How to Cleanse Tarot Cards
Tips for why and how to cleanse tarot cards.
While shuffling the tarot deck is a way to cleanse and clear the energy of the cards, there are times when you might want to do something more specific and ritualized. Maybe you’re just starting to learn tarot and cleansing your deck seems like a good place to begin.
There are many reasons why you may want to cleanse your tarot deck, including:
- Starting out with a new deck
- Doing readings for others
- You feel like you need a refresh
- Your card readings feel “off” or a little disconnected
- You haven’t used your deck for a while
- Others have handled your deck
- You feel like you’ve be using your deck A LOT – especially for emotionally heavy readings
Why should you cleanse or clear your tarot deck?
Cleansing your tarot deck can keep the energy between you and your deck flowing. Think of it like a little spiritual hygiene to keep the connection clear and well tuned. It’s not something you need to do, but if you’re feeling any of the above, explore a few different ways of clearing your deck energetically (see below) and note which ones feel like they work the best for you.
How often should you cleanse your tarot deck?
There are no hard and fast rules here, which is another way of saying USE YOUR INTUITION. If you don’t feel like your deck needs it, don’t worry about it. Or if you want to cleanse them once a week or once a month, great. You can even put your favorite crystal on the deck each night, if that feels right to you.
If you’re regularly placing crystals on your deck and putting your deck on an altar when you’re not using it, you may not feel the need to cleanse it often as this small ritual can be enough to keep your deck feeling good to you.
Just like there are many reasons you might want to cleanse your cards, there are plenty of ways to do it.
Different ways to cleanse your tarot deck
Use sacred smoke. Light a smoke cleansing wand made of dried rosemary, lavender, cedar, sage, or palo santo until it’s smoking. With the burning herbs in one hand and deck in the other, hold the smoke a safe distance below the deck, so the smoke wafts upward onto the cards. Turn the deck so that all sides get engulfed by the smoke. Then set your deck down and safely stop the smoke.
Place a selenite stone (or black tourmaline or clear quartz) on the deck. I like to let it sit like this overnight, but an hour would work, too.
Put them out on under a New Moon. The New Moon is blank slate energy, you can cleanse the deck under the new moon by placing it on a window sill on a new moon night. You can also set a fresh intention for your deck at this time.
Stick the cards in a bowl of salt. Salt is a powerful and grounding cleanser. This is my favorite option for a serious cleanse. Let it sit 1-8 hours in dry place (watch out for humidity with this one!)
Chaotic shuffle. Lay the cards out on the floor and mix them up like you’re a kid playing in mud. The randomness and freedom of this method is a great reset.
The sort and shuffle. Lay out the deck starting with the Major Arcana numbers 0-22 in lines of 7 cards across (see photo above). Then lay out the cards Ace through King for each suit in this order: Wands, Cups, Swords, Pentacles. View the deck in this form, then mix it all up (like the chaotic!) and shuffle well.
Read more: How to Shuffle Tarot Cards (plus Jumper Cards).
How to cleanse tarot cards
There’s no right or wrong way to cleanse your deck. Experiment and find what works for you. Some methods of cleansing might work better for different situations. If you want to learn more about reading tarot intuitively, sign up for the waitlist for my course, Tarot Foundations.
You can also book a tarot reading or tarot tutoring session with me.
Thank u for all this fantastic information.....luv and light 💙💜💙💜👊🌈
ive been using selenite to cleanse my tarot cards and wanted to double check and make sure i was doing it right!! ☺️
oooh yeah, love selenite!
If I choose to use the salt method of cleansing do the cards need to be entirely submerged in the salt?
No, they can be partially submerged. Whatever feels right to you.
Thanks for this information
Baby witch here,hoping to learn more.
I baught a deck of tarot cards, we seem to hit it off. I've been doing a 21 day bonding (not done yet) the cards used call out to me but now are cold. I've put them back in the correct order,am trying selenite,clear quartz tonight till morning. It is the Tarot Del Fuego. I think it is a strong deck personality. I'm also trying to bond some, lenormand, crystal tarot. Crystal is fine, lenormand now is warming up to me. Is Fuego upset? Yes the cards have been cleansed with polisontos,sage before I started bonding have had them under my pillow.
I don't think anything is wrong or upset. It sounds that you're working so hard to connect and you're doing all the things, which is awesome, but maybe you need some breathing room? Maybe a little break is in order or perhaps just switching up the way you approach the deck. If you usually do spreads and ask very specific question try just pulling some cards in an open-ended way — or vice versa.
In the seventies I used Tarot cards for me personally.. they have been neatly packed away for about 20 years. My granddaughter wants to learn and have mine. Whats the best cleanse
The cups are positive, are the rods also positive?
is it okay to put my tarot cards on a catholic altar?
for the salt cleansing can it be any type of salt or normal salt?
Still consider myself a baby witch, but have intuitively done readings for myself and close friends only. It's been about a year that I started doing this.
Does anyone besides me use a small spritz of lroroda water on their hands and then shuffle ? It’s very cleansing and pure . I also use it on whatever surface I’m goin to do the spread on .
Bought my very 1st set of cards, from my good friends shop she owns in Lahaini, Maui. Deck of 78. the back of the box says Originally made by Pamela Colman Smith, under the instruction of Arthur Edward Waite. So as a NEW owner of her 1st set of cards, what / how do I open them and take it from there?
I got a tarot deck a couple of days ago, I got The Enchanted Tarot 25th Anniversary Edition. I'm a beginner and just know very little. I have a beautiful little amethyst tree I got as a present last year from a very dear friend of mine, looking at it always brightens my heart since it was given to me by someone important and I was wondering if it's a good idea to place it on top of my tarot deck as a way of cleansing since it feels just right to me and special, or is it a better idea to use a different method??
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I’m new just wanted to know what’s the best beginner deck.
Hello, I’m new to the tarot cards and want to make sure I keep them cleansed properly and safe, is putting 3 crystals to cleanse it fine as well or it has to be one crystal?