Sea pearls and lake pearls are the two main types of farmed pearls.Sea pearls have three major types, Akoya pearls, South Sea pearls, and Tahitian pearls.
Akoya Pearls #
Akoya pearls are small to medium in size, typically ranging from 6-8mm in diameter, and are grown in the Akoya oyster in Japan, China, and other parts of Asia. They have a high lustre and are usually white or cream in colour, although they can also be found in shades of pink, blue, and green.
South Sea Pearls #
South Sea pearls are larger in size, typically ranging from 9-20mm in diameter, and are grown in the Pinctada maxima oyster in the South Pacific, including Australia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. They have a lower lustre than Akoya pearls and come in various colours, including white, cream, gold, and silver.
Tahitian Pearls #
The Tahitian pearl is also known as a black pearl, and it is produced in French Polynesia by the Pinctada margaritifera oyster. They are medium to large in size, typically ranging from 8-15mm in diameter, and are known for their unique dark colours, ranging from black to dark green to aubergine. Tahitian pearls have a lower lustre than Akoya pearls and are usually more expensive due to their rarity.
Freshwater Pearl #
Fresh water pearl is produced by freshwater mussels rather than saltwater oysters. They are grown in lakes, rivers, and other bodies of freshwater, primarily in China and the United States and other parts of the world. Freshwater pearls are typically smaller and less round than other types of cultured pearls and come in a wide range of colours, including white, pink, peach, lavender, and purple. While they are not as highly prized as saltwater pearls, they are a popular and affordable alternative to other types of pearls.