Have you ever wondered what you should do with a crystal before and after using it for healing purposes? It makes sense that after using something to benefit you energetically, you’ll want to restore its natural vibration afterward. So is stone cleansing a one-size-fits-all deal?
Not exactly; while you can often use many cleansing practices with many of your stones, not all will react the same way. For example, there are some crystals that can go in water and some crystals that can’t go in water. That means that giving all your crystals a cleansing bath may do more harm than good.
Why do you need to cleanse your crystals?
Many people rely on crystals’ healing vibrations to soothe their souls, but these stones often travel long distances before ending up in the current owner’s lap. Each part of that physical journey exposes the stone to vibrations that may not be beneficial to you.
When used as part of healing practices, these crystals can absorb the negativity you want to let go of. For this reason, it’s important to cleanse and re-charge them so that they don’t maintain that energy you’d been working on releasing. Read on as we explore which crystals should and should not be cleansed in water, plus how to cleanse your non-water-safe crystals.
Does the Mohs scale matter?
Before we get into the stones that can be cleansed in water, let’s look at how to measure the make-up of each crystal. The method used is called the Mohs hardness scale.
The Mohs hardness scale is a scale of 1-10 and involves each stone’s minerals being tested using other minerals to establish the stone’s surface resistance. The number is assigned when a tester scratches one stone with the other to determine which causes and which sustains damage. To put this scale into perspective, things like rock salt, talc, amber, and pearls sit at the top of the scale, while diamonds, rubies, and sapphires are on the opposite end.
It’s important to note that you can’t determine whether a stone is water-safe from its Mohs scale number alone.
The Mohs scale will determine how easily the stone can be scratched – not whether it can be affected by sunlight, water, acids, and other substances. That’s why it’s important to remove jewelry when you’re doing your face care regime, and so important to learn about the properties of each stone you work with.
Crystals That Can Go in Water
Crystals that can go in water include:
- Black Obsidian
- Clear Quartz
- Rose Quartz
- Smoky Quartz
- Snow Quartz
- Tiger Eye
These crystals are considered to be water-safe because they won’t disintegrate, become discolored, or lose their sheen if exposed to water. Now let’s look at some stones that should not come into contact with water where possible.
Crystals That Can’t Go in Water
It’s important to note which crystals cannot come into contact with water as this damage is often irreversible. You may be able to bring your crystals to a jeweler for polishing but ultimately, once a stone has begun to deteriorate, you won’t be able to undo it. Here are a few well-known crystals that can’t go in water:
- Amazonite: This striking green crystal won’t break down in water but it may absorb water which can cause damage over time. In other words, if you’re working with it and water, don’t allow it to be submerged in water.
- Angelite loses its structural integrity when exposed to water.
- Aquamarine: Despite being an 8 on the hardness scale, this stone is not water safe.
- Black Tourmaline: A quick dip is fine for this crystal but try to avoid long baths as it’ll damage your Black Tourmaline in the long run.
- Calcite may dissolve in water.
- Fluorite is water-soluble.
- Gypsum starts to break down in water.
- Labradorite will lose its sheen and may even begin to disintegrate if it’s left in water for too long.
- Lapis Lazuli: Since it contains calcite which dissolves and pyrite which is toxic in water, Lapis Lazuli shouldn’t be cleansed with water.
- Malachite should never get wet!
- Moonstone: Water damages this stone pretty quickly, so it’s best to avoid getting it wet at all.
- Pyrite will rust if it gets wet due to its high iron content.
- Turquoise: Water exposure will cause Turquoise to lose its quintessential color.
How to Clean & Cleanse Crystals That Aren’t Water-Safe
While water cleansing is a common method of making sure your crystals are free of the negativity you’re looking to release (or even simply just giving them a clean), there are plenty of other water-free cleansing methods. Here are three simple ways to cleanse your non-water-safe crystals:
- Smudging with sage
Smudging is common among Indigenous people and has been used to cleanse spaces, crystals, and other items for centuries. Smudging uses herbs like palo santo, sage, lavender, and sweetgrass.
Here’s how you can use sage to cleanse your crystals and restore them to their original vibration:
- Pick a place (ideally outdoors) where you feel safe, secure, and grounded
- Take a bunch of dried sage or a pre-made smudge stick and light it
- Holding it around your crystals, focus on the smoke purifying and cleansing your crystals with healthy, positive energy
- Let the smoke surround your crystal for around 30 seconds, visualizing the healing, cleansing, and refreshing of your carnelian crystal
- If you cannot perform this ritual outdoors, then make sure you open a window to let out the smoke (and energy) that the sage has generated
- Full moon cleansing
This method will work on all stones and can be used to charge and cleanse your crystals in one go. Moonlight will fill your crystals with the moon’s feminine energy which you can then use to your advantage. To charge your crystals using the moon’s energy, simply place them on your windowsill and leave them overnight.
- No-contact water cleansing
This method is popular among the water signs of Pisces, Cancer, and Scorpio as many people with water signs have an affinity with water and find this the most energetically beneficial. For this cleansing technique, place your crystal beside a glass of water and leave it there overnight. This technique is particularly beneficial if you place the crystal and water on the windowsill on the night of a full moon. For added benefits, you can use this energized water for your plants the following day.
- Sound healing
Sound healing is a great idea if you have a large volume of crystals that you don’t tend to move around or touch. Certain sounds and vibrations can wash over an item or area, causing it to match the same vibration as the tone. You can do this by chanting or using a tuning fork or singing bowls. The key and pitch of the sound are not important, provided that the sound emitted is loud enough that the vibrations will envelop the stone.
Here, you plant your chosen crystal in the ground. The purpose of this practice is to return the stone’s energy to its original source, re-activating its spirit. Make sure you find a safe spot for your stone and leave it there for 24 hours. Just be sure you make a note of where you buried your crystal when you’re ready to dig it up!
As well as the methods we’ve just looked at, several methods are even simpler. Placing your crystal into a bowl of brown rice can draw out negativity and unpleasant energy, just make sure to throw that rice away once you’re finished with it!
You can also use natural light to cleanse and recharge your crystals; leave your stone on a windowsill for 10 to 12 hours or directly on the earth if you have access to a private space.
If your not-water-safe crystals get dirty or dusty and you want to physically clean them, polish them with a cloth.
Ways to Use Water to Cleanse or Charge Your Crystals
Here is how to practice water cleansing for your water-safe crystals:
- Fill a large bowl with water
- Rinse the crystal under running water for five seconds and put it in the bowl, making sure it’s submerged in water
- If you’re planning on wearing or using your crystal immediately after cleansing, let it soak for a couple of hours or leave it in water overnight. This will give your stone a more thorough energetic cleansing
- Take your crystal out of its container, rinsing it under running water for a further couple of seconds
Part of taking care of your crystals is cleansing and charging them. In many ways, crystals have similar requirements to us humans: we both require feeding, energizing, cleaning, and charging when we’re low on energy!
Now that you know how to maintain your crystal collection, you can explore their potent vibrations confidently. You may use a crystal to help you walk away from something negative, or you may seek the strength to communicate your true feelings. Whatever you need from your crystals, you can cleanse, recharge, and take care of them while they guide you through life’s challenges.