Green Living

How to Sage Your House

The other day, my friend asked me how to do a sage energy cleansing of her house. I thought maybe you all would like to know too!

Saging your house is also known as smudging. It’s roots are in Native American cultures and traditions. It is a ritualistic way to cleanse a person, place or an object of negative energies or influences.

The theory behind smudging, is that the smoke attaches itself to negative energy and as it clears it takes the negative energy with it, then Mother Earth reabsorbs the negative energy and filters it herself.

To cleanse your house with sage, you need a bundle of dried sage like this:

You can find them at natural food stores, or specialty bookstores or you can buy some online. And if you’re feeling adventurous, it’s even possible to make smudge sticks yourself!

To start, you set your intention. You can say a prayer or an affirmation, whatever feels right to you. The exact words do not matter for it to work. Simply set an intention, to clear your house of any lingering negative energy. I like to say a prayer, because I am Catholic, and I then I say something like “anything that is not of the highest Christ light and energy please leave you are not welcome here.”

Then light your sage. You want to get it lit completely. It is the smoke, not the flame, that clears the energy.

Then wave your sage stick around your whole house. Try to get the smoke into every area of your house. Every corner, every closet, etc.

Sage also helps the flow of energy (a la Fung Shui) in your house, every house can have stagnant areas where the energy is not necessarily negative, but it’s stuck. The sage helps move it along.

Also do the front and back porches and all around your door.

So when would you want to sage?

-After you have had a large party or gathering at your house. Energy is fluid, so people can leave bits of their energy field where ever they go. Have you ever felt yucky after going to the mall or a sporting event? It’s because there are 5 million people there and you are rubbing up against and mixing with their  energy. Sometimes this feels wonderful, like when you are at retreat with like minded people, but other times it feels like you need to take a shower to get the gunk off! Just FYI, there are ways to protect your aura from negative energy, I will show you how to do that one day soon.

-If you have had a fight with your spouse or children. Me and Peter fight all the damn time (while Penelope is sleeping). I do my best to sage after every fight (I also always tell Penelope that we are just working things out and we get angry, but that it is not about her and that she is safe).

-If a negative/grumpy/mean person comes into your home.

-If you just moved into your house or apartment. You want to clean out the last families energy. I would also sage a hotel bed or your bed if you are house guest. You are literally laying on someone else energy, and it can make you restless.

-If a virus or illness just went through your house. Sage does have anti-bacterial properties to it. But really its good to do, because usually all illness is just a physical manifestation of an issue in your energy field that has been taken care of.

-If something sad or traumatic happened. Grief is not necessarily a negative energy, but it sometimes lingers longer than is healthy, and sage can help it along.

Hope that helps! Happy Saging!

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  • She's crafty, and she's just my type.
    June 15, 2011 at 7:58 PM

    That's great. Thank you for sharing. I had a shaman come and sage our home a while ago and it was AMAZING how energized we all felt after and how clean the air felt. Its hard to describe, but I totally believe in this stuff.

    • maria sparkes
      September 25, 2012 at 1:56 PM

      please,how do you contact a shaman?

      • Stephanie
        September 25, 2012 at 2:13 PM

        I would search for energy healers in your local area. Most healers do not call themselves shamans but some do. Go to a natural food store or spiritual bookstore and you should find some flyers or business cards. Asking for referrals from chiropractors, acupuncture doctors or midwives is another great place to start.

  • Amanda McKay
    June 16, 2011 at 12:51 AM

    Question: do you have to buy sage? Can you just dry some sage from the garden and tie it up?

    • Angela
      May 23, 2016 at 6:23 AM

      Hi Stephanie,
      For 3 months my house has had several issues related to water. First, my water heater had issues, then I had a leak in one of the toilets, then a pipe started leaking and yesterday my master bathroom and bedroom were flooded while being gone for the weekend. A month ago I got serious hail damage on my roof. All of these are related to water. Do you recommend saging?, or is there something else I should be doing??

      • Stephanie
        June 15, 2016 at 9:57 PM

        It’s always a good time to sage!

  • Stephanie
    June 16, 2011 at 2:48 AM

    How Cool, She's Crafty! I saged this afternoon, and felt a little kick in my step too. It really does make you feel lighter.

    Hi Amanda, I have never dried my own sage before, but I am sure you could. I have dried rosemary before and I put the needles on a single layer on cookie sheet and left it out for weeks till it was completely dried. If you do it, let me know how it goes.

