At times, consumers get a little confused in regards to the wide variety of pearls that are available in the jewelry marketplace. The following article breaks down the major pearl jewelry categories into easy-to-understand categories that should answer all of your pearl questions. Tahitian South sea pearls, also known as black pearls, are cherished for their incredibly exotic colors and mirror-like luster.
Tahitian pearls are generally dark in color and are characteristic of their green and black overtones. Whereas other pearl types are limited to only a few or even a single color, Tahitian pearls consist of thousands of different features with incredibly exotic colors such as peacock green, silver green, blue, and eggplant colors just to name a few. These pearls are produced by the Pinctada Margaritifera oyster, which is found exclusively in Tahiti and several other French Polynesian islands. Other South Sea pearls include White & Golden South Sea pearls, which are cherished for their brilliant color as well as their exceptional sizes. These beautiful and treasured pearls are produced by the Pinctada Maxima oyster, which is found in very deep and offshore waters.
These pearls are the largest of its kind and can be found in sizes up to 18mm in diameter. White South Sea pearls are most commonly found off the shores of Australia and are typically creamy white in color with a silver overtone. High quality Golden South Sea pearls are usually found in the Philippines and include a wide variation of shades of light to dark golden colors. Another category of pearls are akoya pearls, which is a valuable option and are an everyday alternative for many jewelry lovers. Akoya pearls are mainly used for making pearl earrings, and pearl necklaces.
Since the 1930's, Akoya pearls are the world's best-known pearl. Akoya pearls are often very round and spherical in nature and are complemented by very high luster. Produced by a small oyster called the Pinctada Fucata off the seas of Japan and China, they are commonly found in sizes ranging from 2 to 10mm in size. Akoya pearls are a long-time favorite in the pearl industry and are commonly worn by brides on their wedding day. The last category is Freshwater pearls are typically found in lakes and rivers in China or Japan. Freshwater pearls have recently revolutionized the pearl industry by producing beautiful and lustrous natural white and pink pearls that have remarkably rivaled the beauty of Akoya pearls and even some smaller-sized South Sea pearls. These pearls are also popular for their affordable price points. Freshwater pearl sizes typically range from 5mm to 9mm, though they are often available in larger sizes up to 13mm.