Cleansing Your Crystals

Many people believe that you should cleanse a new magical crystal or stone as soon as you get it, and certainly before you try to use it in any workings. There are a number of reasons for this – first, you may want to clear out any residual energies that the crystal has picked up along its way before it got to you. Just like with any other magical tool, you can’t go wrong with a fresh clean slate. Also, if you feel a little off-kilter after handling a particular stone, go ahead and do a cleansing. It could be you, it could be the crystal, or it could be a combination of the two.

It’s important to note that there are different types of cleansing methods, and those will vary depending on the type of crystal you’re working with. Let’s look at some of the most popular methods, as well as which one you may wish to avoid.

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Use a simple consecration ritual to cleanse your crystals. Image by Michael Peter Huntley/Moment/Getty Images

If you’ve got the time, there’s nothing wrong with doing a full-fledged consecration ritual for your new crystals. This particular ritual is a simple one that can be used to consecrate any magical tools, clothing or jewelry, or even the altar itself. By offering your crystals to the powers of the four elements, they are consecrated and blessed from all directions. More »

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2. Magical Moonlight

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Let your crystals absorb the power of a full moon. Image by shaunl/E+/Getty Images

Cleansing a crystal by moonlight is a pretty popular method. Although the specifics of how it’s done will vary from one practitioner to the next, there are a couple of ways you can take advantage of the moon’s energy to cleanse your crystals and stones.

Place your crystals in a bowl outside under the light of a full moon – in some traditions, they’re left out for three nights, to include the night before and the night following the moon’s fullest phase.

In other belief systems, the crystals are left in the moonlight during the waning moon phase, in order to get rid of negative energy.

In general, while moonlight is great for cleansing, sunlight really isn’t. This is because sunlight can cause crystals to fade over time, and some people believe that this can reduce the power of the stone.

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Use sage or sweetgrass to smudge your crystals. Image by zenaphoto/E+/Getty Images

Smudging is a popular method of cleansing crystals that is used in a variety of magical traditions. Just like when you create sacred space, the purpose of smudging is to eliminate negative energies.

With smudging, you can use sage, sweetgrass, or other herbs. You can also use incense, if you like. When you light sage or sweetgrass, allow it to flame for a moment and then blow out the flame. This will leave you with a burning herb bundle, which will create smoke. Pass your crystals through the smoke for cleansing. Here's how to Make Your Own Smudge Sticks. More »

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4. Sea Salt, Dirt, or Herbal Burial

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Use sea salt to cleanse some of your crystals. Image by Chris Hackett/Getty Images

Some people like to bury their crystals – and if you want to give it a shot, go for it! Place the crystals in a bowl or jar, and completely cover them with dirt from your own property, or dried herbs associated with cleansing, such as sage or sweetgrass. Another option is to bury your herbs directly in the ground – if you have a garden, it’s a great place to stash your stones for a few nights.

If you’d like to use sea salt, you definitely can, but keep in mind that some crystals don’t react well to salt exposure. Do your homework before you bury a crystal in sea salt, especially if it’s a porous stone.

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If you live near running water, use it to cleanse your stones. Image by Peter Cade/Iconica/Getty Images

Use consecrated water to soak your crystals in. Again, if you’re going to use salt water, be sure to check before immersing your crystals.

Live near a beach, river, or creek? Hold your crystals in the running water to cleanse them of negative energies. If you’d like to leave them for a longer period of time, place them in a mesh bag, and tie it so that it’s anchored firmly – that way your stones will still be there when you return for them! More »

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What Not To Do

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Take care of your crystals, and you'll get many years of use from them!. Image by Patti Wigington 2014

Finally, let’s talk about what NOT to do. In general, it’s considered a bad idea to use hot water for cleansing your crystals. This isn’t so much for metaphysical reasons, but for practical ones – some crystals and stones can fracture or crack when immersed in hot water. Your best bet is to avoid it.