The use of Incense in spell work

As well as making use of herbs as plants, decorations and for healing, witches most important use in magic was – and still is – in incense. Incense symbolizes the Element Air and the spiritual realms and has been part of ritual use by occultists and priests alike for thousands of years. Granular incense, with its basis of resins and gums, sweet-smelling woods and herbs is nowadays usually preferred for magical workings or ritual worship. It has a magic all of its own. For this reason a good incense burner will be one of your most important tools. You should choose this carefully, and not just for its aesthetic sense, because it is vital that the incense is allowed to burn properly

Egypt became especially renowned for its high standard of blending and the use of ritual incense. There was a particular class of incense called Khyphi.

Kyphi is a compound incense that was used in Ancient Egypt for religious and medical purposes.

It required magical techniques and the finest ingredients for its manufacture. Some incense were mind-altering and could produce trance-like states in users.
For short spells, joss-sticks work very well, though they are not to everyone’s taste.

Dhoop, or incense cones as they are known, are another way of using the same material.

By far the best method is to burn the granular type on a charcoal disc which is lit and placed in a fireproof receptacle. The incense is then piled onto the concave surface and allowed to do its work. You should dispose of the discs very carefully, dousing them with water and ensuring they are no longer hot.

Two witches discuss various options for burning incense on a charcoal disc

Blonde Gypsy & BWS catch up in Sydney Australia, and talk about the fun of charcoal burning. Blonde Gypsy talks about a few of her favorite love and divination herbs to use…..right now. We each have our own way of creating spells and magick. I shared this video so you can feel comfortable in knowing every witch, gypsy, or pagan has their own way – and each method is correct!

You might like to bury what remains of the incense as an offering to the Earth.

Many of the herbs we have already encountered are suitable for incense, if  you wish to make your own. You should choose your correspondences carefully, according to your spell. You will soon find out through experimentation what works for you.

When blending your own granular incense it is important to use a pestle and mortar to grind and mix all the ingredients together properly.

You may wish to consecrate your pestle and mortar first.

Granular incense usually consists of a base of incense gums to which are added the woods and herbs of choice before the mixture is blended using fragrant oils.

Blending granular incense

•When blending, first grind the gum resins (such as gum Arabic or benzoin) until the granules are like granulated sugar.
• Then add the woods, herbs and spices, all of which should have been finely ground and thoroughly blended together.
• Add the essential oils a drop at a time and mix well. The blending of the incense is an important part of the process, both from the perspective of the synergy of the ingredients and the personal energy you add to the incense.
• At this point you might like to dedicate the incense to the purpose intended,
saying perhaps simply:

I dedicate this incense to be used in [name spell]
•Place the incense mixture in a strong polythene bag (so that it retains its
pungency) then put it into a clean jar with a screw top lid.
• Do not use for at least 24 hours to enable the perfumes and qualities to blend properly.
• Don’t forget to label the jar, noting the ingredients and the date you made
the blend. It is also a good idea to note the intention or purpose for which the incense is made.
• Make your incense in small quantities so that it does not lose its potency.

When making your incense you may like to follow the example of herbalists of old, who gathered their herbs in tune with the cycles of life and planetary correspondences. Even though you may have to use bought herbs, the more you are able to work with the correspondences  and think about timing the more effective your spells or rituals will be.

Good luck!




Learn Wicca & Witchcraft in this easy to follow series.

Affordable to everyone, and no need to perform a group initiation ceremony.

Find out more

Learn More