All About Pearls- June’s Birthstone:
Lucky June babies get the pearl as their birthstone! And with so many varieties to choose from, there really will be something to suit everyone. Thanks to Kokichi Mikimoto’s pioneering efforts over one hundred years ago, cultured pearls are readily available for use in beautiful jewellery and they are the type most commonly found on the market, encompassing everything from creamy freshwater to the pinky high lustre of Akoya, golden overtones and large size of South Sea and peacock grey Tahitian pearls. Cultured pearls are formed through human intervention; a small grain is implanted into shells, although the oyster still does all the hard work, covering the speck with layers of beautiful nacre. The supply of natural pearls has unfortunately completely dwindled; they are extremely rare and therefore priced to match! A strand of natural pearls recently sold for over €5 million in Geneva – so we are certainly grateful for Mr. Mikimoto’s hard work in making these gems available for more of us to enjoy.
How to Look after Pearls: Being a natural substance, the nacre pearls can be very delicate and must be looked after accordingly. Chemicals in fragrance and makeup can be very damaging to the lustre so always remember to put pearls on after everything else – and give them a wipe with a soft damp cloth to remove the day’s dirt after removing them. They are also best kept out of a jewellery box – the lustre benefits from the moisture in the air.