  • jaya pratheesh
    June 20, 2011 at 7:26 AM

    in india, the more superstitious of ou friends would burn dried red chillies and smoke the house after a particulaly ill-willed 'friend' visited the prevent the evil eye, they said.

    maybe it had something to do with the energies, maybe not. i'm convinced there is some effect for everything, including burning incense, oud, and lighting (certain)oil lamps.

  • Amy
    October 7, 2011 at 7:33 PM

    I just found this post today! I am so excited, because a friend of mine is having a homebirth VBAC. This is the perfect thing for her to do in the house before her baby arrives. I also pinned this, so that when I have my next baby I can do the same:). Thanks for posting this!

  • Wendy
    December 25, 2011 at 4:16 AM

    I found this post and I have a question can you use the stick more then once or they a one time deal?
    Thanks Love the Blog!

  • Stephanie
    December 27, 2011 at 5:25 PM

    @jaya…red chilies! that is so interesting, thanks for sharing.
    @Amy…this is a great thing to do in early labor! Or even at anytime in labor, especially in the hospital where there are so many different energies coming and going. Thanks for pinning this post!
    @Wendy…it depends on how big the stick is. They come in all sizes. I usually buy a much bigger one than I took a picture of that day, and I reuse it. Just keep saging, until you feel peaceful and calm in your house. You will know when you are done and how much to use. And so glad you like the blog, thanks so much for telling me!

  • Sarah
    February 7, 2013 at 11:51 AM

    I found this to be very useful. will be saging my home within next couple of weeks should be good as my house feels kinda heavy like if that makes sense, and I have trouble sleeping. I think this may do the trick THANKYOU

    • Stephanie
      February 8, 2013 at 3:25 AM

      Yes! That makes perfect sense. You will feel much better after you sage the house.

  • holly
    March 8, 2013 at 4:54 PM

    hi I have been feeling a bad energy in my apartment also the other day I took a pic of myself and seen a guy standing in the background of the pic…. im usually home alone with my 8 month old son and when I talk to him I can hear somebody mocking what I say sometimes in a womans voice and sometimes in a mans voice my son has also been laughing looking around the room like he sees something too. its gotten so bad that I cant sleep at night even with my husband laying next to me…. I will be using the sage today..

    • Stephanie
      March 9, 2013 at 2:40 PM

      Creepy! Let me know how the sage works? But for that kind of stuff you might need to actually have a priest or someone else come and do a clearing.

      • Kat
        July 17, 2015 at 11:46 AM

        its not creepy at all, it’s smart and there is a science behind this. THe natives had it right all along. It may be creepy if you’re not familiar with the whole thing. My questions is, do you start from the basement of the house up or top to bottom? thanks.

        • Stephanie
          July 17, 2015 at 8:49 PM

          No pattern or reason, I just walk around my whole house and sometimes porch and yard with the sage stick. 😉

  • Katylina
    March 15, 2013 at 10:27 PM

    I love the benefits of sage. It is so important to do as you have said above and it really does feel clean and refreshing once your home is saged. Really love this stuff!

  • Noemi
    April 18, 2013 at 12:26 AM

    Thank you so much for this! I came across your post as I googled on how to get rid of negative energy. Are there any specifics on open or closed doors and windows?

    • Stephanie
      April 18, 2013 at 2:50 PM

      I have done it both ways. If you can it is good to open windows after you sage, because the air and sunshine do wonders to clear stagnant energy as well.

  • Isabelle
    June 2, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    Hi, Stephanie – does this have to be done with the dried-sage bundle? I put some ground dried sage in a ceramic bowl, lit a match, and put it in, and the sage burned very slowly, giving a steady supply of aromatic smoke for a long enough time to cover my entire house and keep burning for a while more. I did notice (or imagine?) a lightening or clearing of the atmosphere after. Felt good. 🙂

    • Stephanie
      June 3, 2013 at 8:09 PM

      That is a great way to do a saging if you want to have a consistent burn either after you walked around your house with the stick or if one particular area needs a good cleanse, say the spot you had a mega blow out with your spouse. It does need to be dried, fresh sage wont burn.

  • Jill
    October 23, 2013 at 11:37 PM

    I have a security system that will call the fire dept. automatically, will smudging set off my fire alarms? Do you open the windows while smudging and/or after? Does this make the negative energy leave out the house through the windows?

