Himalayan salt lamps are decorative lights for our home that have become quite popular in recent years. These lamps are made with the pink salt that is extracted from the Himalayas, and it's believed to have several health benefits. Salt lamps enthusiasts claim that they can clean the air of their home, alleviate allergies, improve their mood and improve their sleep.
Other people, however, question the validity of these properties. In this article, we will tell you why Himalayan salt lamps are used, what are their benefits, how they work and how to buy an authentic salt lamp.
Himalayan salt lamps are made by placing a bulb inside large pieces of pink salt from the Himalayas. They have a peculiar shape and emit a warm a pink glow when lit. Authentic lamps are made out of salt extracted from the Khewra mine in Pakistan. The salt that comes from this area is believed to be millions of years old and, although it is very similar to table salt, the small amounts of minerals it contains give it a pink color.
Many people buy Himalayan salt lamps simply because they like their appearance and enjoy the atmosphere that the pink light created in their home. However, there are others who use them for the multiple benefits they bring to our health.
It is believed that salt lamps provide health benefits because they are natural ionizers, that is, they change the electric charge of the air circulating in our homes. It is also speculated that a Himalayan salt lamp can produce ions by attracting water particles that evaporate as a solution when heated with the lamp, forming mainly negative ions.
However, this theory has not yet been proven, and it is currently unclear if these lamps produce ions in significant quantities. Besides, the Himalayan salt lamp serves to create a warm and relaxing atmosphere thanks to the pink tone it emits.
It is considered that the Himalayan salt lamp provides a series of health benefits. Continue reading below to discover three of its main properties.
Salt lamps can improve the air quality of our home. More specifically, they are said to be beneficial for people with allergies, asthma or diseases that affect the respiratory function, such as cystic fibrosis. However, there is currently no evidence that the use of a Himalayan salt lamp can eliminate potential pathogens and improve the air quality of the home.
Another frequent theory regarding its properties is that the salt lamps of the Himalayas can improve our mood by exposing us to the negative ions they produce. However, there are no studies that can claim this property although there are people who attest to have experienced this benefit.
The use of the dim light from a Himalayan salt lamp helps increases drowsiness towards the end of the day if we use it to replace powerful electric lights. This is because powerful light before bedtime can delay the production of our sleep hormone, called melatonin.
If you're interested in buying a Himalayan salt lamp, you should know there are many options available on the market. This can be misleading, and we could end up purchasing a forged lamp.
If you decide to buy it in a store, you have to talk to the manager and clarify the authenticity of the lamp. If we decide to buy it online, it is essential to read all the comments of the people who have previously purchased this item and what reviews it has, so we make sure that we're buying an authentic Himalayan salt lamp.
As we have said before, there are many models and types of salt lamps out there, but not all are authentic, and it is extremely easy to fall for a well-made fake. To prevent this from happening, keep an eye out for a series of telltale signs that indicate the lamp is counterfeit:
This is one of the most critical issues to consider. Because of its inherent nature, salt is a water absorber. If the lamp does not release water, especially if it is near a source of humidity such as a shower, you are undoubtedly dealing with a counterfeit. An authentic salt lamp is prone to sweating when exposed to moisture. Many people mistakenly believe that the lamp melts, but what is happening is that it releases water from the humidity it draws from the air.
As we have just said, Himalayan salt lamps are fragile objects. Once we have one, we must be careful not to drop it or hit it against other solid objects, since the salt crystal can be damaged very easily. If your salt lamp is not affected by blows, it is very likely to be counterfeit.
If you are looking for a powerful light source, a salt lamp is not the way to go. Due to its high content in minerals, it emits irregular light. A real salt lamp does not emit enough light to brighten up a whole room. If your lamp does, you probably have a fake.
Usually, we find Himalayan salt lamps that emit a pink or warm orange hue. There is a white Himalayan salt lamp, but it is scarce and much more expensive than colored ones. Therefore, if you find a crystal of white salt that is not much more expensive than the pink or orange versions, it is probably false.
The deep underground mines in Khewra, Pakistan, are the only source of the pure pink salt of the Himalayas. When buying a lamp, we have to make sure that Pakistan is mentioned as the country of origin of the salt crystal.
Real Himalayan salt lamps are made of salt, so it is not surprising that they are fragile objects. A proper manufacturer knows this and has flexible return policies since there could be some damage during their delivery. If the manufacturer of a salt lamp is stringent, you might be looking at fake items. It is known that some fraudulent retailers do not allow refunds because they know they are not selling the actual product.
Goldacre B, "Christmas presents to avoid" in "Bad Science," The Guardian, 2003-12-18.
Lardge J, "Salt lamp: heated Himalayan salt improves your health," Sense About Science, 2007.