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      16.03.2013 20:15
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      A cool light but more for effect than illumination

      ===My Opinion===

      Lava lamps come in all shapes and sizes and colours - from the standard ones that sit on tables to much larger floor standing ones.
      They all work on the principle of a bulb in the base giving off light and also heating the contents of a glass tube that sits over the bulb. When the contents heats up blobs of 'lava' rise in the coloured liquid up to the top of the container - where then then cool and drop back down - so as long as the bulb is switched on there will be continual motion in the lamp.
      These lamps were invented in the UK i the early 1960s and came to be associated with fashionable decor along with ball or basket chairs.
      Personally I have always been fascinated with these lamps since seeing them on old black and white TV programmes way back in the 60s. They would often crop up as a groovy accessory in shows such as The Avengers or The Prisoner. They were part of psychedelic decor. I never thought I would end up owning one one day - but my eldest son gave be a red and blue one for Christmas a few years ago.
      After being very much a 60s and 70s item I did not see them around again until they started being seen on sale during the 1990s and now are standard gift items every Christmas - just look in the Argos catalogue.
      The lamp just needs to be plugged in and switched on, but it does take quite a while for the lava to get moving - sometimes from an hour to an hour and a half to get the blobs of 'lava' circulating freely.
      I did have the bulb go once and I had a terrible time trying to find a replacement so these days I keep my lamp for special occasions such as Birthdays and Christmas or when having visitors round and I will then turn it on early and leave on fr all day.
      It is very relaxing to gaze at the blobs of lava rising and falling. It does not give off a lot of light - more a red glow.
      Some of these lamps can be quite unstable as mine is just a glass section resting in the base - the top fluid filled section makes it top heavy so a slight knock and it would tumble over and smash.
      I am not sure what the composition of the 'lava' is, some sort of wax I believe, but googling shows that some lamps did contain carbon tetrachloride which is poisonous - so for this reason, and the fact that they can get quite hot and would shatter if knocked over I would not want to have them in a child's room - though from some of the designs they seem to be aimed at the child market. Personally I think they are much too dangerous to have in children's rooms.



      ===Star Rating===

      4 stars. Nice but you have to be careful with them.



      ===Website===

      www.mathmos.com
      This firm made and still make the original Lava Lites and you can buy replacement bottles from them for lamps dating back to 1963.

      However these days many other firms make these lamps and you have no way of knowing what the contents are.

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        16.03.2013 18:26
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        Highly recommended!

        I have a lava lamp at home, bought it from Ikea 3 years ago and it's great fun to watch when fully warmed up. If anything a little relaxing when reading a book or listening to calming music. It's not particularly useful, it's not particularly eco friendly, but it looks funky and seems to add a sense of art to the room.

        Lava lamps can take a while to heat up, they burn through your bank account in electric bills and they have no purpose other than to be looked at. But thats exactly what describes art. Art is expensive and so i'm told to be art, a work has to have no purpose, be on it's own and have no purpose, but that's why people buy these, for artistic merit. My point is, they have a point.

        If you're buying the bigger floor stand ones like i've got then be prepared for a long wait. Mine now takes a full 30 minutes to get going but smaller desk ones take less time and they're cheaper to run. The bulbs aren't as much to replace and the electric bill will stay down. It depends on your budget so choose very wisely.

        I am genuinely fascinated by the shapes the blobs make in the lamp, most are round balls of lava but sometimes you get long stringy ones that don't seem to want to let go of their base. It is interesting to watch but it really sets a relaxing mood in the room so i'd set a lamp up in a study or a bedroom with some slow RnB music with dimmed light. By RnB i don't mean Rhianna or any of this modern rubbish, i'm talking Jodeci - Freakin' you. etc etc.

        The more funky lava lamps can be rocket ships or missiles and what not but these are the sort of decorative furniture you'll find in a spotty 13 year old's bedroom. If like me you're contemporary and want a good looking mood room design i'd recommend the bog standard ones.

