It can be so difficult to choose a perfect present for a special friend! You're looking for something that's thoughtful, personal and shows them how much you care about them. A meaningful crystal gift can be a clever solution to your problem - provided you choose the most appropriate one, of course ...
So here's a handy guide to the meaningful aspects of three popular crystals - amethyst, citrine and rose quartz - both for people who believe they have healing powers as well as for those who simply see them as lovely tokens of friendship.
Amethyst crystalAmethyst is one of the most popular crystals and is associated with emotional balance, self control and clarity. It's sometimes called an "all purpose" crystal due to its reputed protective qualities, such as anxiety and stress reduction, releasing negative energy, and promoting better sleep.
This makes it a perfect choice for a friend who may be going through a tough time and needs to give themselves time and space to relax and resolve matters. Or someone who's a busy parent or high flyer, who needs to remember to look after their own emotional and physical wellbeing too.
For friends who like to party, it's also worth knowing that amethyst's name comes from the Greek amethystos, meaning "not intoxicated" as it was thought to protect against drunkenness. Maybe the perfect crystal for a night out!
Fun fact: there's a museum dedicated to amethyst in Austria, Amethyst World, where you can take a guided tour of the world's largest exposed amethyst deposit and even have a go at digging for your own amethyst stones!
This sunshine yellow coloured crystal radiates optimism and confidence, and is often linked to success and happiness in all their different aspects. Some people meditate using citrine crystals to help them focus on personal growth or improved relationships, physical wellbeing or career success.
Citrine is therefore an incredibly versatile choice for a gift - after all, who wouldn't want a bit more happiness and success in their life? It could be particularly appropriate for someone who's actively seeking a promotion at work or to grow their own business, or someone who's been knocked back by a bad experience and needs a bit more confidence and optimism.
In medieval times, citrine was thought to have magical properties that could protect against evil people, poison and the plague! It also became known as the "Merchant's Stone" for its association with prosperity. Citrine was particularly fashionable for its bright, glamorous colour in the 1920s Art Deco movement.
Fun fact: the largest citrine stone in the world was found in Malaga in 2010 - it weighs an astonishing 20,200 carats, or nearly 9 pounds!
Rose quartz crystal
This lovely pale pink crystal is associated with emotional balance and harmony, and also represents compassion and love in all its forms, including romantic and familial. Some people use it to manifest positive emotional energy and creating closer, more harmonious relationships with others.
A rose quartz crystal gift would be ideal for a special person who's looking for more balance in their life and may need to love themselves a little bit more too! Or it can be sent as a "virtual hug" to reconnect with a family member or friend who lives far away. As it's the "Heart Stone", it's also a perfect present for true romantics!
Rose quartz is one of the oldest crystals in use. According to Greek legend, its colour came from mixing the blood of Aphrodite (goddess of fertility and love) and her lover Adonis (god of beauty and desire). Some believed it could help promote beauty and had anti-ageing properties.
Fun fact: rose quartz masks have been found in ancient Egyptian tombs, presumably to make sure the departed looked their very best in the after life!
We hope you've enjoyed finding out more about these fascinating crystals, and you've been inspired to find thoughtful gifts for friends, family and loved ones.
If you'd like more suggestions, we have some magical mixed crystal gift sets with Success Crystals (pictured below), Friendship Crystals and Calm Crystals, each of which comes with a card with the crystals' meanings.
And if you have a friend who'd like to find out more about crystals at a deeper level, or you're interested yourself, why not dip into Philip Permutt's bestselling "The Crystal Healer" or Cassie Uhl's "Zenned Out Guide to Understanding Crystals".
Which meaningful crystal gifts would you choose for your special friends? We'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.