Smells has the uncanny ability to conjure up thoughts, feelings and emotions. I bet if you close your eyes you can remember exactly how your grandmother’s kitchen used to smell around the holidays. For me the smell of rain is the first indicator of summer, of new beginnings and rebirth.
Although different scents might conjure different emotions in each of us, some scents inherently hold specific metaphysical properties. While some people use them just because they smell nice, others might use them when meditating or praying. Sometimes they play a part in rituals, visualisation and manifestation or spell work. Burning a certain kind of incense or using an essential oil can greatly change the atmosphere or a situation or space.
A general guide would be that anything sweet brings in sweetness. Think rose and vanilla for example. Stronger scents like ginger and cinnamon brings fire and passion. Earthy tones like sandalwood is good for grounding while airy tones like white sage is good for cleansing.
Here is a list of incenses (and/or oils) and their uses.
Aastha – a blend that includes sandalwood. Relaxation, meditation, spiritual practices.
Acacia – To stimulate psychic powers and meditation. Very high vibrations. Anointing of altar and candles.
African Violet – For protection and spiritual growth. Promote spirituality in the home.
Allspice – to attract good luck and money.
Aloe – to attract good fortune, love, strength and spiritual vibrations.
Althea – for protection and to increase psychic powers.
Amber – for love and desire, comfort, happiness and healing. Good to use in meditations where you are looking for information, wisdom and the truth, or want to find out about past lives.
Ambergris – dreams and aphrodisiac. Promotes pure love and high spiritual vibrations. Can be replaced with clary sage.
Angelica – protection, harmony, insight and understanding, meditation.
Anise Seed – meditation and emotional balance.
Apple – enhances knowledge and wisdom. Love, healing, immortality and garden magick rituals.
Apple blossom – anoint candles for love rituals. Attract happiness and success.
Aqua – any kind of cooling including tempers, excess emotions and physical fevers.
Bamboo – enhances divination and protection. Luck, hex-breaking – usually the stick part of most incense sticks.
Banana – enhances prosperity, fertility, and potency.
Basil – to protect against evil, attract good luck, love, fidelity, sympathy and wealth. Increase concentration, assertiveness, trust, integrity, decisiveness, mental clarity, cheerfulness, confidence and courage. Encourages harmony.
Bay – to increase psychic powers and encourage prophetic dreams. Protection, divination and purification. Draws power towards the user.
Bayberry – attract money, happiness and control. Protection.
Benzoin – purification, astral projection, clear negative energy, emotional sadness, eases negative emotions like sadness, grief, depression, anxiety and attracts wealth. Good for working through grief.
Bergamot – Money, prosperity, joy, protection, emotional strength and balance. Uplifts spirits, increases concentration alertness, confidence, courage, motivation and assertiveness.
Bistort – to aid divination (often in conjunction with frankincense).
Bracken – to bring rain (burned on an outside fire).
Cardamom – mental clarity, concentration, courage, enthusiasm, motivation.
Carnation – protection, strength, healing, love and lust. Attracts power to user and produces energy.
Cedar – purification, healing, protection, money, balance, grounding, insight, wisdom. strengthen psychic powers attract love, prevent nightmares. It promotes peace and good fortune.
Cedar Wood – purification, protection, abundance, grounding, male virility, strength (including strength during healing). Insight and wisdom.
Chamomile – harmony, peace, calm. Spiritual and inner peace.
Cherry – relaxation. Divination and attraction. To stimulate or attract intimate love.
Cinnamon – protection and attract wealth and business success. Grows psychic powers. Healing (especially during winter), stimulation, lust, raise sexual energy. Increases power of any incense to which it is added. Problem solving, clairvoyance and spiritual magick. It has high vibrations. It is a strong cleansing incense when white sage is not enough. It cultivates power especially when you feel like you are powerless or in a hopeless situation.
Citron – healing and strengthen psychic powers.
Citronella – cleansing, healing, protection form evil.
Champa – Clearing and protection. Meditation and creating a sacred space. Bring individual energies into harmonious balance.
Clove – dispel negativity and illness, purify, attract money, stop/prevent gossip, business success. Intellectual stimulation and business success. Eases fears, improves memory and focus.
Coconut – protection, relaxation, stress reduction. This could be used in love magick and chastity.
Coffee – divination, dispel nightmares, cleansing.
Copal – purification, attract love, protection. Finding true love, separating from toxic relationships. Copal Black Resin – enhances energies of the heart, healing the heart. Copal White Resin for love and purification – emotional matters of the heart and is the purest of the copals.
