Crystals do so much for us that it is important to take special care of our crystalline friends. If you have a crystal that you have just acquired or one that you have been working with, it is a good idea to give it a little energy cleanse.
Why should you cleanse your crystals? It gets them back to their original, sparkly vibration level to where they can do their best work on helping you. Simply put, absolutely everything has a vibration, which even includes emotions and physical objects. Negative energy, including negative emotions and physical pain, have low vibrations. Crystals, when they are at their optimal vibrational state, resonate at a high vibration. Low and high vibrations cannot exist together, so the crystals will help to raise the low energies to high ones. That high vibrational energy means your health and over all well-being is increased.
Crystals that you work with or keep with you often should be cleansed more regularly than the ones that may simply be sitting on your desk or in a box. However, it is nice to give all of your sparkly friends a nice energetic tune-up every now and then. Use your intuition on how often your crystals need a little extra care.
Recommended Cleansing Methods
I have listed my personal preferred methods first. They are among the easiest and safest for all crystals.
DO NOT: Do not put your crystals or crystal jewelry in a chemical cleaner or ultra sonic cleaner. It will hurt the stones. If you have silver needs to be polished then use a polishing cloth on the silver only.
• SOUND (MY FAVORITE METHOD): Everything has a vibration, especially sound. Since we are helping to set a crystal’s vibrations back to its original state, it makes sense that sound can help us with that. Crystal or Tibetan singing bowls work perfectly. Have your crystals near the bowl as you play it. You can run a tuning fork over your crystals, use a bell, tingshas (Tibetan cymbals), or drums. You can find videos on YouTube for this purpose too. Put your crystals in front of the speakers and turn up the music. I prefer the in-person method, though, as I can literally FEEL the vibrations of the tuning fork or singing bowl. The important thing with sound cleansing is to have the crystals within the sound’s vibrations. There is no specific amount of time that you need to do it for. Just follow your intuition.
Sound is my absolute favorite way to cleanse crystals. You can do it any time with any crystal. I use a tuning fork on every single crystal just before I ship it off to my customers. Many have noticed the difference! This is the exact tuning fork that I use. As for singing bowls, I have several Tibetan bowls, but my favorite is this crystal singing bowl.
• MOONLIGHT – Full Moon: I have not yet met a crystal that does not enjoy the moonlight. The best time is during a Full Moon. The strong full moon energy actually lasts for 3 days, so it’s ok if you miss the actual day of a full moon. You can catch those moonlight rays on the day before, day of, and day after a full moon. Yes, your crystals will still get the energy even if it is cloudy or raining. However, if it is going to rain make sure that none of your crystals are listed in the “avoid water” listing below. Read more about cleansing your crystals with the Full Moon in my “Cleansing with the Full Moon” article.
• REIKI: You can cleanse and give your crystals an extra little energy boost with Reiki energy. Simply hold the crystals in between your hands as you and infusing them with the energy.
• SAGE AND INCENSE: Sage is another wonderful energy cleanser. You simply run your crystals through the smoke or waft the smoke over your crystals. This method also cleanses any of the areas around your house. If you do not have a stick of sage available incense work also. — Update March 2021: It has recently come to my attention that working with White Sage is a closed practice and sacred to indigenous people. They have come forward and asked that we not use this method. There are other types of Sage that can be used. I have heard conflicting information on whether this is ok or not, so I will not tell you to use it or not to use it. (I will leave my original info up but adding this amendment to it.) The choice is yours on what you wish to do. You can easily use incense or other herbs as an alternative to Sage. I personally love Frankincense and Myrrh as well as Rosemary.
• OTHER CRYSTALS: Not every crystal has the ability to do this, but I thought I would mention it since it is a method that you can use. Your crystals can be placed on top of an Amethyst druze or cluster, a Selenite slab, put in a bag with a tumbled Carnelian, or surrounded by Clear Quartz Points. Keep in mind these crystals mentioned above will need to be cleansed themselves. Also the crystal you are using as your cleansing crystal (Amethyst, Selenite, etc) should be larger than the one you are trying to cleanse.