        There's no point getting a small one if the room is huge, but equally a small one on your desk would be perfect for keeping you calm at work. Sadly not all employers or bosses will support such an idea but tell them its health and safety or workplace stress management, they love that sort of nonsense.

        I'd highly recommend a lava lamp, they're great fun to watch and relaxing.

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          16.03.2013 15:33
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          This is a very nice lamp and I think lava lamps are very attractive

          WHAT IS IT?

          A lamp that you plug in. It is made of see through glass and mine has got a metal stand and frame but some that you can buy are plastic. I bought the one I have got now from a local electronics store and the brand name is International Lighting.

          WHAT DOES IT DO?

          Inside the glass lamp there is coloured wax and when you turn the lamp on that heats up and melts a bit. When it has gone soft the wax goes up and down the lamp in blobs for a very attractive effect. You can buy lava lamps with all different coloured wax or with glitter suspended in the water instead of wax, the one I have got has got a pink purple wax that is very pretty and feminine.

          WHAT I THINK

          I like my lava lamp very much and think it brightens up my home. This is for mood lighting because when the lamp is switched on it is still not bright enough to read with so I have put mine in a corner where it can glow and make that part of the room look nice.

          The wax doesn't start to melt straight away and until it does I think the lava lamp is boring looking and when I switch the lamp off sometimes it sets in ways that are not pleasing but you cannot do anything about it until you put the lamp back on again. I have had mine for 2 years and the wax is still bright and the water is still clear, I only have it on for 2 or 3 hours because you can burn the wax if you keep it on for too long and then it will start to go brown.

          It gets very dusty and that is a disadvantage because even when I have cleaned it it still looks like it has got dust on it sometimes. The plug lead is only about 1 metre but that is ok for me because I keep it next to a plug socket.

          ANYTHING ELSE

          Lava lamps are quite cheap to buy and you can get a basic one like mine for about £12 but you can pay up to £50 if you want to buy something different.

          4 Dooyoo Stars.

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          14.03.2013 22:35
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          retro lighting

          When I was a teenager I was given a lava lamp as a present. I had a newly decorated and was presented with a bright green lamp - which fitted in neatly with my lemon and green colour scheme.

          For those unfamiliar with the concept of a lava lamp, it is a decorative novelty item. It was invented in the 60s and is quite well known as to be part of that era - so now is considered somewhat retro or nostalgic. The lamp contains coloured wax inside a glass vessel filled with clear (but sometimes coloured) liquid. Underneath the vessel, there is a lightbulb which heats the wax when switched on, causing the wax to rise and then subsequently fall as it calls (due to it's change in density).

          Lamps come in all different shapes and sizes, mine resembled the first one in the dooyoo picture, with silver casing. It had a bright green liquid inside and a darker green wax that bubbled up when lit. After switching the bulb on with a flick switched attached to the wire, the lamp immediately lit and illuminated my room quite well - letting off a decent amount of light. After a few seconds, a few small bubbles of wax would rise and then, without much delay, it would set into a rhythm of larger bubbled coming up and down. This was pretty to watch and actually quite calming - quite a distraction but at the same time a nice feature piece in my room.

          I found that the lamp got quite hot to the touch very quickly - so could be dangerous around children. The top and bottom which were a silver metal casing got especially hot.

          These are really very dependent on personal taste. I perhaps wouldn't want to own one again, with having children about but also they are quite bright in colour and probably wouldn't fit in with my decor. But, if you know someone who has a love for all things 'retro' these make a fun present. Prices vary dependent on style size etc but they can be found quite easily to purchase online.

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            20.12.2012 13:30
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            Something strangely relaxing about it

            I remember when I was a teenager and we were on our weeks holidays at Whitby, we would play the bingo everyday and collect the wins to get prizes at the end of the week, my eyes were on the prize of a lava lamp. As we are talking about 15 years ago lava lamps were at the time pretty expensive and I needed a lot of wins but my Mam donated some of her wins and at the end of the week I came home with the lava lamp I had wanted.

