You can walk into any crystal, new age, or witchy shop and you'll typically find an abundance of raw and tumbled crystals in every shape and size. What are the differences between the two though? Is one better than the other? Do they have different energies?
The shortest answer is, no, not really, but let's dive in a little deeper.
Raw stones are just that, raw, untouched, untreated, and found just the way you'd find them if you were to pull them out from the Earth yourself. They can vary from small almost gravel-like size to large natural formations. Since they are raw they're slightly more fragile (especially softer stones) in this state and may chip or get scratched. Some folks believe that raw stones have more of a pure energy or purer vibrations. I don't ascribe any purity to a raw stone, but they are my preferred state for crystals, especially when it comes to having smaller ones. The rough texture and shape just gives me happy feels when I'm holding one. Seeing all the ridges, markings, colour variations, and whatnot, knowing the time it took to create this one piece is so amazing to me. Seriously, this planet that we stand on is super rad.
Tumbled stones, unlike their raw counterparts, have been handled and processed. That process does not take anything away from them energetically, or vibrationally, well not for me anyway. The smooth even finish is very appealing for many people, it feels good in the hand and makes rubbing (often for worries) easier than with the rough texture of a raw stone. They will vary in size as well from small, very thin slivers to polished free forms as well.
A stone with a hardness of 5 or higher (too soft and they'll just crumble)
have likely been put through a rotary or vibratory tumbler. The tumbling process can take up to 28 days, it's definitely not quick. The four steps taken to achieve those perfectly formed and polished crystals start with a coarse grind silicon carbide that takes about 7 days. The second step a medium grind is used and takes another 7 days. The third step is a pre-polishing that uses a fine grind and runs for another 7 days. The fourth and final step is polishing with an aluminum oxide powder for another 7 days. After 4 weeks you'll get perfectly polished crystals. This process is ideal for crystals that have some sort of sheen or flash like Rainbow Moonstone
, or Tigers Eye
as the polishing makes that flash or sheen that much brighter and easier to see.
Each type of crystal holds the same energy whether it's a large enchanting sphere of Rose Quartz
, a Citrine druzy
or a small tumbled piece of Black Obsidian
. You will get all of the same magical and healing benefits with any size piece. Smaller raw and tumbled stones are really affordable and easily accessible for anyone at any stage on their spiritual journey.
These smaller pieces are excellent for using with a crystal grid mat or board, or just using for grids in general. Since the stones are lightweight they can easily be tucked into pockets or bras for when you want to keep those healing energies closer to your body. You can add some to a bag and carry it with you all the time, I have a bag myself that never leaves my purse unless I need to cleanse them
. That bag is filled with stones I've bought myself, ones that have come into my life through other people, and some pieces that came from my lovely House of Intuition spell candles
. I use them as daily reminders of the things I'm working on manifesting for myself. Using a crystal bag
for these types of stones are perfect for making energy sets, things that you can carry for yourself, or gift to friends, loved ones, and coworkers who may benefit from a little crystal magic in their lives.
When all is said and done, and no matter what stage you are at in your crystal journey, don't ever feel like you need to compete with people that have large collections of all kinds of crystals in all sorts of sizes, that cost all kinds of money that you may or may not have. I mean I wish I had a sink made of Rose Quartz, but that small raw chunk sitting on my bedside table can hold just as much power if I let it. Know that each journey starts with a single step, and if that step starts with a tumbled stone gifted to you by a friend, then it is just as valid and just as healing. The true power comes from you, and all these beautiful crystals are just a physical tool that you can use to make that thought, or promise, or intention into something more tangible.
Let us know in the comments below which you prefer, raw or tumbled? And what do you do with yours? Do you carry them in a bag, or is your pocket stuffed with tiny pieces of Amethyst and Smokey Quartz? We want to know. 😊
Love and good vibes, always. ❤️