There are many types of smudge sticks that you can choose from to use to cleanse your home. Each variety is made with different herbs and aromatics that give off different energies and scents, and are all used for different purposes in the home.
One of the most popular types of plant used to make smudge sticks come from the Salvia genus, which is true sages. While there are so many different sage plants, only those which are particularly aromatic are most commonly used to make smudge sticks.
What are the different types of sage for smudging? There are a variety of types of sage for smudging, including white sage (the most popular), blue sage, black sage, lavender sage, and more. Which type to choose will depend on what you are wanting to achieve by using the smudge stick, and also what you have access to.
We have listed all the best sages to use as a smudge stick, and the purpose for using each different type, to help you better choose which one would be best for you and your home.
What Are Smudge Sticks?
Smudge sticks are a bunch of herbs that are tightly bound together with twine. The herbs used to make a smudge stick are chosen for their special properties and qualities, which could benefit your home, space, or energy.
Smudging is an ancient practice that was originally used to clear out stuck energies and low vibrations, and instead allow for positive energy to flow into homes.
Nowadays, smudge sticks are used for much the same thing, but mostly in homes to reduce negativity, balance energies, and to create a calm atmosphere that is conducive for meditation.
Many people also just love the calming aroma that smudging gives, which can bring about a wonderful relaxation in the home.
All different types of smudge sticks will work to clear out negative energy and allow for the flow of positive energy into your home, but some herbs and mixes might resonate more with you and what you are wanting to surround yourself with.
The Types Of Sage For Smudging
Below are the best types of sage to use for smudging. All of these sage options will be wonderful to use in your home, but you will find one that calls to you the most, and which will calm you and re-energize you at a soul level.
White Sage is the most popular type of sage used for smudging. In fact, it is used in most smudge sticks, whether they contain other types of herbs or not.
It is a beautifully versatile herb to use, as it is suitable for cleansing, healing, meditation, and protection. It is the perfect base to be mixed with other herbs for a more specific smudging blend to see to a particular need.
White Sage has quite a strong scent, which is often equated to eucalyptus, or marijuana when it is burned. The scent of sage can be easily detected just by rubbing your fingers along the leaves.
Most of the White Sage sold is harvested in California, and most of it is wild-gathered and then the smudge sticks are hand-made by different producers. Some of these producers and gatherers follow prayer and observances when picking the sage, to make them more potent.
You can even look to buy White Sage that has been grown and harvested following traditional American Indian practices, as it is believed that this sage holds more power and spiritual connection.
White Sage is a great base for any smudge stick and is absolutely fine to use on its own too.
Blue Sage is also known as New Mexico Sage or Grandmother Sage. It is a very hardy bush that is native to deserts in the Southwest of America. The leaves of this sage plant have a blue tinge to them, but it gets its name for the many blue flowers that grow on the herb bush.
The thin leaves and blue flowers have a fragrance similar to lavender, which has the traditional sage herbaceous scents, as well as some floral hints too.
Blue Sage is good to use for cleansing and healing and works very similarly to White Sage. The smell a Blue Sage smudge stick creates can be wonderful to have in your home, and can help to soothe you down for meditation.
If you aren’t a fan of the smell of burning White Sage, you might find the smell of burning Blue Sage more agreeable. Blue Sage can be used in a smudge stick, or the loose leaves can be kept around the house to cleanse and energize the area, without the need to burn the leaves.
Lavender Sage grows on the southern coastline of California and is a sage bush that loves the sun. The leaves of the lavender sage are round and green, and quite fuzzy, very similar to Common Sage. Along the plant are groups of small purple flowers, similar to lavender.
Although the name is misleading, Lavender Sage is not related to the lavender plant, but the two look very similar with their leaves and purple flowers seeming the same.
Much like lavender, Lavender Sage is used in a smudge stick to bring about calm and peace and is believed to have a sedating effect. It is believed to reduce anxiety and can encourage love in the home, and it is often used to bring about attraction.
For the perfect balance, you should look for a smudge stick that combines both white sage and lavender sage.
The duo will cleanse and balance the energies in your home, and work to soothe and calm your soul, and encourage peace and rest. The aroma that Lavender Sage gives off is also beautiful.
Black Sage serves a very specific purpose and is only really used when someone has this specific reason in mind.
Helping to bring about and encourage dreams and visions, Black Sage is known to be an herb that centers around inner-healing and introspection, for when you need to take a look within yourself and possibly try to rebuild yourself up again.
While it does help to bring about dreams and visions, Black Sage also helps to encourage a night of good sleep and even brings about good dreams.
Those who are more experienced with the spiritual tie to dreams use black sage to astral travel, and as protection, as they go about these journeys.
True Black Sage has long, elegant leaves which are very dark green on the top, but a sliver underneath. It is native to the mountain ranges in California, along the West Coast, all the way north to British Columbia. The name comes from the leaves tendency to darken during drought.