            A lava lamp consists of a base which plugs into the electric and has an elemant inside to provide heat, a glass bottle which contains a wax type of material inside coloured liquid and finally a top to sit over the top of the bottle. The idea is that when you plug in your lava lamp the heat produced at the base heats the wax and it will then move around and make it's way up to the top where it will cool down and then fall back down to the bottom. The lava lamp does also provide light so is actually a lamp too.

            I loved my lava lamp and ikt was well worth the money we spent on the bingo that week to get it, now a days lava lamps come in alsorts of shapes whereas when I got mine it was a simple end to end cone shape so it was wider in the middle and narrower at either end. Lava lamps have also comes down in price now too and you can pick up the style I had for about £10.

            There were good and bad points to the lava lamp, the lamp would take about an hour to heat up and get the wax moving properly which in the end was why I got rid of it, as I got older I foudn that I wasn;t in for more than an hour or so at a time wso it didn;t get used however now I am older again and have my own house I would quite like one again. The bottle in the lamp also gets pretty hot and with it being glass is of course breakable so it wasn't a good things to have near young children. The lamps are really relaxing once they have got going properly and they do provide a decent amount of light so they are useful as well as being nice to look at.

            I loved my lava lamp and will probably end up with one again once my daughters are a little older.

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            15.10.2012 00:52
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            They do look very pretty.

            ~ Lava Lamps ~

            Over the years I have had a good few different lava lamps, the latest is a set of three that sit on a base. There are three pin style bottles (like the pins in bowling), one is coloured in pink, the other blue and the last being yellow. There is the same colour wax in the bottles as the liquid and they sit on a round silver light up base. There is a long lead leading from the base that plugs into the wall socket, on this lead is the on/off switch to operate the lamp.

            I was bought this for Christmas about three years ago by my step mother and I am not entirely sure why she thought it was a good gift idea, it doesn't go with any of my decor nor did I particularly want one but there you go!
            So it is in my son's bedroom, on his computer desk. He puts it on in the evenings rather than the main light as it offers a much dimmer glow and is more relaxing. For about two months I did have it in my kitchen and whilst I do find the gloopy wax patterns really relaxing it just wasn't practical!

            Lava lamps are really cool to look at and I could sit for hours just watching the wax float around in the liquid, making patterns and floating up and down.
            When off the lamps don't look anything special really, the wax sits at the bottom and does nothing until it is put on, the heat of the lamp then warms up the wax and it is then the fun begins, but they can take a while to warm up.

            You can get lava lamps in a variety of sizes, shapes and colours and the prices vary greatly. If you want a lava lamp you will be spoilt for choice. You can get small ones, normal sizes ones, large ones and massive ones! I know at the moment B&M Bargains have large lava lamps available for around £10 which is a good price. You will also find a good range available on Amazon.

            I do however have a slight horror story about lava lamps or a lava lamp should that be. When me and my brother were younger we were both bought a lava lamp for Christmas, I rarely used mine but my brother was scared of the dark so he would use it as a night light. He would put it on when he got into bed and then my mum would turn it off within an hour when he was asleep, baring in mind they need to be put on for a while to warm up so the wax goes gloopy I really don't think what happened should have happened! Anyway, he put the lamp on one night and as she did every night my mum went up to turn it off only to find that the lamp had exploded all over the wall, the bedside cabinet and my brothers bed! Luckily my brother was facing the wall and his blanket was up over him or he would have ended up being burned by the hot wax! We had no idea as to how this happened, the lamp had not been dropped or moved at all but I would definitely say not to put a lava lamp near your bed!

            Thanks for reading :o) x

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              12.10.2012 23:12
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              A lava rocket lamp

              I bought a lava lamp for my study at home. I find the moving colours and shapes really relaxing. I wanted one that was well made and good quality though so I decided to look on the Internet and buy one that was a little better quality and more unusual than most.

