Minecraft enchantments guide

Minecraft enchantments - an enchantment table chilling in its natural environment, a library
(Image credit: Mojang)

Searching for the best Minecraft enchantments, but need a primer on them? Minecraft has lots of items already and enchantments add onto that, with different tiers, and a shedload of possible effects to add—the variety of choices can be daunting. But luckily, this guide should help explain what's involved in the process.

Minecraft enchantments are by no means essential, but they can be a big help. Minecraft Netherite armor is one of the rarest and most valuable pieces of kit out there—if you can find Ancient Debris (opens in new tab) to make it, that is. That said, let's get to the bottom of how to use Minecraft enchantments. Be aware that you're also going to need a diamond pickaxe (opens in new tab) to gather the necessary materials for your new enchanting table. 

What is Minecraft enchanting?

Minecraft enchantments are an essential mechanic to set you up for endgame as it grants your items various special effects. You can enchant everything from weapons, tools, and armor, so there's certainly something in your possession that you can take to the next level. It basically involves imbuing items with special powers to make them stronger. 

How to set up a Minecraft enchantment room

Before you enchantment run you have to enchantment walk, so here's how to get started with your journey to being a shiny collecting Minecraft wizard and set up your very own spot to enchant stuff.

How to craft an enchanting table

To craft a Minecraft enchanting table, you first need the ingredients. Here's your shopping list:

  • 4 Obsidian blocks
  • 2 Diamonds
  • 1 Book

Minecraft enchantments - crafting an enchantment table

(Image credit: Mojang)
Best of Minecraft

Minecraf 1.18 key art

(Image credit: Mojang)

Minecraft update: What's new?
Minecraft skins (opens in new tab): New looks
Minecraft mods (opens in new tab):  Beyond vanilla
Minecraft shaders (opens in new tab): Spotlight
Minecraft seeds (opens in new tab): Fresh new worlds
Minecraft texture packs (opens in new tab): Pixelated
Minecraft servers: Online worlds
Minecraft commands: All cheats

To get the Obsidian, you need a Diamond or Netherite pickaxe: you can pilfer the Diamonds you need from various chests you can find, or mine them up yourself in the deeper levels of the world, though you may need a bit of luck to stumble across them either way.

Obsidian, on the other hand, doesn't require luck to find. What's more, you can craft it yourself. Obsidian forms when water and lava meet, so grab a bucket and go looking for some of the hot stuff.

You can make books by combining three pieces of paper—made from sugar cane—and some leather, or by destroying book cases you find in the world. Either way, they're pretty easy items to get for the Enchanting Table.

Once you have the ingredients, you can combine them using a Crafting Table. Just place the obsidian along the bottom row, then the middle row needs to be: diamond, obsidian, diamond. Finally, put a book in the top-middle space and you'll have your table.

How to set up a Minecraft enchantment room

(Image credit: Mojang)

Next, you've got to actually set up your Enchantment Table properly. To function correctly, the Enchantment Table needs a total of 15 Bookshelf blocks exactly two blocks away in X/Z coordinates, and either on the same Y coordinate or one above. Effectively, this means you can stack bookshelves up to two high to achieve this layout and power up your table.

In the image above, you can see the layout from above of the simplest setup for enchanting, with a one high arrangement of Bookshelf blocks and an opening to stand at. This isn't the only way to do a Minecraft Enchantment Table setup—so feel free to get creative—but it's a good simple one to return to if yours isn't working.

What else do you need for doing Minecraft enchantment

While the basics like levels and Lapis Lazuli are important, some other tools and resources are very useful for doing your very own Minecraft enchantments. The first is the Anvil, which is a block crafted from iron blocks and iron ingots that allows you to combine enchanted equipment and books to upgrade them.

The next are books themselves, which you can enchant on your Enchantment Table like any other item to receive random enchantments. But afterwards, you can use your Anvil to put them onto your gear—even gear that's already enchanted.

Enchanted Books are the best way to get the specific enchantments you want onto your gear, or even just to burn off your excess levels to 'store' them into enchantments you might like later.

How to use an enchanting table

Enchanting items in Minecraft comes in three main flavors, each with slightly different rules. The first method is the one you'll use most often, and revolves entirely around the enchanting table, just make sure you have some levels to use along with a supply of Lapus Lazuli to start.

How to use a Minecraft enchanting table 

(Image credit: Mojang)
  • The main way to enchant items is to use an enchanting table, which allows you to exchange your levels and some Lapis Lazuli to grant permanent bonuses to your items. However, the enchantments you receive will be random, and you'll only be given a hint of what they'll include.
  • Place the item you want to enchant in the top left slot and place Lapis Lazuli into the slot next to it.
  • The three entries to the right that appear are ranked from one to three, and the bottom enchantment option is the strongest. Each option has its own level cost displayed as the green number on the right.
  • Once you've decided, you can click the option you want to enchant your item.

