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March 16, 2015

Burning the Sage

Ahhhh! So excited to tell you about my first burning sage ritual that I did over the weekend. I’ve always wanted to, having only seen them performed on TV in some Real Housewife’s mcmansion, but was waiting for a reason. Which is what I hope you’ll take away from this post: You don’t need a reason! Everyone can benefit from “smudging” and it’s truly one of the simplest, most beautiful gifts you can give yourself + whoever else you invite to join you. A little background: Smudging is an ancient and sacred practice that can be traced back to ancient Egypt. Like the sage traditionally used in this ritual, the burning of herbs and other natural substances has been used throughout history for cleansing, healing and spiritual purposes. You’ve probably heard of burning sage in a new house to clear out old energy and make way for the new owners, but it’s so much more than that. Even happy homes can accumulate negative vibrations, just like people (hola!) can use a good, positive clearing every once in a while. I haven’t talked about it on the blog yet, but I got a divorce this past December. My husband was and continues to be a positive force in my life, but the house that we shared is now mine and new beginnings call for a page-turning cleanse. I’m also redecorating so what better way to commence that process than with a proper smudge! It’s really easy to do:

1. Secure a sage or smudge stick. I love this pretty set, which I picked up locally at Honeyshine. Such a great hostess gift!

2. Open windows to give negative energy an escape route.

3. Light the stick and once it catches fire, blow it out. It will gently smoke like incense.

4. Set your intentions for each room. Perhaps you want to bless it, release a memory, or fill the space with a new, more nurturing energy. You can’t mess this part up as long as you allow yourself to ask the universe for what you need.

5. Walk around the room and wave the stick along walls, corners, the ceiling and behind doors, all the while staying mindful of your intention.

6. Now smudge yourself or ask a friend to smudge you. This can be incredibly powerful, especially when you’re with someone you love and trust, who knows where you’ve been and where you want to go. My sisterfriend Katie and I closed our eyes and silently set our own intentions. Whatever your soul needs, now is the time to give it up.

Maybe it was the prosecco (essential for purifying!) but truly this was such a powerful and uplifting experience for us both. I think smudging should kick off every party, as a way to pause, reflect and remember what brings you together: the desire for more joy, love and grace in our lives.


  • Elizabeth Dehn
    Born and raised in Minnesota by surprisingly low-maintenance parents, beauty writer and lifestyle editor Elizabeth Dehn (aka Bets) spent her awkward years buying Mood lipstick and whipping up DIY face masks before founding Beauty Bets in 2009.
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