Everything To Know About Hematite, From Healing Properties To How To Use It
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What is hematite?
Hematite is an iron-based mineral that's actually chemically the same as common rust, according to crystal expert Yulia Van Doren of goldirocks. It's originally a rusty-red color, gets its distinctive metallic gray sheen when polished, and is found in Brazil, Canada, England, the U.S., Venezuela, and more.
"Hematite's name literally means 'blood stone,' as it comes from the Greek word for blood, haima," Van Doren says, adding that it's long been revered by many cultures for protection. "Roman and Native American warriors would paint themselves blood-red with powdered hematite for protection in battle," she tells mbg.
As crystal expert Heather Askinosie notes, this stone can sometimes be seen with red streaks running through its surface and is known for connecting the body to the Earth. "Hematite was believed to make warriors invulnerable and give them courage and strength," she notes, adding, that during the Paleolithic era, early humans created cave paintings with the red pigment from ground-up hematite.
Of all its properties, hematite is probably most well known as a grounding stone, with strong associations to the root chakra. As Askinosie tells mbg, hematite can help ground the mind, body, and spirit, thanks to its connection to nature and Mother Earth.
"When you feel like the rug has been pulled out from under you, hematite can help you get back on your feet again," she adds.
Along with supporting feelings of grounding, hematite also encourages mindfulness. It's actually often magnetic, which Askinosie says further boosts its connection to the Earth. This sense of being rooted in stillness will help bring you back to the present moment, she notes, adding, "Working with hematite teaches you to be in control of your mental and emotional states, even in unsettling situations."
As aforementioned, Van Doren and Askinosie both note hematite has protective properties and has been used as such for centuries. Simply having some nearby can help absorb negative energy, leaving you more secure.
"For those times when you feel like you just can't find your foundation, hematite will be there to support you," Askinosie says, adding, "Its grounding energy is there to help you feel safe, centered, and secure no matter where you are or what you are confronting."
How to use hematite:
Meditate with it.
Askinosie tells mbg that hematite is a great crystal to meditate with, particularly if you're looking to do a grounding meditation. Here's one she recommends:
- Stand with your feet slightly apart and firmly planted on the ground.
- Hold a piece of hematite in each hand, close your eyes, and take three deep breaths.
- As you breathe, visualize yourself as a tall, strong tree. See the roots of the tree—a few inches in diameter—growing from the sole of each foot and spiraling down into the core of the Earth to create a solid foundation.
- Say out loud "I am grounded" three times.
- Open your eyes. You are now grounded.
Keep it on you during the day.
One of the easiest ways to work with any crystal is to simply keep it on you throughout the day. Van Doren explains that it's great to have on you when you need to stay balanced and level-headed: "Keep a small polished hematite in your pocket to recharge and rebalance during your daily activities, or tuck it into your chair for continuous grounding during your workday," she tells mbg, adding that wearing it as jewelry is also an easy (and beautiful) way to keep its energy around you.
Bathe with it.
If you're a fan of spiritual baths—or any kind of bath, for that matter—Van Doren says adding some hematite to your next bath by your feet will help you re-center and relax at the end of a long day. (Here's our full guide to spiritual baths for some inspiration to get started!)
Practice shadow work.
Van Doren also tells mbg that hematite can be great for doing shadow work, or any work that involves mining down into issues "buried deep in your emotional psyche, history, and ancestral lineage." She adds that hematite "doesn't mess around," so if working with it feels a bit intense to start, you can try black tourmaline or smoky quartz as well for a "gentler" version.
Make a spell jar for protection.
And last but not least, if you want some extra protection in your life, why not make a tangible spell for protection in the form of a spell jar? Here's how:
- A black hematite crystal
- An obsidian crystal
- A smoky quartz crystal (Note: It's OK if you don't have all three, and any crystal for protection will do)
- Pine needles or pine cones
- A piece of paper and a pen
- Add your items to the jar one at a time, thinking about what each item represents and how it relates to your intention.
- Write down your intention and place it in the jar (i.e., "I am protected" or "I am always safe").
- Light a candle and state your intention out loud, visualizing what it will be like when it comes true.
- Seal your jar with candle wax.
- Close out the ritual, placing your jar somewhere you'll see it often to remind you of your intention.
In combination with other crystals.
When thinking about pairing hematite with other crystals, you'll want to work with those that are also associated with grounding, mindfulness, and protection.
For mindfulness and focus, for example, Askinosie says clear quartz and azurite pair well with hematite to help you get out of your head and into your body.
Van Doren adds that she likes to pair hematite with lepidolite, noting that lepidolite is "a very calming and soothing crystal and can help offset hematite's potential over-intensity." Rose quartz as well, she says, is a nurturing crystal that she recommends coupling with hematite.
Cleansing & charging your crystal.
When it comes to cleansing and charging your hematite, it's important to take into account whether your crystal is raw or polished. Polished varieties, Van Doren explains, can be safely exposed to water. Raw hematite, on the other hand, will rust when exposed to moisture, so you'll want to avoid water (and even leaving it out overnight) with those pieces.
And as Askinosie adds, because hematite is a heavier crystal, it's great for absorbing a lot of energy, but that means it needs to be cleansed more often than other crystals might. Personally, she adds, she likes to cleanse hematite in the sunlight.
Aside from those points, any of your preferred methods of charging and cleansing would work here, such as smoke, sound, or even your breath.
FAQs about hematite:
Is hematite associated with any birth months or zodiac signs?
Hematite is not officially associated with any particular birth month or zodiac sign, and according to Van Doren, it's ultimately a great crystal for anyone. Askinosie does note, however, that earth signs (Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn) and air signs (Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius) may particularly benefit from using it.
"For the earth signs, working with it enhances their natural grounded nature, and for air signs, it allows them to keep their two feet on the ground to balance out their 'in the clouds' nature," she explains.
Which chakra is associated with hematite?
Is hematite a good crystal to sleep with?
Hematite is not traditionally used for sleep like some other crystals are, though Van Doren notes because of its protective properties, it can be helpful if you're struggling with nightmares. It is an intense stone, however, so keep it by your feet rather than near your head, and if you feel that it's disrupting your sleep, stick to working with it during the day.
How should hematite be worn as jewelry?
Hematite is great to wear as jewelry, and to really amplify its grounding effects, Askinosie recommends wearing it as an anklet, so it's lower on the body and closer to Earth, which will help you stay rooted and balanced.
Hematite is a powerful and intense crystal for all things grounding and protective. With its beautiful sheen, inexpensive price point, and host of benefits, this is a stone you'll definitely want to have along your own spiritual journey.
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Sarah Regan is a Spirituality & Relationships Writer, as well as a registered yoga instructor. She received her bachelor's in broadcasting and mass communication from SUNY Oswego, and lives in Buffalo, New York.