Why does the cleansing crystal need to be bigger? Let’s use cups as an example. Cup #1 represents your crystal that needs to be cleansed. It is currently full. Cup #2 is your cleansing cup. It is empty, but only half the size of cup #1. You want to pour the “negativity” out of cup #1, but cup #2 can’t handle all of it because it is smaller. You would need a larger cup to be able to handle the clearing of the negativity. The same basic concept goes for your cleansing crystal. As you can imagine cup #2 (your cleansing crystal) will eventually need to be cleaned out itself with any of your preferred methods.
• SUNLIGHT: Many crystals love a sun bath, especially ones that are red, orange or yellow (like Carnelian and Sunstone). You can put them out in the sun for a few hours for a cleansing and recharge. However, be careful of which ones you place out in the sun. There are some crystals that will fade in sunlight or change color. Typically these are the pigmented crystals, see-through crystals that have color, like Amethyst or Fluorite. If you are not sure if a crystal will fade or not, then be safe and keep them out of the sun.
Avoid Sunlight: These crystals should avoid being placed in sunlight for prolonged periods of time. This list will include many of the most common crystals. This list is not exhaustive, but it will give you a good start. — Amegreen, Amethyst, Ametrine, Apophyllite Green, Aquamarine, Auralite23, Celestite, Citrine, Fluorite, Hiddenite, Kunzite, Opal (will dry out), Prasiolite, Rose Quartz, Smoky Quartz, Spirit Quartz, Super Seven, Topaz, Turquoise.
• WATER: A nice cool water bath works very nicely on most crystals, or place them under running water. It is quick, easy and you can do it any time. When I run my crystals under running tap water in the sink I visualize the water cleaning out any negative energy. This will get them clean physically as well as cleanse their energies. Keep in mind that there are some crystals that you need to avoid putting in water. A good general rule of thumb is to not submerge crystals with a MOH hardness level of 5 or less. Also if you are going to keep the crystal in the water for a long period of time, make sure it does not contain iron — like Hematite, Magnetite, and Lodestone — because it can cause them to oxidize.
Salt Water Bath: This is another way you can cleanse your crystals, however, it is probably my least favorite. Many crystals can be damaged by the salt. Crystals with a MOH hardness of 7 or above will generally be safe but use your intuition. If in doubt, don’t do it.
Avoid Water: The following is a list of some of the more common crystals that should completely avoid water. Water can either damage the crystal or cause the crystal to disintegrate and dissolve. This list is not exhaustive, but it will give you a good start. — Desert Rose, Halite, Himalayan Salt (Salt Lamps), Malachite, Selenite — I will be adding more to this list.
• FLOWER PETALS: You can bury crystals in a bowl of flower petals. You can use any petals you wish. Keep in mind that flowers also have healing properties of their own and can share that energy with your crystals. For example, Roses are for love or Lavender for healing and relaxation. In general it does not matter which petals you use. Follow your intuition or just use what you have in your yard.
• SALT OR BROWN RICE: This is a relatively easy method. Bury the crystals in a bowl of salt or brown rice. When you are done with the cleanse, throw out the salt or rice. Do not re-use it. Brown Rice is the better of the 2 options. Salt can damage the surface of many of the softer crystals.
• BURYING IN THE EARTH: Mother Earth and her own vibrational energies can help crystals to re-tune themselves back to their original vibrations. This would work if you used a pot with soil in it, otherwise you could run the risk of losing your crystal unless you mark where you buried it. Also, you need to make sure that the crystal is a MOH hardness of 6 or higher due to rain and moisture in the ground. Take into consideration if the crystal has little nooks and crannies that dirt could get trapped in.