              ==Price and availability==

              The lava lamp I bought for the study is made by Mathmos. It cost me £55 and I bought it from EBay. Brand new the brand's website the lamp can cost around £60.00.

              ==Description==

              The lamp stands around 17 inch tall and is shaped like a rocket. It stands on a metal frame which is silver and has a silver cap on the top. The middle section is clear with pink wax. When the lamp is off the wax goes hard and settles on the base of the lamp. As the lamp heats up and indeed the exterior feels quite warm to the touch the wax melts and rises. As wax and water do not mix, the wax rises and swirls in the water like a lava effect, which gives the lamp it's name. 

              There is a lead that connects the lamp to the mains supply. The lamp lights up and gets warm which makes the wax melt and as water and wax do not mix you get some really lovely psychedelic patterns.

              ==My experiences==

              I love the patterns and the shapes of the lamp and I find it so relaxing when I am trying to do some work in the study. The wax and water makes some lovely patterns on the wall too as the shadows leap and blob across the roof and walls.

              The only problem I have with my lamp is that because of the size, the wax takes quite a long time to melt. If you are only in the room for a short period of time then you will not get to experience the true effects of it. 

              Overall the aesthetics of the lamp are great, the frame looks great and it stands elegantly in the study. The lamp brings the Bohemia of the 60's to the contemporary style of today. I am pleased with it as it looks different, quirky yet stylish. 

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              13.03.2012 17:20
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              Adds character to any room

              When I was 10 my parents bought me a blue lava lamp which I adored, and looked fantastic placed in my room. For many years I enjoyed watching the lava float up and down within the lamp, and I don't think there was a day that I didn't turn it on.

              However, for some silly reason, about 2 years ago, I decided to sell my beloved lamp at a car boot sale, in order to gather enough money together to go on holiday with. I was an incredibly fickle teenager, and at the time thought that due to having my room redecorated also, that the blue lamp wouldn't look right within my newly painted pink room.

              About 2 weeks ago, after moving to University last Autumn, I saw one of my friend's lava lamps within their accommodation and fell in love with the lamps all over again. After spending hours decided what size, colour and price to spend, I found my new lava lamp.

              I decided to purchase a 14.5inch red and purple lamp, which cost £18 including postage. I love it.

              For anyone considering purchasing a lamp, I'd suggest searching around on the internet, as many websites have various offers, meaning you can great deals and save money.

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              17.04.2011 22:54
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              Lava Lamps were created many years ago, and its great to see they are still popular

              I have owned many different types of Lava lamps now, I find that they are very soothing to look at, and also offer something different and unique to a room. There are a lot of types of lava lamps around, from ones that are glitter (I used to have a silver one and it reflected around the room), also wax lava within the clear liquid and then also my favourite which is a yellow liquid with yellow wax inside.

              I like these lamps because not only are they different but they also give off enough light to turn off the big lights in the house, and rely on these instead. I prefer smaller lights anyway, so find these great.

              However, the main reason for buying these is for decoration more so. I cannot believe how many different types there are around, and also just how many different sizes there are now.

              Generally the bulbs are from 25 to 40 watts, so not overally powerful, but enough for background light. I find that for the wax to heat up, and for more light to come around the room it takes about 30 minutes, and for most the amount is 40-60 minutes.

              One of the most popular places to buy these from, in all sorts of sizes - as you can even get miniature ones, are gadget shops. They range in price from anything from £7 right up to £40 for the large ones.

              These lamps have been around for years and years now, and came into England in the 1990's. Some people think they are a bit dated, but i think it is great you can still buy the more old fashioned styles. However, Argos for example are selling much more modern versions now, ones that can light a room - as they are massive. There is a giant red and purple one which I have seen, and it has a height of 69cm and width of 21cm! Ones this size can actually take about 2 hours to heat up and actually get moving around, but I think one like this is certainly more for a unique taste!

              The particular model I have colours yellow, and I find the bulbs very easy to pick up. I recently had to change them and brought 2 in a pack from ASDA for £1.50, so they aren't hard to find.

