Himalayan Salt Lamps – Are They Beneficial?
If you’ve stumbled across this because you have no idea what a Himalayan salt lamp is, here’s the breakdown.
These lamps are from Pakistan and have a special bulb and emit a soft pink glow. The color comes from small amounts of other minerals in the salt. Some people believe these lamps have certain medicinal qualities because they are natural ionizers. This means the circulating air has a slight change of electrical charge. There are limited studies but fans of these lamps claim they improve air quality, improve your mood and help you sleep.
There are numerous health benefits that make this lamp worth the money.
Firstly, it improves air quality. Normal household air pollutants such as dust, mold and some allergens are mostly found in water. Since these salt lamps are considered “hygroscopic,” meaning they absorb moisture, water molecules in the air containing pollutants are attracted to the salt lamp and the water evaporates, leaving the harmful molecules behind. This works as a natural filtration system for your air.
This whole process can greatly benefit kids suffering with allergies or even asthma. It also acts as a dehumidifier which can soothe skin conditions as well. Babies in particular are prone to all sorts of skin problems. Being proactive before problems become too serious can make things a lot easier to handle. Trying to calm down really inflamed and irritated skin can take a lot longer than preventing these issues to begin with.
By breathing easier, kids can also sleep better. The antibacterial properties that clean the air overnight promotes little ones to sleep more soundly. There won’t be any late night coughing to keep your infant awake. Even just the light itself serves as a softly glowing nightlight that can soothe uneasy sleepers.
The orange and pink hues are relaxing as opposed to modern LED nightlights that can be counterproductive. Since the light is soothing, it can regulate sleep patterns.
This means your little one can fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. Plus more sleep for your baby means more sleep for you!
Himalayan salt lamps also produce a small amount of negative ions. The name may sound strange, but the freshness of waterfalls and beaches are familiar to many of us. These are because running water has a slight negative charge that attributes to the surrounding energy.
Himalayan salt lamps have this same slightly negative charge on a smaller scale. Electronics, like cell phones, tablets, T.V’s and even microwaves add a slightly positive charge. These salt lamps can be a natural way to try and balance it all out.
The Real Deal
There are differences between real Himalayan salt lamps and knock offs. Certain companies will jump on trends, just trying to make a buck but there are several ways to determine what you are getting has the real properties of a salt lamp. The only true Himalayan salt is mined in the western edge of the Himalayan Mountains. Without this particular salt, your lamp is just decor on your desk, without all the benefits.
Firstly, make sure the place you are buying from is a reliable source. Do a little research into the company and see what their business policies are and if you can trust them. Read reviews and check return policies. Also, make sure it’s actually from Khewra, Pakistan and not just manufactured.
An obvious way to spot a fake lamp is by seeing if it looks similar to an authentic Himalayan salt lamp. Does it have a soft glow? Or is it too bright? The color is very important and naturally occuring. It ranges from a soft pink to a deeper orange. This is due to the minerals along with the salt that add to the color. There are some cases of white salt that is authentically mined but it is very rare and expensive.
Salt has particular and unique qualities that can’t be manufactured. For one, salt absorbs moisture. If you live in a humid climate and your salt lamp never “sweats” then it’s probably not real.
“Sweating” is what happens when water accumulates due to the salt attracting water molecules. This process is what purifies the air and means it’s working. If you live in a dry climate, your lamp may never really sweat. Salt is also pretty fragile. It is a crystal that can shatter when dropped or bumped.
If you notice your salt lamp is particularly durable, chances are it’s a fake. These lamps are made from authentic, mined salt. They should be fragile and rough around the edges. Polished lamps are also less effective, because they have less surface area. These lamps are supposed to be natural looking and therefore if your lamp is smooth, the seller is not very reliable.
Lastly, if you find yourself not receiving any benefits from the lamp, it may not be real. These lamps have a few scientific studies showing how they work and what they do. It is particular to the mineral properties and your Himalayan salt lamp should be helping. If you aren’t experiencing any of the effects, make sure you check if your lamp is authentic.
Himalayan salt lamps may accumulate dirt and debris by nature. To clean, make sure your lamp is unplugged. After it has cooled off, use a damp rag or sponge to gently wipe the lamp clean. Just make sure you are careful, since these lamps are very fragile. Overall it’s very low maintenance to care for your salt lamp.
In a basic sense, a Himalayan salt lamp is really no different than a regular lamp. Therefore, the fire hazards are the same. Be careful of heat build up and keep your lamp away from flammable materials. Having a dimming switch can prevent some of these issues.
Also, make sure you remember to change out the bulb when they get dim to avoid any electrical issues. You need to use a heat producing bulb to make your salt lamp effective, so check if the bulb you’re using is made for Himalayan salt lamps. LED bulbs and other more modern bulbs won’t properly heat the salt to have the same benefits.
Sometimes moisture can accumulate around your salt lamp. This is due to the hygroscopic properties of the salt and is completely normal. It can be a nuisance, and there are a few ways of preventing this “sweating” from happening. One way you can prevent the moisture build up is by keeping the lamp on more often.
This will burn off the water instead of it pooling. If the humidity in your house is particularly high, there might not be a way to prevent the sweating. If that is the case, putting a dish underneath can help catch the water so it won’t ruin the furniture underneath.
Does it really work?
There are limited studies on the true effects of Himalayan salt lamps. The science shows that there really are hygroscopic properties and it does give off negative ions. Studies just haven’t confirmed the extent of those properties and how much of an effect it has.
There are no real risks involved and the benefits can be well worth it. Worst case scenario, you have a pretty lamp. Best case scenario, you and your child can experience cleaner air, better sleep and a mood boost. You’ll have to see for yourself if these lamps work for you and your family.