March 01, 2021 9 min read

How to Cleanse and Charge Your Crystals: The Complete Guide

In crystal healing, we use certain stones to absorb negative energy and heal our bodies. But what happens to the unwanted energy that was released from us?

It gets stuck in those healing crystals.

When the stones accumulated too much negative energy, they fail to work as effectively as they were once before. That’s why we cleanse and charge the stones to restore them to their natural state.

In this guide, you’ll discover how to cleanse and charge crystals in great detail. Learn the steps of cleansing your crystals using different methods. Also, find out how you can charge and program your stones so you can activate their full effects.

But before we delve into that, first, you need to understand the difference between cleansing and charging.




Cleansing and charging are two important practices in crystal healing that are often used interchangeably. Below, find out the clear distinction between the two.

Crystal cleansing is done to get rid of unwanted energy that has accumulated in the stone.

When a stone is filled with negative energy, it blocks the healing vibrations from releasing out of the stone. That’s why you cleanse the crystal to free the positive frequencies from this blockage.

On the other hand, crystal charging is done to place your intentions onto the stone.

Crystals have specific healing vibrations that they emit. For instance, rose quartz stones are known for their love energy. You charge the stone with similar intentions, say, “I am attracting love,” to amplify those natural frequencies.

Before you can charge your crystal, you have to ensure that it’s free of unwanted energy so that it can effectively absorb your intentions. Hence, you need to cleanse your crystal before charging it.



Crystals are often exposed to unwanted energies as they travel long distances before they reach you. While we at Inner Wisdom Store cleanse our crystals before sending out, we still advise that you purify them after buying for that reason.

Cleansing new crystals is easy. Simply wash the stone with running water, e.g., river, stream, rain, or faucet water.


How to Cleanse New Crystals with Water

  1. Wash the crystal with running water.
  2. Completely submerge the stone for 1 minute.
  3. Rinse and pat dry when done.

Best used for: New crystals and tumbled stones

Caution: Avoid washing soft stones, those below 6 on the Mohs scale of hardness, such as apatite, fluorite, and calcite. As a general rule, many stones that end with “ite,” are water unsafe crystals.

Iron ores such as hematite, magnetite, and pyrite may also rust when exposed to water for long periods.

For a list of crystals that can and can’t go in water, see Cleansing Specific Crystals section.



For stones that need thorough cleansing, there are various methods that you can try at home.


1.  With Incense

Cleansing with incense is known as smudging. In this method, you use smoke to get rid of unwanted energy from your healing stones. Sacred plant like sage and palo santo are a great incense for this purpose.

How to Cleanse Crystals with Incense

  1. Burn the tip of the sage or palo santo.
  2. Hold the incense with your nondominant hand.
  3. With your other hand, move the crystal through the smoke for 30 seconds.
  4. Open your doors and windows while you smudge all four corners of your home as well to disperse the negative energy.

If you feel like the crystal has stored too much negative energy, continue cleansing for another 30 seconds.

Best to use for: Any stone


2.  With Salt

Salt is believed to absorb negative energy in many cultures. You’ll see it used in spiritual practices and rituals to drive away unwanted presence in a room, objects, and even people.

How to Cleanse Crystals with Salt

  1. Dissolve a tablespoon of salt into a bowl of water.
  2. Submerge the crystal in the mixture.
  3. Leave it for a few hours to two days for thorough cleansing.
  4. Rinse and pat dry when done.

Best to use for: Hard stones like amethyst or quartz

Caution: Soft or porous stones such as calcite; stones that contain trace metals such as hematite and pyrite

For a list of crystals that can and can’t go in salt water, see Cleansing Specific Crystals section.


3.  With Singing Bowl

Sound can raise the vibration of the stone to restore its natural state. Tibetan singing bowls are a great way to accomplish this, but you can also use a tuning fork and chanting as well. If you don’t have these tools, you can also play Tibetan singing bowl music online as an alternative.

How to Cleanse Crystals with Singing Bowl

  1. Place your stones on a flat surface.
  2. Hold the cushion with the singing bowl on top of your nondominant hand.
  3. Position the singing bowl in front of the stones.
  4. Hold the stick on your other hand.
  5. Gently strike the side of the singing bowl to emit a ringing sound.
  6. With the side of the stick, rub the outside of the bowl gently but firmly to keep the ringing going.
  7. Rub the singing bowl a few times while saying your intention.
  8. Expose your crystals to the sound for 5-10 minutes.

Best used forCleansing large volume of crystals at once

CautionDon’t place the stones inside the bowl while cleansing as it could chip, crack, or break them


4.  With Sunlight

The sun is a great source of natural energy that can be beneficial to your crystals. However, the sun can be too powerful that it can be more damaging than helpful to some stones. So, take extra care when cleansing with sunlight.

How to Cleanse Crystals with Sunlight

  1. Place the crystals directly on the ground during sunrise or sunset.
  2. Let your stones bathe under the sunlight.
  3. Collect your crystals after more than an hour or so.

