5 Types of Pearls & Their Lesser-Known Facts

The logic is simple; if you have to pick a favorite you need to not just love something, but also be aware of what makes it different from the others. In the case of pearls, however, things can get slightly confusing. They may look similar, but are they? Not really. There’s something special about each of these gorgeous beauties that makes them a prized possession.

Read more to find out which one will find a spot in your must-have list!


  • South Sea Cultured Pearls

    South Sea pearls from Australia and Philippines are the largest and rarest of all cultured pearl types in the world. They are extremely sought-after for their satiny soft glow, which is due to their thick nacre layers acquired through as much as four years of cultivation time.

    Color: These beauties are white in color and radiate exceptional luster.

    Derived from: The white-lip variety of the Pinctada Maxima pearl oyster creates these exceptional quality pearls.


  • Golden South Sea Cultured Pearls

    The sheen of a Golden South Sea cultured pearl is luxurious and soft. One look at this beauty and you’ll figure why it is prized by collectors and designers alike. Much like white South Sea cultured pearls, these too are typically larger than other saltwater pearl varieties. Golden South Sea cultured pearls predominantly come from Philippines and Indonesia, but are also cultivated in Australia.

    Color: It has a captivating golden tone, which is completely natural and requires no color enhancement treatments.

    Derived from: This jewel is grown within the gold-lip variety of the Pinctada Maxima – a type of South Sea pearl oyster.


  • Tahitian Cultured Pearls

    Tahitian cultured pearls, also simply known as black pearls, started gaining popularity only in the mid-1900s. Since then, they have been revered for their dramatic and unique hue. Now they’ve become one of the most desired and valuable pearls available. Tahitian cultured pearls do not undergo any color enhancement treatments and their distinctive hue is completely natural. This has further added to their appeal.

    Color: While their color is traditionally referred to as “black”, it can range from a grayish black to a peacock black.

    Derived from: The exotic Tahitian cultured pearl is born within Pinctada Margaritifera, commonly known as the black-lip pearl oyster.


  • Freshwater Cultured Pearls

    These are perhaps the most frequently used pearls in the jewelry industry and look very similar to Akoya pearls. However, they are relatively much more affordable. Most Freshwater cultured pearls are typically sourced from China. They are obtained from an intricate process in which one resilient mussel is harvested many times in a single attempt, resulting in several pearls.

    Color: These are good quality pearls that are available in a beautiful white shade. Its heirloom quality may have a slightly creamy hue.

    Derived from: Hyriopsis Cumingi, a type of mussel, is used for harvesting Freshwater pearls.


  • Akoya Cultured Pearls

    A specialty of Japanese pearl farms, the Akoya pearl is famed for its deep, beautiful gleam. They may look like Freshwater pearls but are, in fact, much smoother and rounder in comparison. Akoya cultured pearls also have an extremely high reflective surface; hence they are frequently used for creating high-quality pearl strands and earrings.

    Color: They are generally white, but excellent quality pearls will have overtones of pink.

    Derived from: They are cultured in the Akoya oyster, which is primarily found in Japan.


No matter which pearl you pick, a stunning piece of jewelry adorned with this wonderful gem is most certainly going to win admiration. So go ahead and take your pick from Angara right away!

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Content Editor @ Angara. Loves to keep up with the latest trends in jewelry and fashion, and aims to curate the best style tips for her readers.