Buying a Crystal Ball (and not getting ripped off)

escher_crystal_ball_original

So I just got a new crystal ball, my fourth, and I thought I would give some advice on getting a crystal ball. Crystal balls are very useful things. They’re magickal tools with 101+ uses. Unfortunately most people think they can’t afford a crystal ball, or that they’re not worth the exorbitant prices some stores charge. Most people who sell crystal balls are scam artists using misinformation to sell items for more than they’re worth. If you’re looking into buying a crystal ball, and don’t already know much about them, please read this article and inform yourself. You may be paying $200 or more for something you could buy for $30 (I’m not exaggerating about the price difference either).

Not everything that gets called a crystal ball is actually a ‘crystal’ ball. Although I have four crystal balls, I only have one ‘crystal’ ball. Two of my balls are laser cut glass, and one is amethyst. There’s a big difference between these three types of balls, and they have very different prices.

Real crystal balls tend to be a bit pricey. One the size of your fist can easily go for $50-$100. Expect to pay at least $150 for a descent sized ball, and $250 or more wouldn’t be unreasonable. Large crystal balls can cost a lot more. Things that can raise the price of a ball include its size, flawlessness, age, and occult history. Magicians are usually the only people interested in these types of balls because there are cheaper options available for decorative pieces. Look around though. Sometimes you can get a good deal on a ball, especially a used one. Some of the older sentient balls are looking for the right owner, and they’ll drive away prospective buyers, and drive down their price, until the right owner comes along. Real crystal balls are worth spending the money on too. They’re powerful tools, and once you use one you’ll see how superior it is to the laser cut glass balls. If you can afford it, I highly recommend a real crystal ball.

If you can’t afford it, the laser cut glass balls are still useful. These really are a poor man’s crystal ball. It’s not as powerful as crystal is, but it can still do most of the things crystal can, just not as well. These balls work great for enchantments and divinations. They’re also always flawless. Although they’re not as good as crystal, with a little TLC laser cut glass balls can be powerful and invaluable magical tools. They can also be bought for about a tenth of the price of a real crystal ball.

The problem is most retailers sell laser cut glass at real crystal prices, because most people can’t tell the difference between the two, and many don’t even realize that there is a difference. Customers will usually compare the price of a laser cut glass to a real crystal ball and think they’re getting a deal on the price. It’s gotten to the point that almost every store I’ve been to or website I’ve looked at has had the higher price for real crystal, but most of the products being sold are laser cut glass.

With laser cut glass, a ball the size of your fist should cost less than $15. Expect to pay around $30 for a descent sized ball that’s about as big as a soda can, maybe a little more for one slightly bigger. One the size of your head should go for less than $70. The $120-$180 price range is really for gigantic sized balls.

You can usually tell laser cut glass because it’s flawless and perfect. Even the best crystal balls will have at least a few minor flaws if you look close enough. In fact, some practitioners actually prefer the flaws because they use them as a  divinatory aid. Also on a real tumbled crystal ball you can sometimes see the grooves from the tumbling on the outside. Finally anything with a glass stand included is almost always laser cut glass (and the stand should drive the price up from what I quoted above either).

Now there’s also another category of ball. These are made from precious stones, and the prices can vary widely. Some are far more valuable than crystal. Some aren’t. You have to consider the size, the cost of the stone used, the demand for the stone (low demand can actually drive up the price), it’s beauty, and how good the quality is. Generally speaking, if a stone is jewelry quality, expect to pay more. If a stone isn’t jewelry quality however, it’s often times worthless to anyone except practitioners who can still utilize it for its innate spiritual qualities. For example emerald is very expensive. You can get tumbled emerald for about a dollar a stone though. It’s because the emerald is such a low quality, and so small, it can’t be used for any type of jewelry. It’s worthless to miners, except to tumble and sell to occultists. The same is true of some of these crystal balls. Also keep in mind these things are treasured by New Agers, so they can get pricey. Depending on the price you can be looking at paying a premium over crystal.

If you’re looking for laser cut glass, check online stores and swap meets. These are the places where I’ve seen the best deals, but you have to look around, and be adamant about not paying too much. There’s no reason to spend what many retailers are asking, because you can get a real crystal ball at those prices.

