Saunas date back over 2,000 years, originating in modern-day Finland. (1) But saunas have come a long way with technology. Today, you can choose from traditional steam saunas or infrared heat saunas. Many saunas today fuse present-day tech luxuries with a traditional aesthetic for an authentic but upscale experience.
Saunas have been linked to improved cardiovascular health, reductions in inflammation, more energy, and better sleep, which is why they’re such a popular recovery tool right now. (2) These sweat houses are starting to become a staple in many athletes’ homes, and if you’re ready to make the investment, we’ve gathered the best options. Don’t sweat the search (pun intended) — our team of Barbend experts personally tested 10 of the best home saunas on the market to help you find the perfect unit for your fitness goals and budget.
Best Home Saunas of 2024
- Best Home Sauna Overall: Sun Home Equinox
- Best Outdoor Home Sauna: Plunge Home Sauna
- Best Portable Home Sauna: Sunlighten Solo System Portable Sauna
- Best Two-Person Home Sauna: Renu Therapy Rusticus 2-3 Person Home Sauna
- Best Home Infrared Sauna: Sun Home Solstice 2-Person Infrared Sauna
- Best Steam Sauna for Home: Redwood Thermowood Cabin Outdoor Sauna
- Best Home Sauna Blanket: Higher Dose Infrared Sauna Blanket
- Best Traditional Home Sauna: Almost Heaven Pinnacle 4 Person Barrel Sauna
- Best Budget Home Sauna: SweatTent Outdoor Sauna
How We Tested the Best Home Saunas
As you’ll soon learn, home saunas aren’t a cheap recovery tool. Even the best foam rollers or best massage guns don’t even come close in price. To ensure you’re making an educated investment, our team of Barbend experts, including athletes and certified personal trainers, put about 10 saunas to the test. These are the factors we considered while testing:
Durability and Construction
If you’re going to spend thousands of dollars on an at-home sauna, you don’t want it to come with tons of plastic parts. We researched the materials used to ensure our picks are made with high-quality wood that’s built to last and withstand harsh weather (for outdoor options).
If your sauna doesn’t get too hot or takes hours to heat up, how often are you really going to use it at all? Probably not much. While we tested out different units, we took note of the highest temperature and the length of time it took to reach that heat.
Features and Extras
High-end features and extras aren’t a must-have but if you’re paying for surround sound, bluetooth capabilities, and customizable lighting, you want to make sure it works. We tested all the extra features on each unit to ensure they’re up to snuff.
Best Home Saunas Video Review
Check out our full video review of the best home saunas on the market in 2024. Jake Herod, BarBend‘s expert product tester and a certified nutrition coach, takes you through our favorite steam and infrared saunas, as well as the best portable sauna and sauna blanket.
Best Home Sauna Overall: Sun Home Equinox
This at-home sauna has a modern design and can comfortably fit two people. This sauna has built-in surround sound that's bluetooth compatible, so you can stream your favorite music and podcasts.
- Dimensions: 77.7 inches tall by 45.9 inches deep by 50.9 inches wide.
- Occupancy: Two people
- Warranty: 7-year warranty
- Sauna Style: Infrared
- Price: $6,399
- This infrared sauna has full-spectrum heaters to promote deeper penetration of infrared heat.
- The modern dark wood is visually appealing and can blend well into your home.
- You get a seven-year warranty, which is more than most competitors offer.
- This sauna has built-in bluetooth speakers, so you can stream music or podcasts.
- You can’t control the sauna remotely on your phone.
- Other options can go to higher temperatures.
- Only two people can fit in the sauna at a time.
The best home sauna needs to have a blend of comfort and effectiveness without ignoring aesthetics. This one from Sun Home hits all the marks — plus, it has a chic and modern appeal, so it’ll fit beautifully in your home.
Sun Home designed this sauna with a 100 percent solid eucalyptus wood framework that’s non-toxic, earning a 5 out of 5 for durability and construction for our team. This full-spectrum infrared sauna can heat up to 165 degrees, supplying near, mid, and far infrared wavelengths.
The Equinox has 99 percent emissive heaters and blocks EMF/ELF rays, which may be damaging to your health, according to the American Cancer Society. Thanks to these precautions and Sun Home’s third-party testing, we gave the Equinox a 4.5 out of 5 for performance.
