We’ve been talking a lot about crystals, so it’s time we explore ways to properly care for them and use them to our magical advantage. Taking anywhere from a minute to a million year to form, crystals have such strong earthly energy and are often the “gateway drugs” to a magical life. Most witches you meet will tell you they were initially drawn to metaphysics and magic via the power of crystals. Most witches will also tell you they freeze their crystals, wash their crystals, bury their crystals… but they only really stick to one way. That is a huge rookie mistake.
Just like crystals have varying energies, so do cleansing methods. Most people begin adding their intention to a crystal when the charge it, but intention should begin focus during the cleansing process. After all, that is the first step of the magic! So now, let us discuss 20 methods for appropriately cleaning stones.
#1 – NATURAL RUNNING WATER
Although one of the best all-purpose methods for cleansing crystals, unless you live next to a creek or have a waterfall in your backyard… this method definitely isn’t feasible for most people which brings us to method #2…
#2 – TAP WATER
When you seek water as a method for cleansing, a faucet is the go-to crystal shower for most witches. Whenever I cleanse a crystal under tap water, I always envision myself holding the crystal under a docile waterfall to try and pull in the essence of natural running water. Although this is the most popular way to cleanse a crystal, it is not always the best. Use this method when you will be using the crystal to deflect or wash away things like negative energy, emotions, or people. Think of how water relates to your magical agenda. Does the movement of water or emotions seem to further solidify your magical intentions? If so, by all means, use this method!
#3 – MINI DESKTOP FOUNTAIN
Yes, we’ve all seen these cheesy little zen fountains for decades now at better living stores like Brookstone. Meant to give a soothing feel to a cubicle or other high-stress area, these little electric fountains are perfect all-purpose cleansers for witches with crystals in heavy rotation. Just fill the fountain with natural spring water and you will have your own crystal cleaning conveyor belt! They look great on an altar and bring the magic of a bubbling brook into your own home. You can leave your stones in there for as long or as little as you like. You may even want to store your stones in the fountain permanently if you clean your crystals often. Just remember, do not put salt-based crystals (like selenite) in water for extended periods of time or they will literally melt!
#4 – SALT WATER BATHS
I hesitate to mention this method, because I DO NOT RECOMMEND IT, but salt water baths can be great for crystals magically intended to promote cleansing and purity. The general rule is 1 teaspoon of sea salt for every 2 cups of water. The problem is, salt can damage many common crystals like calcites, carnelians, turquoise, and hematite to name a few, so I just generally don’t promote this method.
#5 – HERB BATHS
Alternatively, you can give calcites, carnelians, turquoise, and hematites herb baths. Just find an herb or flower that has the same properties of the intentions you seek from the stone and place it in water with the crystals for an hour.
#6 – FRESH HERBS
Personally, I find fresh herbs to be the most efficient and under-utilized way to clean a crystal. The reason is, if you find an herb that corresponds with your magical intention, that is the most powerful way to clean the crystal. Say you buy a piece of rose quartz to help you find true love – gently scrub your crystal with red rose petals or leave it on top of a bed of rose petals when not in use. Literally, any magical intention for a crystal can be further focused if used in conjunction with the appropriate herbs.
#7 – SALT CIRCLE
If you want to cleanse your stone using salt for its instinctually pure and clean energies, I would suggest placing your stone(s) within a ring of salt. Leave it there for a day or so or until, you feel it is fully cleansed and ready for charging.
#8 – SALT BED
A third salt method would be to lie your stones on top of a bed of sea salt. Just fill a small dish with the salt and leave the stones lying on top for at least 24 hours.
#9 – FIRE
Another method I don’t recommend, for obvious reasons, is cleansing by fire. Typically, you would pass the stone through the flame of a candle, but you will often end up with burnt fingertips, so if you must do this – please use tongs! Fire cleansing is most often utilized when your magical goal involves passion, strength, or a building of power.
#10 – FREEZING
Ironically enough, I find the freezing method very similar to fire. It also is a great cleaning method when strength is the primary focus for the crystal’s purpose. Also use this method when your intentions call for transparency, barriers, or setting aside emotions. Generally, leaving a crystal in your freezer overnight is all it takes.
