The Himalayan salt lamp became quite a star in the world of room accessories. Even though it’s nothing new or ground-breaking, many people still raise their eyebrows when this item is mentioned.
I’ve been in the very same position before being blown away by the sheer beauty and elegance of the Himalayan salt lamp. Now I have one in pretty much every room of my house. There are never enough.
In the remainder of this guide, I will present to you all the things you need to know about this artificial light-bringer, from what it is more exactly, what it does, the various styles it can come in and the different types.
Let’s start with the beginning, i.e. the most common questions regarding this stylish accessory for one’s bedroom:
Its name should give you a hint: it’s a lamp made with salt from a certain region in Pakistan. No, the salt doesn’t come from the Himalayas. It’s quite difficult to understand why exactly it is called “Himalayan” when it isn’t.
How does salt shine? Well, it does not. The salt covers a bulb. When turned on, the light from that bulb spreads throughout the salt crystal, illuminating it. We will see later on that this process is so much more than mere illumination.
The outcome is splendid: it looks like you’re having a huge, glowing ember by your bed. Salt lamps can differ in terms of color and shape. Therefore, each of them has its own brilliance. Given that colors can have effects on one’s emotion (blue, for example, has a calming effect), you should choose the color of your lamp carefully.
Himalayan salt lamps can be illuminated by either an electric bulb or a candle. Those that use candles are a tad less shiny than their electric counterparts. You might want to keep that in mind.
It is said that a Himalayan salt lamp offers a plethora of health benefits to the one that has it in his/her home. People, however, are divided in believers and skeptics. We should mention that these skeptics probably failed their chemistry classes.
Here is a list of perks you can reap by purchasing such a lamp and putting it in your living room, bedroom or any other room, for that matter.
Before I start enumerating the actual health benefits of this lamp, there is something I need you to know. Everything around you, as well as your very body, is nothing but a combination of neutrons (particles with no electrical charge), protons (with a positive charge) and electrons (with a negative charge).
These three categories of particle compile the – venture a guess? – atoms, of course. The Himalayan salt lamp balances these particles. Moreover, it absorbs moisture (water) from the air around it.
That moisture usually contains plenty of pollutants. When they are sucked into the salt crystal, the light from the bulb evaporates them, and when the lamp has reached its capacity, it expels clean air into the room.
Here are some other benefits, apart from particle balancing and air deodorizing:
During summertime, certain people cannot go outside due to pollen and other allergens. When those can be found in one’s house, the situation is even worse. The salt crystal, as we’ve mentioned above, attracts these allergens, destroys them and replaces them with clean, fresh air.
Some more chemistry for you: our bodies use a neurotransmitter called “serotonin.” This makes us feel happy. When we’re devoid of it, we’re feeling blue and anxious. Salt lamps have an extremely soothing effect thanks to their pale glow.
Calcium, magnesium, potassium, and sulfur are minerals that play a crucial role in our well-being, and a Himalayan salt lamp has them all. Therefore, it will improve your overall health.
Your bones, metabolism, blood circulation, muscles, and stomach will be the beneficiaries of these minerals. Moreover, they can be helpful for those suffering of iron deficiency.
Everything that’s plugged into an outlet emits EM. This type of radiation is made up of positive ions and is responsible for fatigue and anxiety. The salt lamp emits negative ions that annihilate the positive ones. Therefore you will feel a lot fresher, so to speak.
There are many individuals that say these lamps don’t have anything to do with the disposal of EM, but they do. They don’t emit as many negative ions as some claim, but still.
Primarily because the air you will be breathing is purified. Moreover, it will have a lot more oxygen and less contaminants that can make you cough while sleeping. Poorly oxygenated air is also among the most common culprits in causing headaches.
By using a lamp, you won’t need to open the window and potentially be devoured by tens of mosquitos that don’t have anything better to do.
If you’ve ever had issues with your sinuses, you were probably prescribed saline sprays by the doctor. Why? Because salt is an antibacterial agent. If you have an infection anywhere along your respiratory tract or in the sinuses, the salty, ionized air provided by the lamp will make a huge difference.
This happens thanks to the removal of positive ions from the air. Negative ions, on the other hand, cut the stress levels short. You will be able to concentrate on whatever it is you’re doing as a consequence.