Cypress – strength, healing, confidence, physical vitality, willpower. Vibrates on high astral planes. Brings in peace and screens out negative vibrations.
Damiana – psychic visions.
Darshan – blend combining sandalwood, jasmine and vanilla. Concentration, freedom from negativity and reviving a tired mind and spirit.
Dittany of Crete – materialisations. Aid divination and conjure spirits. Astral projection especially when mixed with equal parts benzoin, sandalwood and vanilla.
Dragons blood – dispel negativity, purification, courage, attract love, restore male potency. Protection while spell casting and invoking. Enhances powers of all other incenses.
Elecampane – strengthen clairvoyant powers and scrying abilities.
Eucalyptus – healing, purification, protection.
Fern – burned on fire outside to bring rain. Exorcise evil.
Fir – promotes peace and contentment. Cleanses the atmosphere. Enhances breath work and pranayama.
Frangipani – erotic and used for physical love.
Frankincense – dispel negativity, purify magickal spaces, help meditation, resolve arguments, heal broken friendships, protection against evil, astral strength, psychic visions, good luck. One of the most powerful and sacred scents. It is good at ending conflicts and arguments. Alleviates tension to bring peace and calm.
Frankincense & Myrrh – power and memory.
Fumitory – exorcise demons, poltergeist and evil supernatural entities.
Galangal – break curses cast by sorcerers.
Gardenia – peace, love, healing. Mending marital problems, attracting pure love and protection. The scent is highly magnetic. Attracting peaceful sprits during rituals.
Geranium – Rose Geranium: courage and protection, love and healing, calm and stress relief. Geranium and nutmeg: prosperity and fertility, luck and fidelity. Geranium and Oak: Enhances, strengthens and maintains friendships. Geranium and Orange: luck, love, fidelity, money and weddings.
Ginger – wealth, lust, love, romance, magical power.
Ginseng root – protection against evil.
Gotu – meditation.
Gum Arabic Powder – psychic purification and protection.
Heather – magickally produce rain, conjure beneficial spirits.
Heliotrope – very high spiritual vibration. Peace, harmony, clairvoyance, meditation, psychic development.
Hibiscus flower – attract love and lust. Divination.
High John the Conqueror – Power and justice. Mostly used to gain success in court cases.
Honey – good for drawing in admiration, wealth and luxury.
Honeysuckle – attract money, happiness, healing and friendship. Stimulates the mind and creativity. Good for rituals of prosperity and seduction.
Horehound – as an offer to Horus.
Hyacinth – happiness and protection. Sleep and psychic dreams.
Hyssop – increases finances and purifies. Good general scent to use in all rituals and spells.
Indian Tobacco – invoke Indian guides.
Jasmine – attract love (emotional and mental connections rather than physical) and money. Prophetic dreams, purification, wisdom and astral projection. Highly spiritual with many magickal and spiritual properties. Restful sleep, balance, peace, meditation and psychic protection. Cultivating inner beauty, connecting with others emotionally.
Juniper – calm, protection, healing. Breaks curses and hexes, increases psychic powers. Protection from the evil eye and breaking a period of bad luck.
Lavender – induce rest and sleep. Attract love, cleanse, heal (especially from addictions), relaxes. Good to burn during romantic situations. Refreshes the body, mind and environment.
Lemon – healing, love, purification. Divination, prophecy and eloquence. Confidence and good luck. Gives energy to achieve your goals.
Lemongrass – mental clarity.
Lilac – increase psychic powers especially clairvoyance, attract harmony. Work on past lives – to remember them or learn from them.
Lotus – lift-up your mood, protection, mental clarity, healing, meditation, spirituality. Good health, fertility, blessing, visions, astral travel and harmony.
Magnolia – meditation, harmony and psychic development. Fidelity and love, promotes love of the family and home.
Mastic – conjure beneficial spirits, increase psychic powers and intensifies sexual desires. Increases powers of other incenses.
Mesquite – disinfecting and enhancing energy of spells and rituals.
Mimosa – prophetic dreams and healing.
Mint – sexual desire, very magnetic for attracting money and good fortune and business success, powerful healing and protection.
Musk – restore order and balance, remove negative influence, creates protective barriers, re-aligns energies. Powerful sexual attraction, courage and determination. Good for marking your territory (like a mate or partner). Helps with facing your limits and connecting with departed loved ones.
