You will be ready for any festive occasion during the winter months with these adorable snowman earrings, made of sea shell pearls and Swarovski crystal. Two 8mm White Sea shell pearls are topped with a black Swarovski crystal and sequin “hat” and accented with a rhinestone rondelle bead. Hypoallergenic surgical steel earwires.
Earrings measure 1.75 inches, including earwires.
Shell pearls are made from the inner lining of oyster shells, also known as Mother of Pearl. The substance is ground to a fine powder, shaped, dyed and coated with natural pearl nacre and then a protective coating to give it lustre. Authentic pearls are formed by molluscs when an irritant gets into the creature. It reacts by coating the irritant with layers of nacre, which eventually builds up and forms into a pearl.
Shell pearls, on the other hand, are created by humans using the inner lining of oyster shells, the substance known as Mother of Pearl. This makes shell pearls quite interesting, because although they’re made by humans, they are made of the same materials as real pearls.
Unlike imitation pearls which contain glass or plastic, the base of shell pearls is nacre. The pearl is made using a bead of mother-of-pearl.
First, nacre is collected, then pulverized and combined with other materials to form pearls. The outer surface is then coated and polished to attain the luster that we associate with pearls.
Taken this way, shell pearls are fake pearls, but they’re made using the same ingredients as a cultured pearl. Because of this, we like to think of shell pearl as synthetic pearl or lab-created pearl, rather than a fake pearl. Although the process is different, shell pearls, in essence, are quite similar to lab-created gemstones. Shell pearls are more durable than genuine pearls, because of the way they’ve been created. They don’t tend to discolor or fade and are more resistant to damage. They can tolerate chemicals, sweat, body oils and detergents better than real pearls.
There are stringent measures in place in the shell pearl industry that ensure that the pearls are durable and able to withstand exposure. They are an affordable natural alternative to genuine pearls.