What’s With Those Himalayan Salt Lamps We’re Seeing Everywhere?
We’ll take 2.
You may have seen the warm orange glow from a pinkish rock lamp radiating from a corner in your meditation group session, perched on the desk of your crystal healer (what, you don’t have one?), or on your colleague’s Instagram feed—the colleague who can’t stop talking about how pretty and pure her living room feels now that she’s amassed a collection of rosey rocks. Whether you have one yet or not, the Himalayan salt lamp is currently the most sought-after bedside accessory.
But what does having a Himalayan salt lamp actually do? Does it purify the air, neutralize negative ions, and boost your mood? We asked Heather Askinosie, crystal expert and holistic healer, co-founder of Energy Muse, and co-author of the forthcoming Crystal Muse: Everyday Rituals to Tune into the Real You, who counts Lena Dunham and David Beckham as fans, to break it all down for us.
First, What Are Himalayan Salt Lamps?
“In the simplest terms, a Himalayan salt lamp is a pure piece of Himalayan salt with a small bulb inside. Himalayan salt lamps have the ability to purify the air by attracting water molecules from the surrounding environment and absorbing these molecules into the salt crystals. This process emits negative ions into the air to neutralize the positive ions, which are said to be energetically draining.”
What They Do
“Himalayan salt is a powerful tool to absorb negative energy from your home or office. Salt itself has a reputation as a powerful cleansing, purifying, and detoxifying energy. This can be through the lamp in your home or office, or through consumption by adding Himalayan salt to our meals. Himalayan salt has trace minerals, which helps the body maintain a healthy cell function versus other iodized or sea salts.
“If you’re looking to reduce your intake of blue artificial light emissions after sunset, turn off your electronics and turn on your salt lamp. They offer a warm orange glow that helps to calm your mood and get back into your natural circadian rhythm adjust so we can get a better night’s sleep.”
Sure, There Are Skeptics, Too
“It’s difficult to measure exactly how many negative ions are emitted from the salt lamp. Some scientists argue that a light bulb could never be hot enough to dissociate two ions (positive and negative). I’m not saying a salt lamp will drastically change the air quality of your environment. If you’re looking for negative ions, a day at the beach is going to be more beneficial. But like I say about healing crystals, if it makes you happy by just looking at it or makes you feel something beneficial to your well-being, then it is doing its job. I believe this philosophy applies to the Himalayan salt lamp.”
What to Look For Before Buying
“Look for salt lamps that are about six to 14 inches tall. This is a nice size for most rooms. I personally prefer the rougher-surface lamps in my home. Always purchase from a reputable seller, and make sure it is made from 100 percent Himalayan salt. Because the lamps sweat, look for a lamp that has a stand or base. This way you can add them to any room, especially rooms you spend the most time in, without ruining any furniture. Darker-colored lamps are usually a higher-quality salt.”
How Long Do You Keep It On?
“I personally have mine on 24/7, but you can turn it off at night if the light bothers you. They don’t use much energy, so no need to worry about high electricity bills.”