The ultimate beginners’ guide to crystals and crystal healing

Posted by
Jo Hoare
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Has your interest in crystals been officially piqued? Here, Stylist speaks to crystal expert and author of The Power of Crystal Healing, Emma Lucy Knowles, to get the crystal 101.

Whether you’re a full-blown advocate or not, crystals have no doubt reached peak popularity. Nowadays, you’ll find them in beauty products, they’ve become key components of facials, and you can hardly scroll through Instagram without spotting a tactically placed hunk of rose quartz in the background of someone’s selfie, or a celebrity walking you through their multi-step jade roller routine.

But of course, they may have reached the mainstream in recent years, but crystals are nothing new. From Chinese medicine, to Ancient Egyptian therapies, they’ve been used in spiritual wellbeing rituals for centuries. But what exactly is all the hype about?

Do we need to all build crystal shrines in our bedrooms? Should we all be storing a pebble of amethyst in our bras? And what on earth is crystal healing

We spoke to Emma Lucy Knowles, crystal expert and author of The Power of Crystal Healing to answer all our crystal-based questions.

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How do crystals work?

The whole world is made of energy - every person, every object is vibrating at different frequencies. When we are happy we emit high vibes and when we are burnt out and down we emit low vibes. Energy is fluid and changeable and we can use crystals to change this energy and align ourselves with the vibe we want.

The Egyptians used Hematite crystal as a mirror, The Greeks used to rub the same stone onto their soldiers bodies before they charged forth in to battle - there is literally a crystal to aid and support anything you wish to promote or remove in your life.

Crystal are formed under pressure (much like ourselves), and they can work to heal or realign our energy when it’s out of swing or to amplify and enhance good vibes- to help us feel more alive and bring us within reach of all those desires and goals we’d like to fulfill. They’re the ultimate powerhouses of the earth, ready to raise your vibrations- to walk with you, explore with you, teach you and help you develop your intuition.

Why are they so popular in the fashion and beauty world right now?

Just like make up and fashion is used to focus on or draw your eye and attention to flatter our greatest features, so are crystal but just on a different level. I also feel that we live in an age of where we’re so ‘switched on and connected’ via technology’ but we’re looking for something more real - we want to get back to what it truly means to be us and crystals can be so powerful in that process, that’s why I feel now is there real time to shine.

Historically they’ve always been used by creatives- to clear energy and minds to make space for a powerful creative journey, celebrities like Victoria Beckham and Adele also use them as talismans for luck and powerful magnets for success and radiating power. 

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Which crystals would you recommend for a beginner?

For a beginners kit I would say Rose Quartz, Amethyst and Selenite would be part of my go to staple crystals – promoting love, spiritual and creative lifting and universal guidance – you really cannot go wrong with these crystals when you are ‘starting out’. Beyond that – ALWAYS go with your gut, hold a piece and see what you feel and if you have a connection with it. Then play around with them, see what works for you and start journaling your experiences. Knowing what helped you and when can be really powerful.

How do we start to work with them?

It’s all about your own intuition and feeling your way to what you need. Try putting your crystals in a lineup, in front of you. Rub your hands together gently three times to stimulate the chakra points at the centre of your hands then move your dominant hand over the crystals- right to left. Take long deep breaths and close your eyes, then turn to your intention. What do you want. Asking is important. Try something like ‘Please guide me to what I need’ and continue floating your hand back and forth over them. You’ll be drawn to one of them- sometimes I feel a gentle prickling or a breeze. When I’ve chosen I tend to like to keep it on my skin – be that holding it my hand but mainly by putting it in my bra

Is there any science behind them?

Look at the Einstein quote - “Everything is energy and that’s all there is to it. Match the frequency of the reality you want and you cannot help but get that reality.”

 Crystals are formed based on environment, pressure, temperature, science- and in terms of their healing properties I think we’re just scratching the surface of what these beauties can do – tribes and religions have been holding their secrets at heart for years.

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How do we look after them?

Much like a sponge, your crystals soak up remnants of your emotion or day and need cleansing. You cannot beat the moon when she is full for cleansing and charging your Crystals – for those stones that are not soluble I would run them through or bathe them in cold water before laying them out in the moon light or on your window sill during a full moon. When a full moon feels too long away – you can nest them in sand or natural salts.

Emma’s crystal cheat-sheet

Rose Quartz

To embrace and love your true self.

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Tiger’s Eye

For inner strength and confidence.


To soothe your soul with clarity and calm.


To dance in joy and swim in success.

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For protection and absorbing negative energy.


For self-reflection.

Golden Healer Quartz

For opening your heart.

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Red Calcite

For a kick start, caffeine-style hit.

Main Image: iStock


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Jo Hoare

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