Smudging 101: everything you need to know about smudge sticks & how to use them

The ritual of smudging with dried herbs has been known for centuries, and its properties can positively affect both you and your well-being, as well as the surrounding space. Calming movements, your favorite scents and a moment of awareness and mindfulness – this is what smudging offers. You may smudge yourself before or during a spiritual practice such as meditation, breathwork, pranayama or yoga, or when the energy just doesn’t feel right after an argument or a tough day.

It’s also worth noting that each of the herbal incense has its individual qualities. In the following article, we have described all of them to help you choose the right herb for you & your needs.

SMUDGE STICKS & PALO SANTO

Palo Santo (bursera gravolens)

Like Sage, Palo Santo is one of the most popular and most used incense. It is most often used for spiritual cleansing and balancing the energy. The smoke of this plant removes negative energy, brings peace and balances emotions. Traditionally, it is also used as a natural remedy for colds and flu, as well as stress. It relieves asthma symptoms, headaches, anxiety, depression and reduces inflammation. Known for its calming effect, it also supports the immune and nervous systems, which aids faster recovery. It has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory effects, and also supports the fight against viral and fungal infections.

You can also explore the subtle notes of our Ecuadorian-origin Palo Santo here.

White Sage

Sage relieves anxiety, symptoms of depression and hyperactivity. Smoke from burning Sage calms the mind, relaxes the body and positively affects the mood. Research done on the properties of Sage smudging suggests, that the plant stimulates the mental functions, relieves depression, and even stimulates brain memory functions. Due to its unique, intense aroma and properties, it is a great tool for deepening the practice of meditation or yoga. Burning Sage helps to balance vibrations received from the environment and neutralize negative energy.

Dragon’s Blood 

“Dragon’s Blood” is a red resin obtained from the Dracaena plant also known as the dragon tree. Adding the resin to any other herb is known to enhance its’ effects. Our Dragon’s blood is paired with Blue Sage, which has been used by Native Americans for thousands of years to cleanse negative energy. The Sage is harvested by hand in a way that does not damage the natural environment of the plant.

Copal

Energetically, this incense helps open up at the spiritual level, increasing intuition and creating positive energy conducive to self-development. It stimulates the imagination, intuition and creativity. A Copal smudge is also a great tool to use during meditation – it helps to achieve balance and peace while removing energy blockages from the body. It is connected to the crown chakra, deepening consciousness and encouraging clear thinking. It has a clean, light, woody fragrance with a distinct citrus note, and is considered soothing and calming.

Sage and Eucalyptus

Traditionally used for healing and protection, Eucalyptus is used to cleanse negative energy, especially after misunderstandings or during illness, when the level of unwanted energy is high. White Sage is used primarily for cleansing, restoring balance, and protection. Due to its unique smell and properties, it is a great tool for deepening a meditation or yoga practice. Burning Sage with Eucalyptus creates a soothing and relaxing atmosphere.

Yerba Santa

Yerba Santa, also known as the “holy herb,” ​​is a sweet-smelling plant called so by Spanish monks who were impressed by its strong healing properties. It shows anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It raises mental resources, helps develop awareness, and creates an atmosphere of healing and protection & traditionally been used as a smudge for protection and setting boundaries. It helps create conditions for release of emotional pain. While burning, Yerba Santa produces a warm, sweet yet herbal smoke, which is especially appreciated in healing ceremonies.

Pine

Pine is extremely powerful and has been used as a smudging herb in rituals because of its rejuvenating properties. It has traditionally been used to increase energy when feeling stuck in life and striving for change. The energy of Pine smoke provides support and strength to take action. Pine is also burned to avoid disease, it provides a grounding and cleansing effect, deepens breathing and clears the mind.

Sweetgrass

The purpose of this beautiful and powerful plant is to elevate the consciousness and through that help you connect with your higher self. Indigenous tribes traditionally burned it to force out evil and harm, and attract positive energy. The smell of Sweetgrass is often described as fresh hay with hints of vanilla. It induces a mellow, almost hypnotic state when burned. In traditional rituals, Sweetgrass is often used immediately after cleaning with Sage. Its scent is often described as the smell of fresh hay with vanilla notes.

TRADITIONAL NEPALESE INCENSE

Agarwood

Agarwood incense is made from 31 medicinal herbs, including agarwood, collected in the Himalayan region.  It is used for spiritual journey, clarity and grounding. Tibetan monks believe Agarwood incense brings calmness to the mind and spirit. Agarwood rope incense contains the resinous wood from the Aquilaria tree, a tropical evergreen tree. It creates a warm, woody, sweet scent which transports you into the spiritual realm.

Astasugandha

Astasugandha is a blend of 8 different natural herbs, used to balance and calm the mind. It contains pure Himalayan herbs: a mixture of juniper, agarwood, chamomile, kuth, sal tree, vetiver, yarrow and camphor. The incense is prepared from selected medicinal herbs & aromatic spices, and is completely natural and safe. Handmade in accordance with ancient traditional formulas. It is mainly used to balance and calm the mind.

Spikenard

The incense is prepared with all natural ingredients: herbs, spices and aromatic tree barks, which are all blended together. Spikenard rope incense contains spikenard, clove, cardamom. It creates a heavy, spicy, earthy, sweet-woody scent. Spikenard is famous for its cognitive and neurological benefits in ayurvedic medicine. It is recommended for a mind that is out of balance.

Sandalwood

Sandalwood rope incense is made of herbs which are naturally found in the Himalayas, and contains mostly white and red sandalwood, with the addition of saldhup, spikenard, cinnamon and clove. This mixture creates a warm, spicy, woody scent.

Cedarwood

Made from the best quality Cedar extracted from the wood of cedar trees, which are found in the Himalayan Regions of Nepal. It gives a slightly sweet, fresh and woody aroma. One of the oldest aromatherapy herbs, cedarwood has been highly valued since ancient times, and used in incense and perfume. Its rich, slightly masculine scent relaxes and harmonizes, while building inner confidence and self-acceptance. Cedarwood is used whenever calmness is required. It is said to support in relieving nervous tension, anxiety, and be particularly beneficial in times of stress.

Frankincense 

Frankincense is the most popular incense of all, and has the greatest association with spiritual practices. Frankincense is the resin of the sacred Boswellia tree and has been used since ancient times in Egypt, Africa, and Mesopotamia. With a characteristic purifying and relaxing quality, its character is thought to strengthen willpower, self-confidence and determination. The scent of Frankincense is fresh, yet sweet and woody, reminiscent of pine forests. It is a calming fragrance, often used for relaxation and meditation.

SETS

To help you choose the right products for you, we have also created sets – a collection of ceramics & herbal incense put together to work in harmony.

Beginner set

The basic set to remove bad energy from your environment, deepen your meditation or yoga practice. Begin your journey with smudging and create mindful rituals.
The set includes: White Sage, Palo Santo & Night Sky ceramic burner.

Urban Shaman set

A true urban shaman’s set – allow yourself moments of grounding and mindfulness. Use to remove bad energy from the environment, during meditation or yoga practice. Continue your journey with smudging and creating mindful rituals.
The set includes: White Sage, Palo Santo, Pine, Sweetgrass, Ceramic burner in White Sand.

The Minimalist set

A balancing set supporting the practice of mindfulness and the creation of rituals. Natural, aromatic rope incense and a burner designed specifically for this type of incense give the space a unique, minimalist feel.
The set includes: Concrete burner, Sandalwood incense.

You can find more of our products here.