#11 – SMUDGING
Unlike the way it sounds, smudging is just cleansing with smoke. Lighting appropriate incense or herbs for your magical goal and passing your crystal through the smoke several times is all there is to it. Use this method when the element of air is needed for your magical goal. Smudging is a great way to clean stones used for concentration, meditation, ideas, creativity, and any other intent in which air is the driving element.
#12 – BURIED TREASURE
The element of earth can be utilized in cleansing when you bury a crystal in soil or sand. You can leave your crystals buried for 24 hours, but generally I would bury them on a full Moon and retrieve them 2 weeks later on the next new Moon if time permits. If you don’t have a yard to bury them in, you can bury them in a small plant pot. Use this method when your crystal is intended for grounding or promoting growth and expansion.
#13 – ELEMENTAL
An elemental cleansing is the most involved cleansing process. You actually combine 4 of the previous processes. First, one would dip the stone in a bowl of water, then pass the stone through the flame of a candle, then through a stream of incense smoke, and finally lay the crystal onto a small bed of soil. It’s a few extra steps and a candle flame involved, but it has a classic, ritual feeling to it that most witches love.
#14 – SOUND
Although I have never used this process, it is actually quite common in some magic cultures. By using a musical instrument, one would use the sound to clear the energy from a crystal. The most common way is to use small gong or singing bowl, but virtually any instrument can be used by playing a specific rhythm or pitch.
#15 – SUN
The Sun is amazing! And so dependable too! If structure, stability, happiness, or illumination is the goal of the crystal’s use, nothing is better than tanning your crystals in the sun! Just place them on the ground in direct sunlight for at least an hour and your crystal will be filled with those optimistic, clean energies and ready to charge!
#16 – FULL MOON
Many witches clean their witches like clockwork, every full Moon they put all their stones and crystals on a tray and leave them out in the moonlight overnight. It can be a hard-fast ritual for many, but I really don’t recommend it always. Like every country – every crystal is different. Every goal is different. So to lump all your crystals together and clear all their energies at once, seems kind of like erasing your entire hard drive without backing anything up. You’re definitely going to want to come back to certain information, and deleting all data in one fell swoop often leads to backtracking and more work for yourself at some point. That being said, just use a full Moon to cleanse crystals that need it. I recommend using this method when you will be using your crystal for spiritual work, divination, scrying, emotional imbalances, cycles, insomnia, and metaphysical powers. If it is appropriate and won’t damage your particular crystal, you can also place your crystal in a bowl of water before placing it under the moonlight if desired, but it is not necessary.
#17 – SELENITE & CARNELIAN
Some crystals are natural cleaners and that is what they are good at! Such common crystals are selenite and carnelian. These stones literally clean the energy of any stone they are around, so if you like keeping all your crystals fresh, throw a carnelian or chunk of selenite into the mix. Although I consider this an all-purpose cleansing method, you might want to combine this with another method. When I don’t have a particular use for a crystal at the moment, I store them with selenite or carnelians and then use another cleaning method right before I’m ready to charge and use the crystal.
#18 – CRYSTAL CLUSTERS
Like using selenite and carnelian, crystal clusters are another great all-purpose cleansing method. Just place the stone you wish to cleanse on top of a large crystal cluster (preferably quartz or celestite) and leave it there for at least 24 hours. Again, this is a great way to clean a stone for any magical purpose – especially growth or spiritual purposes.
#19 – VISUALIZATION CLEANSING
The most advanced technique, begin by holding the stone in both hands. Imagine a cleansing white beam of light shooting out from the crystal and toward the sky. See that beam of light thickening until it engulfs the the entire crystal in your hands and then disappears. In your minds eye, you are left with a cleansed crystal ready to be programmed. Once the visualization has worked, the crystal should feel fresh, yet lifeless in your hands. This might not work on your first try… or ever! Being that there is no physical ritual in play, a lot of witches can feel disconnected from this process.
#20 – CRYSTAL CLEANSING SOLUTIONS
The newest way to clean crystals, and a way I have never tried is by using cleansing solutions specifically designed for crystals. Famed metaphysical mineralogist Judy Hall swears by these concoctions. The solutions come in a small squeeze bottle or spray bottle and contain herbs and oils chosen specifically to purify a stone’s energy. You just squeeze or spray a small amount of the solution on the crystal in question and it’s ready to go.
Have any of you had any experience with those squeeze or spray bottle crystal cleansing solutions? If so, what are your thoughts? I would love to hear what you have to say in the comments section of this post!