Myrrh – purification, healing, meditation, offering to Isis and Ra. Protection from evil spirits. Very sacred with a high spiritual vibration. Could be replaced with sweet cicely. It amplifies whatever spell is being performed – but only if it is in accordance with the will of the gods.
Nag Champa – increase focus. It is a blend that includes sandalwood. It purifies and used as a general incense for spiritual matters including meditation and pursuing spiritual enlightenment. It is spiritual while keeping you grounded in the present.
Nutmeg – meditation, attract prosperity, increase psychic powers.
Oakmoss – money and attraction.
Opium – dream associative including lucid dreaming and prophetic dreams, contacting deities and guides in dreams. It is good to burn to dream. Some use it when looking for forbidden knowledge.
Orange – divination, love, luck and money.
Orange blossom (Neroli) – attracts love and romance and induce proposals of marriage. Sexual magnetism.
Orris root – love and desire, concentration, creativity and to strengthen will power.
Osha Root – powerful healing abilities.
Patchouli – attract money, love, growth, mastery, sensuality and to promote fertility. Relieves depression, anxiety and fatigue. Peaceful separation of relationships, keep away unwanted persons. Protects empaths and sensitive people.
Peppermint – energy, mental stimulation, healing.
Pine – purification, banish negative energies, break hexes and return them to the sender, grounding, strength, cleansing and healing. Moving beyond outgrown habits and circumstances.
Pineapple – luck, fertility and chastity. Bring money and luck to the home and family.
Plum Blossom – meditation, purity, feeling young.
Poppy seed – promote female fertility, attract love, good luck and money.
Rose (Red) – increase courage, fertility, healing, attract love, prophetic dreams. Strongest incense to enhance love. Dispels anger, encourages artistic creativity, peace and beauty. Opens the heart and increases psychic gifts. Good for house blessing rituals.
Rose Geranium – courage and protection.
Rosemary – purify, healing, prevent nightmares, dispel depression, attracts fairies, restful sleep and pleasant dreams. Powerfully protective. Put on windows and doors of a house to purify and bless the space.
Rue – restores health.
Sage – protection against evil and negativity. Purify sacred spaces and ritual tools. Promotes wisdom, attract money, heals and balances body, mind and soul.
Sagebrush – aid healing, banish negative energies.
Sandalwood – spiritual awareness, protection, healing, wish-magick. Wards off evil and invites beneficial spirits in. It is also an aphrodisiac. Powerful and spiritual scent that raises vibrations and purifies. Opens doors to past lives. Good for consecrating and blessing ritual tools and spaces. It should not be used to curse or compel but to enhance benevolent magick.
Solomons – as an offer to ancient Pagan deities.
Star anise seed – increase psychic powers.
Strawberry – attract love and luck, happiness and joy. Cultivate generosity and sweetness. Helps with fertility.
Styrax – vibrates very high spiritually. Spiritual growth and meditation.
Sugar and spice – anything sweet like apple cider, Christmas cookies, gingerbread… to ‘sweeten up’ a person or situation. Evoke generosity, celebration and pleasure. Could be used around Yuletide.
Sweetgrass – conjure beneficial spirits before spell casting.
Sweet pea – friendship, love and courage.
Thyme – healing, attract good health. Purifies magickal spaces before rituals.
Vanilla – attract love, increase sexual desire, improve mind powers and decision making. Arousing to women, restores energy and attracts power to you during rituals.
Verbana (Lemon) – carried for protection of love. Used by women in the Victorian era as charm pouches to slip into their husband or intended’s coat pockets.
Vervain – exorcise evil supernatural entities. Protection and attracting material good fortune. Creativity and purification.
Vetivert – break curses, protect against black magick, thieves. Attracts money, peace and love.
Violet – wisdom, luck. Love. Protection and healing. Promotes reunions of separated families. Attracts wealth.
Willow – avert evil, attract love, promote healing. Offered to Pagan lunar deities.
Wisteria – protection against all forms of evil. Creates a connection between the physical and spiritual planes. Powerful for divination and illumination as well as psychic work.
Wormwood – increase psychic powers.
Yarrow – courage.
Ylang-ylang – love, harmony and euphoria. Attracts the opposite sex and love. Can soothe marital problems. Useful to help find a job.
Incense can greatly change the feel of a space as well as increase the energy that you put into a visualisation or spell. You can use them individually or group them together to enhance the effect.
What is your favourite incense to use?
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