Are you searching for a perfect mala to use during a meditation session and haven’t been able to find one? You can make your own mala by picking the perfect beads and putting them together. Using an authentic and unique mala will help you further your manifestations, dreams, and intentions.
Mala necklaces are immensely popular amongst individuals who are into meditation and follow spiritual practices. It is widely used in Hinduism and Buddhism and the practice of using malas is slowly catching up in the western world too.
A mala serves as a simple reminder of positive intentions. The word originates from a Sanskrit word which means “garland”. Malas have been used for thousands for years and its use can be traced back to 800 BC.
So how do you choose beads for malas? A mala is generally a string of 108 beads that can be pearls, seeds, wood, precious and semi-precious stones. You’ll need to choose the beads based on your goals and intentions, the size and number of beads you want, and whether you are making a mala for a spiritual practice or not. This will help you refine your choices and choose the most appropriate bead for the purpose.
There are many options for you to choose from, so let’s dive into this ultimate guide to making mala beads.
Choosing Mala Beads – 3 Things to Consider
There are 3 important things to consider when choosing mala beads. Check out the list below.
1. The number and size of the beads
If you are making a prayer mala, then go for 108 beads plus the Meru bead which also signifies the beginning and the endpoint of your prayer.
You can also make a bead bracelet which comprises 24 beads along with Meru bead. A more traditional choice would be to go with a necklace or a mala.
The beads should be such that you can grasp them quite conveniently between your fingers while chanting or meditating. Although beads come in various sizes, choosing bigger ones will make counting a lot easier.
2. The type of energy you want to channel
While choosing a bead for your mala, you need to clearly define the energies that you want to nurture during a prayer or mediation session.
Wooden and Tulsi beads are the most commonly used Japa mala beads. These beads are more commonly used in Hindu Brahmin households where frequent chanting and meditation is the norm.
However, if your focus is accelerated healing, then you can consider semi-precious or precious gemstone beads for your mala, such as:
- Quartz is a universal crystal and it is good at absorbing, storing, amplifying, and transmitting healing energy.
- Carnelian beads are an ideal choice when you are seeking courage and motivation.
- Turquoise supports the constant flow of healing energy.
- Some malas have a Meru bead that occupies the center of the mala. Many are of the opinion that positive energy associated with your chanting is collected in the Meru bead.
Choosing a mantra is more personal and it is always based on what your intention is. Hence, you need to take some time in deciding the perfect beads for your mala.
3. Your intentions (spiritual or otherwise)
If you simply want to make a mala without any spiritual meaning associate with it, then you can go ahead with any bead that makes you feel positive and happy. Malas serve as a gentle reminder of what you choose to associate yourself with.
You can pick any beautiful beads that resonate with your style and personality or have a special significance in your life. We have reviewed some of the best beads available for making malas. You can weigh your options before shortlisting one.
4 Types of Beads for Making Malas
We have reviewed some of the best beads available in the market and we have listed their pros and cons. This will help you weigh them and choose the perfect bead for your mala.
|Type of Bead||Diameter (mm)|
|1.||Turquoise Gemstone Beads||8mm|
|2.||Polished Black Onyx Beads||6mm|
|3.||White Howlite Beads||8mm|
|4.||Natural Wood Beads||20mm|
1. Turquoise Gemstone Beads
These 8mm turquoise beads are perfect to make a Japa mala for meditation.
It comes with a stretch cord and you can use it for making bracelets. Around 100 loose beads are offered in the package.
The beads are and have excellent polishing which makes it convenient to move the beads with your fingers.
All stones are unique and of top AAA quality.
- 8mm smooth loose beads
- 100 beads per pack
- Excellent quality beads
- Stretch cord is offered for free along with the beads
- Beads come with superior polishing
- Unique beads and of AAA quality
- Can be used for beading, jewelry making and for craft projects
- Not as bright as shown in the picture
2. Polished Black Onyx Beads
These smooth black onyx round beads are perfect for making Japa mala. These are 100% onyx and measure 6mm in diameter.
200 beads are offered in this set. These are enough to make a Japa mala and 2 bracelets.
You get a crystal stretch cord along with the set for beading purposes. These beads offer great value to the users and come with excellent polishing.
- 6mm round black onyx beads
- Offers great value
- 200 pieces of smooth black onyx beads offered per set
- Free crystal elastic string
- High-quality beads with a smooth surface
- Excellent polishing
- Wide applications and can be used for jewelry making, beading, and more
- Genuine beads
- These beads are a little heavy
3. White Howlite Beads
These white Howlite beads are of superior quality and are highly polished, have a shiny surface, and are smooth.
These are the standard 8mm size and the packaging comprises of best-selling stretch cord which is excellent for beading purposes.
These beads are great if you are making a mala to relieve stress and improve your concentration power.
Chanting with this mala is also believed to boost memory and good for knowledge preservation. Howlite beads keep an individual relaxed while expressing emotions and while communicating.
It also boosts inner strength and dismisses self-centeredness. If you have a loved one who is battling anxiety, then there can be no better gift than a bracelet or mala made with these beads.
- Excellent beads for jewelry design, yoga bracelets, beading and more
- Standard 8 mm bead size and 1 mm hole size
- Highly polished and of superior quality
- Howlite beads are ideal for relieving stress and for boosting focus and memory
- Great for meditation
- Have a shiny and smooth surface
- Of superior quality
- There is a slight misrepresentation of the bead in the images
4. Natural Wood Beads
These 20mm natural wood beads are made from 100% lotus wood material.
The surface of these beads is well polished and these don’t have any odors, stains, or shapes. Miukada beads are safe and practical for DIY crafts.
As the surface of these beads is smooth, it is easy to dye, lacquer, glue, draw or embellish them. This package consists of over 200 beads on total and also a roll of twine in 10m length.
- Made from 100 percent lotus wood
- Safe and practical for DIY crafts
- Round wooden beads find various applications
- Can be used in designing decorations, wall hangings, macramé, jewelry and more
- The package consists of 200 beads and a roll of twine of 10m in length
- Easier to embellish, glue and dye the beads
- Has a smooth and polished surface
- Don’t have any stain or odor
- Beautiful wooden beads
- There can be lesser number of beads in the package and it may not exactly be 200 as mentioned
Are mala beads dyed?
All beads are real as mentioned and these come without any treatment. These have been just cut and polished so that the surface is smooth and comfortable for the user making a mala.
What is the best beading thread for malas?
Almost all beads set reviewed come with a wire or thread that is suitable for making beaded malas. You can check the diameter of the bead hole to pick a suitable thread for your project.