HOW TO TELL IF YOUR PEARLS ARE REAL

 

Did you know that there are ways to determine the authenticity of pearls? If you've ever wondered if your pearls are authentic, look no further.

Here are some tips on how to tell if your pearls are real:

 

1. CHECK FOR FLAWS

One way to determine the authenticity of pearls is to examine their surface. Like anything else created by Mother Nature, no two pearls are the same. Real pearls have small, fingerprint-like ridges on their surface. These ridges give each pearl a personality and bristly feel. If you can't feel the ridges or if the pearls are perfectly smooth, they are most likely faux pearls.

2. USE NATURAL LIGHT

Authentic pearls are more reflective and seem to glow. Try this pearl test, hold your pearl necklace up to a source of light and check if each pearl reflects light with an iridescent glow. You're likely looking at a strand of authentic pearls if they do. In contrast, synthetic pearls are not reflective, although they are shiny.

3. CHECK FOR OVERTONES

Dazzling real pearls are prized for their overtones — the slight color visible on their outer surface when light hits them. As authentic pearls come from different mollusks and often from different places, the tones of organic pearls should differ. Typically, faux pearls would not have this overtone effect, which is difficult to reproduce.

4. CHECK THE SIZE

Natural pearls come in different shapes and sizes, unlike man-made pearls, which are usually in one uniform size. This is because genuine pearls occur naturally, and anything that occurs naturally in nature will have a slight variation. We repeat, natural pearls are not perfectly round.

In contrast, faux pearls have an overly perfect spherical shape because of the precise manufacturing process.

5. CHECK THE TEMPERATURE

It's not just about looks; you can distinguish between a real and synthetic pearl with touch. Bonafide pearls are cold to the touch. Regardless of the weather, they slowly warm up as worn. On the other hand, imitation pearls are warm to the touch and don't change temperature. So if you're feeling a cold sensation when you wear your pearls, they're likely real

This test, however, is far from exact and is highly dependent on the material of the faux pearl.

6. CHECK THE WEIGHT

One major difference between legitimate pearls and fake pearls is their weight. Legitimate pearls are solid and substantial, making them heavier than their faux counterparts.

Try this pearl test; hold a loose pearl in your hand and feel its weight. If a loose pearl is light in proportion to its size, it is probably man-made. Faux pearls usually consist of plastic or another lighter material.

7. BOUNCE IT

The bounce test is a great way to tell if a pearl is genuine. Drop the loose pearl from 2 feet high on glass, then observe the height of the rebound. If the pearl bounces back higher than 1 foot, it is most likely genuine, as the rebound height of fake pearls is much lower.

8. RUB TEST

The next method for discovering the origin of your pearls is a little invasive, but it is 100% accurate. So try this trick, rub a genuine pearl against another authentic pearl. This should feel gritty not smooth, and produce a thin pearl powder.

9. LISTEN

Another easy way to test out your pearls is by listening to them! Knock two genuine pearls against each other, and you should hear a soft and unique sound. Whereas when you knock counterfeit pearls together, this produces a very slight sound.

10. USE UV LIGHT

Natural pearls will display fluoresce under ultraviolet light, meaning they glow. Press a small UV flashlight over the pearl to see if it glows.

11. USE A MAGNET

The easiest way to check whether your pearls are real or fake is by using the magnet test. Natural pearls contain a hard material called nacre, which gives them that classic opaque pearl look. If you put a small magnet near a real pearl, attraction causes the real pearl to stick to it, while fake pearls will not show any sign of attraction to the magnet.

12. CHECK THE PRICE

If you're still not sure if your pearls are real or not, take a look at their price tag. Genuine pearls will usually be more expensive than imitation pearls. So, if you find a great deal on a cheap strand of bonafide pearls, chances are they're not real.

13. CHECK THE STRING

Typically, bonafide pearls are connected along a silk or nylon thread. If you're examining a strand of pearls and the string is made from cotton, the pearls are likely not real. Cotton strings are commonly used to hang imitation pearls.

14. CHECK FOR KNOTS

Authentic pearls feature individual knots, which means there is a tiny knot between each pearl. The knots keep natural pearls from rubbing against one another and protect you if your strand snaps. However, high-end fake pearl strands contain knots between each “pearl.” So this test by itself is not definite proof.

15. USE A MICROSCOPE

The easiest way to tell if a pearl is real is to inspect it using a microscope. This will allow you to inspect the surface under 10x magnification. If you place a pearl under an intense microscope, it looks scaly. Whereas fake pearls often have a grainy texture.

 

16. LOOK FOR A DRILL HOLE

Take a look at the pearl under a magnifying glass to see if there's a ring around the drill hole. If that's the case, they're most likely real.

Another thing to look out for is that drill holes in organic pearls are often smaller than those in counterfeit pearls. The holes in genuine pearls are drilled as small as possible to maintain the integrity of authetic pearls.

17. NAIL POLISH REMOVER TEST

One way to test if your pearls are real is by using nail polish remover. Apply a small amount of nail polish remover to a cotton ball and then lightly rub the cotton ball against the pearl. Imitation pearls will lose total luster within one minute.

18. USE FIRE

When you burn a real pearl mildly, the pearl remains shiny, intact, and produces no odor. If the flame is consistent for about 2 minutes, an authentic pearl produces a pop sound. When a fake pearl comes into contact with an open flame, it emits a foul stench and loses its shine.

 

19. CHECK WITH A PRO

If you're still unsure if the pearls in your possession are authentic, bring them to a professional jeweler. They can help authenticate your pearls with ease and give you an honest opinion on whether or not they're organic pearls.