              I don't think these lamps are everyone's taste, but I think they are great, and like to have them as something a bit different to have, and great when you don't want the 'big' light on - such as when watching a film!

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              27.02.2011 10:51
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              A nice decorative lamp

              I remember having a lava lamp as a teenager (many years ago now) when I was living with my parents and I would make a guess that most people have owned one at some point in their lives. A month or two before Christmas, a new shop opened up in a local town centre called the Gadget Shop and lined up on the top shelf near the door was a variety of different lava lamps. I decided that I really fancied having one again and asked for one for Christmas.

              What is a lava lamp? A lava lamp (also known as Astro lamp) is a decorative lamp that is really for aesthetic purposes than light purposes! The lava lamp was invented in 1963 by Edward Craven-Walker and began being produced in 1968. Each lamp contains a standard lightbulb which sits underneath a glass bottle containing water and wax mixture. When the lamp is turned on, the heat from the bulb begins to warm the water which in turn causes the wax to melt and form blobs which rise and fall making random patterns.

              It can take up to an hour for the wax to be warm enough and you will find that as it is starting to melt some very random (and quite disgusting at times) shapes will begin to appear as it starts to rise up the bottle! It is at this point that it really freaks my little girl out as she doesn't like the ugly shapes that form.

              The lava lamp I received is one of the concave shaped ones rather than the rocket ones which I was really pleased about as I had decided I wanted it in my living room and I thought a rocket one would look very out of place. The metal base and top is a bright metallic pink which I personally love, and the wax inside is a purpley/pink colour before it is melted, turning into a lovely reddy/pink once it gets going. The glow from the lamp is also pink, which I think looks fab at night with just that and the television on. Of course it doesn't give out much light, it is just a nice discreet glow so you wouldn't be able to read with just the lamp on.

              One thing to be aware of is that the lamp can become very hot after being on for a long period of time so it isn't recommended to lift it once it has been on. Also, it must be kept away from children for this same reason!

              As my lava lamp was a present I am not entirely sure how much it cost, but I would imagine it would have been around £15.00 and looking online I see that you can buy them for around £12.99. The lamps come in a range of colours and designs, with some I have seen having lime green wax in! Another variation of the lamp is that with a glitter filling rather than wax.

              I really like my lava lamp and would recommend them to anyone as I think they make a nice feature in a room and are really quite relaxing to watch. I especially like it when my kitten sits next to it and becomes totally mesmerised with the movement of the wax and follows it up and down!

              Thank you for reading my review!

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                17.02.2011 23:36
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                The best lava lamp I have ever owned

                I was given a mathmos lava lamp for christmas by my other half, it was the perfect gift as I have always loved lava lamps although the ones I usually chose were on the cheap side and the bulbs tended to blow if you so much as breath on them. With mathmos you dont get these problems, they are fairly durable and hard wearing so will last as long as you want them to.

                I was given two different colour bottles with mine which is brilliant as depending on what mood you are in you can change the colour of the lamp accordingly, I think the colours that you can get are very adaptable to differnent peoples moods, for instance if you are feeling a bit down in the dumps you can opt to put the darker colours in, these colours include : violet/red, Blue/blue, violet/orange.
                The lighter brighter colours include: blue/green, yellow/red, clear/pink, clear/turquoise.
                You can also chose if you want a chrome base and top or white, I much prefur the chrome as it isn't likely to chip and scratch as much as the white may do.

                There is also a nice selection of different style lamps to choose from, you have the astrobaby, which is the style I have, the astro and the telstar. They are all amazing in their own right, they come in 3 basic shapes and sizes. The astro baby being the shortest at 43cm tall, the astro is 44cm tall and the telstar which is 49cm tall, the telstar is by far the best looking lamp as it has funky rocket shaped legs and a pointed nose.

