THE WELLNESS EDIT: WEIRD THINGS #1
WTF are Ear Seeds?
We were asking the same thing just a few weeks ago, so we called up founder of Auricle, Elle Halliwell, to talk us through this mystical new wellness modality that is changing the way we approach anxiety, stress and even sugar cravings.
What's the story? How did you discover Ear Seeds?
I've been a huge fan of acupuncture for years, but it wasn't until I was pregnant with my son in 2016 and diagnosed with blood cancer that I discovered acupressure.
I found acupressure incredibly helpful with dealing with morning sickness, as well as the nausea from my cancer treatment. After I had my son, an acupuncturist friend of mine introduced me to ear seeds.
They were vaccaria seeds which were applied to the ear with skin-coloured tape, which were really effective but also really ugly!
It was my blood cancer diagnosis which really sparked my new career in health and wellness and I'm now a certified health coach, Level II Reiki Practitioner and completing my final year of Naturopathy studies and in recent years pivoted from a career as a fashion and beauty journalist to a health and wellness writer.
Last year I found a manufacturer who made gold-plated alternatives and, believing more people needed to discover the benefits of this incredible modality, decided to launch The Auricle.
When did you start using Ear Seeds?
I started using them about three years ago.
What sort of benefits have you experienced from using them?
I have a generalised anxiety disorder and that was what I initially used them for. I also find them great for headaches, insomnia, and sugar cravings.
Who should be using them?
Anyone who loves acupuncture but doesn't like needles or isn't able to go for regular treatments will love these seeds, as well as people who want an alternative therapy for aches and pains, stress, balancing their body's energy levels or alleviating things like food cravings.
Right now with all that's going on in the world, they're particularly useful for managing anxiety, stress, and sleep issues.
In traditional Chinese Medicine the ear is a microcosm of the body and it is also a highly innervated area connected to the vagus nerve, third trigeminus branch and great auricular nerve of the cervical plexus.
What is different about Auricle compared to other Ear Seeds that are around?
A lot of ear seeds you'll find offered by acupuncturists are black seeds of the vaccaria flower applied with a plaster.
Our seeds look like tiny earrings, and the tape we use is very difficult to see, so they can look like little ear constellations.
When do you like to use them? Do you have a ritual that surrounds your practice of them?
Personally, I like to meditate prior to applying, during which I focus my awareness on the issues that I'm seeking relief for. I find this helps me become more attuned when I place the seeds, and can locate the more sensitive points which tells me I've applied them in the correct spot for my needs.
Candles and a cup of herbal tea are also favourite rituals of mine when I apply, however if I've got a blistering headache I'll literally sprint to the bathroom and whack them on!