Essence of Pearls

What this means for you and me is that pearls are going to be everywhere … more so than ever before. The designs are creative, exciting and new. The single strand of small- to medium-sized pearls will always be available and considered the most traditional. Now there is abundance in the variety of shapes, types, and color. The following charts will help you in deciding which pearls are for you and how to care for them.

Natural pearls are rare and are usually found in estate sales or in museums from when European royalty discovered the Americas and the bays filled with oysters filled with naturally occurring pearls. Those pearls had an irritant that naturally made its way inside the muscle of the oysters started it producing layer upon layer of nacre which continued to build until the oyster was removed by men.

Now day’s pearls that are affordable are cultured. Which means that mature oysters are harvested from a riverbed or ocean: A small round bit of oyster shell is inserted into the muscle and the same nacre producing activity begins building a pearl over a period of 10 months to 3 years.

Man-made or faux pearls are produced when a round glass bead is covered with iridescent fish scales that generate a pearly finish. When you rub one of these beads against your front teeth, they feel smooth. Whereas when you do the same with a cultured pearl, the nacre coating feels slightly gritty against your tooth.

Man-made pearls, such as your standard Mardi-gras beads will feel room temperature when you pick them up. Cultured pearls will feel cold, especially when in an air-conditioned room. Pearls need to be the last thing you put on after you have dressed, applied makeup and fixed your hair.

Hair styling products, deodorant, fragrance and any alcohol-based spray will break down the luster and finish on a pearl causing it to look pitty because the nacre layers will begin to peel off. The acid in our natural occurring body oils can build up on pearls which can make them look dull. It is best to wipe them off with a soft cloth or wash with a mild soap to remove a build up on the pearl surface. Do not dip in an ultrasonic cleanser, the damage would be immediate.

Moissanite Bracelet

Moissanite is a new diamond substitute that, unlike previous faux diamond offerings, is a stunningly beautiful material in its own right, and considered by experts to surpass diamond in many ways. So if you want to add some simple elegance to your favorite outfit, a moissanite bracelet might be your perfect choice.

A moissanite tennis bracelet is one of life’s simple beauties. So called because of Chris Evert’s loss of a diamond strand bracelet on court during the 1987 US Open Tennis Tournament, tennis bracelets combine simplicity and extravagance all in one. Chris refused to continue playing tennis until the safety of her bracelet was assured and it was safely back on her wrist, and with a moissanite tennis bracelet, you can be sure that you will be a show-stopper too.

While a chunky bangle can add a casually stylish air to an outfit, a moissanite bracelet adds a mature and subtle style. While earrings and necklace draw attention to themselves, a moissanite bracelet brings an understated brilliance that adds intrigue to your look.

Nestling under your sleeve, or resting against your wrist, a tennis bracelet is the piece of jewelry seen only when you speak and gesture, displaying a momentary glimpse of your unique sense of style. A moissanite tennis bracelet endows you with a sophistication that doesn’t speak aloud, it merely whispers of its understated elegance to those with an eye for real beauty.

Moissanite has been taking the jewelry world by storm, so treat yourself to a moissanite bracelet, and enjoy the combination of innovation and timelessness for yourself. Don’t wear your heart on your sleeve, but create a sense of mystery with the subtle beauty of a moissanite tennis bracelet.

Fake Diamond Manufacturing

Here are some easy tips you can use to determine fake diamond – or real?

Ask. Ask the salesman straight out if the diamond you are looking at is a fake or real. A reputable salesman will give you an honest answer.

Wear and Tear. Real diamonds are almost indestructible. If you seek chips or scratches on the gem, chances are your diamond is made by man and not nature.

Documentation. Ask for a certificate from the Gemological Institution of America. The GIA is the largest diamond grading authority in the world.

Appraisal. Take the diamond to a certified diamond appraiser. While the naked eye may not be able to distinguish between a real diamond and fake one, appraisers have the tools needed to tell the difference.

Setting. Look at the quality of the setting. If the diamond is fake, there is a higher chance the setting will be of poor quality than if the diamond is real.

Fake or real, a beautifully cut diamond in a dazzling setting can be a real eye catcher. The trick is not to pay more for your diamond, fake or real, than it is really worth. By taking the proper precautions to know what you are buying, you can enjoy your diamond purchase without regrets.

Pearl Care

Storing Pearls

Because pearls can be easily scratched or damaged, keep your pearls separated from other items or jewelry. They are best kept in a soft cloth, a soft pouch, or a soft, lined jewelry box. Do not keep your pearls in an airtight or excessively dry environment. They need moisture in order to prevent cracking. If they need to be kept in a safety deposit box or a vault, keep a damp (not wet) cloth nearby. Re-dampen as needed, but be careful not to have too much moisture. This can cause mildew.

Avoiding Harmful Products

Personal care products such as cosmetics, perfume and hair spray, can dull the pearl’s luster and should be applied before putting your pearls on. Other harmful products, such as vinegar, ammonia, chlorine bleach, and even inks will also damage the pearl surface. Make sure to remove your pearls before any strenuous exercise or work. Perspiration is another harmful substance that contains natural acids that can eat away at your pearl’s surface. These are all harmful substances that can spot or disintegrate the pearl’s beautiful nacre.

Cleaning Pearls

After each use, gently wipe your pearls with a warm, damp cloth before putting them away. Make sure not to use anything abrasive to wipe off the pearl surface. Periodically, gently wash your pearls in warm, soapy water using a mild soap (not a detergent) to remove any harmful buildup. After washing, gently rinse your pearls in clean water and then, wrap them in a thin, damp (not wet) cotton towel. Once the towel is dry, your pearls will be dry, too. Make sure not to hang your pearls to dry, since this can stretch the silk thread. If your pearls are particularly dirty, you can also wipe them with acetone polish remover. Unlike ammonia and vinegar, acetone will not damage your pearls.