Getting Stoned - Your Intro to Crystals

You’ve seen them in #aesthetic Instagram posts, popular YouTubers’ room tour videos, and in the pages of magazines. Mary-Kate and Ashley even gave them out in goody bags when their collection was shown at New York Fashion Week. There’s no doubt: crystals are having a moment right now.

For thousands of years, we’ve been drawn to crystals; for decoration, or for use in religion, healing, and magic. No matter how far humans have come, we still have an ongoing affinity for sparkly, colourful rocks.

I’m not advocating for their use in healing, and would say most information about crystals should be taken with a grain of (pink Himalayan) salt, but there’s at least something to be said for the placebo effect. Regardless, there’s something magical about learning about crystals, going to a shop and choosing your own, fostering some element of spirituality, and practicing mindfulness and intention when using crystals to bring clarity, love, luck, or something else you’re looking to manifest into your life.

 

 

Knowing where to start can be difficult. Many of the guides seem to assume you have extensive background knowledge, or are on websites that look like they haven’t been updated since 2003 and are run by someone who closely resembles Professor Trelawney from Harry Potter.

Fortunately, it doesn’t take much to start getting into crystals. A common recommendation for a guide that isn’t daunting for beginners—but is still trusted by longtime crystal enthusiasts—is The Crystal Bible by Judy Hall.

But if you, like me, are a poor student who can’t yet justify spending over $20 on a book about rocks, you still have options. One website recommended to me that is easy to navigate is Crystal Vaults. Though it still is a bit “New Age-y” (sorry, skeptics), it has a ton of information, and a bunch of free guides and resources. I also love the app Stone: it has easy-to-understand “profiles” of a ton of different crystals, and it doesn’t take itself too seriously. The profile for black tourmaline starts off like this:

“Here’s some good advice: Always use protection. And, always bet on black. Black tourmaline has been used for centuries to keep evil spirits at bay. It works on negative energy! Negative thoughts! And negative people, too! Embrace this black stone and bathe in the light!”

I, for one, am sold.

 

 

From there on, the next step (and the most important one), is actually getting the crystals. They’re generally fairly inexpensive if you’re buying smaller ones. Buying them in-store is the best way to go, if you can manage it—usually, the employees will have lots of knowledge and will help you out if you need it! In Victoria, Boho Tribe (550 Yates St), Avalon Books (560 Johnson St), or Triple Spiral (3 Fan Tan Alley) are good options. If you don’t know where you can buy them where you live, googling “new age stores” or “occult stores” in your city should give you some options. If you prefer buying them online, Crystal Dreams and New Awakening are good Canada-based shops.

If you don’t have a specific crystals in mind to buy after reading about them, some good ones to start with are clear quartz, amethyst, rose quartz, smoky quartz, citrine, and labradorite. Clear quartz is said to bring clarity, and serves to amplify other crystals’ properties; amethyst is used to help people let go, move forward, and change habits or tendencies, with a purifying energy; rose quartz is all about bringing about love (not limited to romantic love—self-love, family love, and friend love are just as important), open your heart, protect your heart, and bring balance; smoky quartz is supposed to help absorb negative energy and provide clarity; citrine is used to bring about creativity and confidence; labradorite is the “witchy” stone, said to amplify magic, spirituality, and find joy. Who wouldn’t want all that?

 

 

Once you get some crystals, how you use them is really up to you, as it can be different for every person. Some people like to hold their crystal and focus on their intention with it (what they want it to bring about or help make happen), some like to meditate with crystals, some wear crystals in jewelry (I aspire to be extra enough to wear a crystal crown), some sleep with them under their pillow, some keep them in their school bag, some carry them in their pockets, and some just like to keep them in their home somewhere. It’s all about what works for you!

So if you’re trying to ~manifest~ something, pick up some crystals and give it a go. At the least, you’ll have some cute decorations for your room.

Image credits: 1/2/3