Cultured pearls result from a living mollusk, such as an oyster or clam, secreting its nacreous layer onto another object. The pearl typically consists of two layers: the nacre inside and the mother-of-pearl (or “nacreous mantle”) on the outside. A cultured pearl shell is made from thin plates of calcium carbonate formed into spheres by Mother Nature! The term cultured generally refers to any item produced by a natural process instead of being grown to reproduce something already created, often with complex techniques and equipment.
Pearls are the concentration of an animal’s natural, lustrous nacre or mother-of-pearl. Nacre is a fatty substance secreted by mollusks that encodes a multitude of colors and microscopic sizing crystals. The terms ‘pearl’ and ‘nacre’ are often confused. The distinction between the two is that pearl is a gemstone while nacre is the inner tissue layer of mollusk shells or living tissues.
Benefits of Cultured Pearls
1. Same pearl quality
Relying on the quality of the mollusk or oyster, which is the main difference between cultured and natural pearls, pearls cultivated by techniques of the modern Japanese cultured pearl industry in-line with the International Code of Conduct for Gemstone Quality are precisely identical to natural pearls in molecular composition.
2. Lower pearl cost
The most crucial factor for the current cultured pearl market is that cultured pearls are produced in the same manner as natural pearls, in the same environment, require the same level of care and maintenance, and take a comparable amount of time to grow. Therefore, cultivated pearls can be even cheaper than natural pearls.
3. Synthetic pearls are forbidden
Although synthetic pearls have been made since ancient times, they have not been accepted by society as it is difficult to prove their quality levels are on par with natural pearls. Watch manufacturers prefer natural pearls because they offer better quality and durability.
4. Safer than pearl diving
Divers wear protective goggles to prevent their eyes from getting damaged by the intense light emitted from natural pearls. They also have to use mouthpieces that control their breathing and prevent them from inhaling water when diving. However, cultured pearls are grown in a sterile environment, and mother-of-pearl is made of plastic that is not toxic.
5. More pearl jewelry styles
Cultured pearls are grown with the same or similar shape to the pearls from which they are made. Cultured pearls can be used in various jewelry styles, including long strands, necklaces, and bracelets. The possibilities are only limited to the imagination. Natural pearls do not come in any particular shape and size, so they are limited to products whose roundness is essential, such as earrings and rings.
6. More color Options with cultured pearls
Cultured pearl colors include black, gold, silver, orange, and purple because fashionable colors constantly change over time.
What Makes The Cultured Pearls Special
Cultured pearls are not just another method of putting a coating on something made of nacre. The mother-of-pearl is in the plant’s organ, its natural tissue that arranges millions of tiny stones according to size and shape. Microscopic crystals form nacreous layers; however, these can only be seen under an electron microscope. The crystals that give various colors to the pearl appear in the plant organ when it grows and develops into genuine stones. The main ingredient for cultured pearls is calcium carbonate, found naturally in marine organisms such as shells from bivalve mollusks (oysters and clams) or conchs (sea snails).
Pearls have been worn for thousands of years for their auspicious meaning and elegance. Cultured pearls are an affordable way to share the timeless beauty of pearls with others. If you’ve ever worn a pearl or two, you know how much they can complete any outfit and make any occasion that much better. Furthermore, the pearl is the perfect gift to commemorate a loved one. The beautiful, timeless look of pearls reminds us that special occasions matter and can last forever.