Tahitian pearls are bead-nucleated pearls grown in the gonad of the Pinctada margaritifera mollusk in French Polynesia.

Tahitian pearls are produced in the black-lipped oyster Pinctada margaritifera, in and around Tahiti and the French Polynesian islands. This oyster itself is quite large – sometimes over 12 inches across and weighing as much as 10 pounds – which often results in much larger-than-average pearls. The pearls are unique because of their natural dark colors. Most “black” Tahitian pearls are not actually black, but are instead mesmerizing shades of silver, charcoal, chocolate brown or a multitude of colors with the dominant color being green. Truly black pearls are extremely rare, and rarely – almost white.

Although Tahitian pearls are thought by many to be solely a product of Tahiti, this is in fact not true. Tahiti is the commercial center and trading hub for the bulk of the industry, however Tahiti does not have any pearl farms actually located on the island. The farms are instead scattered throughout French Polynesia, as far east as the Gambier Islands, and beyond French Polynesia to the west into the Micronesian Islands. Australia, the Seychelles and Vietnam have all produced black pearls as well, but those cannot be referred to as Tahitian pearls.

While Japan, the Philippines, and Thailand have in recent years began farming black-lipped oyster pearls, it is only those pearls farmed in the French Polynesia that are called Tahitian pearls.

If you have ever had your heart set on a Tahitian pearl necklace, you know that its captivating beauty was certainly matched by its price tag. Well, that is another interesting fact about Tahitian pearls. Their price and value are slightly above that of other cultured pearls. That is due to the fact that not only do Tahitian pearls don unique colors, but they also come in unique sizes.

The exotic black pearls cultured in the French Polynesia are renowned for their beauty. Nevertheless, the lighter colored varieties of Tahitian pearls, as well as the peacock green and silver Tahitian pearls are remarkably beautiful. A pair of Tahitian pearl earrings with Tahitian pearls of different colors is bound to draw everyone’s attention.

Tahitian pearls have become some of the most sought-after and expensive pearls in the world. May we add, rightfully so.


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