The elusive Vaginal Jade Egg, recently pulled from the Goop website, was the subject of much public controversy regarding its supposed benefits and real risks. This was followed by a lawsuit against the Goop company, claiming false representation of the egg’s health benefits. The suit settled for $ 145,000, based on lack of evidence of the Goop company’s scientific claims of the jade egg’s health benefits, including hormonal balance, menstrual regularity, and bladder control. A recent Forbes article also discussed an academic peer-reviewed journal article, entitled “Vaginal Jade Eggs: Ancient Chinese Practice or Modern Marketing Myth,” published this year in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery. The manuscript elucidated the lack of evidence that the Jade Egg had been used for reproductive health in ancient China, another claim by the company selling this $ 66 stone egg. Indeed, the egg was a modern marketing myth, not an ancient Chinese practice. Soon after the lawsuit settled, the egg was listed as “sold out” on the goop.com site. At that time (November 2018), it was unclear whether or not the egg was sold out because it was on back order or discontinued. Apparently the latter was the case.
Never fear– in its place is a similar appearing product, complete with the same cloth pouch and gift box. But this time it’s a handful of stones, eight to be exact. While these stones are not being sold for vaginal health, it appears visually as if the stone egg has hatched, and eight tiny “medicine crystals” were born.
OK. There has been plenty published in both the lay and medical literature on mind-body medicine, including the concept of the chakra system as it relates to personality, and even organ systems. These concepts are claimed to date back to Chinese Medicine and acupuncture over 2000 years. And crystals supposedly date back even longer– 6000 years– to the ancient Sumerians of Mesopotamia. While the notion of ancient practices may be met with skepticism, one can certainly consider these and other complementary medicine practices as veritable adjuncts to traditional modern medicine.
But will carrying the crystals, which retail for $ 85, really benefit your healing energy? Well, why not? Here’s why: while crystal healing has been gaining increasing popularity in alternative medicine circles, there is no scientific evidence that crystals themselves are doing any healing. It’s the good old placebo effect at work. While the placebo effect can generate a “real” physical response, the crystal effect was put to the test by Dr. Christopher French and colleagues at the University of London back in 2001. French, a psychologist, enlisted 80 volunteers to meditate with either genuine “New Age” crystals or cheap, plastic crystal-appearing lookalikes. All volunteers were explained that holding the crystals would elicit certain sensations, including balanced emotions, increased energy levels, and an improved sensation of well-being. The folks holding the fake stuff felt the same feels as did those holding the pricey real ones. The work was presented at the 2001 British Psychological Conference.
Crystal cleaning and charging are also apparently not new. Charging is performed, by the light of the moon (or sun, I suppose), to enhance the crystal’s energy. Cleansing one’s crystals is performed to remove bad energy. Since the energy itself is placebo, the charging and cleansing are, needless to say, in the same category.
Are these costly crystals really that bad? Certainly not. While some may wonder if these rocky pseudo-medicinal objects, seeming to replace the mother jade egg, are to be similarly placed in one’s nether regions, not to worry. Holding them in the hands, or placing them externally, will only damage your wallet. If you must crystallize, a premium healing crystal set is available on Amazon for less than half the price of the Goop stones. Or better yet, grab the plastic gems for less than ten cents per stone. Apparently they work just as well as the “real medicinal” ones. The Goop company did not respond to request for comment.