Crystals are just as celebrated for their purported healing powers as they are their natural beauty. But if you use crystals in hopes of aligning with their spiritual properties (and not just their mystical aesthetic), then it’s important that you regularly cleanse them to ensure their frequencies remain clear, fresh, and effective. Knowing how to cleanse crystals is a necessary part of working with crystal healing, and finding a method that works for you will help you maximize on their restorative magic.
Just as our clothes need to be washed after wearing and our shelves need to be dusted every so often, crystals require some spiritual maintenance in order to be effective healing tools. “Crystals store and emit information by way of frequency and vibration, so they need to be released of excess energetic information to maintain their vibrancy and potency,” crystal healer Mariah K. Lyons, author of Crystal Healing For Women, tells Bustle. “Cleansing doesn’t remove the crystal’s base energetic tone, but simply wipes it clean of energy that is no longer needed so you can recode the crystal with a new intention for your life.”
Every crystal is believed to have its own unique healing qualities — but in order for us to be able to align with them, their energy fields have to be primed and ready to give and receive, without being bogged down by unwanted spiritual clutter. “It is imperative to cleanse your personal healing crystals, as cleansing helps to maintain and restore their natural, optimal, and highest healing potential,” Claudia Chirico, bio-energy practitioner at Before Noon, tells Bustle. An un-cleansed crystal could be storing all sorts of heavy or negative energies that its picked up along its journey. But once cleansed, we can program crystals with our intentions and fully enjoy their soothing vibes.
There are lots of ways to cleanse crystals, and you can experiment with different methods depending on what type of crystals you’re working with — as well as what feels right to you. So whether you’re trying to rid your rose quartz of a weird vibe or finally figure out how to cleanse selenite (hint: don’t put it in water!), here are eight simple ways to cleanse your crystals that’ll allow you to make the most of their mystical potential.
1. Cleansing With Moonlight & Sunlight
One of the easiest and safest ways to purify your crystals is to simply put them them out under the sun or moonlight — and it’s an ideal method for any astrology lovers out there, too. This serves as a cosmic cleanse that will release any unwanted vibes from your stones and make their energy feel more vibrant. “Placing your crystals in sunlight energizes the stones, while placing your crystals under a full moon will draw out and clear away any impurities,” Chirico says. Basking in the direct sunlight all day is just as powerfully cleansing for your crystals as is soaking up the moonlight all night, so do whatever feels right or works best for your schedule.
This method is especially useful if you’re trying to figure out how to cleanse black tourmaline or how to cleanse moldavite (two powerful crystals that can absorb a lot of energy) — as the power of the sun and moon can transmute even the heaviest and darkest of vibes.
2. Cleansing With Salt
Salt is naturally detoxifying, and that's why people like to add it to their bath water or use it to create circles of protection during spiritual rituals. Similarly, it can be used to cleanse your crystals. Fill a shallow bowl with sea salt and put your crystals in it, partially burying them in the salt. Then simply leave them there for a few hours or overnight to give the salt time to work its cleansing magic. However, keep in mind that contact with salt can be potentially damaging to certain stones — such as turquoise, opal, and moldavite. Do some research to ensure your crystals can handle direct salt exposure before using this method.
3. Cleansing With Sound
There’s a reason that hearing the sound of a crystal singing bowl or the ringing of a gong can feel so grounding, healing, and relaxing — and that same method can be used to soothe the sensitive frequencies of your crystals. “Sound currents can help to break up energetic patterning and release stagnant energy,” Lyons says. “Using tuning forks, chimes, quartz bowls, or drums can change up the frequency of and release old energy from your stones.” Experiment with different sounds and use your intuition to figure out what works best to lighten up your crystals’ heavier vibes.
4. Cleansing With Water
Giving your crystals an old-fashioned washing with water not only scrubs away any literal dust that's accumulated on them, but also serves as a much-needed energy cleanse. Use a bowl filled with water to create a miniature bath for your crystals and let them soak. It’s ideal to use a natural water source like rain, river, or ocean water — but regular water works in a pinch, too. “Immerse your stones in water for 20 minutes to two hours, and add a pinch of sea salt to the water for additional cleansing and restructuring, if you’d like,” Lyons says. “Stones can also be cleansed in a body of water, such as a river, stream, or the ocean.”
If you’re wondering how to cleanse clear quartz, rose quartz, or amethyst, this is one of the most simple and straightforward methods (as most quartz can handle exposure to water). However, you’ll want to research each crystal in your collection before cleansing in water to ensure they won’t be damaged if gotten wet. “A good rule of thumb is to remember that anything that ends in -ite (selenite, angelite, azurite, etc.) should not be placed in water,” Lyons says. Looking into whether your crystals can be safely soaked in water will prevent you from ruining them.
