Himalayan Salt Lamps : How Do They Work?
Posted on October 10 2016
In this article today, we will talk about the Himalayan salt lamp, famous for its aesthetic purpose and health benefits.The crystal lamp is well known for generating negative ions with its many health benefits, as well as being able to capture pollutants in the surrounding air.
Before we get into the lamps, lets go a bit further and talk about the actual Himalayan salt
What Is Himalayan Salt?
Himalayan salt, as the name suggests, is rock salt/halite found only in Pakistan and some parts of Tibet
What's so special about this salt is how it contains the same 84 natural minerals and other elements we have in our bodies, and how its unique cellular structures can store vibrational energy.
This characteristic of storing vibrational energy is the one utilized in the Himalayan Salt Lamps, claimed to be able to emit negative ions, producing positive energy waves into the air.
You can check out other benefits of Himalayan salt both as decoration and edible salt in an article from Global Healing Centre here.
The Himalayan Salt Lamps
Generally, there are two types of Himalayan Salt lamps. The first hides a small bulb inside a large piece of pure Himalayan salt such as in this photo below.
The other type is a decorative basket or other containers filled with large crystals of salt like this one.
Both types function the same. Thus, the differences are purely by design. In both types, the light from the light bulbs are penetrating the semi-transparent Himalayan salt, creating a pleasant visual effect and beautiful colorations.
The Health Benefits
Salt naturally attracts water molecules from surrounding air. With water molecules carrying pollutants like dust, pollen, and sometimes even bacteria and viruses.
After attracted by the salt, the pollutants will remain on the salt, thus indirectly cleaning the surrounding air.
On the other hand, the heat produces by the light bulb inside the lamp will release the water vapor back to the surrounding air, while the pollutants will remain on the salt. This process indirectly cleans the surrounding air and the water vapor it contains.
Himalayan Salt Lamps and Negative Ions
Himalayan Salt lamps are also famous for its capability to generate negative ions. However, before we discuss Himalayan salt lamps negative ion functionality, let us first learn about the positive and negative ions and its benefits.
Negative ions are commonly produced by natural phenomena such as thunder and lightning, ocean waves, waterfalls, and even sunlight. These natural things are commonly perceived to be good for human bodies, like how we often feel more relaxed after a holiday on the beach.
On the other hand, positive ions are often created by electronic devices such as your TVs, computers, vacuum cleaners, and are commonly associated with stress, allergies, and sleep trouble.
As we know in common physics, positive and negative ions attract each other, thus an increase of negative ions (i.e, from the Himalayan Salt lamps) can allow more of them to bond with positive ions, neutralizing the negative qualities of the surrounding air.
The big question is, will Himalayan salt lamps actually produce negative ions when lighted?
The answer is yes, the heating of the light bulb will evaporate water vapor previously trapped on the salt, as in the process mentioned above. The evaporation will release negative ions in the process.
The main benefits of the Himalayan salt lamp, as mentioned, is its ability to generate negative ions and to capture pollutants in the surrounding are.
Therefore, those benefits will mean:
- Reducing Stress by reduction of positive ions, increasing relaxation and calmness
- Less airborne viruses and bacterias, thus less sickness like colds, flu, and many others
- Can reduce body pain, even those of sicknesses like arthritis and arthritis
- Can improve skin conditions and help combat skin diseases
- Better sleep quality, mainly because a Himalayan salt lamp doesn't produce blue light which has been shown to be disruptive to sleep patterns.
Placement & Size
The downside of a Himalayan salt lamp as a negative ion generator is that it will only covers a limited area compared to a dedicated negative ionizer.
Thus, the lamp is best placed quite close to where you spend a lot of your time.
- A desk in your work space placed close to your sitting location. With this application, a small Himalayan salt lamp roughly 5 pounds in size will be appropriate. If it must be placed further, choose a larger size.
- In rooms below 10 square feet, in general a 6-8 pounds lamp can do the job. For smaller bedrooms, you can place it on the bedside table.
- For larger rooms like kitchen, living room, or lounge room, use a salt lamp between 9-11 pounds. For rooms with a lot of electric radiation (a lot of electronic appliances), you can use a larger salt lamp, 12 pounds or heavier.
Same principle can be applied to a commercial setting like a spa, restaurants, and hotels.
Bottom Line-Other Considerations
To achieve the best possible benefits, you must remember that Himalayan salt lamps' benefits came from its evaporation process. Thus, a warm enough light bulb with enough wattage is necessary.
A hotter light bulb will actually be preferable for a Himalayan salt lamp application, therefore tungsten filaments and fluorescent bulbs will generally serve the purpose better than LEDs.
Typically most Himalayan salt lamps will use E12 candelabra fittings, you can check for our collection here.
To check whether the wattage or heat is enough, simply touch the crystal salt surface when the lamp is powered on for a while. If it is not warm enough, or even worse if it drips water in a humid environment, consider increasing the wattage of the bulb or change to another type of bulb.