Skeptical of the 'power' of crystal healing? The spiritual practice is still worth a try

crystal healing
A beginner’s guide to crystal healingTHOMAS SAMSON - Getty Images

If you’ve gone through a breakup, made a career change, or entered another transformative time in your life, chances are you had some support from the gang. Maybe your mum sent you a care package, your best ~corporate~ gal pal gave you a pre-interview pep talk, your sister took you out for dinner, and your witchy friend gave you a crystal. Perhaps you’ve kept it on your nightstand, or in your purse, pocket, or bra—no judgment!—and if so, may have benefited from the grounding power of healing crystals.

While these gemstones have been around for centuries, crystal healing really became trendy during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Google Trends. Subsequently, the crystals market grew 20 percent during that time, per Bloomberg. Plus, they've got their fair share of celeb fans: Adele holds crystals in her hand while performing, Victoria Beckham keeps them backstage at her fashion shows, and Miranda Kerr stores a crystal wand in her purse to keep herself balanced.

So, what’s so special about these ancient stones? While there is no hard proof that these stones will spark any massive changes in your life, they sure are pretty to look at, and a little extra spiritual support never hurts, right?

Plus, the barrier to entry is low—all you need is a stone or two to get started. 'This is an easy holistic healing modality you can invite into your life,' says Sandy Labbate, a certified trauma-informed transformation coach and crystal reiki master, based in Arizona.'Crystals can help you balance yourself and even release bad energy around you.' And if you’re entering the world of crystal healing with a healthy dose of skepticism, hey, they also make excellent home decor, if nothing else.

Ahead, experts explain everything to know about crystal healing, including if there’s any science behind it, the meaning and uses of each crystal, and more.

What is crystal healing?

Crystal healing is a spiritual practice that believes in the power of crystals to shift, absorb, direct, detoxify, diffuse, or amplify the energy of your mind, soul, or environment, says Erin Panzarella, a spiritual mentor and quantum healer based in New York. 'Each crystal has a certain vibration, or energy, that can help bring the body or environment back to harmony.'

Is there any science behind crystal healing?

There is no scientific evidence backing the power of healing crystals. It's worth nothing that very little scientific research has been done on the topic, beyond a few studies that claim it is pseudoscience and the power of the placebo effect.

The most famous study about crystal healing happened in the early 2000s in London, where Dr. Christopher French, a psychologist at Goldsmith's College, worked with 80 volunteers to test the effectiveness of meditating with a healing crystal. Half of the participants were given a natural stone, while the other half were given a fake. Of the 80 volunteers, 74 reported positive shifts in their energy, with the most popular symptoms being a warm sensation and increased concentration. Only six people said they felt nothing. French concluded these side effects were the result of the placebo effect, The Telegraph reported at the time.

More recent studies, one completed in Pakistan in 2009 and another in Denmark in 2013, more or less came to the same conclusion as French. It was the suggestion of the power of crystals, rather than the crystals themselves, that made the difference for people.

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While our experts acknowledged the lack of science on the topic, 'having something to believe in and pour your energy into is all you need sometimes,' says Melissa Randazzo, a crystal expert based in New York and the owner of True Warrior Jewelry. '[That] can actually have the benefits that you're looking for.'

Crystals and their meanings

Clear Quartz: Master Healer

transparent quartz crystals with rainbow light background
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This stone is known as the master healer because it helps to amplify the energy of all of the crystals around it, says Panzarella. It’s believed to help people find a sense of harmony, clear their own energetic field, and sharpen their intuition. Using this crystal may also evoke a sense of calmness.

Obsidian: Protection

black obsidian stone volcano lava
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Obsidian is believed to shield against negativity, says Panzarella, byblocking and absorbing negative energy from the environment as well as your physical body. This crystal can help ease stress, tension, and psychic blocks, she says. Obsidian can be a powerful tool when you are trying to manifest but are coming up against a lot of negative self-talk.

Rose Quartz: Universal Love

woman holding a rose quartz crystal heart
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Rose quartz is considered a powerful crystal that represents universal love, says Panzarella. It is a great crystal to use when trying to up your self-love practice and promote kindness around you and in your relationships.

Jasper: Nurturer

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If you’re going through a tough time, Jasper can bring a sense of peace, tranquility, and wholeness into your life, says Panzarella. And like obsidian, it’s believed to absorb negative energy. Panzarella recommends this stone for those grieving any kind of loss.

Citrine: Happiness

citrine geode geological crystals
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Citrine is an energizing stone that can help elevate every area of life, says Panzarella. If you are looking to bring more prosperity, creativity, pleasure, and strength into your life, consider this potential tool. She also recommends citrine as a beginner stone because it generally helps you enjoy your life more fully!

Turquoise: Purification

natural stone turquoise and beads close up
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Turquoise is known as a purification stone that is believed to help dispel negative energy and keep bad vibes from coming into your space, says Panzarella. This crystal may also help stabilize one's mood and help one feel balanced and serene. If you need to tap into your inner strength to get through a difficult time or the end of a cycle, this is the stone she recommends.

Amethyst: Meditation

amethyst crystals
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Amethyst is considered a protective stone that can help chill you out, says Panzarella. It’s also believed to heighten spiritual awareness and promote healing of the mind and soul. Crystal healers say it’s especially powerful when used with meditation to help balance your energy and bring an overall calmness through the body.

