If your loved one is not a fan of diamonds, or you’ve both simply decided that it was too much money to spend for a ring, there are many options left for you. You can always buy a ring with some other precious or semi-precious stone, but if you have a sophisticated taste, you could opt for pearl engagement rings. Contrary to common belief, pearls do not bring bad luck.
Pearl Engagement Rings Are Beautiful Gifts From Nature
Pearls have always been attracting attention with their beautiful reflection and mild diffusion of colors. Beauty of pearls cannot be compared to anything else in the world.
People had recognized the value of this beautiful creation of nature a long time ago. History is filled with stories and legends about beauty, value and elegance pearls bring along. Different civilizations assigned them various magical features, and for a long time pearl wedding rings were a privilege of royal families.
A pearl is a symbol of faith, love, happiness and abundance
In most of the cultures pearls had a symbolic character. In China and Japan, pearls symbolize fortune, wisdom and dignity. In India, pearls represent blessing with children.
In the Islamic cultures pearls symbolize virginity. Old Greeks and Romans also highly appreciated pearls. Pearls are referred to as gemstones in spite the fact that they are minerals. Pearls come from deep under the sea, with no human assistance and they symbolize purity and faith.
There are two main types of pearls:
- Natural pearls
- Only 20 sorts of oysters may, under certain conditions create a pearl. It occurs when a foreign object (sand, piece of shell, or a parasite) get into an oyster which activates its defense mechanism. The oyster then excretes pearly matter which, in a year or two creates a pearl. It is reasonable to say that pearls procured in this way, at the bottom of the sea, are rare and very hard to find. In the 18th century the demand exceeded supply so pear findings became exhausted. During 19th century it was almost impossible to find pearls. On Mosh’s hardness scale, pearls range between 3.5 and 4.
- Conch Pearls are extremely rare, natural pearls found exclusively in Caribbean waters
- Abalone pearls are some of the most unique and rare pearls on this Earth
- Cultured pearls
- Cultured pearls are not fake, they are made of the same material as natural ones, but under other conditions
- Fake pearls are made of glass or plastic
- The most famous among cultured pearls are Mikimoto pearls
- Cultured pearls are divided into freshwater (from lakes and rivers) and saltwater pearls (cultured in salty waters)
- Cultured pearls are divided into three further categories according to types of oysters and location of farms
- Akoya (Pinctada fucata oyster)
- Tahiti (Pinctada margeritifera oyster)
- South Sea Pearls (Pinctada maxima)
Pearl Engagement Rings
Those exquisite pieces of jewelry are not so easy to find, they are created for refined customers. Not everyone can wear a pearl engagement ring. Pearls symbolize harmony and purity, even though pearls are not meant to last forever; they are associated with eternal love and fellowship.
What to Look for When Buying a Pearl Engagement Ring
If you decided to buy a pearl engagement ring for your loved one, there are several things you should pay attention to:
- luster and nacre (luster is pearl brilliance which distinguishes pearl one from the other: nacre is the very essence of a pearl)
- surface quality (natural pearls are not perfect, they have slight imperfections which make each pearl so unique)
- color (pearls come in wide range of colors, choose according to preferences of the woman who will wear it)
- size (price rises with size of pearl, bear in mind lifestyle of the wearer, too big pearl could be and obstacle for everyday wear
- types: there are slight differences between saltwater and freshwater pearls, not to mention natural ones; natural ones are the most expensive, followed by saltwater pearls
Distinguishing Pearl Engagement Ring Styles
Black pearl engagement rings are attractive but sometimes not easy to wear, due to their size. They are glamorous and ideal for sensual and gentle women who will know how to wear these exquisite pieces of jewelry. Pearl engagement rings are not intended for those with adventurous lifestyle because extreme conditions might damage sensitive pearl. You should take the ring off before you go into shower, bath or for a swim.
How to Care for Pearl Rings
According to Mohs’ hardness scale, pearls belong to soft gems category, so they are prone to damage and wearing out. Pearls are safe in bezel settings which will prevent them from falling out.
- Freshwater pearls are softer than Akoya, South Sea, and Tahitian pearls, and do scratch much more easily. Salt water pearls would be best choice for wear as they consist of 100% nacre. So, choose smaller pearl in fairly protective bezel and pearl engagement ring will last as long as any other.
- Pearls are half drilled then inserted the bar of setting, secured by glue. That is why pearl ring should not be washed since water and other chemicals can get into the pearl and damage its nectar.
- Never, ever use ammonia or vinegar to clean your pearls, as this will damage them. Only adequate way to clean your pearl engagement ring is to rub it with a soft cloth. For professional cleaning, consult your jeweler
- Be aware that a pearl will change its color during time, due to the fact that pearls are organic materials and they absorb your bodily oils
What to ask Your Jeweler when Buying Your Wedding Ring?
- Always ask to identify the pearl (it is essential to know whether the pearl is natural or cultured, because it affects the price greatly)
- Ask for money back guarantee, warranty and possibility for repairs
- Be sure to get a proper certificate of authenticity