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What is the Birthstone for June?

What is the Birthstone for June? 

People born in June are blessed, and have three birthstones to select from.

PEARL

ALEXANDRITE

MOONSTONE

Starting with pearls, the Queens of the Ocean, pearls are associated with both royalty, purity and innocence.

Pearl jewellery, rings and necklace

Pearls are found in Oceans, Lakes and Rivers all over the world with the most valued and beautiful on our West Australian Coastline near Broome, which are known as South Sea pearls

If we travel back in time, many ancient populations considered pearls to be teardrops that had fallen from heaven whereas the Chinese fancied the idea that pearls came from the brain of a dragon.  Christopher Columbus believed that the molluscs formed pearls from dew drops.

 

 

How and where are they formed? 

There are a few different varieties of Pearls, from freshwater cultured pearls, Edison or nucleated pearls and South Sea Pearls. Pearls grow inside the issue of a freshwater or saltwater mollusc – Either an oyster or a mussel. Typically found away from any built-up areas. Pearl-bearing molluscs fail to thrive in polluted waters, so farms are usually located far from civilisation – and often in breathtaking settings. 

Size

To begin, the size of a pearl mainly factors into where it has come from. Generally, they are 6mm – 7mm. Any larger and the size becomes more desirable, similar to when a diamond is 1.00ct, the price goes up dramatically. Only a small percentage of the biggest, healthiest molluscs can produce the larger pearls, making them rare. 

Lustre

In relation to lustre, this is measured by shininess. When great lustre is observed, light travels through its layers of nacre and is refracted and reflected from within, giving the pearl a shine within

“if you can see your reflection in the nacre of a pearl, it is the sign of a quality pearl” Sandra

Shape

Shape has a big impact on value, perfectly round meaning subsequently the more expensive. 

Three round grades exist from Near Round – meaning perfectly round when worn. Interestingly, this is an illusion and is not normally perfectly round when viewed close up. 

Baroque – Meaning irregular in shape. However, the irregular shape is commonly known to allow more light, improving lustre. (this is my personal favourite)

And finally, Keshi – Meaning very small and Baroque. Keshi is the Japanese word for ‘poppy seed’, and it’s an apt name because when you look closely at poppy seeds, they’re small but very irregular in shape. 

Colour

As a rule, colour doesn’t significantly impact the value. A range of colours exists for different types of pearl, which also affects the Lustre on what colours to look out for. Commonly, white, peach and purple Freshwater pearls of the same lustre, size, shape and surface quality consist of the same value. 

Surface Quality

The most important factor for grading and value, only a small percentage of pearls have a smooth, even surface. The majority are marked with pits, bands, bumps or even cracks. 

Pearl quality

 

Nacre Quality

Relating to thickness – additionally only relevant for nucleated bead pearls, i.e. saltwater and certain Freshwater pearls, because most Freshwater pearls are 100% nacre and have no bead in the middle. 

 

Care and cleaning 

“Pearls are 2.5 to 3.0 on the Mohs Scale of hardness, so they are a comparatively soft gem and require special care.

Store them separately from other gemstones and metal jewellery to prevent scratching. Never store your birthstones in a plastic bag — plastic can emit a chemical that will damage their surface.

Always apply perfume, hair products and cosmetics before putting on your jewellery. The best way to clean your June birthstone: Use a soft, damp cloth, ideally after each time the pearls are worn.”