Q: I have bad asthma and can’t burn sage or use incense. Is there any other way to cleanse my apartment that won’t involve burning stuff and making smoke?
A: As someone who is not a huge fan of burning sage, I can say with certainty that there are several cleansing options available that will take care of the energy in your home without needing smoke of any kind! Since we are talking on the basis of asthma and allergies though, be sure to test these options first for safety’s sake before using them on your whole home.
One easy and popular option is sage spray. Typically sage sprays are made using sage essential oil added to a water or alcohol base, sometimes blended with other essential oils or fragrances. These make a quick and easy way to use sage for cleansing without any smoke at all! Sprays are also ideal for places or situations where burning sage would be impossible (or heavily discouraged) such as offices, vehicles, or on-the-go cleansings. You can find commercially made versions of these online and in most metaphysical stores, or acquire the ingredients and make them yourself. A good, simple recipe that I like is 20 drops sage essential oil and 5 drops lemon essential oil added to a 2 ounce spray bottle of purified water. This makes an uplifting and cleansing spray that you can use almost anywhere!
Another option is coffee. Yes, coffee! Coffee is used for cleansing, banishing, and exorcism in several magical practices. While it is most commonly burned or brewed into a bath (or drink!), you can also use coffee grounds to cleanse a space. One method is to sprinkle coffee grounds around the room, let it sit for a good amount of time–at least an hour, overnight is best–and then sweep or vacuum the grounds up and dispose of outside or in an outdoor trash can. If you don’t want coffee grounds all over, a more contained method is to put out a bowl of coffee grounds in each room of the home and let it sit for at least three days before disposing of outside the home. If you do use the coffee for cleasing, I suggest making sure to use ground rather than whole bean coffee. In my experience ground coffee is just a lot more effective in magic. An added bonus is that coffee is also an excellent deodorizer!
One of my favorite cleansing tools that requires no smoke at all is Florida Water. Florida Water is a type of citrus-based herbal cologne that is used for cleansing, blessing, and can even be used as an offering to some spirits. There are several recipes available out there to make your own Florida Water, but it can be a tedious and somewhat expensive task so for most spiritual practitioners I would suggest just purchasing what is available commercially. Many metaphysical shops carry it, and some supermarkets and pharmacies also have it in their beauty care sections. Yes, it is THAT popular! To use it, just sprinkly some onto a cloth or towel and wipe down the area. You can also wear it, add it to a bath, or add to mop water. You can even pour it into an empty spray bottle and turn it into a cleansing spray! Florida Water is an effective and versatile way to cleanse just about anything and anywhere. My only caution is that it is an alcohol-based cologne so use caution around eyes and open flames.
Some other cleansing tips and tricks include various ways to create movement and break up stuck energy. Sweeping the floors from back door to front and out (yes, even carpet) helps move energy and sweep out the negative. If you don’t have a broom, just walking the floors helps move the energy around. If you have bells, rattles, or chimes, then using those as you walk will also help break up any stuck energy as well as chase away any unwanted spirits. If nothing else, clapping and stomping can work in a pinch! Opening the windows on a windy day also helps refresh and clear out any negative energy that may have built up.
Setting out stones and crystals can also help absorb negative energy and keep a space feeling good. Kyanite, citrine, and black tourmaline are my top suggestions for clearing a space. Kyanite and citrine won’t hold onto negative energy and instead they transmute it, so they never need to be cleansed themselves, but black tourmalines absorbs it and therefore should be cleansed fairly regularly.
I’m sure there are many more cleansing methods out there that I’m forgetting or haven’t heard of, but these are my top go-to’s that I suggest and use myself when I can’t/don’t want to burn anything. My advice is to test them and see which one you like the best and seems most effective for you. It may end up being a combination of them, or something else entirely! But as you can see, there are indeed plenty of smoke-free cleansing options available to suit any taste.