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15 Full Moon Rituals To Try Yourself + Tips To Make Them More Effective, From Experts

Sarah Regan
April 17, 2024
Sarah Regan
mbg Spirituality & Relationships Editor
By Sarah Regan
mbg Spirituality & Relationships Editor
Sarah Regan is a Spirituality & Relationships Editor, and a registered yoga instructor. She received her bachelor's in broadcasting and mass communication from SUNY Oswego, and lives in Buffalo, New York.
April 17, 2024
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The full moon rolls around once every 28 days, bringing with it a hefty dose of energy, as the peak of the lunar cycle. As the moon illuminates the night sky, it's also a great time to turn inward and do some intentional practices to work with the moon's energy—and that's where full moon rituals come in.

Whether you're looking to release, manifest something, or simply set aside time to get in touch with yourself, here are 15 rituals to try yourself, plus a few extra tips for getting started.

What does the full moon represent?

Full moons represent a time of culmination and fruition, energetically speaking, while new moons are all about setting intentions to build up to the full moon.

Once the moon reaches its full peak, all that energy has built up over two weeks since the new moon. And then, of course, the moon begins to wane until it is new once again, and the cycle continues.

"When the moon is completely full, it's a spiritual and energetic pinnacle of whatever you started when the sun and the moon united at the new moon," the AstroTwins explain.

And depending on what astrological sign the moon is in (and where it lands in your birth chart), the full moon can impact us differently every time it comes around.

By doing rituals on or around the full moon, you both amplify the effects of your rituals through the moon's energy, as well as work with the natural rhythms of the lunar cycle.

How the full moon affects us

If you've ever felt like full moons disrupt your sleep or cause you to feel a bit frantic, you wouldn't be alone.

In fact, one study published in the journal Current Biology1 discovered it took people longer to fall asleep as the full moon approached. And on the night of the full moon, they spent 30% less time in deep sleep, had lower melatonin levels, and slept for 20 fewer minutes, on average.

As author of Inner Witch Gabriela Herstik puts it, "It's like you're plugging into the energetic outlet of the universe" around the full moon. "It's a very intense time. The moon teaches us about how things transform, and the full moon is the peak," she adds.

Of course, there's also something to be said about self-fulfilling prophecies—so rather than thinking about the full moon as a stressful or overstimulating time, consider it an opportunity to reflect on the cycles of life in and around you.

15 full moon rituals

Here are 15 ways to harness the powerful cumulative energy of the full moon—and use it to your advantage. From quick and easy to more involved, there's a ritual on this lunar list for everyone:


Draw a ritual bath

"I personally love a full moon bath," Herstik tells mindbodygreen, adding, "You can light candles that correlate to the colors of the sign the moon is in," she adds (i.e., Taurus is associated with green—peep the rest of the zodiac color palette here). And as the AstroTwins previously explained to mindbodygreen, submerging yourself in water is a great way to connect with lunar energy.

"You can say your full moon intentions aloud while you're relaxing in the tub as you imagine the full moon restoring every cell of your body," the twins say, noting that you can even take a dip in a lake, ocean, or pool if weather and location permit.


Make moon water

Moon water is water that has had time to sit under the light of the full moon and soak up some of its power. It can be used for a number of things, from drinking to bathing and even watering your houseplants. Here's how to make it:

  1. Fill a container with water. If you can use fresh rainwater, even better—but any water is OK.
  2. Place your container in direct moonlight. It doesn't matter whether it's outside on your porch or inside on a windowsill! Anywhere with moonlight will do.
  3. Say an affirmation or prayer. Think about what you want to use this moon water for, and say an affirmation or prayer over the jar to seal your intention.
  4. Leave overnight. Once your container is in place and your intention is set, leave the jar overnight in the moonlight. In the morning, your moon water will be good to go!

Charge your crystals

If you're into crystals, you'll be happy to know the full moon offers a great chance to clear and charge them. Similar to moon water, all you have to do is place your crystals under the light of the full moon (inside or outside). You could even leave your crystals with your moon water and tackle two birds with one stone.


Hold a full moon circle

Full moon circles are a great way for friends to come together and work with the full moon. While you can make your circle anything you want it to be, they typically involve setting intentions, clearing energy, and sharing your experiences with one another.


Do an oracle or tarot card reading

Because full moons are a powerful time for divination, Herstik recommends tapping into your own intuition with an oracle or tarot reading. Grab your favorite deck, ask the cards your questions, and pull as many cards as you like.

