How to Burn Incense Sticks Without a Holder or Burner

ceramic incense burner

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Many people think that burning incense sticks requires a traditional wooden, ceramic, or metal incense burner but there are many ways in which you can incense sticks.

We always recommend using an actual incense burner, but if you are in a pinch, then then you can try using a DIY incense holder instead.

A Soda Can

Not only does this give you a reason to drink your favorite soda (as if you needed a reason anyway), soda cans also make great incense burners. You can fit the incense stick into the tab of the soda can, or you use the soda can to keep the incense stick in place on a fire-proof surface.

An Urn or Vase

Japanese Incense Vase

You can place sand or salt inside of an urn or vase and stick your incense sticks in.

These are really common outside of Buddhist temples in Asia.

These are really convenient because they catch all of the ash which falls off the incense sticks.

A Potted Plant

Your plant may not like it, but if you need a quick DIY incense burner, you can simply place the incense stick in the wet soil of your plant.

A Heavy Object

Of course, if you’re going to suspend the incense sticks in air on a fire-proof surface, a soda can isn’t necessary. You can use any heavy object to do so, as long as it’s fireproof.

Your Sink

A good place to burn incense sticks is your kitchen sink. You can suspend the incense sticks over it and the ash will simply fall into your sink. However, if you do this, make sure that the burning portion will not reach your sink, or it may potentially leave a mark. It is also recommended to place a heavy object on top of the incense stick to make sure it doesn’t fall off. If done right, it is very easy to clean up.

Holding It

Lady Holding Incense Outside of a Temple

If you don’t mind doing so, it’s perfectly acceptable to simply hold the incense stick while it is burning. While this may seem like common sense, it is also pretty common among hikers and in certain styles of meditation. Be careful not to burn yourself though!

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