For balls made of precious stone, try the new-age stores. A lot of them carry them. And if you’re interested in a stone that has a low demand, a lot of times they have one sitting on the shelf that gets discount after discount and can be gotten at a bargain.

45 Responses to Buying a Crystal Ball (and not getting ripped off)

  1. Giania says:

    A well-reasoned guide indeed! If there are any online merchants that you deem trustworthy, it wouldn’t hurt to mention them. There are 1001 “occult” or “new age” merchants out there, and though the pricing guides you’ve set down make a good rule of thumb for ferreting out poor choices, it actually leaves a lot of room for less-than-reputable dealers to turn a profit. (Especially when it comes to differentiating crystal from laser cut glass as you mentioned.)

    The relative “quality” of how the website is put together isn’t even a good indicator toward merchant trustworthiness, since some of my favorite merchants for other items have some pretty rudimentary sites (all things considered).

    And even though I’m of the opinion that it’s best to shop locally and in the flesh – as it’s ideal to experience potential new tools with your own senses – there are always folks who simply don’t have the means to do that sort of hunting.

    So, any favorite sellers you’d feel comfortable mentioning by name?

  2. Rob says:

    If you go through an online occult store, it’s going to be glass. Most pagans are 1. unable to tell the difference between glass and crystal and 2. don’t understand the inherent qualities of stones and other materials. Most ceremonial magicians don’t believe that stones or anything else holds any inherent qualities, mainly because no major ceremonial magician ever wrote about such a thing, but only because it’s so obvious they assumed any practitioner would figure it out pretty quick (and most ceremonial magicians aren’t practitioners).

    Sorry, I’m bitching. You might have better luck at the new age stores. New agers understand the inherent energies of stones and want specific ones. Any place that sells real crystal balls is going to have displays of exactly what you’re buying on the web page. Each one is going to be unique. If it just has a general picture, it’s glass. Also the crystal ball section will probably have some sorts of other types of balls if it’s real. Things like Onyx and Amethyst, not things like black and pink (which is colored glass).

    I’d say check out the antique stores, herbal stores and new age shops before going online. If you want glass, you just have to find a local dealer that’s selling it at a fair price (and they do exist, and in my experience will usually boast about their crystal ball prices).

    As for online merchants, I don’t know any with crystal balls. I got a wand from Haunted Wood though, and was very happy with what I got, and I believe Mr Stenwick has also had good experiences getting wands from them. Tarot Garden is a good place for tarot, especially if you want to import European stuff that isn’t sold here. I get a lot of statuary from eMuseum. And I know that most online occult stores get 90-100% of their merchandise directly from Azure Green who offers a wholesale discount to anyone willing to pay an annual fee.

  3. Giania says:

    :) Excellent. Exactly the kind of input I was hoping for! Many thanks.

  4. Scarlet says:

    I think that it might be more well-read if you fixed your spelling errors! LOL. I’m not being mean, I have plenty myself, just saying you might want to do better proof-reading so more people will take you seriously.

    • Pendragon Deville says:

      Interesting thought… I wonder what the world would be like if we paid more attention to what we are doing and stop worrying about what others do? Crystal balls don’t even come with spell check but often come with spells. So in metaphysical thought is it the idea or the words that matter? Ever read some of the books that came out of the 1930’s first print on magick?

  5. Lian B says:

    The crystal balls we sell are made from high quality optical glass. The crystal ones are so expensive we have stopped selling them. We still do a black one that is 60% leaded glass and 40% crystal. This is what it says about the pricing on the manufacturers website.
    “Because the ball must be flawless many have to be discarded after production. The larger the ball the more likely a flaw can develop, hence the larger sizes are dis-proportionately more expensive”

    • Rob says:

      I don’t know exactly what the going rate for things in pounds is, but your store seems to have fair pricing for the glass balls. Part of the problem is a lot of retailers are selling the glass balls at crystal prices. The glass balls I buy for $25 at the flea market (same brand with the same stand and box) sell for $140 at the occult bookstore.

