Freshwater Pearl Education
Freshwater pearls can be found in a variety of colors and shape with more variety than any other type of pearl. Although they are known as an affordable alternative to Akoya pearls, freshwater pearls can rival the luster and roundness of these high priced designer brands..
How Are Cultured Freshwater Pearls Made?
A freshwater pearl is created by a unique technique of "seeding" a mussel with a small bead, causing a small irritation. The mussel will then produce a compound to cover the irritation, forming a round pearl. This process can take anywhere from 2 to 7 years depending on the desired size of pearl.
What Colors Are Available in Freshwater Pearls?
Freshwater pearls are most commonly white, but can naturally form in a wide range of pastel colors. Other colors can be achieved through a variety of techniques including heat and long process dyes, performed in a way to keep the luster of the pearl while permanently changing the color.
How Should You Care For Your Pearls?
Because of their delicate nature, pearls should be carefully handled and stored. A good rule of thumb is to have your pearls be the last thing you put on and the first thing you take off as perfumes, make-up, soaps and other chemicals can dull and damage pearls over time. Always store pearls separately from other jewelry to avoid scratches. When cleaning your pearls, only use a soft cloth and water if necessary. Pearl necklaces should be restrung periodically to maintain the strength of the silk cords as well.