• NEVER NEED CLEANSING: Some sources say that there are a few crystals that never need to be cleansed. These would include Kyanite, Citrine, and Super Seven. In my opinion, all crystals love to be cleansed whether they need it or not. Use your judgment and intuition on what you feel your crystal needs or want. Ask it! Believe me, it will let you know. 🙂
• How should I cleanse my jewelry? — For jewelry it is safest to cleanse it with Full Moon energy, Reiki, or sound. This way regardless of the stone or the metal it will not be harmed in any way.
• How often do I need to cleanse my crystals? — It is a good idea to cleanse your crystals when you first acquire them. This will remove any energy from whomever handled the crystals before you. Beyond that, the frequency in which you cleanse them will be based a lot on how often you work with the crystal as well as your intuition. If you feel your crystal needs to be cleansed, if it is not working as well as it was for you before then give it a little energetic cleansing. Remember, this is something you can do any time. There is no such thing as too much, especially when you use safe methods such as sound, lunar energy, or Reiki.
For jewelry you wear regularly, once a week should be sufficient. Again, you can do it as often as you feel necessary. If you know your crystal is working overtime or it is one you are wearing for protection, you might want to cleanse it daily.
For crystals you have not been working with that are simply sitting in their box or on a shelf, once or twice a year is fine. However, if you go to work with them for a healing then give them a quick cleanse before your session.
Finally, if you are doing a healing on someone else then cleanse your crystals both before and after. This has them energetically ready for the session and then clears them after the session of anything they might have picked up from your client.
• What is the difference between cleansing, charging, and programming a crystal? How do you program a crystal? — Cleansing is a way of re-tuning the energies of the crystal back to their original energetic frequency. Think of it like a guitar; when it has been moved around or frequently played the sound might need to be re-tuned to bring it back to its perfect sound. The same goes for re-tuning (cleansing) the energies of the crystal.
Some people see charging a crystal as cleansing it or charging it with energy. Others might see it as programming it. I personally do not charge crystals or feel it is necessary. Naisha Ahsian (co-author of “The Book of Stones“) has a very interesting article about cleansing/clearing crystals and why she no longer feels charging crystals in necessary. I personally agree with her information and highly recommend checking it out. https://crystalfaqs.com/2015/05/11/stop-charging-your-crystals-clear-them-instead
Programming is you putting your intentions out into the Universe and letting the crystal know how you would like it to work with you. Author Dolfyn calls this “inspiring a crystal” in her book “Crystal Wisdom“. I love that way of looking at it. Essentially you are infusing your desires with the crystal. You are inspiring it to help you attract and amplify those prayers that you are sending out into the Universe.
Crystals already have a good idea of how they want to work with you. They have their innate qualities. I feel that programming is not necessary as a crystal is going to help you with what you need assistance with. However, programming can put your intentions out to the Universe for your benefit as well as to kind of put a magnified glass on the specific thing you would like your crystal to help you with. Again, you need to go along with what that crystal is beneficial for in the first place. For example, you’re not going to ask a Blue Lace Agate to help boost your physical energy. You’re better suited to choose a Carnelian for that. But you could program a Blue Lace Agate to assist you in clearly communicating your emotions. Generally if I am going to program a crystal that I am regularly working with for healing I state, “I ask that this crystal to assist me with healing on all levels for my highest good.” The crystal will know what to do for me from there and I know it will always be what is right for me. With all of this said, Clear Quartz is a highly programmable crystal for just about any purpose. For the highest good… always! Hold your crystal in your hand. Follow your intuition on which hand feels right for you. In one class I was taught hold it in your receptive (non-dominant) hand. In another class I was taught hold it in your dominant hand because that is your projective hand. I personally place the crystal in my left hand and place my right hand on top of it. How long the programming lasts also will vary widely on the answer. One teacher taught that you should re-program your crystal once a month or it will eventually lose the program. Another teacher taught that it will hold that intention until you ask the crystal to clear itself of all programming. So as always, follow your intuition and what feels right for you.
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