Check out our full guide to tarot readings for spread inspiration and helpful tarot tricks and tips.



Herstik and the twins both note that the full moon is a great time for meditating, especially on specific intentions you're working with. "You can do a full moon meditation before any of your rituals to set up the right mindset and align yourself with what you want to accomplish," the twins add.

Here's one example of a full moon meditation to try:

  1. Sit comfortably in a space where the moonlight is visible.
  2. Close your eyes and feel the moon's beams fill the room and your body.
  3. Focus on your breath and the intention you've set.
  4. Imagine the moonlight enveloping and purifying your body, mind, and spirit.
  5. Slowly bring your attention back to the room and open your eyes.
  6. Repeat as many times as you'd like in the three to five hours before or after the full moon reaches its peak.

Try a full moon manifestation ritual

No matter what you're looking to manifest, the full moon can help expedite the process, according to the twins. "A simple manifestation ritual can solidify your full moon intentions and help you bring things to fruition," they say.

Here's one to get you started:

  1. Create an altar or sacred space in your home where you can perform this ritual.
  2. Gather some inspirational objects (photos, notes, books, crystals, or anything that contains the energy of what you want to manifest).
  3. Sitting in front of your altar, meditate and relax your mind for a few moments as you get clear on what you're calling in.
  4. Let go of any judgment and close your eyes as you visualize yourself attracting exactly what you want. You can use the objects as points of focus.

Release what's no longer serving you

Once the full moon reaches its peak, it then begins to wane back to the new moon. As such, full moons are often associated with release and letting go of what doesn't serve you. To tap into this energy, Herstik recommends doing a releasing ritual—and it doesn't have to be anything elaborate.

Here's what she suggests:

  1. Grab a pen and paper, and get clear on what you want to release under this full moon.
  2. Once you're clear on what you want to let go of, write it down using affirmation statements such as "I release self-doubt" or "I release destructive habits."
  3. When you've written everything down, take a moment to visualize what it will be like once you release these things.
  4. Whenever you feel ready, burn the piece of paper outside under the full moon. (This goes without saying, but be careful to either burn it in a safe container or somewhere it won't touch vegetation—and make sure the fire is completely out before walking away!)
  5. Close out the ritual by thanking the moon for aiding in your release.


If you're looking for something straightforward, Herstik tells mindbodygreen the full moon is also a great time to do some journaling.

While you can write about anything you want, you can make your journaling sesh particularly potent for the full moon by thinking about themes of release and manifestation.

Ask yourself questions like:

  • What's stopping me from living my best life?
  • How can I release those things?
  • What would I like more of in my life and how can I get it?

Commune with nature

What better way to soak up the full moon than by simply basking in its rays? Herstik says spending time outside under the full moon connects you to nature and the moon itself, and you can incorporate other rituals into your outing as well.

Perhaps you meditate under the moon, hold your full moon circle outdoors around a fire, or do a tarot reading outside. The options are endless!


Try a breathwork visualization

If you've ever tried breathwork, you're going to love this breathwork technique from Herstik that couples the power of the moon with a visualization. Here's how to do it:

  1. Begin by visualizing the new moon.
  2. As you inhale, visualize the new moon slowly waxing, getting brighter and brighter, until you reach the peak of your inhale.
  3. Hold your inhale for a moment at the top, visualizing the full moon and imagining its lunar light and energy filling your body.
  4. As you exhale, visualize the moon waning, letting go of anything you want to release.
  5. Repeat as many times as you like.

Do a self-love ritual

There's never a bad time to do a self-love ritual, but the night of the full moon is a particularly great one, according to Herstik. This can look like virtually anything that makes you feel loved, but here's an idea from Herstik to get you started:

  1. Begin the ritual by doing something to drop into your body, whether stretching, breathwork, or even a full moon bath.
  2. Then, choose a cleansing water of your choice (moon water, rose water, Florida water, etc.) and sit in front of a mirror.
  3. Wipe the mirror down with your water while holding the intention to clear away any and all illusions stopping you from fully loving yourself, letting yourself be loved, and aligning with love.
  4. Sit in front of the mirror and gaze softly at yourself. You can also do some breathwork here, or repeat a mantra of your choice—anything that allows you to connect to your heart.
  5. Close out the ritual by thanking yourself, the moon, and the universe for holding you in self-love.