You can control the climate of your sauna using the digital control panel, which also has a 25-hour programmable timer. You can’t operate this sauna from your phone, though, so you’ll have to be at home to get it started. However we gave the features and extras a 4.5 out of 5, as this pick does have a built-in bluetooth surround sound speaker system, so you can stream your favorite music or podcasts.
This sauna is easy to assemble with zero power tools required, however unloading the unit was a bit of a challenge. “You’re going to need several people to unload this sauna because it’s heavy and involves many different parts,” our testers said, giving the unit a 3 out of 5 for delivery and setup. “Sun Home uses a lot of styrofoam and wrapping for protection, which we did like.”
You can finance this sauna and it has a seven-year warranty on the cabinetry/heaters and a three-year warranty on controls, so we gave it a 5 out of 5 in this category. Sun Home promises at least 30,000 hours of operational life and at least 100 years of daily use. Plus, the wood is kiln dried and air dried, which helps prevent warping or cracking.
This outdoor and indoor sauna costs about $6,399, which is pretty standard pricing for an at-home sauna. However, it can only fit two people, whereas other options can accommodate multiple athletes at once. As a result, we had to give it an overall 4 out of 5 for value.
Best Outdoor Home Sauna: Plunge Home Sauna
This at-home sauna is built with durable cedar to withstand the harsh elements outside. Plus, it's spacious enough to do a full workout right inside.
- Dimensions: 68 inches wide by 71 inches long by 95 inches tall
- Occupancy: Five people
- Warranty: 24 months
- Sauna Style: Steam sauna
- Price: $10,990
- This sauna is built with durable cedar to withstand all types of weather.
- The temperature can go up to 230 degrees fahrenheit, which is more than most others.
- The unique shape provides a high ceiling and comfortable backrest to support natural posture.
- The set-up time is three to four hours.
- This sauna is much pricier than some of our other picks.
Although you may know Plunge for making some of the best cold plunge tubs on the market, they do way more than just ice baths. This at-home sauna is ideal for outdoor use, thanks to the high-quality cedar wood, warp-resistant hemlock wood, and weather-proof roof. Our team just had to give the durability and construction a perfect 5 out of 5.
This one is a little larger than some other units, as it can hold up to five people. As such, it’s pretty heavy, so we gave the footprint and portability a 3.5 out of 5. However, considering this is our favorite outdoor pick, it shouldn’t be a problem for those with yard space who don’t plan to sauna on-the-go.
The setup may take a little longer than some other saunas, unfortunately, because this pick doesn’t arrive assembled. We gave this category a 3 out of 5, as the assembly can take around three to four hours, which isn’t ideal for those who want seamless setup. However, you can upgrade to White Glove Sauna Assembly Service for an additional cost.
We do like some of the fun add-ons, so we gave this unit a 5 out of 5 for features and extras. You can control the sauna right from your smartphone and there’s an interior built-in sliding vent to give you some more airflow. The benches inside the sauna also flip up, so you can do some stretching, yoga, or even stationary bike workouts (yes, it’s that spacious).
Plunge offers a 24-month warranty (which you can extend) and several financing options. However, the $10,990 price tag is quite a bit higher than some other saunas on the market. We gave the value a 3.5 out of 5 — we like the durability of the materials and the spacious design. However, if you’re not set on having an outdoor sauna, you can find less expensive options for indoor use.
Best Portable Home Sauna: Sunlighten Solo System Portable Sauna
Functionality and convenience are the aim with this single-person portable sauna system. It has infrared heating technology to provide the benefits of a sauna without taking up a ton of room in your house. You can even fold the Solo System up for easy storage.
- Dimensions: 69 inches long by 18 inches tall by 28 inches wide
- Occupancy: One person
- Warranty: Seven years on heaters, three years on the controller, one year on fabric and memory foam
- Sauna Style: Infrared
- Price: Contact for pricing
- Unlike most saunas, this small system is easy to take on-the-go and only requires a few feet of space.
- This portable infrared sauna is likely much cheaper than full-sized saunas.
- The control panel allows for easy adjustments, and you can set timers.
- This is made for only one person to use at a time.
- Taller people won’t be able to fit their entire body into the dome since it is only 69 inches.
