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Having been in the crystal and gemstone business for close to 40 years, there is a lot of good, bad, and ugly with mining and how a crystal or gemstone finds its way to you. Not all crystals are ethically sourced. A crystal can be mined in one country, cut in another, and sold someplace else before it gets to you. It’s a sometimes troubling process similar to the diamond industry. Many individuals are now familiar with blood diamonds, which are diamonds that are unethically mined in a war zone to fund conflict against the country’s legitimate government. To help reduce the global flow of conflict diamonds, policies and actions like the Kimberly Process have been introduced.

Unfortunately, the same level of focus has not necessarily been targeted to the widespread sale of crystals and other gemstones. Many come from countries that use either slave labor, child labor, or both. To add to the ugly side of crystals, they are not renewable resources, and many times they are blown out of the earth with little regard for the environment and the communities around the mines.  

Because everyone is crazy for crystals, people will often purchase the lowest-priced items with little regard for how these gifts from nature made it to them. A $2 crystal has a big story that comes with it, so it is important to delve a little deeper into your purchase. Some questions I ask before I buy:

  • How long have you been buying and selling gemstones and crystals? 
  • What is the country of origin?
  • How are your crystals and gems harvested?
  • Who are the miners, and how are they treated?
  • Who cuts and cares for the stones?

Just like we do with organic food, we are now beginning to ask important questions about crystals, which are programmable and carry energy by their wavelengths and dominant oscillatory rates. If you believe you have a crystal that was unethically mined, retune its vibration with sound, set it out in the sunlight to bring prana or energy to it, run it under water if it is not porous, and set it in salt or the moonlight. 

It is easy to make a mistake in the beginning of your crystal experience, but be mindful and make sure not to get caught up in the literal shiny object syndrome. It is better to walk away or give a questionable crystal or stone some attention and reprogramming. 

About The Author
Photo of Elizabeth Trattner

Elizabeth, a doctor of Chinese and integrative medicine and licensed acupuncturist, is a highly sought-after physician who specializes in women’s health, weight management, allergies, autoimmune diseases, environmental illnesses, green beauty, and cosmetic acupuncture. She is a graduate of The University of Arizona’s Center of Integrative Medicine and the only acupuncture physician in the country to complete a prestigious medical rotation there with her mentor, Andrew Weill, M.D. Elizabeth is also a member of the esteemed Global Wellness Initiative: Beauty Meets Wellness, helping to redefine beauty and wellness standards while creating aesthetic responsibility with other health and beauty leaders across the country. She is the creator of the Gemstone Acupuncture Facial, which has received international recognition in the media. Elizabeth is also a reliable source in the media. Most recently, Allure magazine shared her personal journey and practice along with Shape magazine naming her one of the “Smart New Voices of Wellness.” Learn more about her at