Choosing Pearl Sizes

The right pearl jewelry can quickly become a staple of any woman’s wardrobe; but pearls of the wrong size or style will seldom see the light of day. Ask almost any woman, and she’ll likely tell you that size does matter – pearls of the wrong size can alter the entire look of a piece, making it look overly gaudy or too minimalistic. Whether you’re looking for pearl jewelry for a loved one or the perfect style for yourself, read the pearl sizing guide below to determine which size is right for you.

how to measure pearl size

Small to medium sized pearls (5.5 mm - 7.5 mm)

If you’re looking for something dainty but not diminutive, you’ll probably want to consider pearls measuring 5.5 to 6mm. These pearls are tasteful for petite women and young girls, as well as older women who enjoy wearing pearls as an accessory to busy shirts or dresses. If you find this size to be a bit too tiny, pearls sized 6 to 7mm will create a similar delicate look that will garner a bit more notice.
Pearls sized between 7 to 7.5mm are already considered medium sized pearls, and are most popular among women in their 30s and 40s who are looking for something substantial but not overpowering. Pearls of this size are trendy for brides, new mothers and as a meaningful ‘just because’ gift.

Medium to large sized pearls (8 mm - 10 mm)

Women who appreciate jewelry that will really make a statement will likely prefer medium to large sized pearls. Shoppers who aren’t sure exactly what size pearl to choose should consider pearls sized 7.5 to 8mm, as this is the most popular size of pearls overall. Those who prefer to make a bolder statement can, of course, choose even larger pearls, such as the 8.5mm pearls favored by style icon Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Pearls above 9mm are both extremely rare and expensive, not only because they are hard to find, but also because it is hard to match pearls of this size to create a cohesive necklace.
Pearl & Clasp offers pearls in all sizes so that your ideal pearls are only a click away.

Extra Large Sized Pearls (11 mm -15 mm)

The bigger the pearls, the rare and more expensive they are. Pearls ranging between 11 and 15 mm are hardly available and they certainly come with exorbitant price tags. If you buy a pearl necklace, these are probably the ones that stay at the center.

You will find freshwater, Tahitian, and South Sea pearls at that size range. Freshwater beads are round and uniform around all edges, but the other two types are likely to have rough edges.

Extra-large pearls are glamorous and statement-makers. First Lady Barbara Bush used to look gorgeous with 9.5-10 mm pearl strands. Think about the kind of lush impact that these larger pearls can create.

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