- The additional features are lacking compared to many modern full-sized saunas.
Not everyone has a ton of space for a massive multi-person sauna, but that doesn’t mean you need to forego the potential benefits. This sauna from Sunlighten is portable and takes up barely any space, earning a 5 out of 5 for footprint and portability.
Sunlighen developed this system with functionality and convenience in mind. This foldable and lightweight product is easy to assemble, so we gave the set up a 5 out of 5. Considering this is an in-home, on-the-go design, we gave the durability a 2 out of 5. Compared to a large, wooden unit, it definitely can’t withstand as much use. But for single-person, indoor purposes, it should hold up perfectly fine.
The design doesn’t compromise on performance, though, with advanced infrared heating technology that delivers penetrating heat from far infrared wavelengths. This unit has five digital heating panels in the domes and four heaters in the body pad, reaching up to 150 degrees fahrenheit. We gave the performance a 4 out of 5 because the infrared coverage is limited, as taller users may not be able to cover their entire body.
For features and extras, we had to give this pick a 2 out of 5. As it’s a more minimal design, this product doesn’t have too many bells and whistles, which some athletes may prefer. However, you do get an included timer, so you don’t have to be constantly checking the time.
Best Two-Person Home Sauna: Renu Therapy Rusticus 2-3 Person Home Sauna
This sauna is big enough to two to three people comfortably. You can also customize your own build with different wood, door, and heater choices.
- Dimensions: 70 inches wide by 47 inches deep by 78 inches tall
- Occupancy: Two to three people
- Warranty: Five years on the heater and its components, one year on the heating elements
- Sauna Style: Steam sauna
- Price: $5,056
- This at-home sauna can easily fit two people and maybe even three.
- You can customize your sauna by choosing your own lumber style, door design, and heater.
- There’s an interior LED light to add some ambiance.
- This model isn’t designed for outdoor use.
- The assembled weight is 515 pounds, so you won’t really be able to move it around.
For those who want to sauna with a partner or family member, a slightly larger unit is more appropriate. This pick from Renu Therapy comfortably fits two people or maybe even three, depending on your height and size.
This model has a mid-size footprint, easily accommodating two users. However, the assembled weight is about 515 pounds, which means you can’t comfortably move this pick once it’s in your home. As such, our testers gave the footprint and portability a 3.75 out of 5. Pro tip: Pick your placement wisely, since you won’t be able to change your mind without assistance.
Assembly can be a little lengthy and challenging, so our testers had to give this sauna a 3 out of 5 in that category. You do only need a cordless drill, but for those who aren’t familiar with power tools, this may be a little tricky. The whole assembly process can take a max of six hours, too, which is pretty time consuming, compared to other at-home saunas.
We love that you can customize this sauna to your preferences. You can select your preferred wood, door style, and heater. The price of this sauna will vary depending on your selections but all the wood material options are high quality, earning a 4 out of 5 from our testers. However, this design isn’t weather-proof, so this pick isn’t ideal for athletes who want to use their sauna/steam room outdoors.
For overall value, we gave this product a 4 out of 5. The $5,056 price tag is pretty standard for a sauna of this size, however, some competitors do include convenient extras like wifi compatibility and remote control (here, this is an extra charge).
Best Home Infrared Sauna: Sun Home Solstice 2-Person Infrared Sauna
This two-person sauna offers far infrared lights, chromotherapy, and an attractive pinewood and glass exterior. Plus, the Bluetooth sound system lets you mellow out to the music of your choice.
- Dimensions: 50.9 inches wide by 45.9 inches long and 7.77 inches tall
- Occupancy: Two people
- Warranty: Seven-year limited warranty
- Sauna Style: Infrared
- Price: Starting at $6,299
- This unit is equipped with far infrared heat, ultra low EMF heaters, and medical-grade chromotherapy lighting.
- The dark wood exterior is unique and a little more sleek than standard brown saunas.
- This unit has a surround sound system so you can play music or podcasts.
- Larger options that can accommodate more people are available at lower price points.
- If you like the steam aspect of saunas, you may want to look for an option that works with wet heat rather than only dry.
- Folks who prefer a more rustic look should look elsewhere.
