Epsom Salts and Dead Sea Salts are two go-tos for those seeking natural healing therapies. But what is the difference between the two? Much to people’s surprise, Epsom salts are not in fact salts. They are actually a mineral found in water containing high levels of magnesium and sulfate. When crystallised, it forms the substance we know now as Epsom salts.
Technically known as magnesium sulphate, Epsom salts don’t contain sodium chloride, which is the active ingredient in salt. We call it ‘salt’ due to its crystalline structure and properties that mirror actual salt. Regardless of its chemical makeup, Epsom salt is still hugely beneficial to our health. First distilled in Surrey England in the 1800s, the mineral is now used primarily in healing muscle injuries and for warm baths for relaxation and recovery. Today, much of the Epsom Salt sold has been manufactured, but you can find Epsom Salt that is sourced naturally and sustainably in Germany and USA.
Dead Sea Salt
Dead Sea salt, on the other hand, is a legitimate sea salt. Nestled between Jordan, Israel, and Palestine, the Dead Sea is a giant salt lake that formed more than fifteen million years ago. Its salt has been harvested for thousands of years and used in medicine and natural beauty remedies, and more recently in cooking. Its crumbling moist consistency sets it apart from the clear smooth crystals of Epsom salts.
The composition is also different. In regular ocean water, 85 percent of the salt is sodium chloride (table salt); however, Dead Sea salt is only 12-18 percent sodium chloride. This means that Dead Sea salt contains a richer mixture of other nutrients, primarily magnesium salts. In Dead Sea salts you will find 21 minerals which include magnesium, calcium, sulfur, bromide, iodine, sodium, zinc and potassium.
Beautifully absorbent, its high moisture content make it perfect for combining with natural essential oils. But this means Dead Sea Salts needs to be stored tightly and kept in a cool dry place, whereas Epsom salts are very resilient and can be stored in your bathroom cupboard.