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BEST PRICE GUARANTEE: If you order any item today then see it at a lower price on our website (up to 20/12/2023), tell us and we'll happily refund the difference (Terms)

Pearl Grading

Unlike diamonds, there is no universally accepted grading system for pearls. This can make choosing pearl jewellery very confusing, since different jewellers may use different scales. The problem is that so many of the qualities of pearls, such as lustre and shape, are subjective and can be seen differently by different people (sometimes deliberately so).

Perfect pearls, which are perfectly round and flawless across their entire surface are incredibly rare, and so unless you are prepared to spend a fortune, you should expect some deviation from the ideal.

AAA pearl grading

Many pearl jewellers will use a pearl grading scheme based on A, AA or AAA, however there is no set standard for any of these grades. One pearl jeweller’s AAA rating may be different from another’s. To confuse matters further, Tahitian pearls are often graded A to D.

Occasionally, pearl jewellers will try to go one better than their competition by using AAAA or AAA+ pearl jewellery grades, however this is often meaningless exaggeration and should be taken with a pinch of salt.

Below is an approximate guide to the grades used by most reputable pearl jewellers:

LustreExcellent / v. goodGoodAverage
SurfaceOver 95% cleanOver 75% cleanOver 50% clean
ShapeRoundAlmost roundNear round
NacreOver 0.50mmOver 0.35mmOver 0.25mm
MatchingClosely matchedGood matchFair match

Absolute Pearls grading

At Absolute Pearls, we are aware that certain less reputable pearl jewellers have brought the grading system into disrepute by over grading their pearls and exaggerating their qualities, making the AAA system less reliable as an objective guide. However, we also appreciate that many pearl jewellery buyers still rely on the AAA grading system for choosing their pearls.

To give you the best possible information about our pearls, we combine both AAA grading and written descriptions of our pearls, so that you know exactly what you are getting. For example:

  • Pearl Lustre: High AA+
  • Pearl Overtone: Green/Blue
  • Pearl Surface: Excellent AAA

You will see on each product detail page our grading for those particular pearls.

Terms & Conditions

Terms for 'SANTA20' Discount Code:

  • Expires 11:59pm on Monday 11th December 2023.
  • Can be used on any jewellery item EXCEPT any item that is already discounted (shown by a red coloured price with the original price crossed out).
  • Only valid for online purchases.
  • Discount is only applied to the product cost and not to gift wrapping or upgraded delivery charges.
  • Each code cannot be used in conjunction with any other Absolute Pearls discount code. (Only one discount code can be used for any one purchase)
  • The Discount Code must be entered into the 'Discount Code' field and the 'Apply Code' button clicked to apply it. It is the customer's responsibility to ensure the code has been applied prior to proceeding and paying for the order.
  • Any discount code cannot be applied retrospectively.
  • This offer may be withdrawn at any time without notice and is subject to availability.

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Terms for Best Price Guarantee:

  • If you buy any product from Absolute Pearls between 4th November 2023 to 20th December 2023 inclusive and subsequentially find that same product offered at a lower price on the Absolute Pearls website on or before 20th December 2023, we will happily refund you the difference.
  • Product discounts and available discount codes will be used to determine the lowest price available of any item on any given day and do not include postage or gift wrapping charges.
  • This best price guarantee does NOT apply if you fail to use/successfully apply the code in the checkout (for whatever reason) the best available discount code available on the day and which are available on the website banners and the New Subscribers mailing list sign up box. If in doubt, please email us on or call 01516257688 for guidance & information on discount codes.
  • To claim, you simply need to email us ( on the same day when you see the lower price, and include the following details: your name, your order number, the product code number and the date and lower price you saw on the Absolute Pearls website. Please also send us a screenshot or photo of said product and lower price.
  • If the same product (same SKU number) is offered at a price lower than you paid, we will refund the difference to you by the end of December.
  • The 'Best Price Guarantee' only applies to the Absolute Pearls website (

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