Infrared saunas create heat using light rather than more traditional methods of steam or flames. These can often heat up more quickly and provide a dry heat experience. Our best infrared sauna is the Sun Home Saunas Solstice 2-Person Infrared Sauna, thanks to the patented far infrared heating technology.
This sauna uses far-spectrum infrared waves to provide a gentle but effective infrared heat that’s intended to improve circulation and promote relaxation. Multiple 500W infrared heaters are placed strategically to ensure maximum exposure and envelop you in rejuvenating heat, earning a 5 out of 5 for performance from out testers.
“You can also tweak the lighting to create a more relaxing, ambient experience,” our tester said, giving the special features a 5 out of 5. “I also set up the bluetooth and can play my favorite music while I sweat — I wish this were my new office.”
This sauna doesn’t require any power tools for the assembly, which we liked. However, the unit is 522 pounds, so our testers had to give the delivery a 3 out of 5, as multiple people were needed to unload the crate and assemble the sauna.
For value, we gave this pick a 3.5 out of 5 because you can find larger units at a lower price. So, if this price point is within your budget and your space allows, you can get a bigger sauna at a similar cost.
Best Steam Sauna for Home: Redwood Thermowood Cabin Outdoor Sauna
This sauna is more versatile than others, as you can use it with both dry and steam heat. Plus, the thermowood is treated with heat so it won't crack or rot.
- Dimensions: 59 inches wide by 78.75 inches long and 96.75 inches tall
- Occupancy: Four people
- Warranty: One-year limited warranty
- Sauna Style: Dry and steam sauna
- Price: Starting at $5,999
- You can use this as a steam sauna or dry sauna, offering more versatility.
- The thermowood won’t wear or collect moisture even with the steam.
- You can customize your order with add-ons, like roof shingles, LED lights, and an outdoor shower.
- You need to buy additional roof shingles to make this compatible with the outdoors.
- This sauna is not infrared, which some athletes may prefer.
Some athletes may want a sauna option that’s versatile and dynamic with dry and steam options. If that’s the case, Redwood’s cabin sauna is a good choice. This sauna offers both steam and dry heat, plus it has two level seating, so you can sit higher if you prefer more warmth, earning a 4 out of 5 for features.
As a four-person unit, this sauna naturally has a larger footprint than some of the single- or two-person picks. We gave this pick a 4 out of 5 for footprint and portability as it’s pretty tall (about eight feet) and incredibly heavy (800 pounds). “This one definitely isn’t portable in any sense,” according to our tester. So, you definitely need ample space and a forklift to move this around.
We gave the setup a 3 out of 5, as it’s not the easiest to assemble. “The instructions aren’t easy to follow and the instructional video seems like it uses an older model, so our team had to do a lot of troubleshooting,” our tester said. “The screws were also very low quality and wouldn’t screw in properly, so we actually had to go to a hardware store to buy new ones.” So, if you’re not familiar with using power tools, you definitely want to hire a professional, which can be pretty inconvenient.
While the setup was pretty tricky, this sauna performed extremely well, earning a 5 out of 5 from our team. We were able to get it from zero to 190 degrees in only 35 minutes, which usually takes other units much longer. “Overall, I liked how well this sauna worked,” our tester said. “You also get a bucket to fill with water to increase the steam.”
For overall value, we gave this one a 3 out of 5. It’s definitely on the more expensive end but for an indoor and outdoor sauna that also has a steam option, it’s not the priciest.
Best Home Sauna Blanket: Higher Dose Infrared Sauna Blanket
Reap the benefits of a sauna in the comfort of your home with the Higher Dose Infrared Sauna Blanket, which has a wide 68- to 158-degree temperature range that can boost cardiovascular health and aid in muscle recovery. The ETL-certified blanket is made from PU leather and integrated with clay, charcoal, crystal, and magnetic layers.
- Dimensions: 71 inches long by 71 inches wide
- Occupancy: One person
- Warranty: One-year limited warranty
- Sauna Style: Infrared
- Price: $699
- You don’t need much space to use this blanket — it can even be used lying in bed.
- The blanket is easily portable for people who want to take their sauna on-the-go.
- This is considerably less expensive than full-fledged sauna cabins or rooms.
- Taller and larger people may not be able to heat their entire bodies with this blanket.
- You need to cover your body in a towel to keep from sweating on the blanket.