Do some plant magic

As astrology expert and author of Astrology SOS Imani Quinn tells mindbodygreen, tending to your plants is a great way to work with the lunar cycle.

As she explains, plants can represent a physical representation of your goals, so as you tend to them and watch them grow, it's like you're tending to yourself and your manifestations. 


Refresh your home

You read that right! Cleaning can indeed be a ritual, when done with mindfulness and the intention to refresh the energy of your home. As Quinn tells mindbodygreen, cleaning can also be literal or more energetic.

For instance, she adds, you could do some smudging with herbs around your home to clear out any stagnant energy, or you could take the more practical route and clear out your closet.

If you do go for smudging, remember to open up the windows to let fresh air in and any stale vibes out!



Last but not least, sometimes relaxation is the only ritual we really need—and the full moon is a good time to do it. With energy amplified, we might feel restless or worrisome, so take it as an invitation to go inward and slow down. Grant yourself some good ol' TLC, self-care, and a night in because that's never a bad idea.

Tips for your full moon rituals

Work with the astrological elements

As aforementioned, every full moon will be in particular astrological sign, and knowing which sign it's in can help you work with it. Here are a few keywords associated with the themes of each full moon:

  • Full moon in Aries: Individuality, self-image, confidence
  • Full moon in Taurus: Sensuality, stability, security
  • Full moon in Gemini: Truth, communication, curiosity
  • Full moon in Cancer: Emotional safety, family, home
  • Full moon in Leo: Bravery, expression, creativity
  • Full moon in Virgo: Devotion, practicality, discernment
  • Full moon in Libra: Relationships, harmony, balance
  • Full moon in Scorpio: Power, emotional depth, intimacy
  • Full moon in Sagittarius: Adventure, freedom, exploration
  • Full moon in Capricorn: Structure, discipline, abundance
  • Full moon in Aquarius: Innovation, humanitarianism, eccentricity
  • Full moon in Pisces: Spirituality, dreams, emotional sensitivity

Connect to the larger lunar cycles

The lunar cycle is 28 days from one full moon to the next, but these lunar cycles also relate to larger cycles that last all year.

For example, every Aries season, there is an Aries new moon, and two weeks later, a full moon in Libra, Aries' opposite sign. Then, come Libra season six months later, there is a Libra new moon and an Aries full moon.

This "dance" of the opposite signs and their respective moon cycles continues all year long. The opposite signs are:

  • Aries-Libra
  • Taurus-Scorpio
  • Gemini-Sagittarius
  • Cancer-Capricorn
  • Leo-Aquarius
  • Virgo-Pisces

In other words, every time the full moon rolls around, think about what was going on in your life six months prior, when the moon was new in the same zodiac sign. You can also think about what you want to release now that the moon is full, before it is new in that same sign again six months down the line.

Figure out where the full moon is landing in your birth chart

Just as the full moon will always be in one specific zodiac sign, it will also land in one of 12 "houses" in your astrological birth chart.

Pull up your birth chart, and then look up which zodiac sign the full moon is in. For example, let's say the full moon is in Taurus.

You would look at your birth chart for the Taurus symbol and figure out which 30-degree portion of the chart is under Taurus. (Hint: Your rising sign starts at your first house where 9 o'clock on a clock would be, and the signs go around counterclockwise in astrological order from there.)

If you were a Gemini rising, for example, the full moon in Taurus would be in your 12th house, versus a Scorpio rising, for whom a Taurus full moon would land in their seventh house.

Here's a quick overview of the house themes:

  • 1st house: Beginnings, identity, outward appearance
  • 2nd house: Stability, money, self-worth
  • 3rd house: Communication, thinking, community
  • 4th house: Home, security, family
  • 5th house: Expression, creativity, fertility
  • 6th house: Health, organization, self-care
  • 7th house: Relationships, partnership (both romantic and business-oriented)
  • 8th house: Death and rebirth, sex, inner depths
  • 9th house: Expansion, growth, wisdom
  • 10th house: Legacy, status, achievement (also known as the "midheaven" or MC)
  • 11th house: Originality, collective efforts, friendship
  • 12th house: Endings, subconscious, surrender

The takeaway

While full moons can be an emotional and intense time, they offer us monthly checkpoints to reflect and release. And when we understand how to work with the moon, we're able to live in tune with its rhythms and use it to our advantage.

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