The other option is to enchant a book, which works exactly the same as described above. But instead of a receiving a usable piece of enchanted equipment, you'll receive an enchanted book that can use any time later to apply the stored enchantment to a piece of gear on the anvil.

How to use the Anvil to add and combine enchantments

The other ways to enchant your equipment rely on the trusty Anvil.  First, you can combine an Enchanted Book with a piece of the appropriate equipment to get exactly what you want—no more, no less—for some levels.

(Image credit: Mojang)
  • First you place the equipment you want to enchant in the left slot, and then place the Enchanted Book in the middle slot.
  • The enchantment cost in levels is displayed in green text.
  • Finally, you can take the finished and enchanted equipment from the right slot.

The final method of enchanting is to combine two already enchanted pieces of equipment on the Anvil. 

The Anvil combines the enchantments on each piece of enchanted gear you give it. creating one final piece of gear with upgraded enchantments. This will add applicable enchantments that there's space for directly to the finished piece of gear, and also try to upgrade enchantments that are present on both pieces. 

For example, an armor with Thorns 3 and Protection 2 combined with another that has Protection 2 would become one single piece of armor with Thorns 3 and Protection 3. You can read more on the Minecraft wiki about the specifics of Anvil mechanics (opens in new tab) if you want to really dig into it.

The actual combination is a simple process:

(Image credit: Mojang)
  • To start you place both pieces of equipment you're combining in the middle and left slots.
  • The enchantment cost in levels is displayed in green text.
  • Finally, you can take the finished combined equipment from the right slot.

Best Minecraft enchantments

(Image credit: Mojang)

There are a wide range of Minecraft enchantments, each with different levels of effectiveness, so it can be a lot to pick between. To make it easy, here are the ones to look out for, with Mending being our personal favorite: 

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Best Minecraft Enchantments
EnchantmentEffectMax level
UnbreakingIncreases item durability3
MendingRepairs items with experience1
FortuneIncreases block drops3
LootingIncreases mob drops3
InfinityInfinite regular arrows1
SharpnessIncreases weapon damage5
Silk TouchCollect blocks in their original state1
Aqua AffinityRemoves underwater mining penalty1
ThornsEnemies near you take damage3
PowerIncreases arrow damage5

Minecraft enchantment list

(Image credit: Mojang)

Here's a list of every Minecraft enchantment available, as well as what they do, what equipment they can apply to, and the maximum level for each:

Swipe to scroll horizontally
All Minecraft Enchantments
EnchantmentEffectMax levelApplies To
Aqua AffinityIncreases underwater mining speed1Helmet
Bane of ArthopodsIncreases damage and applies slowness IV to arthopods5Sword (or Axe with an enchanted book)
Blast ProtectionReduces explosion damage and knockback4Armor
ChannelingSummon lightning with Trident in storms1Trident
Curse of BindingItems can't be removed from armor slots1Armor
Curse of VanishingItem destroyed on death1Armor
Depth StriderIncreases underwater move speed3Boots
EfficiencyIncreases mining speed5Tools
Feather FallingReduces falling damage4Boots
Fire AspectSets targets on fire2Sword
Fire ProtectionReduces fire damage and burn duration4Armor
FlameArrows set targets on fire1Bow
FortuneIncreases block drop rate3Tools
FrostwalkerTurns water between feet to ice and prevents standing magma damage2Boots
ImpalingIncreases Trident damage against ocean enemies5Trident
InfinityInfinite regular arrows1Bow
KnockbackIncreases knockback2Sword
LootingIncreases mob drops3Sword
LoyaltyTrident returns after throw3Trident
Luck of the SeaIncreases luck while fishing3Fishing Rod
LureDecreases wait time when fishing3Fishing Rod
MendingRestores item durability with experience1All armor, weapons, and tools
MultishotShoot three arrows for the cost of one1Crossbow
PiercingArrows pass through enemies and objects4Crossbow
PowerIncreases arrow damage5Bow
Projectible ProtectionReduces projectile damage4Armor
ProtectionReduces damage4Armor
PunchIncreases arrow knockback2Bow
Quick ChargeDecreases crossbow reload time3Crossbow
RespirationExtends underwater breathing3Helmet
RiptideTrident launches player when thrown in rain or water3Trident
SharpnessIncreases melee damage5Sword (or Axe with an enchanted book)
Silk TouchMined blocks drop themselves1Tools
SmiteIncreases damage against undead5Sword (or Axe with an enchanted book)
Soul SpeedIncreases walk speed on soul sand or sand soil. Boots take damage3Boots
Sweeping EdgeIncreases sweeping attack damage3Sword (Java only)
ThornsReflects damage taken when hit at cost of durability3Armor
UnbreakingReduces item break chance3All armor, weapons, and tools

That's it for our Minecraft enchantments guide. Hopefully, you feel wiser, stronger, and ready to face Mojang's perilous world. Failing that, at least you know a bit more than you did previously. Crafting the perfect items takes a lot of time and a bit of luck, but it's certainly worth the effort.

With contributions from