help you make the right choice.

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There are two types of pearls, natural and cultured.

When you’re searching for the perfect pearl necklace,ear ring or bracelet, it’s essential to know the difference between a natural and cultured pearl. Natural pearls are formed when an oyster ingests a grain of sand.

The oyster then coats this irritating object in layers of calcium carbonate, which results in a gem-like creation called a “pearl.”

Cultured pearls are grown by placing an organic material inside a mollusc shell to encourage it to form its own pearl.

These cultured pearls tend to be rounder and brighter than natural pearls, but they’re also less valuable because they don’t have as much history behind them or as many interesting characteristics that give each one its own story.

How is a pearl formed?

In order to understand the color of a pearl, you need to know a few things about oyster shells and their pearls.

The shell is made up of calcium carbonate (the same stuff as chalk) that has been secreted (released) by an oyster over time. The inner layer of this shell will be smooth and shiny when it’s new and about 1/8th inch thick, but as it gets older, it may become flatter and thicker with more bumps on its surface.

A natural pearl forms when an injury or irritation occurs inside an oyster’s shell—usually from something sharp like a grain of sand or gravel—and then heals over time with a nacre in order to protect itself from future injuries.

The irregularity in the shape of this area creates friction with other layers underneath which makes them stick together tightly enough so that they can’t move around anymore but still allows them some flexibility so they don’t get stuck under their own weight (which could potentially kill them).

What are the variety of colors pearls come in?

Pearls come in many colors that range from black, white, and pink to purple. The exact color of the pearl depends on the type of oyster it came from and the water in which it lived.

However, the color of a pearl can be altered by ambient temperature (the coldness or warmth of the surrounding water the oyster bathes in).

Poorly produced natural or man-made pearls may therefore harbor defects in coloration depending on how duration of temperature fluctuations the pearl was exposed to.

Consequently, you will have to examine your pearl carefully as there may be some discoloration or damage to your gemstone.

Uses of pearls in jewellery.

Pearls can be cut, polished and shaped into different sizes for necklaces, earrings and rings.

Pearls are pear-shaped or round in their natural state, but a gemologist (a jeweler who has studied gems) can cut them to your specifications.

This is important because the size of the pearl determines how it will look when it’s worn as an earring or necklace pendant.

For example: A pearl that’s six millimeters wide will look like a small gemstone when you wear it as an earring stud; however, if you want something less noticeable on your ears and more noticeable around your neck (like at work), then opt for a larger size such as pearls than measure a minimum of nine millimeters in diameter.

The difference between real and fake pearls.

A crude way to test if a pearl is real, is rubbing it against your tooth. The pearl should feel gritty, like sandpaper. If it feels smooth, then it is not a real pearl.

Also, another way to test if a pearl is real is by dropping some water onto the surface of the pearl; if all of the water beads off of it, then this would indicate that your pearls are in fact real and not fake at all!

Pearls are timeless pieces of Jewellery.

Pearls have been considered a symbol of purity, beauty and innocence since they come from an oyster shell, which at one time was believed to be the purest form of matter.

An oyster’s home is also known to be a peaceful place where creatures come together in harmony.

Pearls have been used as a symbol of purity since ancient times. In fact, early Christians wore them in their ears to represent their faith in Christ’s baptismal waters since they were created by God through the gentle work of nature’s processes over time (or something to that effect).

In fact, one needs to look at the tedious and careful process required for producing high-quality man-made pearls in order to appreciate the true worth of these gems.

What determines the price of pearls?

Pearl sizes and shapes differ depending on the type of oyster from which they were extracted. The size of a pearl also affects its value. While pearls are very beautiful, their true value is based on size, color and luster.

The larger the pearl, the more expensive it will be. For example, if you want to purchase an 8mm round white South Sea pearl that has been treated for color with oil irradiation, then it will cost approximately $150-$200 per gram plus tax.

On average each South Sea or Tahitian cultured pearl ranges in size between 5mm – 15mm with color ranging anywhere from off-white (nacre) to blackish grey (mutton fat).

However if you are looking for something unique, then consider buying an Akoya cultured freshwater pearl which starts at around $2 per gram plus tax but can go up to $5 per gram depending on its size and shape!

Caring for an expensive pearl.

It’s important to know how to care for your pearls. All pearls are sensitive to things such as sunlight, perfume and hair spray. Avoid contact with these items in order to keep your pearls looking beautiful longer.

Pearl cultivators often recommend using a soft brush or dry cloth to clean them instead of chemicals like ammonia-based cleaners that can dull the luster of a pearl.

Ultrasonic cleaners should also be avoided as they may damage the integrity of the pearl coating over time and make it more susceptible to scratching and fading in sunlight (this is why many jewelers use an ultrasonic cleaner).

Follow these tips when buying or wearing pearls

  • Be aware of the different types of pearl
  • Know what to look for when buying pearls
  • Understand how to care for your pearls, so they last longer and look beautiful
  • Learn how to wear your pearls so they enhance your look


Now you know how to buy pearls, what to look for when you are buying them and how to wear them. I hope this blog post was useful in helping you make a purchase decision.

All the best in finding your perfect pearl!

About the Author


I am a pearl and oyster enthusiast who loves to share her knowledge and experiences about fashion with the world. I am neither a certified gemologist nor a reseller of pearls.

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