Salem was just your average black cat who liked to hang out in the bathtub. But one day when his owner used a special bath bomb, the moggy rolled around in the glittery residue. And when he emerged, he dazzled everyone with his fabulous new look.
Amanda Barron lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with her beautiful black cat Salem. Like many felines, Salem had his favorite places to chill out around his owner’s house. However, probably unlike most other kitties, Salem’s chosen spot was the bathtub.
Even Barron thought her pet’s obsession with the bath was strange, but she just let him get on with things. “He loves the tub. I don’t know why,” she told BuzzFeed News in 2016. “He just LOVES the tub. The tub is magic fun place to him.”
When the tub wasn’t being occupied by Salem, Barron liked to take a bath herself. So, in fall 2016 she treated herself to an Intergalactic bath bomb from Lush. The item is a favorite among beauty vloggers and emits a psychedelic explosion of glitter in a kaleidoscope of colors when it hits the water.
It’s quite the experience if the product description on the Lush website is anything to go by. “Invite the cosmos into your bathroom with this sexy, interstellar bomb and become the guardian of your own galaxy,” the sales patter reads. “An awesome mix of refreshing peppermint and neon color sends your mood rocketing, while popping candy takes you on a trip around the Milky Way.”
The bath bomb is so popular that in 2017 it was revealed as one of Lush’s best selling products. In the previous year alone, the store sold 3.5 million of the soapy treats worldwide. That means that six Intergalactics were purchased each and every minute.
But while they might be pretty, the brightly-colored bath bombs do come with a downside. As Intergalactic fans will know, they are hard to clean up after as they tend to leave a shimmering mess in the bathtub.
With that in mind, it’s perhaps not surprising that Barron put off rinsing the tub following her Intergalactic-infused bath. After all, who wants to ruin a relaxing soak by jumping straight into a full-on cleaning session?
As a result, Barron left the tub for a while before returning to rinse it clean. However, while his owner was elsewhere Salem had been investigating his favorite spot. And, when Barron reappeared, the cat was rubbing his black fur all along the bottom of the tub, mopping up the excess glitter as he did so.
In fact, Salem continued to roll around in the bottom of the bath until practically every inch of his body was glittering gold. And Barron was so dazzled by her cat’s shiny new appearance that she decided to film the unfolding scenes.
In the footage, a bemused Barron asks her cat, “Are you happy with yourself?” Given that his fur shimmers like the night sky, the question could well be a rhetorical one. It seems evident that Salem is indeed pleased with himself. In fact, it appears that he knows he is going to be the envy of felines everywhere.
There’s no denying that Salem is owning his new disco-cat persona, as he parades proudly up and down the bathtub, flaunting his fabulousness as he does so. And as she watches her pet do his thing, Barron can’t quite believe what she’s seeing. After all, it’s not every day that your feline glitters like the sun.
Luckily, the glitter that Lush used in the Intergalactic bomb was environmentally friendly and free of toxins. Amazingly, the sparkly substance is actually made of seaweed, meaning we can all enjoy Salem the glitter cat without worrying about his impact on the planet.
Unfortunately, though, Salem couldn’t stay that flamboyant forever. Although the glitter was not harmful to the environment, it was probably not the best idea to let the cat consume it during one of his many grooming sessions. So, there was only one thing for it: Salem would have to get a bath.
Bearing in mind the amount of time that Salem had already spent in the tub, you might think it would be a dream come true for him to use it for real. But as the video shows, that was not the case. As Barron washes him down, the cat clings on to the side of the bath and cries mournfully as he watches his sparkle escape down the plughole.
Luckily, though, Salem escaped his bathing ordeal relatively unscathed. “He’s fine,” Barron told BuzzFeed News. “He yeowled at me during his bath, and sulked around the apartment looking like his entire day was ruined.”
Unfortunately for Salem, that might not be the last time Barron gives him a dousing. Because, from the footage following his bath, it’s clear to see that the cat is still covered in glitter, despite his owner’s heroic efforts to clean him.
And it wasn’t just Salem who had got his shine on. Thanks to Barron’s bath, most of her house was now sparkling. “There is glitter EVERYWHERE. You don’t get rid of glitter, it stays with you forever,” Barron joked.
Following her cat’s Intergalactic adventure, Barron decided to post the footage of Salem’s bath online. And since then, the feline has gained viral fame as the one and only glitter cat – the most fabulous kitty around.
Unsurprisingly, then, many pet owners thought about jumping on the cosmic kitty bandwagon. “The temptation to dump glitter onto my cats is strong now,” wrote one fan. However, no matter how many copycats Salem spawns, he is and always will be the original.