Forget a last meal, what would you pick as your last jewel? For King Charles I, it was a single pearl earring, oversize and set in a gold crown. Doomed to the guillotine by Oliver Cromwell in 1639, Charles’s oversize pearl was part of his signature look and he famously insisted on wearing it to his execution. What would inspire such devotion to a gem–especially from a man who also owned a pendant set with 42 diamonds? In the 16th and 17th centuries, pearls were considered to be the highest form of jewelry because they were natural wonders (unlike gemstones which needed to be cut and polished). Royal and noble men wore them frequently, even Sir Walter Raleigh wore a pearl stud in each ear.
Pearls were the ultimate power accessory–and they still are today. Perhaps Harry Styles was channeling that kingly swagger at the Met Ball in 2019, when he put on not one but two pearl earrings in his left ear, the same as Charles I. Certainly A$AP Rocky, who regularly, brilliantly combines Edwardian-worthy gems with streetwear, has learned what a statement even a single pearl can make. And let’s not forget Elton John’s layers upon layers of pearl necklaces; forget lucky charm, this was full-on jeweled armor. They all make a convincing argument that more men should consider pearl jewelry as a staple accessory. It’s unexpected sure, but also traditional, the kind of piece that quietly commands attention, not shout for it. Below, our favorite pearl jewelry for men to wear to every occasion.
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Pearl of Hope Bracelet
Golden pearls, found in the South Sea oyster, come by their sunny luster naturally, which makes them extremely rare. Balanced by a casual braided leather strap, this bracelet is proof that extraordinary things can be worn every day.
Classic Diamond And Tahitian Pearl Brooch
Pearl ID Necklace
You know we love a monogram at Town & Country, and it doesn’t get chicer than a pearl necklace with black pave diamonds.
Madison Pearl Necklace
David Yurman’s industrial looking pieces make them a mainstay for those who prefer a masculine look, but add a few pearls and things start to get interesting.
Baroque-Pearl and Gold-Vermeil Bracelet
Natural Baroque pearls add a surrealist element to a sophisticated bangle.
The Remedy // Chapter ii Necklace
Inspired by Italian writer Dante Alighieri, this necklace was designed as a beautiful antidote to his imagined “Land of the Lawless.”
Bora Bora Stack Rings
The only thing better than one pearl ring is stacking multiples of them. These Bora Bora rings are based on the Polynesian myth that pearls are created as the moon bathes the ocean in its light.
Safety Pin Necklace
This second collection of Mikimoto with Commes des Garcons lets pearls mingle with punk motifs, like a single sleek safety pin.
Esme Baroque Earrings
These earrings will have you wondering if you are a King Charles I with one earring or full on Sir Raleigh with two. Either way, the look is pure royal.
Silver Box Chain with Baroque Pearl
A simple baroque pearl is anything but when highlighted by a silver box chain.
Luna Pearl Bracelet
Nestled in Lagos’s signature caviar beads, this pearl bracelet would mix beautifully with a Rolex or other stainless steel watch.
Canadian jewelry designer Vitaly makes unisex necklaces that look great on anyone, including this half-pearl, half-stainless steel necklace.
14k Pearl and Hoop Ear Cuff
Slip on a pearl ear cuff for a daring look with none of the commitment.
Pearl & 14kt Gold Choker
You can never go wrong with a simple pearl choker. Try wearing this instead of a gold chain with a button down shirt.
Men’s Tahitian Pearl & Onyx Necklace
This pearl and onyx necklace delivers some serious sultriness with a mix of textures and dark hues.
Dhin Layering Long Necklace
Long necklaces are just a little secretive. Worn under a collared shirt, there is just a hint of gold chain, worn over, the gold-set pearl is a real head-turner.
Gold Handcrafted Sandalwood Tahitian Pearl Diamond Mala
The casual, rock & roll-meets-bohemian vibes of this necklace reminds of us something Lenny Kravitz would wear (and what better endorsement is there than that?).
WONG Dragon Pearl Stud Earrings
Worn alone or as a pair, the dragon claw setting makes it clear that these aren’t your basic pearl studs.
White Pearl Pendant
Designer Eli Halili takes cues from ancient Middle Eastern designs to create his modern jewels in Brooklyn. A hand-forged gold setting encases a pearl pendant in this strong, yet delicate, necklace.
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