Pearls are one of three birthstones for the month of June. A woman’s wardrobe can’t be complete without a strand of her own. These enchanting gems have represented beauty and perfection ever since man discovered them in ancient times. Pearls are the subject of countless tales of history, beauty, myth and elegance.
Natural pearls have been coveted for thousands of years and were symbols of wealth and status. Around 1890 a Japanese researcher named Kokichi Mikimoto helped invent the saltwater pearl culturing process. And in 1920 he marketed whole cultured pearls internationally.
The exciting array of pearl choices available today can be overwhelming. When you combine the variety of colors, sizes and shapes with metals and other gemstones in rings, necklaces and earrings, the possible combinations are practically endless.
As pearl brokers here at Suncoast Gems we know the types of natural and cultured pearls that are available and the factors that determine their value. As Gemologists we are an invaluable resource to you as you explore pearls.
Pearls are natural or cultured and grow in mollusks that can live in either saltwater or fresh water. They are made up of layers of calcium carbonate in the form of nacre, a natural substance produced by pearl oysters that coat the inside of the animal’s shell. This beautiful, lustrous nacre is the very essence of a pearl.