How to Burn Incense Sticks

 Incense sticks are an easy, effective, and fun type of incense burning. However, it is important to always enjoy stick incense safely. That is why our team of experts has compiled this step-by-step guide on how to burn incense sticks. Read on for the ultimate guide to safe relaxation!

burning incense stick
"I take a bath all the time. I'll put on some music and burn some incense and just sit in the tub and think, Wow, life is great right now."
~ Brian Austin Green

What are Incense Sticks?

Incense sticks, also known as joss sticks, are the most popular variety of incense today - the most common type of incense sticks are characterised by aromatic powders set around a wooden core, usually made from bamboo. The aromatic powders are typically made from essential oils derived from various plants, resins, and herbs, though in some cases they have added chemicals which can be harmful to the body. The overuse of Incense sticks could become toxic, however, when used with limits (once a week), they maintain their wonderful sacred, spiritual, and healing benefits.
Another popular incense stick is the coreless type, which is made from a combination of herb, spice, or resin powders, alongside combustible wood powders. This type doesn't have the bamboo core, which gives it a purer scent.
Natural Incense sticks were first invented around 200 BC, native to areas of ancient India, where they gained their popularity as a spiritual-connecting tool. Religious relics within Hinduism and Buddhism burnt, and still burn, incense sticks as a way to: cleanse a space from negativity, send messages to higher entities, and heal a person from illness. Incense sticks later became popular within Christianity and with other spiritually inclined practitioners.
Incense sticks usually produce a distinctive spicy and woodsy scent when burnt, though with bright notes of the plant ingredients within the powder. They make a great tool to burn in the home, with minimal effort or clean-up required. 
It is important to note that with both types of sticks, the aromatics of the incense are mixed with wood or combustible wood powders. These can be toxic when burned, so we always recommend having a window open to promote quality airflow. For a more natural solution to incense, click here.


How to Burn Incense Sticks 

Burning Incense sticks have beautiful healing and home cleansing powers. However, if overused, can be too powerful and relatively toxic. We recommend burning your incense sticks once a week.
Ensure the room is well-ventilated and your incense stick is burnt an appropriate distance away from you.

Safety First! 

  • Always place the incense holder on a fire-resistant surface.
  • Never leave burning incense unattended.
  • Always use an appropriate incense stick holder.
  • Never burn incense in the vicinity of children or pets.

When Burning Incense Sticks, You Will Need: 



Our Step-By-Step Guide 

Time needed: 1 hour and 30 minutes.
  1. Setup

    Place the stick on a heatproof holder with the tip pointing upwards.

  2. Light up

    Carefully light the tip of the stick and allow the flame to burn for 5-10 seconds.

  3. Blow out

    Gently blow out the flame. This will leave the incense burning with a small ember.

  4. Enjoy

    Enjoy the fragrances and cleansing smoke produced by the incense. Sticks usually burn for 50-90 minutes.

  5. Dispose

    Safely dispose of the ash and stick remains once it has cooled.

Don't forget to check out our other incense how-to guides: how to burn loose incense, and how to burn incense cones.


The Bottom Line

Incense sticks have a wonderful variety of fragrances. Each of these types of incense offers a whole host of different healing and spiritual benefits. Now that we have produced this guide on how to burn your incense stick, you can feel confident that your incense experience will be a peaceful one.

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