Jewel How

Do Pearls Deteriorate Over Time?

Pearls have been a symbol of elegance and status for centuries. Prized for their natural beauty and durability, these gems have been used in jewelry for generations. However, recent studies suggest that pearls may not be as durable as once thought. Researchers found that sulfuric acid, chlorine, and other chemicals can cause the pearl to deteriorate over time. In some cases, the pearl may even dissolve completely.

do pearls deteriorate over time

How Long Does a Pearl Last?

One of the most frequently asked questions about pearls is how long they will last. The answer to this question depends on a number of factors, including the type of pearl, its care and how it is worn.

Generally speaking, cultured pearls will last longer than natural pearls. This is because the culturing process strengthens the pearl’s nacre coating. Pearls that are well cared for can last for many years, with some even lasting a lifetime.

Environmental Factors

The durability of pearls is determined by a combination of environmental factors. The two main environmental factors that affect pearls are temperature and humidity.


Temperature is one of the most important factors when it comes to the durability of pearls. In general, pearls are very fragile and can be damaged easily. The main thing to remember is that pearls are organic materials and they are affected by both the environment and climate.

The temperature can cause the pearls to dry out or become brittle. In order to protect your pearls, it is important to keep them in a cool, dry place where the temperature is consistent.


The higher the humidity level, the more likely it is that pearls will lose their luster and develop a patina. They may also become sticky or discolored. Pearls should not be worn in high humidity environments such as tropical climates, steam rooms, or saunas.

How Should Pearls Be Stored in Order to Maintain Their Quality?

When storing pearls, it is important to remember that they are a natural product and need to be handled with care. Pearls should be stored in a soft cloth or pouch, away from other jewelry.

They should not be exposed to extreme temperatures, moisture or sunlight. Exposure to these elements can cause the pearls to lose their luster and quality. It is also important not to store pearls with other gemstones, as they can scratch the surface of the pearls.

What Is the Best Way to Clean Pearls?

When it comes to taking care of pearls, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Here are four tips to help keep your pearls clean and looking their best.

Use a Soft Cloth with A Mild Soap or Detergent

When caring for pearls, it is important to use a gentle approach. Pearls can be easily cleaned with a soft cloth and a mild soap or detergent. Be sure to rinse the pearls well after cleaning to remove any residue.

Avoid Harsh Chemicals or Abrasive Materials

The reason to avoid harsh chemicals or abrasive materials when cleaning pearls is because they can damage the surface of the pearls. This can cause the pearls to lose their luster, and they may even become discolored. Additionally, using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials can remove the thin layer of material that helps to protect the pearls from scratches and other damage.

Use a Mixture of Water and Vinegar

When cleaning pearls, it is best to use a mixture of water and vinegar. This is because vinegar is a natural disinfectant and will help to clean the pearls and remove any dirt or bacteria. Additionally, the vinegar will help to restore the pearls’ natural luster.

Use a Very Light Coating of Baby Oil or Mineral Oil to Polish Your Pearls

The purpose of polishing pearls is to remove any built-up dirt or residue and to restore the surface of the pearl to its original luster. In order to achieve this, a very light coating of baby oil or mineral oil is used. This will help to lift any dirt or grime that has built up on the surface of the pearl and will also help to restore the natural shine.

Can Pearls Decay?

There is a misconception that pearls will never decay. However, pearls are organic substances and therefore can decay. Pearls are made of calcium carbonate, which is a mineral.

Pearls will eventually decay if they are not taken care of properly. Pearls should be stored in a closed container with a soft cloth to avoid scratching the surface. They should also be kept away from perfumes, cosmetics and other chemicals that could damage the pearls.


In conclusion, pearls will not last forever, depending on the type of pearl and how well it is taken care of. It is important to know the lifespan of your pearls in order to properly take care of them. Always store your pearls in a cool, dark place, and avoid contact with harsh chemicals. With proper care, your pearls will last for many years to come.