Stepping Stone to Health

Incorporated into spa treatments for their healing properties, gemstones do more than just look pretty

Portrait of Tammy Strobel

Incorporated into spa treatments for their healing properties, gemstones do more than just look pretty

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“Place the waters under the moon each evening two days prior to the full moon and then remove it the morning after she has reached her fullness,” says Debra Haugen. This may sound like a line from a spell book, but the founder of Gemstone Organic is walking us through the process of making her full moon elixir. The brand has become synonymous with the holistic skincare movement gaining traction not just in its California base, but across the globe. 

Gemstone-infused beauty products may sound like a New Age beauty fad, but the concept of using gemstones and crystals for physical, emotional and spiritual healing has been around for centuries. Their high vibrational properties are said to regenerate and revitalise the skin, soothe the soul and balance the body. Haugen says, “Crystals can be used in several ways to improve health and well-being. They are gifts from Mother Earth that can be worn, carried in pockets, placed in your home or in water or food to benefit from their healing properties.” 

Schooled in geological engineering and also a shamanic reiki practitioner, Haugen has a passion for crystals and earth medicine, combining botanical skincare formulas and gemstone elixirs to create the range. Gem essences are made by placing crystals in ionised water which absorbs the mineral and energetic properties of the gemstone or crystal. She says, “Because water is highly conductive, it is a powerful way to harness the healing properties of the crystals. The gemstones create high- vibrational water that is easily absorbed by the skin and works with your body’s liquids, since we are made up of over 70 per cent water.” 

After achieving high-vibration status, gem essences are combined with a variety of raw, food-grade 100 per cent organic ingredients. The products are free from preservatives, additives, synthetics, fragrances and alcohol. 

Each gemstone has unique healing properties, offering additional physical and mental benefits. Haugen says, “Rose Quartz, the ‘love crystal’, can help identify personal needs, bring you warmth, love, joy and oneness. It strengthens the heart, circulation and reproductive organs and is great for softening the skin.” Amethyst, on the other hand, can aid concentration and clarity. “It balances the energies of the spiritual, physical and intellect, and is great for stimulating the nervous system and endocrine glands. It is good for the lungs, eyes and skin too,” she says. 

In addition to facial creams, body lotions, and elixirs, Gemstone Organic also offers gem juice hydrosols and chakra baths. Hydrosols, also known as floral waters, are made by steam distilling plant materials. They are gentle on the skin and have healing properties which can be attributed to the plant’s vibrations. Gem juices come with a gemstone in the hue of the plant used in the hydrosol along with being infused with the colour-coded gemstone to create a vibrational link. They can be used as a beauty water, purifying room spray or deodoriser. 

Gemstones are also sneaking into beauty regimes. Spa treatments incorporating gem and crystal healing are on the rise. Touted as an alternative medical technique, gemstone- infused massages are said to cure ailments and rid the body of negative energy. While some treatments are subtle in their usage of gemstones, they are the complete focus in others. Iridium Spa at The St. Regis Macao dove headfirst into the trend with their spa programmes The Art of Gemstones. 

“Gemstone spa experiences at the Iridium Spa are designed to suit the needs of each guest based on how they feel on the day of their treatment,” says Kitti Watnoi, director of Spa & Recreation for The St. Regis Macao, Cotai Central. “By filling out a gemstone questionnaire prior to the treatment, guests are able to identify the personalised signature gemstone best suited to their current state of mind and physical needs.” 

The spa uses gemstone-inspired massage oils coupled with actual gemstones in their treatments. Six types are used: aquamarine for balance; citrine for renewal; ruby for empowerment; sapphire for vitality; tourmaline to ease negative emotions and promote emotional healing; and pearl for purification of mind and body. 

Watnoi says, “One of the most popular gemstone treatment packages at the Iridium Spa is the Timeless Iridium Journey. This treatment best captures the gemstone concept at the Iridium Spa, offering a head-to-toe gemstone experience. Our experienced therapists create a journey specific to the needs of each guest based on his or her signature gemstone. The three- hour-and-20-minute journey commences with a welcome ritual, signature scrub, signature massage and concludes with a rejuvenating facial.” 

As with most beauty regimes, gemstone therapy is most effective with regular treatments. Haugen says that although results depend on the individual, the majority of guests notice a difference in as soon as three to five days.