Burning Incense over Foil

We hear from folks who hate the smell of myrrh all the time -- the usual complaint is that it smells like burnt rubber. We also hear similar comments about bound incenses, normally that it smells like a campfire or is too smoky.

Resins, and all incense, smell because of their essential oil content. The goal while burning them as incense is to heat them so that the oils volatilize into the air. The best way to do this is to heat them slowly at low temperatures so that the oils volatilize without burning everything into a charred stinky mess. Many incenses that we make are best burned that way too. Since we don't add overpowering synthetics, there's a complicated and delicate dance of essential oils in there waiting to be released.

It's terribly easy to heat resins and incense without burning them. Our favorite and recommended method is to make a little tent out of aluminum foil and place it over your charcoal. You can also dispense with the charcoal altogether and put a foil strip over a tea light in a votive holder - just be careful to keep it off the wax, otherwise you'll have that half-burned wax smell of blown out candles. Just place your incense on top of the foil and enjoy the scent as it cooks.

All resins and incenses that we make can be burned this way, but the ones we definitely recommend it for are as follows: myrrh, breuzinho, and benzoin siam, as well as kyphi and the planetary and sabbat blends. Indeed, if you're one of those folks that thinks myrrh smells like burnt rubber, try this method.