The Variety of Cultured Pearls
1) Akoya Pearls - Cultivated in Japan and China
Akoya pearls are the classic cultured pearls that come to mind when the word “pearl” is mentioned. Ranging in sizes from 3 mm to 10 mm. Akoya cultured pearls come in a wide range of colors and shapes. Akoya pearls are renowned for their intense and brilliant lustre.
2) White South Sea Pearls - Cultivated in Indonesia, Japan, Myanmar, and Philippine
South Sea pearls are considered one of the more exclusive of all cultured pearl varieties. They are known for their extraordinary size and satiny lustre. Ranging in color from silver-white to gold and in size from 8 mm to 18 mm and larger. South Sea Pearls because of their rarity, command premium prices.
3) Tahitian Pearls - Cultivated French Polynesia
The exotic natural color palette of Tahitian Pearls make them one the most unique of all cultured pearl varieties. Ranging in color from light gray midnight black, with pistachio, aubergine, and blue in between. they range in size from 8 mm to 17 mm.
4) Fresh Water Pearls - Cultivated China, Japan, and United
Fresh Water pearls are easily cultivated from fresh water mussels rather than saltwater oysters. They are produced in great abundance, and are therefore generally the most moderately priced of all cultured pearls varieties. Their unique shapes and gentle pastel colors make them perfect gems for those on a budget.
5) Mabe Pearls - Cultivated Australia, French Polynesia, Indonesia,
Japan, and Philippines
Mabe pearls are hemispherical cultured pearls grown against the inside shell of an oyster rather than within the oyster’s body. They are generally used in ring, earring, and pendant settings which cover the flat backs or reverse side.
6) Keshii Pearls - Cultivated Australia, French Polynesia, Indonesia, Japan, and Philippines
Keshii Pearls, though not nucleated cultured pearls, are created by accident as a result of the culturing process and thus must be considered cultured pearls. Their unusual shapes and sizes are best used in unique jewelry.