Be Well

Time to Clear the Air

Get rid of pollutants and negative energy with these natural cleansing tools.
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Good vibes live in the air, and at a time when Americans spend more time indoors than out, it’s time to think about the air we breathe. There are a number of ways to cleanse the air of unwanted smells and energies without using harmful air fresheners or synthetic scented candles. Caring for houseplants and burning wood, herbs, and incense are natural ways to rid the room of negative and stale energy all while improving indoor air quality.

Here are four tools to help you clear the air:

Palo Santo

Palo Santo, Spanish for “holy wood”, comes from the Bursera graveolens tree, primarily grown in South America. Burning palo santo is a spiritual tradition that dates back to the Incan Empire. Palo santo is a cleansing wood that balances the mind and repels negative energy, perfect prior to meditation. Palo santo smoke even alleviates symptoms of the cold and flu. The wood itself smells of mint, citrus, and pine. Allow the stick to burn for half a minute before blowing the flame out and letting the smoke dissipate through the room.


White sage is the most popular herb in smudge sticks, a tool to cleanse the energy of a room. Like palo santo, sage cleanses crystals and has an array of health benefits, treating headaches and coughs. Light the end of the smudge stick, let it flame for a minute, then blow the fire out and direct the smoke towards the corners of the room, keeping a window open for the smoke to circulate.


Not every tool to cleanse the air involves a flame. There are several houseplants that improve indoor air quality by naturally removing pollutants and increasing oxygen flow. The spider plant, snake plant, and aloe vera are three of the most common. Each is easy to maintain and remove common pollutants like formaldehyde and benzene. Plus, aloe vera has a number of properties that promote skin, digestive, and respiratory health.

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