June Birthstone Profile

June Birthstone Profile
 A symbol of purity, clarity and loyalty, Pearl has been a valued gem among cultures for centuries. No other stone compares to the vibrancy of Pearl. In fact, it was said that Cleopatra once owned the most expensive, large and lustrous pearls. She wore them as earrings, and legend has it that she dissolved one of the pearl earrings in vinegar to dissolve the pearl--then drank it. Thus, when she did drink the substance at the feast, it truly was the most expensive feast to ever be hosted in Egyptian times. 
There are 4 kinds of Pearl: Freshwater, Japanese Akoya, Tahitian and South Sea. Pearls were also valued by the Romans. Under the reign of Julius Caesar the pearl was prohibited for anyone to wear who lived below the ruling class. pearl symbolized wealth and prestige in Roman culture. 
Did you know that Pearl is the only gem found from a living animal? Found in both freshwater and saltwater, a pearl is made by the soft tissue within a living mollusk shell. This is meant to protect the pearl from irritants and outside threats in the water. Not all mollusks will contain pearls right away, it can take a period of 6 months to 5 years for a pearl for form.
How do you preserve the luster and quality of pearls? Here are a few tips: 
1) Avoid submersing the pearls in water. Even though the pearl was originally made in water, too much exposure to water will harm the coating, diluting its luster and vibrancy.
2) Avoid exposing pearls to chemicals and substances. Avoid using jewelry cleaners--this will also preserve the pearl's luster. The acid in many substances will begin to break down the crystalized calcium of the pearl, its genetic composition. Some of these substances can include sweat, juice, vinegar, perfumes, soaps and or grease. Try to limit wearing your pearls for extended periods of time and savor wearing them on occasion. 
Store your pearls separate from other pieces of jewelry, and fasten any clasps on the necklace itself. This will prevent the pearls from getting scratched from other jewelry, and prevent the clasp from getting tangled or scratching the pearls. 

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