    • Stephanie
      October 24, 2013 at 1:08 AM

      I have never set off a fire alarm, but can’t speak for anyone else experience. It’s a very small amount of smoke. I will say that when our family dog was alive, the small amount of smoke did make him nervous and he would follow me around and make sure a fire wasn’t starting. As far as the negative energy leaving…it can leave through windows, that’s why when the weather turns nice and you can turn off the AC and open the windows you feel such a huge energetic shift in the house, but it can also just dissapate by using the sage. It’s energy. It’s complicated to wrap your mind around I know.

  • aimee
    September 24, 2014 at 11:22 AM

    I have heard that the direction that you move through your house can affect the outcome, like clockwise vs counterclockwise, one direction can invite unwanted energy and another can remove it. Is there a certain pattern that you use in your home? Is there any truth to this, or is it just some random silliness that someone put on the internet to scare people?

    • Stephanie
      September 29, 2014 at 11:16 AM

      I have not heard that! I could see how it makes sense though!

  • katajo
    October 24, 2015 at 7:08 PM

    how can you cleanse an apartment when your landlord won’t let you burn incense or candles? No way around this as it’s the smoke itself that is forbidden as it’s a designated “clean air” apartment, so is there any other way to cleanse that doesn’t require burning herbs?

    • Stephanie
      October 25, 2015 at 12:39 PM

      Prayer. You could have your local Catholic Priest come out and bless the home with Holy Water. We did this at a rental house we were living in, while we were in South Florida for a year and half. He wrote prayers in chalk over each entrance doorway too. It was an amazing experience.

  • Mark
    February 10, 2016 at 11:53 AM

    After I cleanse my house can we give the sage stick to a friend to cleanse there home????

    • Stephanie
      February 23, 2016 at 5:33 AM

      If there is still dried leaves left, sure thing. 🙂

  • Ann {Created To Cook}
    March 26, 2016 at 11:05 AM

    Hi Stephanie!
    Thank you for sharing this… I googled sagging and found your post. We have construction workers in and out of the house for the past several weeks as we renovate our home. When my husband and I came home from our date night the smell of one partial man was still lingering in the house… And it was all throughout the house in every room he had been in. I went around the house trying to clean the smell away by spraying a mix of water, vinegar and peppermint essential oils.

    I thought I had mostly resolved the problem… But then when I woke up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom… The smell was there. So I just said a quick prayer asking for wisdom on where the smell is coming from… (I completely forgot I had even said that prayer till just now)… I woke up this morning with this strong sense I needed to google the word sagging… Which led me to your blog and this post. I’ve never sagged anything before and didn’t really know what or how to do it. I like that the way you explain it, and you don’t make it seem weird. I have a ton of sage growing in our garden that I’ve been wanting to use up. So I’m gonna try drying it out in the oven and sagging the house. I’ll let you know how it goes.

    On a side note:
    I remember as a kid, that once a year in our Catholic Church, the priest would go around waving a bowl filled with some kind of smoke/incense… Do you know if this is sorta the same thing and done for a similar reason?

    • Stephanie
      April 1, 2016 at 6:18 AM

      Thanks for sharing! Lol, “I don’t make it seem weird” that should be apart of my business tagline or something, “making the weird, not weird!” That is a good question, I keep meaning to find out exactly what incense is used in the Catholic Church, it’s a blend for sure, but not sure what is included.

  • lisa
    March 29, 2016 at 6:34 PM

    My husband left last October my son hates the house we live in because it reminds him of his father and it feels like there’s so much of him still here would saying help make it a more positive place for us all

    • Stephanie
      April 1, 2016 at 6:14 AM

      I’m sure it would. Lots of love to you and your son.

  • Hannah
    August 1, 2016 at 12:05 AM

    You could not have posted this at a better time. My terrible roommate is FINALLY moving out tomorrow and I desperately need to sage the place to get rid of her strong, negative energy and finally be free! I have never done it before and this article was helpful. Also, her name is ironically Sage, so I need to sage the place of Sage. Haha

  • Kassie
    August 14, 2016 at 6:56 PM

    Hi! I was wondering if the homeowner must sage or if another person, like my mom, could come in my home and do it for me? I just had a terrible break up with my boyfriend and have been struggling for a month and am willing to try anything. Please help.