Essentially a salt lamp is a lamp made from a block of pure Himalayan rock salt. The salt is carved out in the centre to make space for a light bulb.
‘Salt lamps release negative ions into the air,’ explains Bhavini Tanna of madebyzen.com. ‘The idea being that these negative ions make us feel good, while positive ions in the air make us feel bad.’
So, the more negative ions you have circulating your home, supposedly the better.
Salt lamps offer negative ion therapy; the idea being that negative ions make us feel good
But how exactly are these negative ions working their magic?
‘The bulb inside the lamp warms up slightly which helps to ionise the air surrounding it,’ says Tanna. ‘This means that when the salt is warmed, it takes the positive ions out of the air and releases negative ions instead. Negative ions are also found in abundance next to waterfalls and oceans and it is believed that these same negative ions could create feelings of euphoria, pretty much what most of us feel when we stand next to a waterfall or at the beach.’
Unfortunately, evidence to support this is limited, at best.
5 Benefits of Salt Lamps
As research around salt lamps remains pretty hard to come by, so the health benefits should, perhaps, be taken with (excuse the pun) a pinch of salt. But, as with any alternative therapy, remember that what doesn’t work for someone else, could well bring around positive results in you; try it out for yourself, first, before making your final call.
1/ Salt lamps can clean the air
And if you’re one of the 5.4 million people in the UK living with asthma, who wouldn’t want a piece of that decongesting action. The idea is that water vapour carrying air pollutants is attracted to the surface of the rock, where it deposits the nasties, leaving your surroundings clean and allergen-free.
2/ Salt lamps can help you breathe easy
Did you know that salt lamps also help clear your airways by attracting toxins to their surface? No, nor us. It’s believed that breathing in tiny salt particles can help to break down mucus, too. Nice
3/ Salt lamps can make you sleep better
Just look at the dim soothing light salt lamps emit and you’re sure to feel stress levels slide. Upgrade your standard salt lamp to one with added extras such as the madebyzen Glo, which combines this light therapy with aromatherapy and surely you’ve a Masterchef-worthy recipe for zzz.
4/ Salt lamps can improve your mood
According to a study by the University of Karachi, Pakistan, exposure to a salt lamp can increase the levels of chemicals serotonin and tryptophan in the body. As these are both associated with regulating mood, salt lamps have been attributed to easing symptoms of anxiety and depression. However, #disclaimer, the study was carried out on animals…
5/ Salt lamps look pretty cool
You can’t deny that having one of these quirky luminaries in your home wouldn’t be quite the talking point. Whether the ionising benefits of salt itself work, or not, the soothing pink tones they emit have been shown to promote relaxation.
10. Airblasters Crystalman
The Airblasters Crystalman (appx. $126) contains multiple shades of pink, yellow, and orange, which provide a very energizing light for your arts and crafts or writing room. At 9 inches tall, it’s big enough to be instantly noticeable, no matter where you place it.
- Base feels sturdy
- More expensive than similar choices
- Included bulb doesn’t last long
9. TGS Gems
The TGS Gems (around $16) comes with a thick felt pad on which to set the base to keep it firmly in place. It has a graceful style that creates a romantic mood, and it makes a great showpiece on any living room shelf or end table thanks to this elegant design.
- Moderately sized
- Satisfaction is guaranteed
- Shape and color can vary
8. Omonic Rare Gray Queen
The Omonic Rare Gray Queen (appx. $40) lives up to its name by offering a dark color, rather than the standard orange-pink. When turned on, it looks something like an active volcano, and is sure to grab the attention of anyone who enters your home.
- Giant size available
- Brightness is adjustable
- Doesn’t throw out a lot of light
7. Amir Mini 2-Pack
If you don’t have a lot of space, or you just want gentle, dim lighting, the Amir Mini 2-Pack (appx. $26) is the way to go. They include 7-watt incandescent bulbs as well as fun LEDs that automatically cycle through six colors for an eye-catching effect.
- Compact and portable
- Adjust for horizontal sockets
- A bit top heavy
6. Waterglider International
The Waterglider International (around $19) comes with two units, so you can spread their beauty around your living space. They are a subtle pink color when turned off that blends well into a kitchen or home library, and the pair makes a great set of New Age bookends.
- Each packaged in its own box
- Exact shade can vary slightly
- Do not have a dimmer
5. D’aplomb Authentic
The D’aplomb Authentic (appx. $40) features a touch-sensitive dimming switch that makes it easy to adjust the intensity of its warm pink glow. Shaped to resemble a rose, this model is a handsome alternative to large pieces with unfinished, rough-hewn looks.
- Weighs approximately 8 pounds
- Cord is ul-listed for safety
- Includes two 15-watt bulbs
4. Crystal Allies Basket
By housing smaller chunks in an elegant container, as opposed to lighting a single pillar, the Crystal Allies Basket (appx. $15) allows for adding, removing, and arranging the pieces to suit your personal taste. There are a couple of basket styles to choose from, too.
- Metal holder feels durable
- Affordably priced
- On the dim side
3. AMSkart Fire Bowl
The AMSkart Fire Bowl (appx. $29) has a sophisticated design that would complement a cocktail lounge or luxury bathroom nicely. Each stone has a natural, rustic appearance, and because the light bulb isn’t completely enclosed, it sends out a few vibrant yellow rays through the rocks.
- Stands just over 6 inches tall
- Bowl is also made of salt
- Warm amber glow
2. Mineralamp Medium
The Mineralamp Medium (around $25) is a great way to create soothing mood lighting for a yoga session or even a midday nap. Each is between 8 and 11 inches tall, and is sculpted by hand before its elegant Indian rosewood base is attached.
- Hefty at around 10 pounds
- Etl-listed dimmer switch
- 6-foot power cord
1. Crystal Allies Globe
This Crystal Allies Globe (about $18) looks almost as good when turned off as it does when illuminated and glowing. It resembles a planet and a crystal ball, so it’s the perfect gift for astronomy lovers and fortune tellers alike, plus it gives off a very natural, earthy vibe.
- Doesn’t get too warm to the touch
- Conveniently located power switch
- 90-day money-back guarantee