The libido, that is. If you feel like there’s no romance between you and your partner, installing such a lamp by the bed can help you with that. It is still unknown why the Himalayan salt lamp can improve one’s sex drive, but we’ll take it anyway.
In the next section, we’ll be talking about the proper way of using a salt lamp.
There isn’t much to say here. You just put it in a room where you feel like the air is stale and you turn it on. After a time, you will observe that the lamp is “sweating.” Don’t worry about that.
It’s normal. That is due to the process of destroying negative particles, bacteria, and allergens from the air. It is called “hygroscopy.” The sweating, therefore, isn’t a sign that your lamp is malfunctioning.
Quite from the contrary, it’s the clearest sign that it does its job. Just wipe it up with a tissue or soft cloth. Apart from some minimal maintenance from time to time, a salt lamp doesn’t need your intervention.
You just plug it in, and that’s about it.
Shape and color account for the existing types of salt lamps. It is widely believed that the color can boost the product’s beneficial properties. There is no scientific proof for that claim, though.
Let’s take a quick look at the most common colors and shapes available for salt lamps.
There are four main colors the salt lamps are available in:
White salt lamps are commonplace. However, you must pay extra attention when you’re about to purchase one of these because they are the most prone to being forgeries. Especially when the price is really low.
Genuine white salt lamps are quite rare, and that’s the main reason why they usually cost more than the colored ones. As long as the price is a little bit higher than what you’d pay for another lamp, you can rest assured you’re getting the real deal.
The pink-colored lamp is said to have the richest array of health benefits, as well as the most beautiful sheen. If you’ve ever bought Himalayan salt for cooking, you probably observed that it has a discreet pink hue.
Pink lamps are everywhere. They’re the go-to product for 80% of the people interested in purchasing salt lamps for their homes. Understandably so, since they’re at once beautiful and healthy.
Orange lamps are much warmer than the ones that have other colors. Their light is rich and comforting. Here’s some advice: if your orange lamp is too bright, then you’ve just been sold a fake.
Even though an orange lamp shines brighter than a white or pink one, an excess of glow can be a sign that it’s a false one. When you’re in the store, turn it upside down and see if it has the “Made in Pakistan” label. If it doesn’t, then don’t buy it.
This is the very peak of stylishness. Such a lamp throws a bloody nuance in the room. It works and looks best when put in a dark room that has complementary colors, like black, for instance.
Of course, there are various hues of red. It all boils down to your personal preference. I do advise you to purchase an intense-red, crimson one. You wouldn’t believe how much it can change the aesthetic of a room.
There are salt lamps that can be purchased in: blue, green, magenta, sepia, purple, black and red and others. If you’re not pleased with the sheen of your lamp, you can try changing the light-bulb with one that is colored differently.
These special lamps come in two shapes:
The most familiar shape. This is the standard block of salt, unpolished and edgy. Even though it sounds like it doesn’t look nice, it does, so don’t worry. Keep in mind that the bigger the natural-shape lamp is, the greater its power of purifying the air is.
It doesn’t need to weigh half a ton, obviously. Believe it or not, most people prefer this natural shape over the crafted one. Perhaps this is the consequence of the fact that it has that “mountain” concreteness that gives the lamp its uniqueness.
For example, the crafted ones are too artificial for my taste, to be honest. I really prefer the natural lamps.
Crafted Himalayan salt lamps can come in uncountable shapes: angels, birds, bowls, eggs, hearts (these make an excellent Valentine’s present), squares, pyramids, roses, etc. These are usually given away as gifts.
If you don’t want a block of Himalayan salt in your room, then you’re free to choose a lamp with a shape that fits your taste. You might have a hunch that these are a bit pricier than the natural-shaped ones.
You are right on that. Alright, now that we’ve seen the shapes and colors you can purchase Himalayan salt lamps in, let’s move on to the next section, where we’ll tackle the topic of the size of the lamp in rapport with its ionizing area.
This is no rocket science. The ionizing area refers to the capability of the salt lamp to absorb moisture from the air and replace the bad air with a fresh one. For instance, a small Himalayan salt lamp will automatically have a more limited ionizing area.
A large Himalayan salt lamp, by contrast, will have a broader range of hygroscopic efficiency. There is no “best choice” here because it depends on how large the room is.
