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Should You Buy Cheap or Expensive Pearl Hair Pins?

Ever wondered why some pearl hair pins cost so much less than others? I only use the best crystal pearls for my designs - but is that really necessary? I bought some cheap pearls from Ebay to see how the quality compared to my luxury pearls - you'll be astonished by the difference! 

Expensive Pearl Hair Pins

I use high quality cultured freshwater pearls for many of my designs because they add a lovely natural element because their shape isn't completely uniform. When I want perfectly-shaped pearls of matching sizes for my luxury pearl hair pins I use crystal pearls from the two top crystal houses in Europe. These pearls have the best lustre and shine, a perfect shape and weight, and a gorgeous pearly coating - all without the extremely hefty price tag of natural round pearls. You can see an example of my luxury crystal pearl hair pins below to see the quality.

Expensive crystal pearl hair pins

My Prudence luxury crystal pearl hair pins

Cheap Pearl Hair Pins

Cheap alternatives to crystal pearls range from plastic or acrylic pearls, which tend to be lightweight and almost translucent, to glass pearls which have a heavier feel similar to crystal. As the closest alternative to my luxury crystal pearls I ordererd some glass pearls from Ebay to see if there was a difference - can you tell which are the cheap pearls and which are the expensive ones below?

Spot the Difference

Cheap versus expensive pearls

Colour, Lustre and Shine

Full marks if you picked the right hand side out as the cheap glass pearls. To be fair, there's an immediate obvious difference between the cheap and expensive pearls. Both are supposed to be ivory but the cheap pearls are a creamy yellow colour and not all of them are the same shade, one even has an almost green undertone.

On the other hand, my expensive crystal pearls from the most illustrious European crystal houses have a gorgeous lustre, shine and depth of tone which changes depending on how the light hits it, which means that when you wear my pearl hair pins they will add a richness and quality to your look. 

The cheap glass pearls are dull and lifeless which means you get none of the gorgeous reflective elements that add to the shine of your hair and gives your skin a natural glow when the pearls are placed next to them. (There's a video coming so you can see the differences even more clearly so keep reading!)

The Perla hair pins shows the quality of expensive pearl accessories

My Perla cluster design luxury crystal pearl hair pins

Surface Quality

It's not just the colour that stands out for all the wrong reasons. While the crystal pearls are smooth and blemish-free, there are chips and pitting all over the surface of the cheaper glass pearl - and they haven't even been used! This is because the coating isn't durable and thick enough.

The quality of the surface around the holes which are used to string or wire the pearls is obviously inferior in the cheaper glass pearl, with unsightly marks, chips and ridges and very large holes compared to the neat holes in the luxury crystal pearls I use for my pearl hair pins and other bridal accessories.

See The Difference For Yourself

Watch as I show you the difference between cheap and expensive pearls in this Instagram Reel.


Perfect Shape And Quality

I use crystal pearls in my hair pins and other accessory designs when I want the beautiful look of pearls with a perfect repeatable shape. Perfectly round natural pearls in matching sizes would cost a fortune which just isn't an option for most people looking for bridal hair accessories so I use the very best alternative for these designs.

This brings me to the shape of the cheap glass pearls - they're flat at each side where the hole is so you don't even get a proper sphere shape. Combined with the inferior colour and coating there is an obvious difference between the cheap and expensive pearls. See for yourself in my Instagram Reel.

Why I Use Luxury Crystal Pearls For My Hair Pins 

  • Because I want my hair pins - and my brides - to look amazing.
  • I make my bridal hair accessories to last and you only get heirloom quality pearls if you buy natural or luxury crystal.
  • Because these crystals are produced under strict ethical and sustainable controls. They are also vegan friendly.
  • The way they are made means no animals - or humans - were harmed in their production.

The Prue hair vine shows the quality of expensive pearl accessoriesI use luxury crystal pearls in my Prue headband as well as my hair pins 

Quality Craftsmanship

It's not just the quality of pearls that contribute to the cost of my pearl hair pins, there is also the quality of craftsmanship and packaging, all of which ensures that your hair pins arrive with you in perfect condition - and stay that way.

Whereas I handwire my pearls with the perfect strength of wire and tension to ensure they stay on the pin and safely in your hair, cheap alternatives from China tend to be stuck onto the hair pin which means they can easily fall off as it's unlikely a suitable glue has been used to ensure they stay put for long. My hair pins are made with utmost care, taking time to inspect every pearl to ensure they are perfect before they get used.

Protected in Transit

I package my pieces carefully in eco-friendly luxury padded gift boxes and postal packaging so they are properly protected in transit - the cheapest alternatives will simply come in a plastic bag which isn't quite the unboxing experience I would hope for when receiving my bridal hair pins!

  • Have you got any questions about how my accessories are made, or the materials they're made from? Simply drop me an email or DM me on social media with any questions and I'd be very happy to answer them!
  • Shop my luxury crystal pearl hair accessories here. You can find my crystal pearl earrings and necklaces to finish off your look here.

Customers outside the UK may be asked to pay a fee by customs in the destination country. The recipient is responsible for any taxes and duties due.


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