Glass beads or Swarovski beads: How to choose the right beads for your jewelry collectionby Gerald Redman Author
Glass beads, clay beads, plastic beads, Swarovski beads and crystal beads are just a few of the available beads out there for making jewelry. With the kind of wide selection available when it comes to beads it’s a wonder that some people get confused when it comes to choosing the right type of jewelry bead to use. For example, many jewelry makers get confused when choosing between glass and Swarovski bead items.
What are Swarovski beads?
This is a kind of crystal bead that is also referred to as lead glass. These beads are considered to be a high quality kind of crystal, and for this reason they cost more than your average crystal beads. They are cut from glass and are named after Daniel Swarovski, the gentleman credited for inventing the electrical machine used to cut glass into crystal. They are considered to be high quality beads and have a uniformity in size and appearance that is achieved by the machine cut that makes them look perfect.
How to identify a Swarovski bead from a fake glass beads?
There are many people out there capable of conning jewelers by passing off fake glass beads as Swarovski beads. To avoid falling into this trap, here are some signs to look for to identify the real from the fake. They have no scratches or swirl marks and their facets meet at the same point because they are precisely cut using a machine. They have no bubbles, are completely identical and outshine other crystals.
Lead content in Swarovski crystal beads
If you have the ability to test their content, you will find that Swarovski crystals have a lead oxide content of 32% while normal crystal has a lead oxide content of 12 – 28%. The high lead oxide content in Swarovski crystals contributes to their perfection as it refracts light in an efficient manner, which causes the resulting crystals to sparkle more than regular crystals. It also makes them heavier than normal crystal, which is why Swarovski beads are accepted as the finest crystal brand in the market and are a good choice of beads to use when making jewelry for clients that appreciate quality crystal beads.
How does a glass bead differ from a Swarovski bead?
To put it in a simple manner, a glass bead is a crystal bead in its rawest form because when you add lead to a glass bead it becomes a crystal bead. The higher the lead content in the beads the better the quality. Swarovski crystal has the highest lead content in the world. The lead content makes crystal sparkle in a way that glass cannot. Crystal reflects light and color in a way that glass is not capable of doing. The uniformity of the cut also differs because the Swarovski crystals are made using machinery that produces uniformity resulting in identical beads in terms of size and shape. On the other hand, glass bead items do not have this, and as a result, you will find some beads with defects such as scratch marks and bubbles. However, still make affordable and attractive jewelry.
These are the differences between Swarovski beads and glass beads.
Created on Dec 31st 1969 18:00. Viewed 0 times.