Pearls are a breathtaking natural adornment, with their luster and immaculate appearance making them one of the timeless gemstones in the fashion industry.
Pearls come from mollusks, mainly oysters and bivalve mollusks. When they feed, a substance is secreted in their body to repair their soft tissue, which is the pearl. Pearls can be divided into freshwater pearls and saltwater pearls, with the former coming from freshwater lakes and rivers, and the latter from the ocean. The color and size of pearls depend on the type and origin of the pearl.
So, what is the difference between freshwater pearls and saltwater pearls?
1.Different origins: Freshwater pearls come from freshwater mollusks, while saltwater pearls come from marine mollusks. Due to the lower cultivation cost of freshwater pearls, their price is relatively affordable, while saltwater pearls are rarer and more expensive.
2.Shape and size: Freshwater pearls usually have irregular shapes, while saltwater pearls often have a more round shape. In addition, larger pearls can be cultivated from freshwater mollusks, while the size of saltwater pearls is usually limited by the type of mollusk and their growth environment.
3. Color: Freshwater pearls have a wider range of colors and can come in various colors, such as white, pink, purple, and more. Saltwater pearls, on the other hand, are relatively monochromatic, usually white, pink, gold, or black.
4. Luster and texture: Freshwater pearls have a softer luster and a relatively softer texture, while saltwater pearls have a brighter luster and a relatively harder texture.
Freshwater pearls and saltwater pearls both have their unique characteristics and advantages.
In addition to classification by cultivation location, pearls can also be classified in the following ways:
1. Classification by origin: Pearls can be classified by their origin, such as Japanese pearls, Chinese pearls, South Sea pearls, and more.
2. Classification by color: Pearls can be classified by their color, such as white pearls, pink pearls, gold pearls, black pearls, and more.
3. Classification by shape: Pearls can be classified by their shape, such as round pearls, semi-round pearls, flat pearls, irregular pearls, and more.
4. Classification by size: Pearls can be classified by their diameter, usually measured in millimeters.
5. Classification by luster: Pearls can be classified by their luster, such as mirror luster, silk luster, satin luster, metallic luster, and more.
6. Classification by texture: Pearls can be classified by their texture, such as crystal texture, honey texture, thin-shell texture, thick-shell texture, and more.
Do pearls have grades?
Pearls have a grading system, usually based on factors such as the shape, size, texture, luster, and surface quality of the pearl. Here are the general classifications of pearl grades:
1. AAA: This is the highest grade of pearl, with perfect luster, shape, surface, and size. Usually, they are natural pearls or high-quality cultured pearls.
2. AA:This is the second-highest grade of pearl, with good luster, surface, and size, but may have slight irregular shapes or surface defects.
3. A: This is the general grade of pearl, with good luster and surface, but may have more visible irregular shapes and surface defects.
4. Grade B and below: These are lower-grade pearls that may have obvious flaws, defects, color spots, or irregular shapes.
It is important to note that the grading standards for pearls are not fixed and may vary between different types of pearls and markets. Additionally, the pearl's grade is not the only factor determining its value, as other factors such as the pearl's variety, origin, rarity, and historical background can also affect its value.
Apart from natural pearls, there are also cultured pearls in the market. So, what is the difference between them?
1. Different formation process: Natural pearls are formed naturally inside mollusks, while cultured pearls are artificially produced.
2. Different pearl quality: The quality of natural pearls is naturally formed, while the quality of cultured pearls is artificially created.
3.Different appearance: Natural pearls and cultured pearls also have differences in appearance. Natural pearls usually have a more natural appearance, with a more diverse texture and color, while cultured pearls generally have a more perfect appearance, such as more regular shapes and uniform colors.
4. Different prices: Since natural pearls take a long time to form and are rare in production, they are usually more expensive, while cultured pearls are relatively cheaper.
5. Different values: Natural pearls are usually considered precious and high-value items due to their unique formation process and historical and cultural background, while cultured pearls are usually considered commercial jewelry.