Best used for: Dense or opaque colored stones like malachite, labradorite, and tiger’s eye

Caution: Vibrant stones that are prone to fading, such as rose quartz, citrine amethyst, and aventurine

For a list of crystals that can and can’t go in the sun, see Cleansing Specific Crystals section.


5.  With Moonlight

Bathing your crystals in the moonlight is also believed to restore the crystals energy. This is especially true during full moon, where the moon’s energy is at its peak.

How to Cleanse Crystals Under the Full Moon

  1. Place the crystals directly on the ground after sunset.
  2. Let your stones bathe under the moonlight.
  3. Collect your crystals before or during the sunrise, depending if you want to benefit from the sun’s energy or not.

Best used for: Any stone

Caution: If you’re going to leave your crystal until sunrise, don’t expose them too long. Some stones may fade after long exposure to sunlight.

For a list of crystals that can and can’t go in the sun, see Cleansing Specific Crystals section.


6.  With Selenite

Some crystals are believed to have cleansing properties, with selenite considered to be the king of crystal chargers. Since selenite stones are typically large in size, they are also thought to have larger vibrations that can get rid of unwanted energy from other stones.

How to Cleanse Crystals with Selenite

  1. Find a selenite cleansing plate for best results.

As a rule of thumb, the more contact the crystals have with selenite, the faster and more effective the cleansing gets. The flat surface of a selenite plate is more ideal compared to spherical or selenite tower.

  1. Place the crystals you need to cleanse on top of the selenite plate.
  2. Leave the stones there for 24 hours.

Best used for: Any stone, especially large crystals and those that are prone to corrosion from salt water and natural elements


7.  With Clear Quartz

Clear quartz is another crystal known for its cleansing properties. Unlike selenite, clear quartz come in small sizes. To gain the most of its clearing effect, you need to use more than one of this stone.

How to Cleanse Crystals with Clear Quartz

  1. Fill a bowl with small clear quartz crystals.
  2. Place the stones you need to cleanse on top of the clear quartz.
  3. Leave the stones there for 24 hours.

Best used for: Any stone, especially small crystals and those that are at risk of getting damaged from salt water and natural elements



With all these methods available to try at home, which is the best way to cleanse your crystals?

The truth is, there is really no best way to cleanse your crystals. Each method is effective, so it’s all a matter of preference and what’s convenient for you.

However, you have to keep in mind that some methods can be harmful to specific crystals, which we will discuss in the next section.



Cleansing with incense, singing bowl, moonlight, selenite, and clear quartz are generally safe for every crystal. Meanwhile, cleansing with fresh water, salt water, and sunlight can be damaging to some crystals.

In this section, find out if your crystal is safe to undergo certain cleansing methods.

Keep in mind that this list only covers common stones that you can find in most crystal stores. We are also following these general rules when deciding which crystals can be in water, salt, or the sun:

  • Soft and porous stones, those below 6 on the Mohs scale of hardness, should NOT be exposed to water.
  • Crystals with metal traces should NOTbe exposed to water, especially salt water.
  • Translucent crystals should NOT be exposed to sunlight.



Fresh Water

Salt Water







Black Obsidian


Blue Topaz



Clear Quartz










Lapis Lazuli






Rose Quartz




Smoky Quartz


Tiger’s Eye



Can’t find your stone? Leave a comment and we’ll try our best to add it on this chart!



To activate your crystal, you have to charge and program it with your intentions. You do this after cleansing your stone.

How to Charge and Program Your Crystals

  1. Hold the crystal and quiet your mind.
  2. Focus your intentions onto the stone.
  3. Depending on the stone’s energy, state your desires for healing, for money, for protection, or for love.
  4. Speak or mentally project your intentions 8-12 times to program your stone.

As we mentioned above, charging or programming is a way to ask the crystals to perform their intended functions.

Remember: Your intentions should be in sync with the crystal’s energy. You are connecting with the stone’s vibration and not adding energy that isn’t there.

For instance, a citrine stone is known for its money energy. To make the most out of the crystal, you have to set your intentions of money onto the stone. You can’t place intention of love onto it.

Rose quartz is another example, which is commonly used for its love vibrations. You can place intentions of love onto the stone, but don’t add frequencies of money that isn’t natural to rose quartz.



As a general rule, perform crystal cleansing and charging at least once a month. The more often you use your crystal, the more unwanted energy accumulates on them.

Eventually, it will be easier to know when your crystal needs cleansing and charging. As you develop a bond with your stones, you’ll know when they’re feeling dull and heavy, which are good signs that you need to purify and restore them to their natural state.



Cleansing and charging your crystals are vital to get the most out of your healing stones. If you want to continuously benefit from your crystals, it’s crucial that you know how to cleanse, charge, and program them properly.

We hope this guide has served you well as you explore the world of crystal healing.

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