5. Cleansing With Smoke
Whether you use the fragrant-smelling smoke of an incense stick or a burning bundle of dried herbs, smoke cleansing is an easy way to rid your crystals of any stuffy vibes. “You can cleanse your crystals daily by using smoke to clear away any negative energy the stones might have absorbed,” Chirico says. The smoke will cleanse your personal energy field through the process, too, so knowing how to cleanse crystals with incense is a must.
This method is especially effective if you work with the smoke of plants and herbs that have specifically purifying properties. “Burning dried rosemary, juniper, cedar, or resins such as pine, frankincense or myrrh — and then allowing the herb smoke to billow around the stones — is a great way to energetically cleanse crystals,” Lyons says. Just make sure you’re buying ethically-sourced and culturally-appropriate cleansing tools.
6. Cleansing With The Earth
Crystals are natural wonders that come from the earth, so it makes sense that re-aligning them with the earth’s healing energy would be cleansing. Burying your crystals in the soil allows them to sync up with nature’s naturally-grounding vibe, which will help to clear away any impurities or negative vibes. Plus, digging up these freshly-cleansed stones will feel like finding hidden treasure. Just make sure you bury them in a safe place.
7. Cleansing Using Other Crystals
It may sound a little redundant, but some crystals are so powerful in their purifying properties that they actually have the ability to clear away stagnant energy from other crystals. “Certain stones emit a particular extremely high frequency that acts as a cleanser for other stones,” Lyons says. “Simply placing your crystals on top of these cleansing/charging stones for a few hours will leave them cleansed and energetically vibrant.” Selenite, carnelian, kyanite, and the TikTok famous moldavite are a few highly-cleansing crystals that can be used for this method.
8. Cleansing With Visualizations
Cleansing your crystals with tools is great, but it’s always nice to you know that you can rid stones of stagnant energies by simply using the power of your mind. If you want to try purifying your crystals using visualization, start by finding a quiet space where you can concentrate and getting into a meditative state. Hold your crystal in your hands, and then visualize a bright stream of pure white light beaming straight out of your third eye chakra (located on your forehead, between your eyes), surrounding the crystal with its glow like a protective shield. Imagine the light has the power to transmute anything negative into pure goodness. Do this until you feel that your crystal is sufficiently cleansed (you’ll have to trust your intuition around this), then move onto the next piece.
It's important to do some research on each stone in your collection to find out which cleansing methods work best (and which to avoid), but here are a few guidelines on how to cleanse popular crystals.
How to Cleanse Clear Quartz
Clear quartz is one of the most accessible crystals for beginners, as it naturally amplifies energy and is easy to connect with. It's also really easy to cleanse! Any of the above methods of cleansing work well with most quartz crystals, so go with whatever feels right to you.
How to Cleanse Selenite
Selenite is a powerfully purifying crystal all on its own, so it doesn't need to be cleansed often. But if you do need to cleanse a piece, try using the smoke method, sound healings, or doing a cleansing visualization — as its porous composition means it needs to be kept away from water, salt, and outdoor moisture.
How to Cleanse Amethyst
Amethyst is a great crystal for promoting relaxation, creativity, and spirituality. This gorgeous purple stone is part of the quartz family — so like clear quartz, most of the aforementioned cleansing methods will be totally safe to use. Experiment with different ones and figure out which feels most effective.
How to Cleanse Black Tourmaline
Black-colored crystals are thought to be highly protective against negativity, and black tourmaline is one of the most powerful. Because it absorbs so much energy, it's important to cleanse this stone regularly. Submerging it in water could damage the stone, so try cleansing it using smoke, sound, visualization, or by simply setting it out under the purifying rays of sunshine.
How to Cleanse Rose Quartz
The heart-healing and love-promoting vibrations of a rose quartz are easiest to connect with when the stone has been cleansed and cleared of any stagnant energies. Like clear quartz and amethyst, rose quartz can be safely cleansed using virtually any of the above methods — including by submerging in water or salt. Go with whatever you feel will work best.
How to Cleanse Moldavite
Moldavite is a powerful mineral that was formed as a result of a meteorite, which is probably why its energy feels so other-worldly. Moldavite is a natural energy purifier, so there’s usually no need to cleanse it often — but if you feel it’s time, try aligning with its cosmic roots and charging it up under the light of a full moon or letting it sit in the sun for a few hours. Just be sure to avoid submerging it in water or salt.
How To Cleanse Crystals With Incense
Smoke cleansing is one of the most well-known methods when it comes to purifying crystal energy, but you don't have to have any fancy tools or an extensive dried herb collection to do it. You can easily and effectively cleanse crystals with incense by allowing the smoke to swirl around the crystal and focusing on the intention of clearing away any unwanted energies.