      You don’t really need a flawless ball though. Any real ball is going to have some flaws, even if they’re small, and the bigger the ball the greater the expected flaws. Even a very flawed ball would have a lot of magical value (as is the case with Quartz balls which are always severely flawed). I’d actually like to go through your manufacturer’s dumpster and pick out some of the bad ones.

      Glass is good and you can do a lot with it, but I still recommend real crystal balls. They’re worth the money. I also recommend looking around for a good deal, they do exist.

  6. anguisette says:

    Perhaps you could consider getting rid of the rape joke in the title? This blog is great, but as a rape survivor I found the title of this post extremely triggering (meaning that it reminded me of the trauma and caused emotional distress) and I’m certain other survivors would feel the same.

  7. Gib says:

    Rape???????????????????????????????

  8. Ahmed says:

    Pls can you tell me much about how the crystal ball works. I am very new in hearing about it and am an herbalist. Pls tell more of it and how to get it

  9. Darky says:

    @anguisette What rape joke?

  10. Caryn Llewellyn says:

    I need some advice: I just received a 30mm “natural quartz crystal ball” from crystal-cure.com, among other items. This ball has what appears to be a wrapper of sorts in it where all of the fissures emanate from…it looks like the little white thing on the sticky part of a band-aid which you pull off just before use…although the material itself appears to be like tissue paper. I’m not sure if this is “natural” or not…it gave off a very negative energy & I felt drained once I opened the package, could just be heavy disappointment. It is cold to the touch until held for a while like other natural stones…but honestly, I didn’t expect anything like this. Most of the ball is perfectly clear, except for this area. It appears to be a repaired crystal I’m guessing. I would like to send you a picture if you don’t mind and get your opinion as to whether it is “real” crystal or some man-made item. I would also like to mention that it has 3 petals emanating from this area, flanking the 3 flat sides of the “wrapper” the “wrapper” itself also has some reddish brown on the edges…made me think someone tried to repair the crystal and cut themselves. Quite the imagination I…

    I have purchased from this store before with no problems, so not sure how to react to this crystal. I am very Empathic & easily pick up on others feelings/emotions. Where it not for the precise shape of the “wrapper” I wouldn’t have given it a second thought…it just seems man-made, I “need” genuine/natural crystal. Thank You for Your Time,
    Caryn

  11. Kiane Marsh says:

    Does anybody know if it’s possible to determine between a natural quarz or a glass ball?

  12. Thanks for this article! I had just recently bought a crystal ball that I believed was made of pulverised quartz with blue colour added. After reading this piece I went back and further inspected it, found that the blue colour was actually a coating that was rubbing off, then contacted the seller who admitted that their “crystal” balls are made of glass! They’re giving me a full refund thankfully. And now I’m about to buy a lovely smoky quartz crystal sphere. Thanks for saving me from the fake crystal ball before it was too late!

  13. saint leo says:

    it is quite informative, i just bought one that i later realized that is just a laser glass.

  14. autumn says:

    where is a good place to buy an actual crystal ball? i wiuld like to get one. have been searching online as its easier for me to buy it that way…do not know any stores in wv that would sell them. any help is appreciated :)

    • i have one for sale. i had sent numerous pictures to spellboundsue in the UK and she determined it to be authentic crystal and made from 1910-1930 somewhere in europe. which makes sense because it was passed down from my great grandmother to my father. she was born late 1800’s and him 1932. my family migrated from portugal. it’s really a priceless antique and i cannot seem to sell it, mainly because what it’s valued at nobody will pay me and im not accepting lowball offers. there’s really no market for this kind of thing near me :(
      i really need to “sell” it though because i am in need of the additional income. I WOULD TOTALLY TRADE THIS FOR AN at&t IPHONE 5/5S! HAHA let me know if anyone is interested!

  15. Walter says:

    Go to ROCK STAR CRYSTALS in New York CIty. THis rock shop and metaphysical store has a big selection of crystal balls in different minerals at reasonable prices. So if you are in NYC or are planning a trip to New York City, check them out at 212 675 3065 or go to http://www.rockstarcrystalsmanhattan.com Better than buying on the web: you can personally touch and see each crystal ball BEFORE you make your selection. An they have a lot of them! You won’t have to worry about being ripped off and you can relax and enjoy yourself.