You do need to be careful when buying Black Sage smudge sticks, as some shops and producers are not too sure about what Black Sage really is, and you might be getting something different in the smudge stick.
It is important to know what you are buying, as some other Black Sage products come from the Artemisia genus, and while these resemble Black Sage, are more closely related to Daisies.
These contain more thujone, which is a trance-inducing compound. It is best to stay safe and only use real Black Sage so you don’t go on any unexpected trips.
Desert Sage looks quite similar to what you would expect a desert plant to look like. It has thin branched leaves that are browner than they are green and appear more twiggy than other sage variants.
This sage bush comes with quite a different aroma. It does have some of the herbaceousness of other sage bushes, but it has peppery notes as well, quite similar to Bay Leaves.
Desert Sage is a good option for when you want to purify, protect and cleanse your home. It is often used to promote inner strength and help you to have pleasant thoughts.
Those who suffer from anxiety, and even headaches, use Desert Sage smudge sticks to help with relief.
It is a good sage to mix with other herbs, or with White Sage, and it does benefit from being mixed with other leaves as on its own it can produce a dense smudge stick that is quite straw-like.
Dakota Sage is not a very popular sage used in smudging. It is quite abundant, growing over South Dakota, through to Louisiana, but it is not found in smudge sticks as much as some of the other sage variants are.
However, it is fairly easy to gather on your own, and if you are making your own smudge sticks, and live in the area it grows, it is easy enough to gather it to make smudge sticks at home.
The appearance and the aroma of Dakota Sage are very similar to Desert Sage, just less obvious.
It is a good herb to use to cleanse and purify your home and gives off a gentle, woody, and herby aroma that is just pleasant to have around.
If you are stuck and need a smudging stick, but don’t have access to any special type of sage suited to smudging, you might be wondering if you could raid your herb garden and use common sage.
Luckily, common sage can be used for smudging, and it is closely related to white sage, and it holds many of the same properties and spiritual and cleansing benefits that white sage does.
Common sage has long been used as a herb for smudging, and centuries ago, those in Europe had access to common sage much more than sage from North America, and it worked perfectly well for them.
However, the smell that burning common sage creates is not as pleasant as some of the other sage options, and you should only use a little bit in your smudge stick. You can add in other herbs to give the smudge stick a better aroma, or you could instead use a sage plant to cleanse areas of your home.
Sage is often mixed in with other florals and herbs to give it more properties and benefits. White sage is popularly mixed with rose, which creates a beautifully cleansing smudge stick that helps to purify and cleanse the home and revamp your energy.
Rose petals included in these smudge sticks help to bring about positivity and self-love, and rose is often associated with love, beauty, and wisdom.
Lavender is also added into White Sage sticks as well, which help to encourage a night of restful sleep, and relaxation, and peace of the mind and soul.
Together, White Sage and Lavender create a powerful cleansing tool, which cleanses the home and the mind.
Use a smudge stick blended with White Sage and Lavender to bring about tranquility and purification.
How To Make The Most Of Smudge Sticks
Smudge sticks can bring so much peace and calm into the home, and completely reverse energy from heavy and negative, to light and positive.
Anyone can use a smudge stick to cleanse their space, but some tips help you make the most of the practice and the herbs used.
Here are some ways you can maximize the benefits of your smudge stick, and ensure it does its best to work in your personal space:
- Clear out the clutter in your home and open up windows and curtains. This allows fresh air to enter your home, clearing out the heavy negative air that was there before.
- Light your smudge stick and use a feather to move the smoke around your home, and around your body.
- Set your intentions clearly when smudging. Use a feather to bring the smoke to your body, from the front to the back, from top to bottom, focusing on the ritual and making your intentions known clearly, which is vital to the process working.
- Carry around a smudge bowl with you to catch the ash as it falls from the smudge stick. You don’t want ash sprinkled around your home.
Sage Options For Smudging
There are some beautiful sage options available for smudging. You simply need to choose which variant, or which blend, speaks to you the most and which would help you achieve what you want.
Sage is a powerful herb to help cleanse and purify your home and your soul, and everyone can benefit from the incredible aroma that some of the sage blends bring.
Before you get started, let’s wrap up a few lose ends.
How often should you sage your home?
You can sage your home as often as you feel the need to, if you feel as though the air is heavy and energies are negative.
However, just to keep up the positivity in your home, you can smudge your home around four times a year, typically as the seasons change.
There is no limit to how often you can smudge your home, you just need to be in tune with the energies in your home to know when it is time to smudge and cleanse.
Can you reuse a sage smudge stick?
It is recommended that you use a new smudge stick for each cleansing ritual, but you can reuse a sage smudge stick, burning it until there is nothing left to burn.
You just need to reaffirm your intentions and know what you want to achieve with each smudging.