Shopping Guide for Tahitian Pearls

Tahitian PearlsTahitian pearls, symbols of luxury and perfection, are long sought for their exceptional beauty and value. Tahitian pearls are valued as queen of pearls and creation of the sea. Tahitian pearls are named after the tropical island of Tahiti. Tahiti’s black lipped oysters yield a unique array of iridescent black, gray and greenish black pearls.

Nowadays, Tahitian pearl farming has spread over thousands of miles around this island. Due to Tahiti’s government promotion, demand for black Tahitian pearls rise 5-10% a year.

There are six factors determine Tahitian pearl quality: luster, nacre thickness, surface, color, size, shape.

Nacre Thickness

Nacre thickness is the most important factor when measuring Tahitian pearl quality. It determines how long the beauty of Tahitian pearls will last. Tahitian pearls with thick nacre will last a life time, while Tahitian pearls with thin nacre won’t last long, their nacre will wear off over time.

French Polynesia Government has set up a minimum nacre thickness of 0.8mm for Tahitian pearls. Tahitian pearls with less than 0.8mm nacre thickness are prohibited from exporting.

Surface Quality

There are four grades to rate the surface quality of Tahitian pearls: A, B, C, D. A quality Tahitian pearls are the highest quality and they are the most valuable.

A Quality: Tahitian pearls with very high luster and clean surface (one to a few slight flaws are distributed over less than 10% of the pearl surface)

B Quality: Tahitian pearls with medium to high luster and slight surface imperfection (some slight flaws are distributed over 30% of the pearl surface)

C Quality: Tahitian pearls with medium luster and medium surface imperfection (some slight flaws are distributed over 60% of the pearl surface.

D Quality: Tahitian pearls are heavily spotted (many slight flaws or several deep flaws are distributed over 60% of the pearl surface) Luster

Luster is the best expression of a pearl’s beauty. It is the quality of the light reflections from the pearl’s surface. Luster measures the pearl surface shininess. High quality Tahitian pearls have high luster and mirror-like finish. Thick nacre results in high luster. Tahitian pearls with sharp and intense light reflection have high luster and a metal-like steely look.

Size

Most common sizes for Tahitian pearls range from 8mm to 14mm. Some Tahitian pearls are 16mm and very rarely over 18mm. The largest Tahitian pearl in the world is 21mm for a round pearl and 25mm for a semi-round pearl. The larger the pearls, the more valuable the pearls are.

Shape

Tahitian pearls have the following shapes:

Round

Semi-round

Semi-baroque

Baroque

Ringed or circled.

Among all shapes, round is the most desirable and valuable. Other shapes may have special appeal to jewelry artists. Round pearls are almost perfect spheres. Round Tahitian pearls are rare and the production rate only accounts for 5-10% of Tahitian pearls produced each year. Semi-round pearls are nearly round. Semi-baroque pearls are subdivided into four shapes: drop, button, pear and oval. Baroque pearls are described as irregular shapes.

Color

Black-lipped oysters produce the natural black color of Tahitian pearls. Although Tahitian Pearls are famous for their black natural color, they have a wide range of colors including black, grey, blue, green and brown. These colors are referred as body color. Body colors are enhanced by at least one overtone colors. Overtone colors include blue, gold, silver, pink and reddish purple. Different names are given to a combination of overtone and body colors. Peacock: greenish black

Pistachio: greenish gray

Cherry: purplish black

Champagne: yellowish gray

Lavender: bluish black

Tahitian gold: golden black

Pigeon grey: purplish gray

Silver: gray

Moon grey: pale gray.

Among these colors, peacock and Pistachio are the most popular colors. Tahitian pearls with peacock and pistachio colors have a higher value than pearls with other colors. Buying Tahitian Pearls

Jewelry Online Shopping

The jewelry sector becomes the highest riser in today’s booming online shipping. If you type “jewelry” or “diamond rings” on Google, a few hundred of jewelry retail websites comes out. To do research online before purchasing is very important.

Three things consumers look for are quality, price and customer service. Good websites always states everything clearly. Blue Nile clearly states out the color, clarity, numbers of diamonds, total diamond weight, setting type, metal, and width in their diamond ring pages.

There are websites stating their diamond color is F/H and clarity is VVS/VS. F color, VVS1 clarity stones are very different and much more expensive than H color and VS2 stones. How can consumers be clear with the quality they are getting?

