Pearl Education

There are endless pearls of wisdom to discover about our favorite gem! Learn about the different shapes, sizes & colors of pearls, where they come from and important jewelry care instructions. For jewelry styling, fun facts, pearl history, and more, follow @HonoraPearls on Social Media.

Pearl Care

The key to long-lasting pearl jewelry is preservation! Follow these tips for longer lasting luster:

• Remove your pearls before taking a shower or going for a swim. Heat, sun and excess water will harm your pearls.

• Gently wipe pearls with a soft cloth to remove body oils or dirt before putting your pearls away.

• Store your pearls inside a pouch or jewelry box in a dry and cool space.

• Ensure your pearls are not touching any other jewelry as this can cause damage to the pearls themselves or to the stringing.

• If your pearls need additional cleaning, contact us or take them to a local jeweler.

For more information, please visit our FAQ page, or use our CONTACT page to get in touch!

Cultured Pearls

Every Pearl is formed through the same process: When an irritant enters the soft tissue of an oyster or mollusk, the animal produces secretions called Nacre (aka Mother of Pearl) that coats the irritant as a defense mechanism. Many layers of coating are deposited on the irritant making it smooth, resulting in a pearl.

In the case of ‘Cultured Pearls’ the only difference is that the irritant is introduced into the mollusk by an obliging human rather than natural forces.

There are four major types of Cultured Pearls: Akoya (round & white), South Sea (large & metallic), Tahitian (dark), and Freshwater (all shapes & sizes!).

Honora specializes in Freshwater Pearls.

Freshwater Pearls

The term ‘Freshwater Pearls’ refers to pearls that are farmed and/or grown in a non-saline (not-salty) bodies of water, like a freshwater lake or pond. These pearls are almost completely solid Nacre, meaning Freshwater Pearls are extremely durable.

For over 70 years, Honora has specialized in sourcing Freshwater Pearls of the highest possible quality.

Honora is largest importer of Freshwater Pearls in the United States, this means we get first choice for the most beautiful pearls in the most glorious colors -- at the very best prices!

Highlight: Ming Pearls

For many years it was common to cultivate as many 32 Cultured Pearls inside one mollusk at a time. In 2011, a selection of pearl farmers, including our partners, began experimenting with growing just one pearl in a mollusk at a time.

The result of this process was Ming Pearls!

By growing each pearl separately, Ming Pearls develop without abrasions, resulting in an almost metallic sheen. With extra room to expand inside the mollusk, Ming Pearls can grow up 20mm - making them a serious alternative to South Sea, the rarest of all pearl types.

Pearl Quality

Pearls are valued by a combination of qualities, such as size, color, shape, luster, symmetry and lack of any flaws on the surface. When it comes to quality, the usual rule for pearl jewelry is ‘the more the better’-The bigger, whiter, rounder and smoother pearls are, the higher their quality is and the more they cost.

Because no two pearls are ever exactly alike, sorting pearls is an extremely difficult and time-consuming process, which can add to the jewelry’s cost as well.

Pearl Colors

While the best-known pearl color is white, pearls naturally occur in nearly every color of the rainbow.

In addition to the brilliant colors Mother Nature chooses for naturally occurring pearls, Honora has worked for many years to develop a process that creates rich, unique pearl colors and offers pearls in the full spectrum of the rainbow.

View our Pinterest Boards for Pearl Jewelry Styling tips and Shop by Color!






Sky Blue









Metal Gold



Navy Blue


Pearl Shapes & Sizes

No two pearls are alike, and their individuality is what we love most about them! The best-known shapes are: Baroque, Button, Coin, Drop, Keshi, Potato, Oval, Ringed, Near-Round, and Round.

Perfectly round pearls are the rarest to find and are considered by many to be the most valuable (But, at Honora, we celebrate beauty in ALL forms). The general rule of thumb regarding pearl size is - the longer the time a pearl spends growing in a mollusk, the larger it will become.











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