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Crystal Care: How to Clear, Cleanse, & Charge

Many people, including myself, use crystals to soothe the soul, mind, and body. It is believed that crystals can act on an energetic level by sending their natural vibrations out into the world. However, these little rocks need to be taken care of properly before they can be used. Crystals often travel long distances and locations to get to their user. Each transition exposes the stone to strange energies and vibrations that may misalign with your own. When used for healing, crystals are said to absorb and redirect the negativity you are working to release. Because of this, it’s so important to always take care of your crystals by clearing, cleaning, and charging.

Before we begin, it is necessary to know the difference between cleansing and charging. Cleansing is done to remove any energy that the stone has absorbed and become cluttered with in order to return it to the clean, pure energy it first had. Charging a crystal is done to replenish its energy after it has been decreased over time. 

The more time you spend respecting, cleansing, and protecting your crystals, the more useful they can be for you as they will gradually become more in tune with your energy and intentions. The more often you use a stone, the more energy it collects. A good rule of thumb is to clear all of your stones at least once a month. If an individual crystal is feeling heavier than usual, go ahead and cleanse it. You don’t have to wait a designated amount of time between clearings. Even so, the key thing to remember is that you are doing this ritual for yourself, so take your time and focus.

Ways to Cleanse Your Crystals

Visualization/meditation: In a quiet room, hold the crystal of your choice in your hand or simply touching you. Close your eyes, allowing the silence and serenity to overcome the space. Visualize your crystal in front of you, all while taking deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth. Picture a bright white light coming from above and pouring over the crystal, washing away any negative energy trapped inside the crystal. Do this until you intuitively know that your crystal is cleared. 

Smudging: Smudge sticks can be made of many different herbs. Smudging your stone is said to clear inharmonious vibrations and restore its natural energy. Sage, for instance, is a sacred plant with a multitude of healing properties. I recommend using white sage smudge sticks or palo santo. Allow the smoke to envelop the stone for about 30 seconds. If it’s been a while since your last cleansing, or you feel the stone is holding onto a lot, consider smudging for an additional 30 seconds. Light it and wave it gently in the air, encouraging the smoke to spill over the crystals and safely putting the flame out when you are done. If you’re unable to smudge outdoors, make sure you’re near an open window. This will allow the smoke and negative energy to disperse.

Saltwater: You can use saltwater from the ocean or simply put salt in a bowl of water. Hold your crystals so that they are immersed in saltwater and have them soak from anywhere between a few hours to a couple of days. The saltwater cleanses the energy from the stones and purifies them. Be sure to clean your crystals using clean water afterwards. Some crystals cannot be placed in water because they are too soft or brittle and the water itself can cause these stones to fracture, break, or even dissolve. Hard stones, such as quartz and amethyst, are safe to cleanse with this method. Don’t use this for stones that are soft, porous, or contain trace metals, such as malachite, selenite, halite, calcite, lepidolite, and angelite. 

Running water. You can do this by holding your crystal under running tap water, holding them in a stream, or pouring bottled water over them. It is important to keep your intention focused in your mind. Water is said to neutralize any negative energy stored inside the crystal and return it back to the earth. Whatever your water source, ensure that your stone is completely submerged. Pat dry when complete. Like saltwater, this method is best for hard crystals rather than soft or porous ones. 

Moonlight: Personally, this is my favorite and easiest method of cleansing while the best part is that it is safe for all crystals. All you have to do is wait for a full moon and place your crystals outside overnight so that they can be cleansed by the moon’s energy. If you are unable to place them outdoors, a windowsill facing the moon can work too!

Larger Stones: Large quartz clusters, amethyst geodes, and selenite slabs can be great tools for clearing smaller stones. Place your crystals directly inside or on top of any of these stones and leave them for about a day or two. It’s thought that the larger stone’s vibrations remove the inharmonious energies found in the resting stone.


Charging Your Crystals

Like cleansing, charging your crystals can be done through a variety of methods. They can also be placed in water, meditated with, or smudged. 

In my experience, sunlight has been the best and most efficient way to charge my crystals. In contrast to the gentle, soft, and feminine energy of moonlight, sunlight is the masculine counterpart of celestial light energy. Sunlight energy is strong and vibrant. Its energy feeds, strengthens, and moves forward. This makes sunlight’s masculine energy ideal for charging stones. As long as your crystal is not sensitive to light and has been cleansed in advance with another method, you can put it in the sun to charge. Keep in mind that some stones, such as Amethyst, will fade over time from exposure to sunlight. 

Sometimes a stone becomes so energetically heavy that it needs to be returned to Mother Earth for healing and rejuvenation. You can bury a stone directly in the earth, or you can elect to bury it in a box for later retrieval. How long it needs to be buried depends on how heavy the crystal’s energy has become. It may need to be buried for a week, a month, a year, or more, depending on how much it needs to be cleansed. 

For example, you may find a crystal in an antique shop or be given a stone that feels energetically heavy or like it has been used or preprogrammed in some way. If all other methods of energetic cleansing do not erase the programming or heaviness of the crystal, you may need to bury the stone and give it back to Mother Earth to be cleansed.

Programming Your Crystals

Although crystals are said to have innate healing properties, taking the time to set an intention for your stone can help you connect with its energy and restore your own sense of purpose. 

You may feel comfortable holding the stone in your hand as you meditate, or placing it on your third eye. You can also lay back and allow the stone to rest on the corresponding chakra or area of the body that you wish to work with. 

Envision the stone’s energy merging with your own. Speak to the stone, silently or verbally, and ask for assistance in working through your current endeavor. 

Thank the stone for its presence then spend a few minutes in meditation.

When we care for our crystals, we’re caring for ourselves. We’re allowing energy that’s inharmonious with our lives and intentions to leave in a peaceful and healing manner. By attracting you to it, the crystal has gotten your attention and subsequently your assistance. If you have resonated with it, you will have an easier time connecting with the crystal and being sensitive to its needs. 

Taking these small measures allows us to be more mindful in our interactions with the stones, with ourselves, and with others.

You can often find Endry working on her courses, hanging out with friends, and drinking Coka Cola (usually simultaneously). A blue enthusiast and organizer at heart, Endry is always decorating and cultivating new aesthetics. Lover of drawing and painting, poetry, self-care, and all things style.
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