Smoke Cleansing Negative Energy

Sometimes the energy around us can get stagnant and we may not realize it until it affects our well-being. If this happens to you, you will need to perform a cleansing ritual to get everything flowing again. The process of clearing negative energy may appear to be as easy as lighting a stick of incense or two but there is a lot more to it. Smoke cleansing is an ancient practice that originates across many indigenous cultures and regions, using plants and herbs native to their respective lands. Nowadays you can find most types of cleansing herbs and incense sold commercially (it is highly advisable to be sure that the product you are purchasing is harvested and sourced under sustainable, fair, and environmentally sound practices). This blog post will help ensure that you have the materials, setting, and process for smoke cleansing for yourself and your space.


  • Incense: You can use any kind of incense cone, stick, or resin, I personally like to use copal or nag champa. Sage or Palo Santo are also examples of widely used herbs for cleansing.
  • Music: If you’re not sure what type of music would work best for your energy-cleansing session, try listening to music with lyrics that are meaningful to you, bring you joy, or have healing properties. These songs make great background noise and can also be used while performing other activities like meditation or yoga. If this isn’t possible due to time constraints or other factors (such as having young children), there are plenty of relaxing instrumental and/or white noise tracks out there too! The key here is finding something that resonates with you personally, allows your energy to feel relaxed and/or uplifted, and supports the type of results you are wanting to achieve.
  • Incense Holder: to feel at ease and practice safety during your cleansing ritual, you will need something inflammable to hold the incense while it is lit.
    • Use a plate or bowl. Place the incense on the plate or a holder and light it. Then allow the smoke to circulate around your home. Use a bowl if you are using sage.
    • Use an ashtray or censer (a metal dish with holes in it). Light the incense and place it in the censer so that its smoke rises out of it when lit–this will help disperse through your home easily without making too much mess!
    • If you have one available, use a cauldron instead of any other kind of vessel since they’re designed specifically for burning things like this! If you are using stick incense, 3 or 4 inches of sand in the bottom will help keep it upright while burning.


It is optimal to be in a place that is free of distractions. This is also a form of self-care, so turn off your phone and put it away. If possible, try to find a quiet area where there are no other people around and no noise coming in from outside. This can be difficult if you live in an apartment building or dorm room, but there are ways around these obstacles:

Solitude: If you are primarily cleansing yourself, you may want to just lock yourself in your room or go into another part of the house where no one else is present (or at least tell others not to disturb you).

Scheduling: Plan your cleansing ritual when you know you’ll have the house all to yourself and/or with the least possible disruptions.

Headspace: Make sure that your mind is calm and centered around clearing your space. Spend about 10-20 minutes in quiet meditation beforehand.


Smoke cleansing is a great way to cleanse the air around you, but it’s also important to be knowledgeable about the materials and careful when using them.

  • Buy incense from a reputable place. As mentioned above, make sure it is sustainably sourced. If you’re not sure where your local store gets its incense from, ask them before buying any products. You don’t want to be inhaling harmful chemicals into your home and body!
  • Light the stick by either holding it in one hand and lighting it with another or placing it on top of something inflammable (like a cup of sand) and lighting it there instead of directly touching any flames yourself–this will prevent accidental burns while still allowing for easy ignition.
  • Never leave an open flame or embers unattended. Blow out all remaining flames after burning each stick so they don’t continue burning while exposed in an open space, also snuff out embers if you plan to leave the space before the incense stick has finished burning –this could potentially result in an unwanted fire hazard.
Palo Santo Burn Sticks 2 oz 3-4"
Nag Champa Stick Incense

Cleansing Process

Self-Cleansing: Light some incense or sage and place it in the proper holder (see above).  Find a comfortable place to sit or stand that has a good amount of space around it so that you can move freely around the lit incense or sage. While holding the incense holder, use the feather or fan to waft the smoke all over your body. Start with your feet all the way to the top of your head. Feel yourself getting lighter and lighter as the smoke washes away the unwanted energy. Imagine yourself releasing the energy out into the universe with gratitude, allowing it to transform into something new and beneficial.

Cleansing a space in a fixed position: Light a stick, cone or resin with charcoal. Place it safely in an appropriate holder and place it safely on an inflammable surface in the center of the room on a table, chair or floor. Open a window or door for the smoke to release outside. Allow the incense to burn completely.

Dynamic Cleansing: You can also walk around the perimeter of a room holding stick or holder in one hand, allowing the smoke to waft. walk clockwise starting in the perimeter and spiral in until you reach the center. Keep a window open to release the smoke.

Closing the ritual: Feel the energy of the room elevate as the smoke fills the space and then flows outdoors.  Release it with gratitude and transformation to benefit the greater good. Freshen the room with water. Use a filled spray bottle and add about 5-7 drops of your favorite essential oil. Spray the air using the same spiral walking pattern.


Sensing and feeling negative energies in the environment is a distinct and notable psychic ability, one that you can take with you wherever you go. Clearing negative energy can be as simple as lighting an incense stick or simply going for a walk in nature. The goal of cleansing is not to make your home a sterile place that feels like an athenic retreat. Instead, it will help you foster and cultivate a healthy relationship with yourself and your surroundings.