- This uses only far infrared heat, which is designed for deep muscle relaxation. Some blankets utilize full-spectrum infrared, which might offer additional benefits.
Like to keep your recovery more minimal? Well, you can use this Higher Dose Infrared Sauna Blanket right in your bed — talk about convenience.
Our team gave this sauna blanket a 5 out of 5 for performance. “It’s incredibly simple to use and it has a dial that helps you control how hot you want the blanket,” our tester said. “This one heats up in less than ten minutes. But I’d recommend buying extra inserts for cleanliness and using a towel for easy clean up.”
For durability and construction, we gave this blanket a 3.5 out of 5. The leather body and zipper are high quality but you need to buy additional inserts to keep the blanket from getting worn out from sweat. Also, you can’t wash this blanket, which isn’t too convenient.
The blanket offers temperatures up to a whopping 167 degrees F (newbies should work up to that level) and timer settings from zero to 60 minutes. It has eight levels of heat to choose from and a hand-held control. Nevertheless, this still has less features than standard saunas, so we had to give it a 3 out of 5 in this category. Some athletes may prefer more extras with their sauna.
Taller and larger people may be disappointed that the interior circumference is 65 inches, and the length maxes out at 71 inches, though. It’s also important to keep in mind that you need to have a layer of material between you and the blanket, such as clothing or a towel, to prevent burns.
For overall value, we gave this pick a 3 out of 5. “You can definitely find less expensive sauna blanket options,” our tester said. “The higher dose blanket has an elevated look but it doesn’t provide better features or technology than the other alternatives, which are $200 cheaper.”
Best Traditional Home Sauna: Almost Heaven Pinnacle 4 Person Barrel Sauna
This barrel-shaped unit can fit up to four people and is built like a traditional-style sauna. Unlike other saunas, you can actually schedule your heating with this pick.
- Dimensions: 72 inches wide by 72 inches deep by 75.375 inches tall
- Occupancy: Four people
- Warranty: Limited lifetime warranty
- Sauna Style: Steam sauna
- Price: $9,291
- This barrel-style unit looks and performs like a traditional sauna.
- You can fit up to four people inside at once.
- You can schedule the heat time so it turns on when you prefer.
- This is one of the most expensive picks on our list.
- Some athletes may prefer an infrared sauna.
Some athletes may prefer a traditional sauna aesthetic for their home or backyard. Look no further than the Almost Heaven Pinnacle Barrel Sauna. Our pick for the best traditional sauna for home is shaped like a barrel and has customizable wood, windows, heating, and sauna stones to get exactly the look you want.
This is one of our larger picks, as it’s deeper than most other saunas, including our other multi-person picks. We had to give the footprint and portability a 3 out of 5, as it’s pretty large and heavy, so you can’t easily move it around.
For performance, we gave this unit a 4 out of 5. It heats pretty quickly, going up to 180 degrees fahrenheit in less than an hour. Plus, it has a dial on the inside that allows you to delay the start time. So, if you like a sauna session first thing in the morning, you can delay the start time for eight hours.
While we do like the customization options, this one doesn’t have a ton of features or extras, earning a 3 out of 5 in this category. This one has an interior LED light but at this price, we would have liked to see speakers or wifi compatibility.
Overall, we gave the value for this one a 3 out of 5. Although it works well, you can definitely find four-person saunas at a cheaper price, which makes it hard to justify the $9,921 price tag. But if you have a high budget and really value the look of your sauna, you won’t be disappointed.
Best Budget Home Sauna: SweatTent Outdoor Sauna
This is a great budget sauna pick for those who don't have thousands of dollars to spend on an at-home sauna. SweatTent is easy to set up and requires little maintenance.
- Dimensions: 72 inches long by 72 inches wide by 84 inches tall
- Occupancy: Three people
- Warranty: One year warranty
- Sauna Style: Steam sauna
- Price: $1,599
- At only $1,599, this is one of the most budget-friendly sauna options.
- This can fit up to three people at once.
- The tent only takes three minutes to set up and 30 minutes to heat up.
- This tent doesn’t look as aesthetically pleasing as a wooden sauna.
- The materials on this sauna aren’t as durable as a traditional pick.
