Fleur de sel is a symbol of France’s national identity, as well as its long-standing commitment to protecting the environment. It is often said that the fleur de sel represents more than a person’s fidelity to his or her country. It represents a people’s dedication to their country and to their native lands. With this in mind, it is little wonder that the fleur de sel has become an important symbol for France and its people. So it makes sense that fleur de sel prices are high, indeed, when you consider that it takes hundreds of years for this salty symbol to form.
Of course, fleur de sel is also a popular salt, as it is for many other types of sea salts. But it is distinct among them in the fact that it is harvested mostly from coastal regions where the salty water lapping on its beaches acts as a natural filter. This allows the flower of salt to form inside the porous rock salt cliffs. Once formed, the flower of salt blocks out the elements from reaching the inside of the crystal salt crystal and thus maintains its solid, crystal structure.
As a result, fleur de sel crystals seldom dissolve. In fact, they stay intact for centuries, and their fine crystalline structure ensures that they will never dry out or crack. This is due both to the superior water vapor conductivity of the sea salt and to the relatively low moisture content of the seawater. When dry, the flower of salt looks like a piece of beach sand with fine lines and wrinkles radiating out from the crystal structure of the salt.
But when the water evaporates, the salt surface starts to absorb moisture content from the air. And as evaporation proceeds, the volume of the crystal depletes – until eventually it reaches zero. During the process of evaporation, the temperature of the seawater may rise above the freezing point of water, causing it to change from a crystal salt into an ice-like liquid.
This triggers a chemical reaction in which the water turns to ice again, forming what is known as dew point. Because of this, the fleur de sel crystals are made to precipitate into sharp needle shapes. As evaporation proceeds at a rapid pace, the water in the air reaches the dew point and turns into ice. In this state, the concentration of sodium chloride in the air is too high, and the salt crystal’s crystal structure is unable to take in moisture. The cycle of evaporation and precipitation then spreads the dew point around the region of the room, causing the room to become extremely cold.
So now you know how fleur de sel works. Although this material is very attractive, it’s not suited to every type of home interior design. You might want to try out fleur de sel for your next big project, and see if it matches up to your expectations!