Thought the crystal craze had died a death when we stopped using the term 'New Age' back in the '90s? Think again. Because they're back - and everyone from Adele to your next door neighbour has one stashed in her handbag. "We have such a cross-section of customers now," says Gabrielle Seymour, of Covent Garden's Buddha on a Bicycle. "Men and women, young girls, older women, bankers, celebrities, dancers, even Russian oligarchs. Few fit the hippie stereotype." Might there be more to crystals than meets the eye? Well, think about it for a second. If a crystal is strong enough to power your watch, what else might it be capable of..?
Everything in the universe vibrates at a specific frequency. The stable nature of crystals' molecular structure means that their vibrations can be relied upon to power and support energy fields in all sorts of ways, via something called piezoelectricity - they're found in phones, computers, radios and video equipment, as well as watches. But can they really help us fall in love, cure a headache or get rich? Science suggests that their reputed benefits may be put down to the placebo effect. Alternative practitioners like Cathie Welchman counter that, "there is no such thing as a miracle, just undiscovered laws of physics," arguing that, whilst we may not know exactly how, crystals affect our own electro-magnetic energy fields just as they affect the energy in the circuit boards which power our watches.
Different kinds of crystals vibrate at different frequencies, which advocates believe endows them with differing properties.Victoria Beckham performs backstage 'rituals' using rose quartz and black tourmaline before her fashion shows, whilst Adele clutches crystals on stage to soothe performances nerves. Meanwhile, Miranda Kerr, who recently launched beauty range KORA Organics, filters her skin care products through rose quartz "to give the vibration of self-love" and has admitted to carrying a 'crystal wand' made from clear quartz studded with rose quartz in her bag at all times.So where should you start? If you're a complete newcomer to the world of crystals, experts suggest beginning by choosing a stone to which you feel 'drawn'.
Crystals and their meanings
Confused about crystal meanings? Read our beginner's guide to the crystal names and stone meanings you need to know about...
A great all-rounder, clear quartz is credited with the ability to gather, direct and transmit energy, transforming negative energy into positive energy. Carry one with you when you're in need of clarity, focus or an energy boost.
Rose quartz is said to calm and soothe away tension and stress, boost circulation and self esteem, balance emotions, heal the heart and attract love.
Said to induce calm, aid meditation and promote a good night's sleep. Fancy sweeter dreams? Try placing an amethyst at each corner of your bed.
Thought to enhance communication.
Black tourmaline is thought to absorb negative energy, whether it emanates from mobile phones, computers or other people!
Said to detoxify - place it in a glass of water to gently raise its vibration.
Yellow and orange crystals such as citrine are credited with boosting confidence and soothing digestive complaints.
Thought to help with throat conditions.
Shungite is the experts' pick for an overall health boost - it's thought to 'clear your energy body'.
Said to attract the energy of money, wealth and opportunity.
Crystal healers believe that crystals can move, absorb and focus positive and negative energy or vibrations in the body to promote physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. During a crystal therapy session, you will typically lie fully clothed whilst a therapist intuitively indentifies energy blockages and other problems, placing crystals on or around you in order to promote energy flow and restore balance.
Want to try it for yourself? Try this simple headache solution using amethyst crystals:
- - "A pain such as a headache indicates an over-energy situation or energy blockage," saysWelchman. "A crystal such as an amethyst point can be used to move the energy away from the area of imbalance."
- - Lie down and place one amethyst on either side of the base of the throat, just above the innermost end of the collarbones. The points should be facing upwards towards the head.
- - Place another amethyst on the brow chakra in the middle of the forehead, with the point facing up towards the crown of the head.
- - Place a fourth crystal above the crown of the head, with the point facing straight up and away from the crown of the head."
- - Relax for 5-15 minutes, or until the headache has eased.
You can 'connect' with your chosen crystal simply by carrying or wearing it (some crystal gurus pop theirs in their bras), or by placing it in a room in which you will be spending a lot of time. When introducing a new stone into your life, you may like to place it on your heart for 10-11 minutes. Some prefer to transfer a crystal's energy to their body via massage.
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