On this page you’ll find all sorts of information about Hazelwood, how it works (theoretically), where it comes from, how to care for it, as well as a FAQ at the bottom of the page. If you get through this whole page and still have unanswered questions, please contact us!
Please note that all products & claims regarding properties & effects have not been evaluated by the FDA or Health Canada. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Information supplied is for general reference & educational purposes only and is not intended to replace professional medical advice.
HOW DO HAZELWOOD BEADS WORK?
According to our own experience and the reports of our customers, hazelwood appears to help create a more alkaline environment in your body through direct contact with your skin, which may help to prevent and remedy many of the symptoms caused by acidosis (being too acidic) and by reducing free-radicals by having a high antioxidant effect through your pores.*
Customers have reported relief from skin issues such as eczema, as well as internal issues such as ulcers, acid reflux, heartburn, and teething pain. You can read customer reviews on specific product listings (such as this one) and customer testimonials regarding hazelwood's potential effect on skin and acid issues.
We've used it to successfully treat eczema, heartburn, and ulcers in our own family, and seen it change the lives of several of our close friends who were suffering from severe acid reflux. However we should note that our understanding of the exact mechanisms of how hazelwood interacts with the body are based on our observations and the theories of our suppliers. Only recently has scientific work began to further our understanding of the potential health benefits of the beaked hazel plant. So far one peer-reviewed paper has been published, which you can find here (warning, it's pretty dense).
*NOTE - The research on this is starting to point to an antioxidant effects as being the primary mechanism in hazelwood's actions on the body. We'll keep you posted as we learn more about how it works!
WHERE DO HAZELWOOD BEADS COME FROM?
There are eighteen different varieties of hazelwood plants. Our hazelwood beads are all from the Corylus cornuta or 'Beaked Hazel' shrub, which is native to Quebec, Canada.
If you'd like to read more about this particular plant, Wikipedia has a great article about this variety which you can find by tapping here.
All of the hazelwood necklaces you'll find on the market are using this particular kind of hazelwood bead; it's not known if other kinds of hazelwood have the same properties as the Corylus cornuta.
HOW ARE THEY HARVESTED?
The wood itself that's used in making the beads is harvested sustainably, just the end of the branch is taken and it grows back good as new to be harvested again.
No sprays or pesticides are used in the care of these plants, they are wild-growing and 100% natural.
ARE THERE NUT ALLERGY ISSUES WITH HAZELWOOD?
There are no known allergy issues to this product because it is made with the hazelwood branch, not the nut.
Measures are taken to ensure that the nut does not come in contact with the wood during manufacture. However some of the clasps we use on our jewelry are silver plated nickel, and there are a lot of folks out there who are nickel-sensitive. If you know or even suspect that your child is allergic to nickel, you may want to opt to get a solid silver clasp. You can find all of our listings that include a solid silver clasp by tapping here.
WHO FIGURED THIS OUT?
Aboriginals are believed to be the first to have discovered that they could put hazelwood chips on their babies' necks to soothe teething pains. This lost art was revived in the late eighties by a few families in Quebec who rediscovered the theoretical properties of hazelwood. Since then hazelwood jewelry has become more available as a product, and has grown in popularity as word has gotten around, mainly through people who have experienced its benefits. Up until recently hazelwood jewelry was still largely limited to Quebec and Canada.
Q: What do you recommend between a hazelwood necklace and a bracelet? A: If you must make a choice between the two, we recommend wearing the necklace, the reason being that there are more hazelwood beads on the necklaces. It seems like more hazelwood that our customers have had in contact with their skin, the better the results. Having said that, many people still get great results from using a bracelet or anklet.
Q: How will I know when my hazelwood necklace is no longer working? A: First, you may begin to notice the symptoms returning. You may also see that the extremities (or flesh) of the wood beads have started to darken. When either of these occurs you will need to replace your hazelwood. Note that it is the flesh darkening and not the outer bark that indicates whether or not the wood is worn out. If the outer bark darkens or starts peeling off, there is no need to be concerned. That's a natural occurrence and will happen sometimes with normal wear and tear.
