How Pearls Are Graded?
There are many different varieties of pearls available in the market, and it will be difficult to compare them, especially if you are trying to buy them online instead of buying in person.
Therefore, a pearl grading system was established to get good idea about the pearl quality that you may be considering and then compare across various sellers and other varieties.
Unfortunately, few pearl sellers may not stick to any standard grading systems. Also, few others may create a system of their own or use terms that is outside the system to give an impression as if their pearls are of higher quality.
In case, you are not too sure about the grading system that a seller may be using, then you may click here to read this post.
There are 2 primary grading systems for pearls.
- Hanadama system of grading
For Akoya pearls this system was designed as such pearls have nacre thickness minimum of .4 mm. They can be rated from A – AAA.
Certain defects of pearls like low lustre and thin nacre is because of a chalky surface. Pearls with AA rating will have higher lustre and minimum visible defects. Rating of AAA is the pearls of highest quality in such grading system.
Here at least 95 per cent of the surface will be free of defects, with perfectly round pearl with mirror-like lustre.
- Tahitian system of grading
In this system, pearls are rated right from A – D. If the defect on more than 60% of pearl surface has some defects then it will be rated as D. Pearls having medium lustre with defects below 60 percent of its surface will be rated as C.
B grade pearls are with medium or high lustre and defects at below 30 percent of pearl’s surface. Finally, A grade pearls are the best quality with high lustre and minor imperfections which is less than 10 percent of surface area.
While shopping for pearls, remember that the higher-grade pearls will be more expensive. Often, it will be economical to buy a lower-quality pearl in case it has been properly set in piece of jewellery in such a manner that its defects are hidden.
You may get certain beautiful piece of jewellery. In this manner at a reasonably lower price.