The price of a Tahitian pearl depends on three criterias : the Shape, the Size and the Quality. Thereafter is a definition of each of those criterias. The pearl has a higher price when it is rounder, bigger or of better quality.
Tahitian Cultured Pearls shapes
Tahitian cultured pearls are selected in 5 different shapes : Round, Semi-round, Semi-baroque, Ringed and Baroque.
- ROUND PEARLS are spherical with a diameter variation under 2%. Round pearls are the rarest and the most desired. That’s why it’s also the most expensive. To know if a pearl is perfectly round, just roll it on a table. If it does not roll straightly it is semi round.
- SEMI-ROUND PEARLS are slightly imperfect spheres with a variation in diameter between 2% and 5%.
- SEMI-BAROQUES PEARLS have more than 5% variation in diameter but do present an axis of symmetry.
- RINGED PEARLS are marked with rings perpendicularly to the rotation axis on more than 1/3 of the surface.
- BAROQUES PEARLS do not have any symmetrical axis.
Tahitian Cultured Pearls sizes
Pearl size is expressed in mm. They generally range between 8 mm and 14 mm. A few pearls can be 16 mm and exceptionally 18 mm. The biggest Tahitian pearl is 21 mm. Such pearls are considered as exceptional.
Tahitian Cultured Pearls classification
Official classification is :
- TOP GEM : no imperfection, flawless even before setting. Very high luster.
- QUALITY A : Very light imperfections on less than 10 % of the surface with a very high luster.
- QUALITY B : light imperfections on less than 33% of the surface. Good luster.
- QUALITÉ C : imperfections on less than 66% of the surface. Medium luster.
- QUALITÉ D : important imperfections on more than 66% of the surface. Poor luster.
Tahitian Cultured Pearls luster
We call luster the effect of light on the pearl’s surface. Luster is EXCELLENT when reflection is bright, intense and strong. Luster is SOFT when reflection is low or dull.