Below is an extreme example of the flesh of the hazelwood darkening. Each necklace may or may not get as dark as this before needing to be replaced. The real guiding factor is the return of the symptoms.
Q: Is it possible for my hazelwood necklace to be worn out after one month or less? A: Though it is uncommon, it is possible. In fact, that was our experience with our daughter with eczema. We found that her first necklace became used up much faster than average but that her subsequent necklaces lasted progressively longer. Our theory is that her first necklace had to absorb all the acid that had collected in her body up to that point in her life, whereas the subsequent necklaces simply had to absorb her current levels of acidity which enables them to last longer. We don't have any proof of this but it seems to be corroborated by our customer's reports of their own experiences.
Q: Are the child necklaces safe? A: Yes, hazelwood necklaces meet the safety regulations required for use by all ages. The necklaces have been specially designed with your child’s safety in mind, each with some form of a safety-release mechanism. Some have a barrel-twist clasp itself has a break-open mechanism. On all our other hazelwood styles, they will come open at the wire loop. In either case, if a necklace were to get caught on something, the clasps and/or wire loop will break open when a certain amount of force is applied (note that this is not repairable, so do not attempt to test). That said, is it still wise to supervise any child under the age of three while wearing a necklace or other forms of jewelry. Since hazelwood is most effective when worn 24/7, one option is to wrap the necklace around your child’s leg or ankle at night. That way they continue to get the benefit of wearing the hazelwood and you can rest easy as a parent knowing your child is safe. For adults, we also recommend that it be worn all the time, including at night to get the full benefit of the hazelwood.
*If you do have a safety mechanism triggered on any style of necklace that has rendered it unwearable, please contact us about securing an 'at-cost' replacement.
Q: What size necklace should I choose for my child’s neck? A: The necklace must be a comfortable length for your child. You should be able to slip your two fingers between the necklace and your child’s neck. The necklace should not be long enough for your child to bring it to his/her mouth.
Q: Can we wear the hazelwood necklace in the shower or the bath?* A: Yes, in fact water helps to keep the wood moist which seems to allow it to be more helpful. So wearing it in the shower or bath is actually a good thing. However, any water with chlorine will alter the life span and the efficacy of your necklace. We therefore recommend you remove the necklace at the pool.
*Please note that our Baltic amber necklaces and combination hazelwood-amber should not be worn in the bath/shower to keep from coating the amber beads with soaps/shampoos.
Q: Can I wear this necklace despite my allergy to metal clasps used with most jewelry? A: Most of our metal clasp are either stainless steel or silver-plated zinc, and we’ve found that some people who have a zinc allergy can’t wear the clasps. If this is the case with your child, we have a few children’s hazel-gemstone and hazel-amber necklaces made with solid sterling silver clasps, which you can find listed here. Another option is to put a few coats of clear nail polish on the clasp or wrap the clasp with yarn (or tape for adults) so the metal is no longer in contact with the skin.
Q: The wood on my necklace is peeling off, is that normal? A: Yes it's a natural occurrence and will happen sometimes with normal wear and tear.
Q: Are your beads authentic? A: This is a question that comes up quite frequently when discussing Baltic amber, but not until recently had we ever run across reports of 'fake hazelwood' beads being used in making jewelry. Sadly, it appears that some companies have begun making jewelry with other kinds of wood and labeling it as hazelwood. Why would they do this? Hazelwood beads are gathered by hand from the wild in Quebec where labor costs are higher compared to other parts of the world. As a result, authentic hazelwood beads are relatively expensive to work with.
We first introduced hazelwood jewelry to the U.S. almost ten years ago, and today there are many new companies and individuals also selling hazelwood jewelry, which is great. Our goal has always been that as many people find out about hazelwood and its natural healing benefits as possible! :) And so it makes us sad and frustrated that the marketplace would be confused by fake hazelwood jewelry. :/
If you do buy hazelwood from a vendor other than Hazelaid, make sure that it says 'Made in Canada' or confirm with the seller that the loose beads were sourced from Quebec. You can also evaluate the price. If you find a hazelwood necklace for really cheap, it's probably too good to be true.
With Hazelaid, you can be guaranteed that whether you're in the market for hazelwood or Baltic amber, you'll always get the real thing.