The Wide World of Pearls, Our 53rd Issue: Comparing SHAPES: Akoya vs F
Japanese Hanadama Akoya pearls are hands-down the most lustrous pearls on the market. Loved for their intense mirror-like luster, iridescent “Aurora” effect, certified thick nacre depths and classic, timeless appeal, Hanadama Akoya pearls are one of the pearl world’s rarest pearls.
Hanadama pearls are the only Akoya pearls in the world certified by the Pearl Science Laboratory of Tokyo.
Each Hanadama Akoya pearl necklace or pair of pearl earrings comes with its own numbered PSL Certification guaranteeing that these pearls reach the very highest levels of luster, orient and nacre thickness. Certificates specifically test for:
- Luster (must exhibit “very strong” luster)
- Nacre thickness (a min. of .8mm of total nacre)
- Near flawless surface (only 1 “deep” inclusion per strand)
- Orient/Aurora (a rainbow-like soap bubble effect on the surface of the pearl)
Out of all the Value Factors used to evaluate and compare pearls, the biggest difference between Freshwater and Akoya pearls is their Shape.
When most people think “pearl necklace” they are typically thinking of a white, perfectly round and perfectly matched strand of pearls.
This ideal image matches what the saltwater Akoya pearl type has to offer: perfectly round in shape, expertly matched in shape, size, surface quality and luster, and a lovely, bright white appearance.
This perfection of pearl shape adds to the Akoya pearl’s higher value, as perfectly round pearls typically account for the smallest percentage of any pearl harvest.
If a flawlessly round pearl necklace is highly important to you in your hunt for the perfect strand of pearls, then the Japanese Akoya pearl type is for you!
Freshwater pearls from China have MUCH more variability in the Shape category.
Freshwater pearl shapes can be:
- Off-round & Potato-shape
- Free-form baroque
WOW, right? It is an almost dizzying variety of shapes.
The most common pearl shape for Freshwater pearls you will find in most jewelry stores today is the off-round shape. Off-round pearls look like ovals or even eggs. This pearl shape falls into the AA+ grade on the A-AAA grading scale.
Stay tuned for our next newsletter where we’ll compare Freshwater and Akoya pearls luster side by side.
White Gem Grade Freshwater Pearl Necklace: 7.5-8.0mm
Look breathtaking in this Gem Grade, 7-8 mm freshwater necklace. This white pearl strand is the epitome of class and sophistication. The bright luster and roundness of these pearls rival even high quality Akoyas.
Our Gem Grade quality is selected from the highest quality of freshwater pearls in the world, and all our strands are hand-knotted between each pearl for security. The pearls are strung with 100% silk thread and finished with a 14K white or yellow gold clasp.