Deciding on what might be the best incense sticks aromas is often a matter of personal preference. What one person might consider a beautiful delicate fragrance; another could easily dislike the very same aroma. What can make matters even more complicated is the overwhelming choice of incense sticks available online from the UK and worldwide. However, because of the increasing popularity of online incense reviews, it is now easier to find good quality incense.
There are certainly cheap and nasty incense sticks out there but we’re going to focus on some of the best value for money. Incense that truly inspires, such as aromatherapy incense that encourages relaxation or calm; depending on the mood you want to achieve.
What Incense Sticks Provide the Best Quality?
Incense aromas are very subjective and as such, it is a highly personal experience when burning incense sticks. Prices vary wildly and often reflect the quality of the particular incense sticks. You can pay as little as £0.50p per pack of terrible quality incense, rising to £30 or more for high quality Japanese incense sticks.
The best way to develop your own knowledge and preference is to look for incense reviews online. Just do a search and see what users have said. Buy a sampler pack of 10 or 20 sticks and be prepared to pay at least £1.50 upwards for anything reasonable as a starting point.
Indian Incense Sticks
There is along tradition of burning incense in India that dates back centuries. Many of the current day Indian incense sticks in production are named after Indian gurus such as Sathya Sai Baba and Sai Baba of Shirdi.
The ingredients for many brands of incense produced outside India, are derived from plants and flowers that originate in Asia and particularly from India. Many of the masala incense blends are unique to India so this is a good place to start your incense journey or to try new ones. Some of the larger manufacturers include Sarathi, Gajalaxmi Agarbarthi Works and the widely exported Shrinivas Sugandhalaya incense products.
Japanese Incense Sticks
All Japanese incense was originally imported from China from around 540 CE and was closely linked with Buddhism. Over time incense became embedded in the culture of Japan for use in meditation and relaxation.
Now Japan has some very established, and high quality, incense stick producers. Some of those incense manufacturers have been making incense for over three hundred years. Well respected makers of Japanese incense include Baieido, Nippon Kodo and Shoyeido which is one of the oldest.
Tibetan Incense Sticks
Most Tibetan incense was used historically while in meditation by monks. The countless Buddhist temples use incense in a spiritual form to create harmony and peace. Tibetan incense derives from not only Tibet, but also covers Bhutan and Nepal.
The Tibetan incense blends are very traditional with earthy notes and have remained unchanged for centuries. Many are derived from historic Vedic scriptures and also have medicinal Ayurveda qualities at their core. They tend to be very rustic in their style.
North American Incense Sticks
Although the US is not traditionally associated with producing incense, their is a definite historical link. This typically dates back to to the burning of incense by North American Indians using local herbs and plants. A spiritual offering if you like.
Fast forward to modern day America and many of the thriving incense outlets offer many imported incense sticks. There are a few exceptions to this and some notable manufacturers that look to be doing well in the thriving US market are the more commercial Wild Berry Incense Company, Fred Soll and Mermade Magickal Arts among others.