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What Are Bath Salts?

Since the time of the Ancient Egyptians, various cultures and groups of people have visited the Dead Sea for therapy. Since the beginning, Dead Sea salts have been used in various forms, soaking, creams, soaps, scrubs and wraps, just as it is used today. The minerals found in bath salts are critical nutrients for our bodies, which are often not absorbed, or poorly absorbed, from our food.

At Salt Box, we stock the three main types of baths salts – they are Dead Sea Salts (straight from the Dead Sea), Himalayan Salts (out of the Himalayan Mountains in Northern Pakistan) and Epsom Salts. All of our salts are 100% pure and natural. We don’t believe in adding nasties to your bath.

All types of salts are said to have health benefits when used as bath soaks due to nutritive elements through absorption by the skin. Now to the technical stuff …

  • Dead Sea Salts are found in Dead Sea water, which has a salt content of 29%, compared to 4% in the oceans. The major ions of Dead Sea water include: chloride, magnesium, sodium, calcium and potassium.
  • Epsom Salts are magnesium sulphate heptahydrate (usually just shortened to magnesium sulphate). It was originally obtained by boiling down mineral waters at Epsom, England. Officially, Epsom is not actually a salt, but a naturally occurring pure mineral compound of magnesium and sulphate.
  • Himalayan Salts are from mined from the south-facing scarp of the Potwar Plateau in the Punjab region of northern Pakistan. It is buried amid mountains (literally) of sedimentary rock dating back over 500 million years ago. The salt that is taken out of here is revered as the purest of all the salts and is known as the ‘King Salt’ and originally served to royalty only (not common folk who used other salts) for both cooking and as a therapeutic ingredient. Indeed, Himalayan Salts, unlike Dead Sea salts and Epsom salts are the same salts used for food.

And just a word of caution! Before you go attempting to season tonight’s dinner with your Dead Sea or Epsom bath salts we strongly recommend you don’t. Epsom and Dead Sea salts are very different from food salts (and Himalayan). Common food salt is primarily (up to 95%) made up of sodium chloride - the chemical compound NaCl – and these salts are typically found in the Pacific Ocean. Dead Sea salts and Epsom salts have a stack of other minerals in them and both have low sodium chloride content (below 20% and often as little as 2.5) and are not suitable for eating. You may experience quite a drastic laxative effect if you do, which may not be very nice … for anyone.