You *have* to try this.
In the past year, indoor plants have made their biggest comeback to our homes since the 1970s, thanks to their ability to help you feel calm, improve air quality, lower blood pressure *and* improve productivity. And as we navigate our third national lockdown, there has never been a better time to bring the outside in.
Indeed, in 2014, researchers from the University of Exeter found that plants can increase productivity by 15 per cent (a green office increases employees' work engagement by making them more physically, cognitively and emotionally involved in their work). More recent research has found that having plants in the home can also help reduce anxiety, since they remind us of nature and the outdoors which is instantly calming. If that wasn’t enough, houseplants help to make your home less toxic by purifying the air and eliminating any toxins (case in point: this Crispy Wave air-purifying fern).
Becoming a 'plant mum' could reduce your anxiety so here are the best indoor plants to brighten this winter lockdown
As well as indoor plants, crystals seem to be all the rage on my Instagram feed RN. I can't move for people showcasing their rose quartz stones, amethyst geodes and jade rollers - and for good reason. Crystals are thought to have huge wellbeing benefits. Feeling low? Grab an amethyst rock. Looking for love? Hoard some rose quartz. Need a single solution to any problem life throws at you? Crystals. It's little surprise that searches for ‘crystal healing’ are up 165 per cent right now.
Wouldn't it be a genius idea to combine the healing benefits of indoor plants and crystals? Well, that's exactly what Nathan Raab, MD of crystal and plant brand Pointless Plants, is doing! “Caring for plants is not only a soothing hobby, but adding some greenery to your home is a great way to boost energy levels - and some clever consumers are now going further by adding amplifying the healing powers of their plants with crystals in them too," he told GLAMOUR of the trend he's dubbing 'crystal botany'.
“Both plants and crystals are organic elements which bring energy into the home - though they both do it in different ways. Plants bring their energy out of the earth, whilst crystals vibrate and self-generate; together this sustainable partnership is not only a great way to boost plant growth, but it’s a sure-fire means of tackling common ailments - stress, anxiety, sleep-deprivation - and bringing some positive energy into your life.”
Want to try crystal botany at home? Here, Nathan reveals the best crystal and plant combinations to tackle common woes...
Want to spread healing? Combine quartz crystal with aloe vera
“Quartz crystal is a versatile energy amplifier. Whatever the mood of the room or space is, quartz will take that and push it back out. So take advantage of this by combining with a plant with healing properties - something like aloe vera, which has medicinal properties, purifies the air around it and has been used in healing rituals throughout history - as the quartz will amplify this energy and spread the aloe vera’s healing throughout the home.”
Want more love in your life? Combine orchids with rose quartz
Orchids are beautiful flowers associated with fertility and virility, so combine them with the circulation-boosting properties of rose quartz to bolster any flagging passion in your home. Rose quartz is also known for bringing unconditional love and strength in relationships, which is the perfect kind of energy to add into the mix if you and your partner are getting a bit moody with each other after months of lockdown.”
Want to bring balance? Combine green calcite and succulents
“If you want to bring a bit of balance to your world, try combining a green calcite crystal with a succulent like an echeveria or sempervivum. Both succulents and green calcite are used to cleanse chakras, so combining the two is a great way to help you feel more relaxed and encourage you to stress less and go with the flow. Green calcite brings emotional clarity, and can encourage you to declutter too - perfect if you need a bit of nudge to organise your home!”
I tried a crystal healing session and couldn't believe what happened
Want to reduce stress and anxiety? Combine string of pearls with amethyst
“The great thing about string of pearls plants is that they’re very expressive - it’s easy to know at a glance when your plant needs water. This provides a sense of soothing clarity and control which helps counteract any stresses and anxieties you may be suffering with. So combine with an amethyst geode crystal: these are known for their overwhelming ability to calm and help relieve anxiety. For best results, keep crystals and plants close - you can even consider putting the crystal within its soil.”
Want more joy? Combine ocean jasper and bamboo
“Bamboo and feng shui go hand in hand, with bamboo bringing wealth, prosperity and happiness to any home. Use an ocean jasper crystal to heighten these feelings. Ocean jaspers, which are only found in Madagascar, are made of opposing sides with opposing forces - fiery and cooler - which taken together, allows you to stop, take stock and focus on yourself for a bit. This combines with the positivity of the bamboo to give you a bit of an excuse to focus on your own happiness.”
This originally appeared on GLAMOUR UK | Bianca London