In case you haven’t noticed (though you probably have), saunas aren’t exactly cheap — they can be a pretty big investment. But if you’re not yet ready to take the plunge on a full-fledged wooden sauna, you might prefer this budget-friendly sauna tent.
When it comes to overall value, our team gave this product a 5 out of 5. “This is definitely below the average cost of a portable outdoor sweat tent,” according to our tester. “And this one works well. If you’re shopping on a budget, it’s worth considering.”
When we actually tried the sauna, our team was pleasantly surprised. “This unit performed really well. It was easy to get the fire going with and it only took 30 minutes to get the heat to where all the testers were pretty sweaty,” one tester said, giving this pick a 5 out of 5 for performance. “When we put water on the sauna rocks, it also created a good amount of humidity.”
We had to give the durability and construction a 3 out of 5 but only because we compared it to significantly more expensive wooden options. “This one is actually pretty well-built for a portable tent,” our tester said. “The roof is fiberglass, so it’s protected from bad weather and you can leave it outside for long periods.”
For features and extras, though, we did have to give this a 3 out of 5. It comes with everything you need to start the fire and get the sauna working but it doesn’t have any of the high-tech features you’ll find with more expensive options. If you like a high-end sauna experience, you may want to opt for another choice.
How We Chose the Best Home Saunas
When selecting the best home saunas, we considered several key factors to ensure that we had a comprehensive list of the top picks available. We also wanted to have a variety of high-quality options to choose from. To make the list, a sauna had to impress us in a few different ways, including durability, features included, and value.
Size and Durability
You want to ensure that your investment will stand the test of time with daily use or be able to weather the elements for outdoor saunas. We only included options that have a solid reputation for durability and offer long-term warranties that show they have confidence in their products.
The size of the sauna is also important to consider. We tried to provide a variety of saunas that range from fully portable to totally sturdy and stationary. Everyone has different wants, needs, and space requirements, so even though a few of the saunas are quite large, there are space-conscious options.
We like our saunas to include a variety of features that can enhance the experience. Amenities such as heating options, control panels, WiFi capabilities, sound and light systems, aromatherapy, and customization options were ranked highly on our list.
While it’s true that many saunas can cost thousands of dollars, that doesn’t mean that they’re not worth the cost if you can spare the cash. Options that are constructed using specialized materials for durability, offer superior craftsmanship, and have lots of features can justify their price. That said, there are some cost-effective options on this list, and while they may lack some of the features and aesthetics of other saunas, they serve their purpose well.
A sauna may have a high-end surround system, bluetooth capabilities, and ambient lighting but if it doesn’t perform well, it’s certainly not worth buying. Our team prioritized each unit’s performance, including the maximum temperature and how long it took to heat up, in order to provide options that are actually worth the investment.
What to Consider Before Buying a Sauna
In order to make an informed decision about such a large purchase, it’s often a good idea to take stock and consider a few important factors before moving forward with the buying process..
Before buying anything for your home, consider your available space. Saunas can be large and take up a lot of room, so you’ll want to ensure that it can fit comfortably in your desired area. Measure the floor space and ceiling height and make sure that any possible ventilation needs are met.
Types of Saunas
It’s important to think about the sauna experience and benefits you’d like. That will lead you to lean more toward either a wet or dry sauna. Wet saunas use the steam generated from ladling water over heated rocks to create humidity and raise the temperature of a sauna. Dry saunas use light in the infrared spectrum to generate heat that penetrates the body.
Saunas can have a variety of features included. Some higher-end models may have heaters with WiFi connectivity and timers. Other models may include chromotherapy lights or integrated sound systems for an especially relaxing ambiance. So, figure out which features are must-haves and which you can live without to make your shopping experience easier.
The elephant in the room is that saunas are generally pricey — some can cost tens of thousands of dollars. They aren’t all that expensive, though; there are many budget options available. If you set your budget early, it can help you stay more focused on choosing the right sauna for you.
Benefits of Saunas
Saunas have been around for over 2,000 years and date back to what is now modern-day Finland as a way of promoting vitality and improving health. (1) They have seen a resurgence since the 20th century as people have started to appreciate all the potential benefits they hold, such as enhancing mood, improving immunity and recovery from exercise, and even aiding in weight loss.
