3 Things about Akoya Pearls You Need to Know


When it comes to pearl jewellery,
Choo Yilin primarily works with three different types of genuine, cultured pearls:
South Sea, freshwater, and akoya pearls.

When you picture a pearl, what comes to mind?

If you thought of a glowing white, orb-shaped gem from the sea, you’re most likely picturing the resplendent akoya.

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Akoyas are “the exemplary pearls”.

Not all pearls are white, round, or even from the sea!
In fact, what you may have pictured is a specific type of pearl.

The majority of cultured akoya pearls are white or cream, and akoya pearl oysters (Pinctada fucata (martensii)) rarely produce more than two pearls at a time, preserving the akoya pearl’s iconic radiance, and impeccably round shape.

South Sea Pearls (a saltwater pearl, like the akoya), are more often formed in oval, or baroque shapes, and come in hues of silvers, whites and yellows.

Then, there are pearls that are not from the ocean: freshwater pearls. Dozens of freshwater pearls may be formed within a single mollusk, resulting in a wider variety in shapes (near-round, oval, button, drop, semi-baroque, baroque) as they form inside the shell together. Only 2% of cultured Freshwater pearls are considered round, and they also come in a broader spectrum of colours than the akoya.

Shape and lustre matter.

Akoyas predominantly come from Japanese pearl farms, and Japanese saltwater cultured pearls are held to the strictest standards for shape. An impressive 70-80% of cultured akoya pearls are considered round.

Apart from its shape, a pearl’s lustre contributes most to its value and exquisiteness. A fine Akoya pearl’s lustre is unlike any other, and is deemed “mirror-like” for its distinctive iridescence. Other varieties of pearls tend to display a more satiny, soft glow.

Due to the organic creation of pearls, perfectly round or symmetrical pearls are  extremely hard to find. Perfectly round pearls with excellent lustre are incredibly rare, and are considered the most valuable.  

Akoya pearls have captured hearts for centuries.

Akoyas were the first type of pearl to be cultured, and is the pearl with the longest cultured history; a testament to this natural gem’s crowning popularity. Early in the days of their discovery, pearls captured the hearts of royalty, and were reserved to be owned by nobles for centuries.

Today, pearls are coveted worldwide and the demand for pearl jewellery continues to transcend trends and even generations. They remain popular adornments for momentous occasions like weddings, and make divine choices for gifting, as they remain symbols of sophistication worldwide.


Our Christmas Surprise For You:

The Akoya Pearl Studs Series


The Akoya Pearl Glow Studs

Each 8mm pearl chosen for the Akoya Pearl Glow Studs exudes outstanding gleam and lustre. These earrings feature an exclusive, handcrafted Choo Yilin floral backing, set in solid 18kt yellow gold.

A timeless gift, for the ones we’ll always adore.


The Akoya Pearl Dew Studs

The Akoya Pearl Dew Studs were designed with tasteful minimalism in mind. 8mm Akoya Pearls are set onto solid 18kt white gold, with a backing encased in silicon for heightened comfort and grip.

A daily touch of wonder, to add radiance to any style choice.




‘Tis the season

For love. For gatherings. For heartfelt giving.

Click here to discover the Choo Yilin Gift Guide,
carefully curated for the ones who make this season
truly the most wonderful time of the year.