Earlier this year, I was very fortunate to source our mala prayer beads myself whilst on holiday in Nepal. I took the most knowledgeable person I know to help me choose the best malas - my own Amala (mum). She knows what materials work and can tell a quality mala straightaway. She is familiar with precious and semi-precious gemstones and the kinds of jewellery that Tibetan women wear.
My mum also knows just about everyone in her community. In fact here's an amazing true story. Back when I was a teenager, I went for a date with this girl and my Mum knew about it. We were on a motorcycle and I had a helmet covering my entire face/head, and still she knew... She has eyes and spies everywhere and asked me how my day went in a very cheeky manner.... I digress...
When selecting our malas, Amala and I set some very simple rules. 1. We wanted a high quality product that our customers would be happy with. After all, we were going to export this item all the way to Sydney, and it wasn't worth it, if the quality wasn't up to mark. She also knew the supplier well, and he agreed to restring the malas for us to ensure durability. 2. We wanted our malas to be natural. No artificial dyes or chemical treatments and our stones would be real stones. 3. We wanted to get a fair price that would make both our customers and suppliers happy. It wasn't about us or our supplier winning, and we both wanted a long-term partnership where we could trust one another.
Here are some of my favourite malas from the sourcing trip:
1. Sandalwood mala: This is a personal favourite of mine and the only mala I own is this particular one. This mala smells beautiful and has a very natural/sober colour, which I quite like. Here's a tip from our supplier. If you find that the smell from your mala has faded over time, put it inside a zip lock bag and then out in the sun for a couple of hours. The oils in the wood will become activated and you will get the smell back!
2. Lapis Lazuli mala: I love the deep blue colour of lapis lazuli. In fact the body of the Medicine Buddha is said to be the same hue as that of lapis. Our lapis malas have the same deep blue colour, with golden overtones in them.
3. Rudraksha mala: This is a top favourite among our customers who practice yoga. Rudraksha trees can be found in Nepal, India and Indonesia (who knew!). Our rudraksha malas have 6 faces, which is believed to be endowed with warrior qualities.
4. Tourmaline mala: If you strike the beads in the mala together, you will see cold sparks (Google Triboluminescence)! This is how you can tell real tourmaline from plastic/resin. I chose these malas myself as I was drawn to the colour and weight of the beads. The vintage Guru bead in this mala adds a whole new level of flair and beauty to this mala.
5. Classic Rosewood mala: Nothing very fancy here... Just a simple and sober rosewood mala for your spiritual practice. Rosewood is also a popular choice for malas, since it is associated with the heart chakra.
To view our range of 108 Mala Prayer beads, go to:
For a limited time, we are including a free gift bag to store your mala in with every purchase.
Written by Dhondup