The 3 best salt lamps

Photo by Kristin Forte/Simplemost

If you’ve stepped into a day spa or visited a very zen friend over the past year or two, you may have noticed a new decor trend: Himalayan salt lamps. The ubiquitous amber accessories have skyrocketed in popularity, thanks to their relaxing vibe and anecdotal health benefits.

Himalayan salt lamps aren’t actually orange. They’re made so by placing a light bulb inside chunks of pink Himalayan salt, which gets its shade from minerals present in the salt. The light from the bulb inside gives the pink salt chunks a soothing orange hue that lightens the mood in any room.

“True” Himalayan salt lamps are crafted with salt sourced from mines in Pakistan. The lamps usually sit on striking wooden bases but some use stainless steel bases.

Wondering which salt lamp is right for your home? We tested several to see which salt lamps came out on top.

Why We Like It: When we first took this salt lamp out of its packaging, the first thing we noticed was how sturdy it is. This salt lamp is massive, weighing in at between eight and 10 pounds, which means it really makes a statement when you add it to your decor. Plus, we like the fact that you can change the brightness depending on your mood with this model’s handy dimmer switch.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost

The stainless steel base feels modern and unassuming, without drawing attention away from the warm pink glow. Plus, the rock salt comes from Pakistan and is hand-carved.

Photo by Kristin Forte/Simplemost

Why We Like It: Our testing found these salt lamps easy to use and easy on the eyes. For starters, you get two individual salt lamps, which means you can play around with where they look best in your house.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost

The neem wood base adds a really warm, rich feeling to the lamps, plus the dimmable switch makes it easy to change how bright each lamp is. For a good value, you’ll get two lamps that each provide a warm, soothing glow. It’s smaller than others, so if you’re short on space, these salt lamps will work for you.

Photo by Kristin Forte/Simplemost

Why We Like It: In our test, these salt lamps stood out because of how simple they are — they have an easy-to-use on/off switch. Each package comes with two individual lamps, each with a warm wooden base, making these lamps especially stylish (they look great in nearly every room of the house).

The salt comes from Pakistan and each lamp is handmade. Plus, it’s easy to change out the light bulbs on these lamps. If you’re looking for a salt lamp with a dimmer switch, this model may not be the right choice for you.

Photo by Kristin Forte/Simplemost

Tips and Advice

  • Before you buy your Himalayan salt lamp, consider where you’ll be using it. Do you want a lamp that emits a relaxing glow in your bedroom, or are you looking to create a more laid-back office environment?  Some are a bit heftier than others, which means they don’t travel as easily. 
  • If you want to use your salt lamp at night, you might nod off in its dreamy glow. An auto shut-off feature can prevent burns or electrical issues.
  • Do you have young children or rambunctious pets in your household? If you do, you’ll want to keep your salt lamp on a higher shelf so it doesn’t get knocked over and break. You’ll also want to keep the cord out of sight so that kids don’t trip over it and animals don’t treat it like a chew toy.
  • Take a look at what kind of bulb your lamp requires before you buy it. This will save you some time and effort when you need to buy replacement bulbs. Many models require 15-watt E12 bulbs. However, other lamps may use different styles of light bulbs, like a B15 bulb, for instance.
  • Scope out the walls in your room to determine where your power outlets are located. This can help you figure out the proper cord length for your salt lamp. Most salt lamps are not recommended for use with extension cords. That means you’ll either need to place your lamp very close to a power outlet, or you’ll need to buy one with a longer cord.
  • Have you ever wondered why Himalayan salt is pink? The formidable Himalayan mountain range formed after the Indian and Eurasian tectonic plates beneath the Earth’s surface began colliding about 50 million years ago. The collision forced underground rocks upward, forming the Himalayan mountains we know today. Trace minerals from those seabed rocks contribute to Himalayan salt’s unique hue, particularly iron oxide from volcanic clay.  If you’re a science buff, you’ll know that iron oxide is a fancy term for rust. That’s right: The same mineral you scrub off of your shower is responsible for Himalayan salt’s striking good looks. Pretty neat, huh?

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