Could crystals and gemstones be more than just pretty rocks? Some people—including a few beauty experts—believe so. According to them, certain crystals and stones possess properties that could ward off negative energy, lift the spirit and facilitate healing—both the mind and body. Reaping the rewards of these mystical wonders may be just as easy as holding onto a stone, wearing them around your neck or slathering a crystal-infused cream onto your face. But how do these mystical wonders work? Read on.
Although it seems like crystals have only exploded into popularity recently (according to People, Spencer Pratt of The Hills fame has a collection worth upwards of $1 million!), they’ve actually been around forever. “Stones have been used for thousands of years from an Eastern health and beauty perspective and are now being used in Western medicine,” says Kristin Petrovich, co-founder of Själ Skincare, a luxury line of products featuring gemstones and precious minerals.
But how do they actually work? Crystal healing or gemstone therapy is based on the idea that all matter is composed of energy, and crystals have energy that resonates with natural vibrations in the human body. “Sometimes people are healed by seeing the beauty of the crystal,” explains Heather Askinosie, crystal expert, co-founder of Energy Muse jewelry and co-author of the upcoming book Crystal Muse: Every Day Rituals to Tune Into The Real You. “Sometimes people are healed by a crystal because they touched it and it made them feel good. And sometimes people are healed with a crystal because when they had one in their house it made them feel light and airy. The thing with crystals is that they like to be touched and felt. When we touch a crystal, another human being or anything else, it deepens the connection and there’s a synergy that happens.”
While there aren’t a lot of scientific studies that support the healing benefits of crystals—one study even claims that the perceived benefits of these stones could be just a placebo effect—anecdotal reports and testimonials abound. Graceanne Svendsen, practice manager and senior aesthetician at Shafer Plastic Surgery & Laser Center in New York City, likes to set amethysts in the room when clients come in for facials. “They give the room a certain vibrational energy and help patients relax.”
While certainly not a replacement treatment option for diagnosed medical conditions, Askinosie explains that there is no harm in using these stones in your daily life. “In the simplest form, crystals are amazing when used as a touchstone,” she says. “The healing properties of crystals become something to hold onto and ground us into the moment. When we are grounded and centered we make better decisions.”
In addition to providing mood- and health-boosting benefits, certain crystals and gemstones also deserve a place on your face. Petrovich explains that along with having anti-microbial, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, the precious minerals found in crystals and gemstones also have toning, firming and regenerative properties, too.
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Loaded with negative ions, February’s purple birthstone is known for tranquility and its anti-inflammatory properties, says Petrovich, and curbing inflammation can help with breakouts. Plus, according to the South African Pharmaceutical Journal, “Amethyst is the ‘stone of meditation,’ because it creates a state of enhanced spirituality and contentment.” (So you can understand why this is one of Svendsen’s faves to have around in her facial room!)
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Whether you opt for the clear or rose kind, this crystal is a direct conductor of energy and amplifies the effects of other stones, says Petrovich. Askinosie notes, “It is said that in the Nile, Egyptian goddesses used tumbled rose quartz and would splash the water on their faces to remove fine lines and wrinkles.”
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This electrical stone has stimulating effects and helps increase collagen production. Svendsen says she’ll often run a black tourmaline wand over clients’ faces during facial treatments.
“Citrine is the stone of light and happiness,” says Askinosie. “It is a sunshine stone, so when you place that on your face or in your energy field, it reminds you to tap into the energy from the sun.” Petrovich also explains that citrine also has regenerative properties, meaning it helps with your skin’s renewal process.
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Gorgeous blue lapis is known for being super calming, says Petrovich, making it a great choice if you’re dealing with irritation. Meanwhile, Askinosie notes that you can place one over your third eye to let go of worries and tap into your inner wisdom.
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For starters, these red beauties are connected to your heart chakra (which is located in the center of your chest and is associated with love, compassion and forgiveness), says Petrovich. They also provide microcirculation benefits for your complexion, explains Petrovich. Microcirculation is the stimulation of blood flow through your small blood vessels. This helps boost the production of healthy new skin cells.
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This deep blue stone is believed to stimulate the pituitary gland, which produces melanin pigment, says Petrovich. It’s also associated with spirituality and divinity, she adds.
Last but certainly not least, pearls are detoxifying, as they contain large amounts of gluthathione, an antioxidant, says Petrovich. These oyster-derived stones help even skin tone, brighten your complexion and fade spots, she says.
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