Whenever we mention the word 'pearl', our mind starts figuring out a white or a cream colored round shaped ball. This is the standard associated with pearl. It is a round beauty accessory rarely found on earth and is nature's gift to mankind.
In today’s world of advanced scientific techniques, it is not very difficult to find the beauty of those charming white or rose sea pearls. The beginning of the 20th century saw many inventions of the cultured pearls. Nowadays many pearl cultivation centers have developed. Unlike the natural pearls which are hard to find, limited in number and usually varying qualities, shapes and sizes, these man made pearls are more accurate and flawless. These are cultivated to be in perfect round shape; useful in jewelry making. This method of production helped to increase the number of pearls being produced, to tens of thousands in numbers rather than just a few pearls being found over a long period of time. The mass production has also been a facilitator in bringing down the cost of this gem to a price, which now a day suits the pockets of many. Today the cultured pearl industry has took over the natural pearl harvesting industry with many different types of pearls being produced in different parts of the globe. These are harvested either from freshwater or saltwater mollusks. The common misconception is that saltwater pearls are known as cultured; where as the freshwater as well as saltwater pearls are produced with the same process.The main producers of freshwater pearls are United States, Japan and China. Biwa is the most famous type of freshwater cultured pearl originator from the lake Biwa of Japan. The beauty of these freshwater pearls has been treasured in the minds of people, as they are rare, elegant, classic and royal. A person will always find freshwater pearls in the category of fashion and lifestyle. These can be afforded by a person and are more beautiful than other pearls.There is a lot of difference between saltwater and freshwater pearls. Pearls which are originated from sea consist of deep color, while the freshwater pearls give a light gray or faded appearance. Saltwater pearls are usually lustrous and round in shape compared with freshwater pearls, which makes saltwater pearls more expensive.A pearl represents elegance, sophistication and beauty for all sorts of occasions or events regardless of its nature and type. At the time of buying pearls, a person should keep in mind all the six factors, which determine the quality and value of a single pearl i.e. shape, size, luster, color, surface texture, and nacre thickness.