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Our Story

Andrew Pickens - Native Salts Founder

Meet Andrew, the founder of Native Salts. Our story begins at the University of Illinois. While playing rugby and working at a campus bar, he would often see people crack open smelling salts to wake up for a pregame and feel alert. Those smelling salts were all pure ammonium and had a little glass cartridge in them. 


One day Andrew was very exhausted from studying for finals when his study partner pulled out a pouch, put it by his nose, and quickly withdrew in disgust. This was his first close-up exposure to smelling salts. They smelled bad and looked odd, but they were extremely effective. In a few moments, he quickly felt alert and energized! 

Fascinated by his experience, he immediately started researching smelling salts with his father, Rob, a chemical engineer. He wanted to learn the history behind them. Why were smelling salts invented in the first place? Why are modern-day smelling salts used by athletes and college students?


Within the next few years, they started to reverse-engineer classic Victorian smelling salts, buying just about every old salt they could find. They realized what common ingredients were in them, such as cotton balls, ammonium, and glycerin. Overall, they were grotesque-looking, overly pungent, and ran out quickly. Nothing about them really excited him.


Later, he thought to himself: “What if there was a smelling salt that created a stimulating, alert sensation but also smelled good and could be reused as a gas?”. He realized this was going to be an uphill challenge and needed someone who knew the basics and cautions behind them.

Enter Native Salts

He found a chemistry professor from Depaul University and was told the only way they can be dangerous is if they’re inhaled in high concentrations or overused. He convinced the professor to help him with his project—not without compensating him with free meals and beer, of course!

They worked every weekend trying to find the right batch that was (1) a solid-like consistency, since he didn’t want people to consume them from a safety perspective, (2) smelled good for a long period of time, and (3) wasn’t too potent like other standard smelling salts, so it was more accessible for the average person. 


Through extensive trial and error, they finally came up with a product that had a consistent viscosity, a refreshing scent, and was also stored in a bottle so it could be reused often as a gas and a solid. 


Production resumed in his apartment in Chicago. The landlord thought there was a “meth lab” in his apartment, except this is not the story of Breaking Bad...but instead, Native Salts!

Native Salts natural smelling salts

Native Salts' Best Features

Here are the unique best features of Native Salts, unlike the common commercially sold smelling salts out there:

Native Salts provide instant alertness

Instant Alertness

Native Salts provide a quick and easy way to regain focus, improve energy, and get back to things that matter most to you. 

Native Salts is aromatic and smells good

Pleasant Aroma

Unlike traditional smelling salts, Native Salts are enjoyable to inhale. They're a perfect complement to your morning cup

of coffee.  

Native Salts have longer shelf-life

Long Lasting

 A single Native Salts capsule can last up to 6 months on average. Please be sure to close the cap tightly after use.

Native Salts are all-natural and safe


Eucalyptus Oil, Glycerin, Peppermint Oil, Ammonium, Water, and Polymer Crystals. That's it. We like to keep our smelling salts simple 

Native Salts eco-friendly smelling salts


Our smelling salts are stored in compact, readily recyclable glass bottles that can be reused.

Native Salts as a Healthy Choice for Everyone

Fast forwarding to today, Native Salts has recently sold over a few thousand bottles of product. These premium smelling salts are carefully handmade, packaged, and shipped in-house from Chicago. They pride themselves on creating something useful yet eco-friendly!

Buy natural aromatic smelling salts

Surely, you’d love to try one, too! You can click the “Buy Native Salts” button below to get them. Also, don’t forget to send us your feedback regarding your experience with Native Salts.

Partnership and Market Expanding

Andrew and his business partner George have been working on growing their business by forming new partnerships with professional athletes, well-known influencers, and well-known brands.

They continue to redefine the trend and execute their goal of delivering the safest, all-natural, reusable, and aromatic smelling salts that everyone can enjoy! If you want to collaborate and support green businesses like Native Salts, feel free to reach out here!

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