  16. Catherine Quero says:

    What are you asking for the heirloom crystal ball?

    • Repo iPhoneGenius says:

      I’d like $200 for it.

      • Catherine Quero says:

        Ty for email. I’m very interested. Would u mind sending a pic n telling me size please? Meanwhile I’ll fenagle the money. The price is not the problem at all. My bank account isn’t cooperating! Haha. I’d need 2 wks so if someone else wants it before then, I’d understand. Also, do you think it would “like” me? I had spent hours looking for one n didnt care for any and then I saw ur post- so maybe meant to be. Plus I love Portugal. Went there twice when I was studying in Spain. My last name is my ex-husband’s who is Cuban. His grandparents were from Spain and it’s rumored that his last name came from an ancestor from Portugal. Nobody knows tho bc there are several dialects in Spain which could also explain the slightly changed spelling. Well thanks. Cathy

        • Repo iPhoneGenius says:

          You may want to leave contact information if you’d like me to email pics of the ball.

          • Catherine Quero says:

            Oh yeah sorry about that. CathyPaden@aol.com
            Thanks.

          • Catherine Quero says:

            First time on a forum, if that’s what u call it. Thought for some dumb reason that I was emailing u directly. Wouldn’t have written all that before.

          • Liam says:

            Hi i would like to see pictures too as am intersted in buying the ball if its not already sold.
            supermanliam@yahoo.co.uk

            • Repo iPhoneGenius says:

              I have yet to sell my crystal ball. Honestly I’m slightly hesitant about it because I have not had an authentic appraisal. It’s not like I use it however it’s the one thing I own that is the oldest. My asking price maybe too low I’m not really sure. I’ve been thinking about auctioning it off on eBay but they are a dime a dozen and I doubt the authenticity due to low pricing and mass production. I have really high quality pictures from different angles and what not. Spellboundsue from the uk made an offer and said she a large dealer in antique crystal and glass but being from the US and not knowing anything really about it it’s tough. I don’t want to rip myself off when I do sell it but it’s been extremely hard determining its value. I hadn’t forgotten about everyone who’s been interested, just would like a professional honest opinion.

      • Stena Keys says:

        could you tell me what the postage would be to australia. I am happy to pay $200

  17. Kimberly Carpenter says:

    I have only recently decided to take a closer look into my natural abilities. I would like to learn more about techniques and tools. Would you mind emailing me and helping me get started on the right track? Ebay has a ton of “crystal balls” for 5 dollars. That is exactly the sort of thing I do not want to be foolishly roped into, which is what lead me to your article.

  18. pascal says:

    i am surprise that the crystal ball is sold for less price

  19. pascal says:

    i have one crystal ball, and i want to sell it,but how can i sell it,can u pleasa help me.

  20. carolyn says:

    Interested in any information/experience anyone can, or will share regarding the use of their ball. Thinking about buying one but would like to learn more before I do. I seek knowlege and positive energy only. Thank you.. Carolyn

  21. steven says:

    All, I am looking for a top quality natural rock-crystal ball – 6 inch or +. Please email me if you have one. I will pay top $$$$

  22. Julie Coyle says:

    Where do I go to find a large crystal ball which has not been laser cut . Regards

  23. Hi, There’s no doubt that your blog could possibly be
    having browser compatibility problems. Whenever I take a look at your
    website in Safari, it looks fine however, when opening in I.E.,
    it has some overlapping issues. I just wanted to give
    you a quick heads up! Aside from that, great website!

  24. Colette Whittle says:

    Hi, I have just been given a 100cm crystal Ball. It appears to be tumbled with some flaws which can only be seen up really close. It does not have perfect smooth exterior but is lovely and clear. All so it is a very slight colour looks old. I want to insure as have small kids etc. But could do with a valuation any offers? X

  25. pendlebreeze says:

    Ive just opened my account lol

  26. pendlebreeze says:

    My crystal ball is yhe real deal tumbled ball and far to powerful for me so its with a saddened heart im putting her up for sale. She has been authenticated by spellboundsue as being late 1890 to 1920 european tumbled ball. If anyonenis interested please get in touch.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 172 other followers