The bigger the salt lamp is, the greater its ionizing area will be. A mini Himalayan salt lamp is a pretty good choice for the room your children are sleeping in. One of these could be suitable for the kitchen, too, in order to cleanse the air that smells like food.
Again, it depends. As a rule of thumb, you should assess in what room exactly you think your allergy is triggered. Is there a room in your house where you start coughing and sneezing as quickly as you set foot in?
That may be a good start. Dusty rooms that open to the main roads around your house could also benefit from salt lamps. Don’t expect any magic to happen, though, and don’t underestimate ventilating those rooms properly.
Evidently, another good place to put the salt lamp in is where you need light, although not necessarily. It’s less likely that you’ll be able to read, for example, in the light of a salt lamp, since it does not provide that much illumination.
The bedroom is where you spend much of your time, so you should consider putting it in there, so the air will always be fresh. If you’re a smoker and there’s a particular place where you go for a smoke, a salt lamp can get rid of the nauseating smell nicotine leaves.
In terms of where in the room, it can be anywhere, really: on the windowsill, at the foot of the bed, by the bed, etc. Its size might come as a package deal with some limitations as to where you can put it without tripping on it or cutting off “traffic.”
Buying the first Himalayan salt lamp you see isn’t a great idea. There are five aspects you must take into consideration in order to be sure you’ll get the most of it.
If it was made elsewhere than Pakistan, you shouldn’t waste your money on it, because there a 99% chance it’s a fake and will break in less than one month. Pakistan is the #1 manufacturer of salt lamps because there’s where the salt comes from in the first place.
There are others that are genuine. When you buy from the Internet, look at the testimonials and the credentials of the website you want to purchase your lamp from.
If you have large rooms, buying small salt lamps isn’t recommended. They won’t have the power to purify the air properly. Buy large lamps for large rooms and tiny ones for smaller spaces. There are some that exceed two kilos in weight, though.
Sometimes, it makes sense to buy a huge lamp than multiple small ones and vice-versa. A huge one can be the best ornament in a living room, just by the fireplace.
I can’t really provide you with any piece of advice in respect with color. Buy it in whatever hue you find most pleasant. In terms of type, however, I do have a recommendation: don’t buy crafted salt lamps if you want to get all the benefits. The crafted ones are usually small and don’t have as much capability of purifying the air as the ones that come in their natural form.
A wooden base, moreover, can suffer from the heat expelled by the bulb and the water your lamp might retain. Both these factors can cause cracks.
There is one more concern we need to tackle in this guide: many people, particularly those who bought their first salt lamps, don’t know how to clean them properly. Don’t you worry, I’ve got that covered, too.
The most recurring problem of salt lamp owners is sweating. This can lead to an accumulation of water inside the salt crystal. Nothing that cannot be solved, however. The lamp is more prone to sweating when it’s not used on a regular basis.
The solution at hand is to leave it on for as much as possible. Even for 24 hours straight. If the bulb didn’t manage to evaporate the excess water, then unplug the lamp and leave it outside, so that sunlight can do the trick.
Cleaning per se should be done with a sponge that’s slightly humid. If the surface is harsh, you can brush the growths off with the rough side of the sponge. Just make sure you don’t ruin the design.
That’s about it. As you can clearly see, few things are easier than taking care of your lamp. One more thing I have to mention here: if the bulb malfunctions, replace it with another one that has the same wattage.
If it’s bigger than the one the lamp was equipped it, the light will fail to be as efficient in absorbing pollutants as it was in the beginning. And if you’re going anywhere for an extended period, don’t leave it on.
Unplug it and put it in a plastic bag. This way, it won’t retain excess water.
Himalayan salts lamps are truly masterpieces of craftsmanship. Not only do they look amazing, but they can also get you rid of bad air. This accounts for your morning headaches or waking up a few times a night with a severe coughing fit.
I am pretty sure that now you want one of these for yourself. Instead of spending a good couple of hours researching on the Internet, which still doesn’t prevent you from ending up with a forgery, I have compiled a buying guide for you.
I will emphasize what exactly you should be aware of when looking for a salt lamp and I will provide you with five products that are sure to meet your requirements. I know that some of you don’t have time to scour the Internet.
That’s why I just invested in four lamps recently. Therefore, I known some of the best models out there. Stay tuned for the next section!