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Blue Nile vs Pearl Paradise & Enhanced Black Pearls

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  • Blue Nile vs Pearl Paradise & Enhanced Black Pearls

    Previously I purchased a freshwater pearl necklace from Blue Nile and was quite happy. Since then I've discovered quite a few highly reviewed retailers like Pearl Paradise. While I am not completely certain PP is where I will buy, I am considering it based on reviews I've read on here and their activity on the forum. I am wondering if any of you have BN pearls and pearls from other retailers and can give me advice on how they compare.

    Also, I have considered picking up black freshwater pearls as they are significantly less expensive and appear to be visually similar to Tahitian pearls.

    Any advice on these two subjects would be appreciated!

  • #2
    Hi SoCalSteve,

    I don't own any Blue Nile products but will address the dyed freshwater vs. Tahitian subject.

    They are simply two different entities, and there are perfectly good reasons for choosing either.

    Dyed freshwater pearls are usually solid nacre, much less expensive than Tahitians, and the dye does not come off or fade over time. They can be attractive and durable, and a perfectly good wardrobe item, but they don't usually look like Tahitians-- at least not to those who know Tahitians. The colors are not really the same as those of Tahitians. I see a lot more blue and purple in the dyed freshwaters, and often there is a sort of oil slick effect, or a kind of mottling. Usually they are smaller than Tahitians, and the shapes are typical of fwp rather than Tahitians. I have also found that luster is lower in the dyed freshwaters-- at least in the strand I own.

    Tahitians have a bead nucleus, but the color is natural, and this is what Tahitians lovers desire-- natural color, in so many variations.


    • #3
      I have bought gemstone rings and gold earrings from BN. I was pleased with what I received. I’ve not bought pearls from BN.

      I bought three strands of dyed “black” freshwater pearls from PP. The were a bluish purple color. I had planned to make a long rope because at the time I wanted a Tahitian rope. I thought they would be a good substitute. However, they didn’t compare to the luster and natural color variety of a strand of real Tahitians.


      • #4
        I have seen BN pearls and they certainly aren't awful, but pearls aren't BN's specialty, so imho while they are probably better than what you find retail, they aren't as nice as places like PoJ, PP, etc. There are a couple of threads on the forum where BN and PP are compared side by side.

        Like Pearl Dreams said, really vibrant Tahitian strands won't really compare to FWP, but there's certainly nothing wrong with dyed FWP. They can be fun and plenty of people enjoy them. Tahitians tend to show more or less color depending on the light, and that's something that I think isn't so much the case with dyed FWP - they have less "personality" - that's the best way I can describe it.


        • #5
          Tahitians comes in many price levels so if you are buying replacements for Tahitians, my experience is that it doesn't work that way I buy the replacement, don't love it enough and end up buying the real thing as well. Apart from all the online stores we know here, who also have sales and special offers during a year, there is also http://www.tahitianpearls.biz and WenPearls and KongsPearl on etsy.com

          My latest pearl purchase is a $100 string of Tahitians from WenPearls that I wire wrapped into a 30'' necklace with cheap base metal. The small pearls (app 8 mm) have fun shapes and a variety of colors and while you get what pay for, this is exactly what I was looking for and I'd much prefer the varied look of the real Tahitians to the uniform look of dyed FW.

          - Karin


          • #6
            I have some dyed freshwater pearls, and I enjoy them for what they are, but after I saw real Tahitian pearls, I realized that the freshies looked nothing like the Tahitians. Tahitians come in all sorts of different colors, so you really can't generalize and say, "Well, Tahitians look like this." I bought and sent back several strands of T's before I found ones that spoke to me.


            • #7
              SoCalSteve, The Pearl Paradise AAA dyed freshwater pearls are custom dyed with very high quality freshwater pearls that were selected just for this process. That is why they are so colorful. I asked when I was looking at them. They are very different than the PP dyed akoyas which are coal black. The dyed PP freshwaters far left and dyed akoya center. Right are commercial grade dyed freshwater from a pearl party vendor.

              Attached Files


              • #8
                My dyed fwp are anything but uniform and I bought them because they actually resembled Tahitians, but I haven't seen any more like the strand I bought years ago. But even this strand has more blues and purples than Tahitians do.
                Click image for larger version

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                Last edited by Pearl Dreams; 12-04-2018, 03:56 PM.