Pearls Are Making a Comeback—Here's How to Wear Them

Pearls are getting a fresh look for 2023.

Pearl necklace on woman in garden

Peathegee Inc/Getty Images

It's official: with #pearljewelry collecting more than 373.9 million views on TikTok, what’s old is new again and pearls are making a comeback. There’s a good reason for this, according to jewelry designer Maya Brenner. “Lots of trends from the ’80s and ’90s are coming back around, including pearls," she explains. "Pearls used to be considered preppy and conservative, but the updated versions we‘re seeing are anything but that. I love the playful designs—both in my own line and what I’m seeing from other designers.”

Here’s everything you need to know about the pearl jewelry trend, along with some of our favorite pearl jewelry to shop.

Modern Pearls  

While a traditional pearl necklace will never go out of style, designers are using pearls in very unique ways today, explains Brenner. “People are getting very creative with using pearls in their designs. Safety pin earrings, simple hoops, dangles, and anything with a bit of an edge are my favorite," she says.

You Can Wear Pearls With Anything

Think you need to get dressed up to wear pearls? Think again. Brenner tells me: “There used to be a lot of rules regarding how and when pearls are worn, and they were mostly seen as a coming-of-age gift or a special occasion [accessory]. But now it’s really an anything-goes kind of approach. I would wear them with a t-shirt and jeans before a little black dress.”

The designer also suggests layering your pearls, “The best way to wear a pearl necklace in a simple and stylish way is to layer it with other necklaces. I especially love this look with gold chains.”

How to Clean and Maintain Pearls

Like other jewelry, it’s important to take care of your pearls, whether they are real or faux. “Pearls were made in water and need air and natural moisture so it is best not to store in anything that’s sealed. A good rule of thumb is if you wouldn’t put it on a baby—don’t put it on a pearl. So no harsh cleaners or scrubbing. You can even use a baby wipe to clean,” Brenner explains. 

 Our Favorite Picks

Pearl stud earrings with gold settings

Maya Brenner

Maya Brenner Birthstone Stud Pearl

If you prefer a timeless pearl look, you can’t go wrong with a classic pair of pearl studs ($135, These earrings level up formal and casual looks. Choose from yellow, white, and rose gold.

Kendra Scott, pearl bracelet with gold link chain

Kendra Scott

Kendra Scott Ashton Half Gold Chain in White Pearl

Looking to layer a pearl bracelet ($75, with other bracelets? This is the perfect way to do it. Available in both gold and silver, this bracelet is a cool piece that modernizes the preppy look.

Pearl hoop earrings on ear


Baublebar Nina Imitation Pearl Hoop Earrings 

Understated yet on-trend, these small pearl hoops ($38, are versatile enough to wear with everything from a formal dress to jeans and a T-shirt. They’re subtle yet chic. 

Gold ring with two pearls


Poppy Finch Skinny Pearl Open Ring

If a pearl necklace or bracelet isn’t quite your style, but you really want to hop on the trend, why not try a pearl ring ($190, Featuring one freshwater pearl on each side, this accessory is equally stylish and elegant. 

Pearl on gold chain necklace

George the Jeweler

George The Jeweler Solo Pearl Choker

This simple pearl choker ($300, has a classic vibe and can be worn on its own or used as a layering piece. Choose from white or yellow gold. 

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