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are magical mixtures commonly brewed in cauldrons and used to create various effects on the drinker. A wizard or witch who specialises in potion brewing is known as a potioneer.

Potions are brewed from ingredients with magical properties. Potions can be used as medicine, lethal poison, or give the drinker any effect from strength enhancement to immunity to flames. Potions are not necessarily used by drinking, as some can be applied by physical contact or creates an effect simply by being created.

The Potions class is taught in the Potions Classroom.

Brewing potions


You can use all sorts of weird and wonderful ingredients in this cauldron, from silver unicorn horns to minuscule, glittery, black beetle eyes.

Once you have the right ingredients you can begin to brew potions. Successfully brewed potions can be given to your friends as gifts, or kept for self-use, and you'll also be awarded house points for your efforts. You will lose house points for badly-brewed potions, so follow the instructions carefully.

Cure-for-boils wide

Cure for Boils, the practice potion and one of the easiest to brew.

Before you brew a real potion, you can practise making Cure for Boils and you won't win or lose any house points for trying, even if you succeed.

When following the instructions given to you in your book, students must follow the instructions in the order given.

Example: If the book says heat your cauldron and then crush ingredients in your mortar, students are required to do it in that order. If students choose to crush their ingredients before heating their cauldron, they will fail at brewing the potion.

You can only brew one potion at a time, so choose your cauldron wisely.


House points comparison

Potion Points Brewing time Cost Points per minute Points per galleon Points per galleon-minute
Antidote to Common Poisons 7 30 0.38 0.23 18.33 0.611
Cure for Boils 3 33 0.15 0.088 19.64 0.60
Forgetfulness Potion 9 45 0.35 0.20 Free N/A
Herbicide 9 45 0.625 0.20 Free N/A
Sleeping Draught 11 52 0.22 0.21 Free N/A
Swelling Solution 7 45 0.35 0.15 Free N/A
Wideye or Awakening Potion 9 41 0.26 0.21 34.52 0.84
  • Fastest points
  • Cheapest points
  • Collect regenerating ingredients instead of buying at the apothecary, especially Bezoar, as each costs 10 G.

Strategies and Tips

Potion-making can be a very costly practice since you have to buy ingredients every time you make a new potion. However, there are some ways to mitigate the cost of your potion making:

  • You can find several potion ingredients throughout the chapters which will reappear after you have run out of that particular ingredient. For instance, two of the ingredients used to make the Wideye or Awakening Potion can be found in Book 1, Chapter 8, Moment 3; there are numerous other reappearing ingredients to be found throughout the first book.
  • Keep in mind that the ingredients only reappear once you have run out of that particular ingredient.
  • You must be careful when going through the steps to make your potion. If you don't let it finish counting the ingredient you were adding for one step, for example, and start on another step before it's finished, it will think you skipped steps and say you didn't do it in the right order, even if you really did.
  • Instead of referring to the potion book between steps, put the potion steps from this site in a second browser window side-by-side with your potions table. Potions are timed and you can save a lot of time by just glancing over at the other window.
  • When you first start a potion, the potion book with step-by-step instructions will appear. It is untimed and you can take however long to familiarize yourself with the brewing insturctions. However, after you close out of it, any time you re-enter the book will still be timed.
  • There's a known bug with temperature; to avoid it, use the "come back later" button or refresh the page before you start the second part of a potion (most notably the Swelling solution and the Sleeping draught). A related bug is that the timer is not reset for the second part if you don't leave the original page with the exact number of minutes, so for any other potion you can have practically unlimited time.


New from J.K. Rowling

It is often asked whether a Muggle could create a magic potion, given a Potions book and the right ingredients. The answer, unfortunately, is no. There is always some element of wandwork necessary to make a potion (merely adding dead flies and asphodel to a pot hanging over a fire will give you nothing but nasty-tasting, not to mention poisonous, soup).

Some potions duplicate the effects of spells and charms, but a few (for instance, the Polyjuice Potion, and Felix Felicis) have effects impossible to achieve any other way. Generally speaking, witches and wizards favour whichever method they find easiest, or most satisfying, to produce their chosen end.

Potions are not for the impatient, but their effects are usually difficult to undo by any but another skilled potioneer. This branch of magic carries a certain mystique and therefore status. There is also the dark cachet of handling substances that are highly dangerous. The popular idea of a Potions expert within the wizarding community is of a brooding, slow-burning personality: Snape, in fact, conforms perfectly to the stereotype.

J.K. Rowling's thoughts

Chemistry was my least favourite subject at school, and I gave it up as soon as I could. Naturally, when I was trying to decide which subject Harry's arch-enemy, Severus Snape, should teach, it had to be the wizarding equivalent. This makes it all the stranger that I found Snape's introduction to his subject quite compelling ('I can teach you to bottle fame, brew glory, even stopper death...'), apparently part of me found Potions quite as interesting as Snape did; and indeed I always enjoyed creating potions in the books, and researching ingredients for them. Many of the components of the various draughts and libations that Harry creates for Snape exist (or were once believed to exist) and have (or were believed to have) the properties I gave them. Dittany, for instance, really does have healing properties (it is an anti-inflammatory, although I would not advise Splinching yourself to test it); a bezoar really is a mass taken from the intestines of an animal, and it really was once believed that drinking water in which a bezoar was placed could cure you of poisoning.


  • As of the 4th of May, 2012, 4.2 million potions have been attempted. It is unknown how many of those failed to brew succesfully.

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