                When you open the box with the lamp, base, top and botttle inside it has all the safety information which is very useful if you have never owned one before, some of the instructions are easy to follow others may not be so easy to adhere to if you have the time or the space to have it. It comes very safely packed in the box and the bottle is packed in a separate box from the rest, it comes wrapped in a bag with a piece of cardboard around the top acting as a stopper to keep it from moving around in transit.

                For instance, you have to run the lamp about 4 or 5 times to get it at its best, it can take anywhere between 1-3 hours for it to warm up and then you can't have it running for more than 6 hours if you don't want to shorten the life on it. It says not to place it on a carpet or block the ventilation spaces beneath the lamp but if you have it on a hard surface then this is likely to happen.

                The bottles are easily interchangeable as I have noticed, its just a case of taking one out, taking of the top and putting the new one inside the base. I have kept all of the boxes as I got 2 bottles with mine I have got the second box in which I keeep the bottle I'm not using in, that way I can easily remove and replace the bottles in a matter of seconds.

                I have both the violet/red colours and the blue/green, my favorite colours have to be the blue/green as they work very well together and can keep me entertained for hours on end! They work best when the room is dark, you will get the full beauty and wonder of them like this. The only downfall of the darker *moodier* colours is that when there is no other light on in the room it can make it very very dark. The green/blue on the other hand is nice and bright, it can be a little bit dark to start with but once it gets going its very hard to take oyur eyes off of it!

                I find myself staring at my lava lamp all the time when its on and warmed up, its a very relaxing thing to have and can make you loose minutes or even hours at a time ust staring at the brightly coloures liquid and wax inside those bottles.

                I have mine on my bedside as its the only place to put it plug wise, the lead on it is fairly long and has an on/off switch on the wire itself. I wouldn't recommend putting these lamps up high as they aren't always the most stable.

                Mathmos is a UK based company and have a factory and a studio & shop. The factory is based in Poole, Dorset, and the factory is based in Hoxton, london. They also have their own website WWW.MATHMOS.COM or you can buy them from Amazon, e-bay and places like that. I would suggest buying them direct from the maker but it all depends on how much you want to spend on them.

                Prices start from (MATHMOS): £49 for the astrobaby,
                £57 for the astro
                £67 for the telstar
                On the mathmos website you can also buy a range of new bottles at various prices. These range anywhere from £23.95.
                The prices for new lamps on Amazon are prices a little bit more, so its definatly worth getting them straight from the maker, who also will do made to order lamps!! Its worth keeping a look out on the website as they are always inventing newer, more brilliant ideas!!!

                These are by far the best, funkiest, brightly coloured lava lamps around at the moment! I have had had mine for only 3 months now and will be very upset when it dies!! Although I will never go back to the cheaper versions, they are still funky lamps and do serve their purpose, I think that its mathmos all the way for the future of lava lamps!

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                16.02.2011 15:40

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                Wax + Bottle + Heat = Winning Combination

                A novelty item used for decoration more than anything, they have been about in various shapes, sizes and colours since the sixties, nineteen sixty three to be exact. The idea could not be simpler, a 25 - 40 watt contained in some sort of plastic base heats a bottle directly above it containing wax and water. The wax expands, rises to the top of the bottle, cools, sinks back down and the process is started over. It can take anything up to 2 hours for the wax to fully start to flow but that does not detract from the enjoyment of watching a lava lamp during this period. During this period of time the wax can and will form quite intricate structures and it can be quite mesmerising to see these built up and then melted. The bottom and top of the lava lamps are encased in plastic both as a safety feature to block some heat ( don't let children touch, can get very hot) and to add form to the bottle usually in the shape of a rocket.

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                07.10.2010 22:17
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                I love my lava lamp now I have it back

                I am guessing that pretty much all of us have owned a lava lamp at one time or another. I had mine years ago and I think it cost me £10 I had forgotten all about it until visiting my moms house and seeing she had put it out in her living room.

                I actually thought I had go trid of it nut apparently not and now Ihave it back and I love it.

