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Here’s How to Extinguish Incense – the Right Way (DIY Guide)

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Written by: Tina Caro

I love incense and I guess you do too as you read this article! We’ve talked a lot about the best incense to relax, to attract certain energies our way and more, but what about how to extinguish incense?

Let’s find out together!


To extinguish incense, blow gently on the lit end to put out the flame, leaving the ember smoldering to produce smoke.

If using an incense holder, tap the lit end within the holder or use the blowing method.

Alternatively, insert the ember end into sand or ash to snuff it out safely.

You can also dip it in water, but be cautious of sizzling and more smoke.

Alternatively, allow it to burn out naturally or use a lid for cone incense to cut off the oxygen supply.

Always ensure complete extinguishment for safety.

What’s the best way to extinguish incense?

First of all, how should we use incense? Ideally, we would light them and let them burn out completely, but in cases where it is necessary to extinguish the incense before it is fully burned, there are some things that you should consider.

How to do it correctly?

To extinguish an incense correctly, the tip of the burning incense must be placed on a metal surface and pressed down, as if you were putting out a cigarette. The ashes do not damage resin, so no need to worry about that.

incense and crystals
Copyright: Tina Caro

Never try to put the stick in the water to extinguish them, as this makes the incense useless and when you try to light it again (even when dry) it could have lost its function or the aroma may have changed.

Avoid lighting incense next to materials that can burn easily, or leave incense burning when you leave the house unless it is a safe area. No matter how you feel in the moment, remember that it is always better to exercise caution.

Pay particular attention when lighting the incense to what is in the immediate area around it. Anything flammable should be moved far away for safety purposes.

How to get rid of incense once extinguished?

As I am burning A LOT of incense lately, I wanted to ensure I was using its ashes correctly so I can enjoy some of their incredible benefits. When researching, I discovered that one of the ancient methods of agriculture involved burning some sections of the forest and then cultivating the new areas that the ashes had fertilized.

The ash is a natural fertilizer and the fact that it then returns to the ground is part of the cycle of nature. In addition to burning tree trunks and branches, ash can also be obtained from pruned branches, herbs, and dried leaves.

Among the nutritional elements in the ash are the vitally important potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, and calcium. The quantity and quality of the nutritional elements contained in the ash depend on what is burned to obtain it: the age of the plant from which the wood was obtained, the species, the environment in which the tree or plant that were used grew, for example.

Before spreading the incense ash on the ground as fertilizer, it is also very important to keep in mind that you should only use ash as fertilizer when the source of the burned wood is traceable.


Natural cycle

The ash represents the final result of a sort of natural cycle:

  • a tree, through its roots, first of all, absorbs all the nutrients of the soil;
  • through water, the tree absorbs other nutrients;
  • all the elements absorbed by the soil and water are accumulated in the wood of the trunk and branches of the tree;
  • when the wood is burned, the fire produces fumes through which oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, sulfur are dispersed and ash is produced;
  • ash obtained from the wood of the burnt tree contains many nutrients to be returned to the soil using the ash as a fertilizer and plus, it’s a wonderful way to return key elements to nature to help new plants grow and thrive.

I love this concept so much!

Also read:
A List of Trees that Symbolize Love (& Connecting With Them)
Where Did Incense Originate? [History & Symbolism Behind It]

Using the right incense is very important

When extinguishing incense, we create even more smoke than what might come from natural combustion and complete consumption. We have to keep in mind that common, low-priced incense is made in India in large factories that use a variety of chemicals to give the product scent and color.

We can therefore find synthetic laboratory perfumes, synthetic dyes, various glues, and combustible raw materials of dubious quality and origin in our incense sticks.

The most common incense is the one in the shape of a cone and stick lit from one end and left to burn to create the smoke that characterizes the product. During combustion, the substances that make up the incense are burned and released into the air through the smoke, also releasing new substances formed by combustion such as formaldehyde.

In combustion, these substances, already full of allergens and toxic materials, change shape and become even more denatured and health-threatening substances that come into contact with us through the air. They also contain heavy metal residues that are released into the environment during use and release very fine, harmful dust.

The smokes that are produced by bad-quality incenses are easily inhaled, go into the lungs, can damage the heart, lungs, arteries, cause respiratory problems, and trigger allergies of various degrees. If we do not find certificates on the labels, we are not sure of the product and the shopkeeper can’t give us adequate information, let’s not buy it.

The same caution should also be taken when buying scented candles, which are also often full of toxic substances released into the air. So, let’s ensure we always buy high-quality, certificate products to enjoy the incredible benefits of incense while safeguarding our health too!

Tina Caro

Tina Caro is a witch with more than 10 years of experience, a yogi, an astrologer, and a passionate supporter of all things holistic! She’s also an owner of the website Magickal Spot where she discusses a variety of her favorite topics.

Magickal Spot has helped thousands of readers worldwide, and she’s personally worked with hundreds of clients and helped them manifest desires to have a happier and more abundant life.

tina caro new about me photo

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