We can see that most websites have good returning policy, and the big ones offer up to 30 days returning policy. This is the most important service for online jewelry stores. Good returning policy shows the website confident with their quality and service. It covers a lot of potential risk of online jewelry shopping. Unless you are very confident and familiar with the jewelry website, purchasing from any one with poor returning policy is risky.

One of the major reasons consumers purchase jewelries online, especially high end diamond pieces, is because of the price. With sufficient amount of research, you truly can purchase some high quality jewelries at 30%-60% off the retail market price.

We should first understand these jewelry websites’ business model. Many of the sites are run by previous retail jewelers. They have many years’ experience and connections in the industry. They memo jewelry pieces and diamonds from wholesale vendors in New York or Los Angeles add a margin and resell them out. Some jewelry sites are run by students fresh out of college.

They create great websites, and get their vendors drop shipping directly to their consumers. Because they don’t have to pay high rent in expensive location, they don’t have the same high mark up as local jewelry stores. They highly threaten traditional jewelry stores, and with financial experts’ prediction, 1/3 of the traditional jewelry stores will either disappear or go on line in the next 5 years.

Few companies take it to a new step. They manufacture jewelries and sell them directly through their website. Their prices are surprisingly low. It is not surprising if we are going to see more and more jewelry wholesalers and manufacturers coming online in the next few years.

Which One You Should Buy Pepper Spray Or Stun Guns?

Pepper Spray Or Stun GunsIf you are serious about self-defense, and you want to take a non-lethal approach, you will have a choice to buy between only a few items that can stop an attacker in their tracks.

You have a right to protect yourself and those you love. And you should be able to act on a moment’s notice. Don’t become another victim……fight back!

Stun Guns, of at least 400,000 volts and up, will stop most people. Some people can take quite a jolt, and keep on coming. It really depends on what part of the body the Stun Gun contacts.

A strong Stun Gun, and they go up to 750,000 volts, can drop a large man in seconds. You would contact the upper part of the body, on the torso. You will have time to either get away, or further subdue the attacker. If there is more than one attacker, you will have to be in close contact with each of them, in order to stop the attack.

If you had a TASER, it would shoot out two electronic darts attached to wires that would bring down any man, except for maybe Rodney King. The TASER only holds one shot, after that it functions only as a stun gun.

Pepper Sprays, such as MACE, are extremely effective in stopping an attack. Pepper Sprays come in a couple of strengths, but believe me, you would not like to be sprayed by any of them. They also come in different sizes.

Here is the difference — You can use Pepper Sprays at a distance, and you can be effective with several attackers at one time, you can spray a whole gang at one time with some of these large spray canisters.

A drawback with Pepper Sprays is that you have to be careful not to spray into the wind. It will come back in your face, and you will be very sorry. If you use a spray it indoors, there will be no problem with spray-back.

It is ALWAYS better to keep a distance from an attacker. This is most effectively done with Pepper Spray.

Few Consideration When Choosing Pearl Jewelry

Pearl JewelryWhen choosing pearls jewelry, there are a number of things to consider besides just the quality of the pearls. While there is no right or wrong way to choose pearls, here are a few tips you should consider.

Necklace Length – You can buy pearl necklaces in a number of different lengths. Generally speaking, shorter necklaces flatter long necks, while long necklaces are nice for smaller necks. The lengths and names are as follows.

Collar – 12-13″
Choker – 14-16″
Princess – 17-19″
Matinee – 20-25″
Opera – 26-36″
Rope – 37″ or longer

The most popular is the Princess length since it is a good length for both long and smaller necks.

Pearl Color – The pearl color does not affect the value of the pearl, instead it is completely in the eye of the beholder. Most people buy pearls that best match their skin tone. People with light skin usually buy white or pink pearls while people with darker skin tones tend to buy black or lavender pearls. In America, white pearls are the most popular, while in Asia, silver are the most sought after.

Pearl Sets – When buying pearl jewelry you should consider if you want an entire set, or just a certain piece. If for instance, you buy the necklace, and then later decide to buy the bracelet or earrings they may not match as well as if you had bought a set. Even if you buy the same size, and color, the style may not be the same. Some stores will allow you to buy the individual pieces of a set. So if you want to buy the other pieces at a later time, they will still match.