Tiger’s Eye: Good Luck

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If you need a little luck on your side, you may want to explore Tiger’s Eye. This crystal is associated with personal empowerment, prosperity, and good luck, says Panzarella. If you’ve been waiting to take action on something, need a little boost, say for a big presentation or job interview, or need to have a tough conversation, Tiger’s Eye can be an excellent stone to have nearby. It’s believed to promote a sense of grace and courage through uncomfortable action, Panzarella says.

Moonstone: New Beginnings

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When you start fresh at a new job, living situation, or school, you may want to have a moonstone ready for the first day. This stone is considered ideal for new beginnings because it promotes inner strength and calmness even in times of chaos, says Panzarella. Moonstone is also believed to be good for fertility, she adds, because it is connected to the moon.

Bloodstone: Soother

heliotrope bloodstone gemstone isolated on white macro
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When you’re entering a situation that may test your patience, it’s not a bad idea to have a bloodstone on hand, says Panzarella. This crystal is believed to soothe feelings of irritability or impatience,provide a grounding and protective energy, and help you remain in control of your emotions.

Black Tourmaline: Grounding

extreme close up of black tourmaline mineral
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Black tourmaline is said to remove negative energy from a space and, overall, help the user feel more grounded. So, if you’re looking to bring a calming energy to a new space, you might place black tourmaline over the windows and door frames, which is said to block negative energy from entering, says Randazzo. Using black tourmaline jewelry, or keeping it on your person, is also believed to connect you to the earth and promote calmness.

Sapphire: Expression

set of blue sapphires
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When you need to express yourself verbally—speaking up for yourself at work and in your relationships—sapphire can be a powerful crystal, says Panzarella. Sapphire is believed to promote creative expression and a thirst for knowledge or further education. If you’ve signed up for a course or are entering a new school, Sapphire can be a powerful way to guide you to expressing your truth in new environments!

Ruby: Passion

closeup of a bunch of red rough uncut ruby crystals
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If things are feeling a bit blah, says Panzarella, you might want to try some ruby. This crystal is said to inspire joie de vivre and breathe exciting new energy into your life. Crystal healers say ruby also attracts a sense of generosity and openness to exciting opportunities.

How to select a crystal

If you’re interested in dabbling in crystal healing yourself, experts recommend finding a metaphysical store near you and buying the crystal you are drawn to. This can be as simple as liking the colour or texture of the stone. Usually, people find the stones or the crystals meant for them, says Randazzo. 'There’s always a reason for it. If you pick something up that’s your favourite colour, say orange, it may be as simple as liking the colour at the moment,' she explains 'But maybe it’s Carnelian and super fiery, and you need to invite that fire into your life.'

Before you enter the store or virtual store, for that matter, you can also find a goal, says Panzarella. You can ask yourself what you need clarity on in this moment or what you need support with. If you notice a flash of color while doing this visualisation, that could be a sign from your subconscious telling you which crystal to go for, she says.

How to use crystals

Labbate recommends that first-time crystal users try crystal jewellery. It’s an easy way to incorporate healing stones into your daily routine and receive the benefits of multiple crystals at once. If you want to block out negative energy and invite love into your life, for example, you may go for a stack of obsidian and rose quartz bracelets.

Healing crystals can also be a great addition to a meditation practice, says Panzarella and Labbate. You can either keep your crystals near you or place them on different chakras or energy centres on your body. If you want to clear your mind, you can literally put a crystal on your head while you lie in meditation, Panzarella says. It may look whacky, but it also might work!

How to take care of a healing crystal

As with jewellery, you can take care of your crystals by storing them in a soft pouch for safekeeping, per Randazzo. You can also burn rosemary to clear the energy of the crystal after you purchase it, suggests Panzarella. (You can also do this periodically or after each use.) Another way to use your crystals: Leave them outside, or on a windowsill, during a full moon to charge them, she says. This is believed to bring the crystal back to its natural vibration using the power of the moon.

What about crystal accessories?

Crystal accessories make it easy to incorporate crystal healing into your life. Here are a few options you can try, depending on your personal style:

Prayer beads

Using a mala, or a prayer necklace with 108 beads, is a powerful way to use crystals in your meditation, say Panzarella and Randazzo. You can repeat an intention or mantra as you touch each bead or count them as an act of meditation. Many of these necklaces come with several kinds of crystals, so you can potentially reap many different benefits.


Wearing crystal necklaces, bracelets, earrings, or other jewelry is a powerful way to ensure you have good vibes with you at all times, says Randazzo. If you want to cultivate calmness, for example, you may reach for an amethyst stack, she suggests. Wearing crystal jewelry is a great way to make sure their energy always protects you, the experts agree.


If you’re looking to elevate the vibes at home, adding a crystal coaster to your coffee table might do the trick. Not only is it nice to look at, but it can bring the power of the crystal to your beverage.

Crystal-infused candles

Lighting a candle always brings good energy into your home. What if you could elevate it with the healing power of crystals? Purchasing candles with crystals in them can help to bring the energy of the crystal into your space.

Where should I buy crystals?

When buying crystals, it’s important to note where they were mined, say the experts. The crystal Larimar, which promotes healing and inner wisdom, is only found in the Dominican Republic. So, if the seller you’re buying from says it was mined in Tokyo, you’ll know it’s a fake, says Randazzo. If you’re shopping online, experts recommend Etsy and encourage checking the reviews. They discourage shopping from Amazon because the sellers tend to be unreliable with the sourcing of their crystals.

What’s the best crystal to wear every day?

Labbte recommends selenite, or clear quartz, for daily use because of its healing powers. Black tourmaline is another great everyday option due to its grounding qualities, adds Randazzo, who carries the stones on her and often wears jewellery incorporating these healing crystals.

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