Physical and Psychological Benefits Of Burning Incense


For centuries, people have burned incense for a variety of reasons. From the utilitarian purposes of covering unsavory scents to bringing good luck, incense has proven to be an invaluable tool in the spiritual and physical worlds. Today, there are many types of incense to choose from including smudge sticks, incense sticks, and incense cones. These sticks make utilizing this powerful tool more convenient than ever. 


Some places have an unavoidable negative energy. Burning incense in these areas helps to banish those uncomfortable feelings. This is also known as cleansing. Sandalwood is an ideal cleansing incense. However, lavender and sage also work well.


The five senses connect people to the world, but they also affect how well the mind takes in information. Burning incense clears many of the pathways that can become webbed and dark during life’s everyday battles. As a result, all the senses are awakened and refreshed. The use of incense along with meditation is an excellent method for tuning into both the inner self and the surrounding world.


People often don’t notice the effects that scent has on the entire body. However, when one encounters an unpleasant aroma, the whole body tenses and recoils. Likewise, when a person smells a lovely scent, they are immediately more at ease and relaxed. This is why so many turn to incense to aid in insomnia and general relaxation techniques.


Most importantly, the user of incense is certain to encounter good luck often. With all the other wonderful effects that incense has on the user, there’s little negative energy, sleeplessness, or closed off senses to hinder the very best of luck from enveloping one’s life.

Scents, aromas, fragrances (however you describe them) can be used to trigger specific responses. For instance; to encourage relaxation, aid sleep, promote concentration, stimulate creativity, increase motivation and heighten sexual desire. In addition, there’s also a whole raft of religious, aesthetic and practical reasons. A further dimension is that specific fragrances or ingredients can be used for specific purposes.

Below, we explore these attributes and uses for Incense, highlight various benefits and suggest fragrances for occasions and purposes.

What is incense made of ?

Incense is typically made up of an aromatic material that produces a scent and a combustible binding material that holds it together in a particular shape.

The aromatic materials used for making incense are typically plant-based and can include a variety of resins, barks, seeds, roots, and flowers.

The specific ingredients used in incense can vary by region and manufacturer. Some specific examples of aromatic ingredients that you may recognize include:

  • cinnamon
  • frankincense
  • musk
  • myrrh
  • patchouli
  • sandalwood

The combustible binding material found in incense is what ignites, allowing the incense to burn and produce smoke. The materials used vary, but can include things like charcoal or wood powders.

1. Relax and unwind

Light some Incense, curl up on the sofa with a cup of tea, a book and some chilled-out music. Alternatively, run a bath and replace candles with an Incense Stick or two. Soft fragrances will further enhance this time, allowing you to give yourself time and space away from the hassles of everyday living. 

Frankincense, Sandalwood and Cedarwood are all ‘calming fragrances’, so work well for general relaxation.

2. Reduce stress and anxiety

A step up from relaxing – reduce body activities like heart rate and breathing. Also, encourage your mind to stop worrying and racing from one thing to another. Go for the purest and best quality Sandalwoods for this. Lavender and Rosemary are other great choices here too.

3. Meditation

Incense is used widely in many religious practices to deepen attention, heighten senses and uplift one’s own spirit when practicing meditation. Traditionally, the passing of time was also measured by the burning of set length incense sticks.

Sandalwoods and Lotus are used most frequently for meditation – but you chose what suits you best. One that transports you to the place you need to be, without taking over your thoughts.

4. Spirituality

The burning of Incense can act as a doorway to spirituality, formal or informal, recognised religion or secular. Incense is and has been for thousands of years in daily use in many religions of the world – Hinduism, Buddhism and Christianity.

5. Generosity and Mindfulness

Whether formal or informal, religious or aesthetic, you create good Karma by taking an incense stick and lighting it as an offering. A simple way to do something, without expectation of return. An act of generosity and letting go.

Make this a mindful activity and select an Incense Stick of high-quality. Take time and pride in preparation, selecting your stick, incense bowl and lighting materials. Light, ‘listen’ to the fragrance and relax.

6. Stimulate creativity

A well-selected fragrance can be used to enhance your own abilities, stimulate ideas and improve mental performance. Aloeswood based Incense is known for this as well as ‘uplifting’ fragrances such as Lemongrass, Citrus scents, Geranium and Ylang-Ylang.

7. Increase Focus

Burn Aloeswood and uplifting fragrances when working or studying to increase focus and enhance concentration. Less intrusive than having music playing in the background, fragrances have a subtler effect of the mind and body, making them a perfect partner for work, study or engaging in a hobby that requires detailed focus. 


8. Aid sleep

Insomnia is an increasing affliction, especially in our modern, always on and interrupt orientated society. Lavender is especially associated with an aid to sleep, as are Vetiver and Chamomile. Having an Incense stick burning when falling asleep is far safer than using a candle with its naked flame.


9. Yoga practice

Help focus the mind and ready the body by creating the right aromatic atmosphere. Doing such a natural and healthy activity you’ll want to avoid anything artificial, toxic or just plain distracting. fragrances carefully chosen to suit many types and styles of Yoga - from energetic to restful and meditative.

11. Medicinal

The effect of good aromas, generated from Incense sticks has been shown to raise serotonin in the brain. As an alternative to taking drugs, nonpharmacological methods of raising brain serotonin may not only improve mood but does so without side-effects or dangers of addiction. 

Serotonin is considered a natural mood stabilizer and helps with sleeping, eating, and digestion. Serotonin also helps reduce depression, regulate anxiety and reduce headaches.

In summary, Serotonin is good and Incense helps it flow! Rose is highest on our list of recommendations for this attribute; try it blended alongside a good Aloeswood stick too.

12. Cultivate a new interest

Some people drink and appreciate fine wines – others burn Incense! There is an interesting journey to be taken here with fragrance … Which do you like, which motivates you, which affects you most? Turning the burning of Incense into an interest will encourage you to slow down, appreciate things in more detail, even tune up your ability to focus and concentrate. There’s much to discover, learn and appreciate.


13. Air purification

Certain floral based ingredients have antibacterial properties – such as the Nag Champas. Plus, Incense is an easy, quick and accessible way to cover unwanted household smells like cooking, pets, damp clothes etc. Cedar, Myrrh and Citrus scents will ‘cleanse’ the air, leaving behind a freshness and new beginning.

14. A magical experience

Scents arouse significant responses in our brains and can instantly remind us of past events, people and emotions. We can be transported back to ancient Egypt, to Springtime in Japan – or anything within our own memory banks.

The good feelings are just a moment away. Accessible in price, easy to use, huge choice plus interesting and engaging. 


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