                Lava lamps are lamps which heat up melting the wax inside them which then rises and falls inside the glass making different patterns. They come in many different colours with the liquid being either clear or a different colour to the wax. As wax is more dense then water when heated it rises to the top of the lamp where it cools then floats back down.

                The bulb in my lava lamp is 25 watts so they are not something you would use for reading with. What they do do though is give of a lovely glow in any room and is very relaxing to watch as the wax moves round.

                Lava lamps can take some heating up though mine usually takes around an hour before the wax is flowing and a couple of hours for the wax to really get going, so I would recommend you pop it on before it gets dark outside then as the lights go down the wax should be flowing. The lamps do get hot as well so don't try and pick it up once it has been on and keep away from children as well, you really don't want them burning themselves on one of these.

                I love my lava lamp and you can buy them online for as little as £10 some people I kno wfind them tacky but I find them relaxing its personal choice. 5 stars from me.

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                04.10.2010 08:23
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                A beautiful lamp from the 60's

                A decorative item that I have grown to love over the last ten years is the lava lamp, an invention of the swinging sixties. It's quite uncanny when you think about it that a lamp that is absolutely useless for lighting would become so popular. Some of you may recall the hilarious episode of the very popular 70's sitcom George and Mildred. The couple climbed the social ladder and moved into a new house on a rather upmarket housing estate next door to a rather posh couple named the Fourmiles. Mildred's lava lamp was her pride and joy, much to George's disgust!

                Whilst I was aware that lava lamps had been around for many years, I had absolutely no idea where or when they were invented and by whom. Consequently, I carried out a little research and discovered that in 1948 an inventor by the name of Craven Walker was sitting in a pub enjoying a quiet drink when he spotted an unusual looking lamp, which he described as "a contraption made out of a cocktail shaker, old tins and things". Walker was determined to create something more spectacular and during the next ten years he set about the challenge. As a result, he created the lava lamp as we know today, which he named "Astro" and in 1964 he took it to a trade show in Brussels.

                Walker was soon to make his fortune when Adolph Wertheimer and his partner Hy Spector took an instant liking to the lamp and they subsequently bought the rights to retail it in the United States. As a result, the lamps were manufactured in Chicago and renamed the Lava Lite and are still being built there today under the name of Lava World International.

                Whilst the lava lamp is not suitable for lighting a room due to its' low 25 watt bulb, I simply love to switch mine on, particularly in the cold and dark winter months when I will gaze at the beautiful colours, which are totally relaxing and calming. I will often find myself dropping off to sleep, particularly as I find it so tranquil watching that bright blob of colourful wax that gently floats up and down.

                I really had no idea of how a lava lamp operated or what it contained to create such beautiful blobs of colour. Whilst I was aware that the lamp contains a specially designed bulb, which will subsequently heat the contents of the glass, I was unsure how the wax was able to travel. I have since discovered that the glass is filled with a combination of water, wax and carbon tetrachloride and you may have noticed that located at the base of the lamp is a small wire coil, which will increase the heat.

                As the wax is of a different concentration to that of the water it will simply float when the lamp is switched off. However, when the power is switched on is when the real magic begins due to the fact that a non-flammable solvent has been added to the wax. This subsequently allows the wax to become a very similar density to that of the water and create a floating effect. The wax will become hot when it nears the base of the glass due to the wire coil and as it glides to the top it will slowly cool and then return to the bottom and so on.

                Lava lamps were extremely popular in the 60's and 70's and sadly the craze died down in the 80's. However, during the 90's the extremely eye-catching item once again became extremely fashionable and to this current day they can be found in the majority of good lighting stores. I was surprised to discover that there are so many "recipes" on the internet giving instructions on how to make your own, although this is not something I would ever consider attempting due to the fact that I would probably blow up our house!

                Unfortunately, my purchases of lava lamps have been rather unsuccessful, particularly as each one that I have owned has only lasted a matter of months as for some reason they simply stopped working. The reason I initially purchased one of these lamps was that I was going through a period where I found it extremely difficult to relax, particularly as I always had to be doing something and would very rarely sit down. Consequently, I placed my lamp on the hearth and would turn out all the lights and just gaze at the blob of wax as it slowly bobbed up and down inside the glass and created a somewhat hypnotising affect.

