Last Updated on January 22, 2023
What Is a Cleansing Stone in DnD 5e?
A cleansing stone is a mostly useless common magic item that does almost exactly what you would think. You can use this stone to remove dirt and grime from your garments and your person.
I’m sorry, did you not believe that such a simple magic item could exist? That’s fine; here are the item’s stats from Eberron: Rising from the Last War.
Wondrous Item, common
A cleansing stone is a sphere 1 foot in diameter, engraved with mystic sigils. When touching the stone, you can use an action to activate it and remove dirt and grime from your garments and your person.
Such stones are often embedded in pedestals in public squares in Aundair or in high-end Ghallanda inns.
This kind of magical item is common in D&D. As in, it is an item of common rarity, and also, it’s pretty often that we see silly, gimmicky items filling the pages of our sixty-dollar guidebooks.
Listen, I’m as big a fan of silly magical items as the next guy, but this is no Boots of False Tracks. This is an item that lets you clean yourself. Is it an interesting item? Maybe. Is it worth 1.99 to purchase this item on dndbeyond? GOD NO! PLEASE NO!
Okay, I won’t go into a full rant about the over-monetization of this beloved RPG system. I’ll get to why you came here: talking about why this is actually a useful item.
The Value of Cleanliness in DnD
Food, arrows, sleep, money, hygiene, etc. There are so many things that can matter in a game of Dungeons and Dragons. The amount of tracking your group does can have a huge impact on the immersion in good ways and bad.
I think that at this point, there are few DMs who really care how many arrows you have, but they’re still out there, and for good reason. Gary Gygax himself was a huge proponent of a simple concept: adventuring is hard work, and you shouldn’t do it for free.
A dominating theory he held over the game was that adventurers are just doing this so they can have enough money to stop doing this. This isn’t to say that characters couldn’t adopt the lifestyle of a hero; it just means that our characters weren’t the altruistic superheroes they’re often portrayed to be today.
Okay, so what in the hell does this have to do with a damn stone that replaces a shower and a clothesline? Well, everything.
One of the three pillars of 5e is Social Interaction, and this is why hygiene can matter a great deal. Do you want to have a conversation with four wild-eyed adventurers that smell like a ripe mix of dragon shite, offal, and sulfur? No, I didn’t think so.
If you want a game where you float around like Pelor’s gift to Faerun, easily conquering one obstacle after the other, then use a cleansing stone as a blunt instrument for all I care.
If, on the other hand, you want a game where everything you do matters, where your actions and inactions have a tangible effect on the world around you, then this item is a lifesaver. After all, when was the last time you saw a tavern with a working shower? I’m sure gnomes have figured out washing machines, but they’re definitely a big-ticket item and are not portable.
The cleansing stone is a stupid item, but it exists for a good reason. Hygiene, like many other things often forgotten once we start rolling dice, can have a huge impact on the game if you let it.
Coming from the guy who’s crashed every PC he’s ever owned with more Skyrim immersion mods than you’d think exist, this item is a call to arms.
So, Is the Cleansing Stone a Good Item?
No, and yes. Whether or not this is a good item is completely dependent on how you want to play this game. At the very least, it’s a cheeky little novelty item that will make your players laugh.
Who knows, maybe they’ll find a genuinely interesting way to use it. After all, this is a game where creativity, above all else, should be rewarded. So yeah, throw this in an early-level dungeon and see what happens. That’s the wonder of DnD — you truly never know what’s going to happen.
Alright, now I’m going to go take a bath because, in real life, this would be the best magic item out there. But alas, this is reality, and I still have to pay my gas bill. As always, happy adventuring.
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As a kid, I was often told to get my head out of the clouds and to stop living in a fantasy world. That never really jived with me, so I decided to make a living out of games, stories, and all sorts of fantastical works. Now, as an adult, I aspire to remind people that sometimes a little bit of fantasy is all you need when life gets to be too much.