Care of Pearls

Remember that a Pearl is not a Rock.

Pearls can keep their beautiful lustre for centuries if the generations of owners remember how these jewels of the sea differ from other precious gem material. Proper care of pearls is not difficult, and it is merely a matter of remembering that these gems are organic by nature, grown in water from the living cells of a living creature.

Like the oysters which formed them, they require moisture ... but because they usually are worn on a silk string which will deteriorate when wet, the pearls will need to be re-strung more frequently if they are taken for a swim in salt or fresh water. Never expose pearls to chlorinated water. Like their “organic” owners, pearls are prone to damage from pollution and injury. They can’t stand the heat, and they should definitely stay out of the kitchen.

What to Do

What to Avoid

Queen Elizabeth I was probably the greatest pearl lover of all times, with more than 3,000 pearl-beaded gowns, almost 100 pearled wigs and chests filled with pearl strands and pearl jewellery. Five centuries later many of Elizabeth's pearl treasures and also the diadems, jewellery and sceptres of other royal houses remain in excellent condition. Precious pearl museum pieces from as long ago as 300 BC still retain their lovely lustre today. Common sense care can assure that today's pearl jewellery also becomes tomorrow's heirlooms.


Pearls must be worn. The grain of the skin improves their lustre. Change the silk thread once a year, separating the pearls with a knot. Avoid exposure to strong light which dries the pearls. Rub them with a soft cloth and put them away alone in a box. Avoid all detergents, lacquer, perfume, make-up and sweat, as they tarnish the lustre. Pearls should be worn on clean, dry skin.



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