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Since the very air we breathe is riddled with allergens this time of year, just about everyone is looking for a path to air purification. Thus the increased popularity of the Himalayan salt lamp–and discussions about their ability, or lack thereof, to do that.

Some sellers claim that the trendy lamps can moderate the balance of positive and negative ions in our air by releasing negative ions to cancel out the positive ones, leaving the room as fresh as a day at the beach. Others believe salt lamps dry out the water vapor in the room, leaving particles of pollutants and allergens attached to the salt, which can be wiped off before the process begins again.

Both of these effects sound helpful, but many outlets have debunked the theories for lack of proof.

Whichever side you’re on, it’s difficult to deny the beauty of these lamps. The faint glow and the pinkish coloring make for a stylish and relaxing statement piece for any room, but there’s the issue of devilish counterfeiters to be wary of. Before you shop, take a mental note of the warning signs of an imposter salt lamp.

Be sure the lamp is from Pakistan.

Himalayan salt is mined from the Khewra Salt Mines in the Punjab Region of Pakistan. If you don’t see any mention of the mine or the region in the description of the lamp, it’s most definitely a fake. Proper sellers will usually promote their lamps authenticity by advertising this fact.

You shouldn’t be able to light up your room with your lamp.

If your salt lamp is bright enough to actually light up a room, it’s probably counterfeit. One of the major draws of using a Himalayan salt lamp in your home is the soft, warm light it emits, so if you’re seeing anything stronger than that, you’ve most likely been duped.

True salt lamps are not indestructible.

An authentic Himalayan salt lamp has a level of fragility to it, so if you’ve happened to drop it on the floor or bumped it against the wall, you’re bound to see a chip or a scratch. Also, salt does attract water to its surface, making dollops of sweat along your real lamp a regular occurrence, especially in Houston’s humid climate.

Beware of the white salt lamp.

Yes, real white salt lamps exist, but they are significantly more expensive and fairly rare, so keep an eye out for pinkish to reddish salt lamps to bring home with you to ensure you're getting the real deal.

Can’t return it? Don’t buy it.

It’s incredibly important when shopping for a Himalayan salt lamp to take note of the return policy of the seller, since many of the signs of an imposter lamp aren’t noticeable until after use. If the seller either doesn’t offer the ability to return or allows returns only under very few circumstances, purchase elsewhere.

With a keen eye, you’re sure to find just the right Himalayan salt lamp for you. Whether it actually clears your mind (and your lungs) is another thing entirely, but they sure look pretty on a night stand.

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