Burning incense has become a hugely popular ritual that can be used for a number of reasons, yet has been around since as early as the Ancient Egyptians. Incense has been used for ritualistic purposes, for religious purposes in Ancient China around 2000 BCE for praying and worship, and for amusement and entertainment in Japan around the 6th century.
There are a number of health benefits associated with burning natural incense. Depending on what kind of incense is used and if any essential oils are used, incense can be wonderful for calming the body and mind, elevating bad moods and helping the immune system. The strong scent from incense sticks excite the olfactory part of the brain, which can have long and lasting positive effects on the body and mind.
I recently have decided to try out a number of incense sticks and I started with buying sticks that were sold at the local convenient store. I wanted to see the difference between store-bought incense sticks and handmade, so you can feel confident in knowing that I have done some incense stick testing before writing this review. I also took note of the ingredients in incense sticks from commercial stores and I noticed that they contain fragrance, which is not an ingredient I would like to be inhaling!
I was in touch with a local Canadian artisan who handcrafts incense sticks. Every stick is personally formulated and created by him, which you can trust seeing as he is a Clinical Aromatherapist and Herbalist.
My introduction to the use of essential oils and herbs came with my first tentative steps on my Pagan path. I learned of their energetic properties and associations, and how to incorporate them into ritual and spell work. Nine years ago I began my education in aromatherapy and herbalism, and have studied extensively over the years not only their therapeutic properties, but also their energetic properties. As well as compounding blends based on their energetic properties, I take the creation process one step further and utilize the energies of the universe around us by creating each product on the appropriate day, during the appropriate hour, and even during the proper phase of the Moon and time of the year. This allows me to create the most potent, energetic products I can offer to you.
He was kind enough to send me 3 packages of sticks (10 in each) for testing and review, and I feel so much better burning these sticks knowing exactly where they came from and just what kind of work and materials went into them. I also really like the meditation and spiritual aspect that goes with these sticks, and the fact that they go hand in hand with other products related to spirituality and getting in touch with oneself. Lailokens Awen makes other products such as candles, loose incense, altar sets, bath salts, smudge sprays and others among many.
Chakra Balancing Stick Incense
Chakra Balancing: Burn this incense to balance your Chakras and personal energy. Made on the day and in the hour of the Sun. Organic, hand-dipped 10 sticks woody, floral
Adoration Stick Incense
Adoration: Use as an offering to the gods and goddesses to honour them, and for enlightenment and spirituality. Made on the day and in the hour of Mercury. Organic, hand-dipped 10 sticks warm, woody, floral
Encens Demeter Stick Incense
Demeter: Burn as an offering to Demeter to honour her, and for Earth rites, fertility, harvests, gain. Made on the day and in the hour of Saturn. Organic, hand-dipped 10 sticks, deep, smoky
These sticks retail for $5.00 for a pack of 10. They are not your average incense stick. They burn for up to and over an hour, and can be stopped and snipped for use at a later time. Keep in mind that you are also filling your home with 100% natural scents and oils that come from a local business, so the price is well worth it!
Please excuse the light from the above image, I found it hard to get the sticks where I wanted them for a good picture! The sticks were neatly and tightly wrapped in each of these baggies in order to keep from breaking, as they are quite delicate. They were clearly put into the package quite carefully and with delicacy and were fit so nicely that you almost don’t want to take them out.
Texture, Size and Colour
The sticks are very light and feel a little rough, almost like a small twig but even lighter. Each stick has a woodsy-brown colour, yet each one differed in shade and lightness. The sticks were mostly the same size and thus all expected to have approximately the same burn time. They look like your average incense stick but they are much more beneficial and healthier than store-bought incense!
To me, these incense sticks all had a unique woodsy scent, with some stronger than others. Once lit, each stick smells almost like a burning campfire (which I love) and then quickly starts to fulfill its cleansing purpose of clearing the air and filling the air with lovely natural scents and essential oils.
I have used many different incense sticks before that I thought were considered ‘natural’. I used to be under the impression that anything that claims to clear the air must be good for you, until I started using incense sticks that are handmade with natural ingredients. The smell that emits from these sticks is light but becomes powerful, filling the entire room and making the room smell amazing for hours. I love the woodsy and smoky smell that comes from these sticks, making you feel like you’re sitting at a campfire or out of the city. I woke up the next day after burning incense and could still smell the powerful scent. I was really happy with the way my house smelled and how much more clear the air was. The benefits and ingredients of each stick are different and each one has a different story. Especially in a home filled with pets or children, burning candles or incense sticks that emit toxins and chemicals into the air is the last thing you want to expose sensitive lungs to. If you want your home to smell good while keeping your family safe, try out these sticks!!