                Whilst I am unsure if all of the designs are similar, the ones I have owned were in two pieces where you would need to place the glass section onto the top of the base unit. My first hubby, who was somewhat clumsy, dropped the glass section of one of my lamps and as a result, our living room carpet was covered in glittery water and wax! The lamp I currently own does not contain glitter and is simply a basic wax version of calming greens with a chrome base section. Whilst the majority of lava lamps are mains operated, I am aware that there are a few that have been specifically designed for children and are battery operated.

                As I am a real fan of this beautiful lamp I often trawl the internet searching for new designs. Although I do not have any intention of starting a lava lamp collection, I always love looking at the stunning new creations. The lamps are manufactured in hundreds of colours and sizes where you are able to purchase versions especially designed for children, such as the aquarium lamp, which contains dozens of tiny fish!

                If you're wanting something to help you relax why not choose the original Astra Lamp or if you're a bit of a glitter bug why not choose something pink and girly with lots of sparkling coloured glitter? I was pleasantly surprised to discover that there is even a lamp that is powered by your pc, namely the USB lava lamp!

                You should be aware that lava lamps take a little while to heat up, so you should allow up to an hour or so for the 25 watt bulb to provide heat to the metal wire and subsequently heat the blob of wax. If your home is extremely cold, particularly in the winter months, this could process could take considerably longer. Once the lamp is in operation the glass becomes extremely hot and care should be taken not to knock or move it.

                I would have to advise at this stage that a lava lamp should never be heated by anything other than its' intended bulb. I recently watched the television programme 1001 Ways To Die and a rather drugged and alcohol induced guy decided to speed up the process and subsequently placed his lava lamp in the microwave. Yes, the microwave! Consequently, the contents of the lamp overheated, the glass exploded, the microwave door shot open and showered the guy with shards of glass; one of which entered his heart and killed him!

                The prices of lava lamps differ considerably with your basic 12 inch high astra lamp retailing for around £30 - £40. You could even choose the 24 inch high lamp, which is currently being sold by Argos for £45.

                In order to provide accurate information I have used various websites to research this product and subsequently written this review in my own words to enable me to advise you of both the mechanics and history of the beautiful lava lamp.

                I hope you have found this useful and would thank you for reading.

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                  20.09.2010 16:14
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                  A good item

                  Lava Lamps have been a big influence on my life in terms of a decorative item for many years. A lava lamp enables you to make a room seem more important with this luxury range of colours and designs which make you want more as time goes on.

                  Currently I have a design by DRW and this is done with a silver bottom and top for the item which has a fantastic turquoise coloured wax inside and the water as well or liquid as many people describe the substance as is a light blue so when the power is on the wax heats up quickly and creates a stunning amount of colour which vibrates of all the walls in a darken room.

                  When I turn on my item I find the bulb inside can last a long time and the heat generated can be very warm causing plenty of heat so there needs to be a warning not to touch anything to do with the lamp until the device is switched off which is usually by a small switch on the side which is attached to the power cable.

                  Usually within an hour the wax starts too circulated and makes many strange movements within the glass and liquid which forms this great range of formations and when the colours are at full beam in a dark room they brighten up the place immediately.

                  The wax continues to go round in a loop and sometimes the parts of wax which break off the rest of the wax can be big or small and this depends purely on the heat on the wax at the time. The size of the DRW lava lamp I have got is 41cm in height which is fairly tall and it weighs around 1.2kg this obviously does include the liquid in terms of weight as well.

                  The bulbs can last a while and are usually a screw in bulb and these can be brought from most superstores which sell bulbs and usually are cheap. In terms of the price of my lava lamp I have brought the DRW one comes in a wild range of colours and can be found online at locations such as Amazon and many other huge online retailers for around £10-£15.

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