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Bleaching

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  • Bleaching

    What does it mean? I know my new freshadama strand (on its way to me ) isn't dyed white but is bleached. But what exactly does that mean? Like soaking it in a jar of (bathroom) bleach to dissolve away the top layer so a whiter shinier layer from underneath is revealed?

    I'd like to know as much as I can about my 'baby'

    PS I read a very old post from someone that brought an unbleached custom made bracelet from pp and it was a gorgeous warm peachy/creamy colour.

    Do unbleached pearls have any structural (or otherwise) benefits over bleached. Is their luster less likely to fade with time?

    So many questions.

    Thank you!

  • #2
    I think they use a jar of peroxide solution to remove off colors. No dissolving of outer layers.
    Done right it should not damage the luster.

    As you know freshwater pearls are sold in natural, unbleached colors as well.

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    • #3
      If its peroxide like how I know peroxide surely it must strip away the outer layer to remove the colouration?

      Oh and what about white akoyas...also bleached?

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      • #4
        White akoyas are bleached.

        My understanding is there is no stripping, just removal of discoloration. I would think it's by oxidation.

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        • #5
          Here is a very old thread about bleaching fw pearls. As always, there are trade secrets that are not shared. My impression is that it involves light and a fairly long period of time, with frequent monitoring. I've seen other photos like the ones showing vats of pearls, but this is the thread I was able to locate.

          Moonpie, there are still beautiful fw pearls available in the creamier hues.
          Pattye


          PatriciaSaabDesigns.etsy.com

          facebook.com/PatriciaSaabDesigns

          SO MANY PEARLS, SO LITTLE TIME----

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          • #6
            They use some mild proprietary warm bleach solution, not all pearls have even natural colors; the ones that do are set aside. the others with uneven colors or spotty colors etc are bleached to even the colors on the pearls and between the pearls.. It makes matching easier and proper bleaching does not affect the luster or orient, if any.
            Caitlin

            How to hand-knot pearls without a tool

            My avatar is a Sea of Cortez mabe pearl. One of a pair of Mexican handmade earrings.

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            • #7
              Very interesting thread pattye. Thank you and everyone else!

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