Precious metals and gemstones are highly valuable in the jewelry industry. However, pearls are also considered to be highly prized in the jewelry business. Before shopping around for these beautiful items, it is a good idea to get educated about some of the technical features that determine price and quality.
Pearls are not mined like metals and stones. Instead, pearls are derived from the tissue of living creatures that are classified as molluscs, which have distinct hard shells. There are tens of thousands of different species of molluscs, which means that there is tremendous diversity in the types of pearls that are available for extraction. The actual pearl is made of calcium carbonate deposits that are part of the shells in molluscs.
Pearls are prized for their beauty and durability that are similar to the qualities of gemstones. The surface quality of a pearl is evaluated based on any blemishes and imperfections that are visible. For example, a AAA surface quality ratings means that more than 95 percent of the pearl is clear of any imperfections. A rating of A implies poor surface quality with plenty of visible blemishes.
The luster of a pearl is a very important feature that often determines the overall quality and price of this precious item. Luster simply refers to the brilliance of the outer surface of a pearl. The best luster ratings are those that imply excellent reflective properties of any light. For example, a AAA rating is given to pearls with high luster. Pearls with medium or poor luster may be of such inferior quality that they aren't sold at any reputable jewelry shops.
The ideal shape of a pearl is perfectly round. An variations in this elliptical shape and form may contribute to a lower grading and appraisal. The nacre of a pearl is also evaluated during an appraisal process. A thick nacre is very desirable, which means that the original "mother" pearl was very strong and full of organic volume.
A site like www.nationalpearl.com sells high quality pearl jewelry. National Pearl is also an example of an online retailer that carries a selection of exotic pearls from places such as Akoya, Tahiti, and the Golden South Sea. Pearls are available in a variety of different textures and colors that range from flawless white to golden yellow. There are also some dark pearls that are derived from locations such as the South China Sea.
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