Mood Enhancement and Mental Clarity
Saunas may be helpful in improving mood and mental well-being. The heat and relaxation that you can experience when sitting in a sauna may help to reduce stress as well as promote clarity, and saunas may even alleviate a host of mental health issues, like depression. (3) The sweat and heat of saunas might also promote the release of “feel-good” chemicals in the brain, like endorphins and serotonin, which may lead to improved mood and mental clarity. (4)
Saunas may also help improve the function of your immune system due to the increase in body temperature when sauna bathing, leading to an “artificial fever.” (5) The heat may help stimulate white blood cells and has even been studied as a potential way to combat infections like COVID-19. (6) The evidence for long-term effects on immune function is still somewhat unclear, and more research is needed to definitively say anything on that subject.
Athletes and gymgoers are always looking for a way to gain a competitive edge or recover more efficiently, and saunas may offer just that. The heat and sweating may help relax muscles, reduce soreness, improve circulation, and improve subsequent performance. (7) It’s not just traditional Finnish-style saunas either — infrared sauna bathing may aid in the same ways. (8)
Many people turn to saunas as a way to potentially aid in their weight loss journey. Professional athletes, especially those in combat sports, often use saunas as a way to cut water weight under the supervision of medical professionals. Saunas may have more lasting and tangible effects, though, such as decreasing appetite and making sugary sweet food less appetizing. (9) The other and possibly more roundabout way that saunas might influence weight loss is through aiding in recovery. If you recover quicker and don’t feel as sore, then you might be more likely to exercise more and burn more calories. (7)
Types of Saunas
There are generally two major types of saunas you’ll find on the market today — wet heat and dry heat saunas. Some offer a combination of the two, but those are few and far between, especially in the prices we’re considering for this list.
Infrared saunas (dry heat) can make use of full spectrum infrared heating or one of the three wavelengths of infrared light — far, mid, and near — which all penetrate the skin to different depths to potentially provide therapeutic benefits.
Near-infrared are the shortest infrared wavelengths and penetrate the shallowest (to the dermis) to potentially remove toxins, promote skin renewal, and stimulate collagen. Mid-infrared penetrates deeper into the subcutaneous layer of skin and may stimulate the cardiovascular system and improve circulation. Mid-infrared saunas may also have a role in helping to support weight loss. Far-infrared are the longest wavelengths of infrared light and reach deeper into the body to potentially stimulate a deep and detoxifying sweat. (10)
Wet or Steam Saunas
Wet saunas make use of either electric heat or a fire to produce heat. They contain sauna rocks designed to have water ladled over them to produce steam and increase the sauna’s temperature. The hot and humid air in these saunas may be beneficial for those who are looking to sweat out a cold, alleviate congestion, or improve respiratory function.
How Much Do Saunas Cost?
The cost of saunas can vary greatly depending on a variety of factors, such as the materials used to construct the sauna, the type of heat it utilizes, size, features, and brand reputation. Larger and more traditional steam saunas often cost more than infrared saunas. There are portable options, which are usually the most cost-effective, though they may provide the fewest features and utility.
|Best Home Sauna Overall
|Sun Home Equinox
|Best Outdoor Home Sauna
|Plunge Home Sauna
|Best Portable Home Sauna
|Sunlighten Solo System Portable Sauna
|Contact for pricing
|Best Two-Person Home Sauna
|Renu Therapy Rusticus 2-3 Person Home Sauna
|Starting at $5,056
|Best Home Infrared Sauna
|Sun Home Solstice 2-Person Infrared Sauna
|Best Steam Sauna for Home
|Redwood Thermowood Cabin Outdoor Sauna
|Best Home Sauna Blanket
|Higher Dose Infrared Sauna Blanket
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Most high-quality, full-fledged residential saunas start around the $5,000 mark and go up from there with large, high-end options topping out around $12,000 though some can be even more expensive. Portable saunas and sauna blankets are usually cheaper and can range from about $350 to $700. Regardless of what you’re looking for, a sauna is an investment that can potentially pay dividends in many areas of your life.
Adding a sauna to your home can transform the way you spend your time. It may also have a profound impact on your overall health and wellness, not to mention your mental health. Considering the key factors of each product, like its size, durability, features, price, and aesthetics, will help lead you to the sauna that best fits your needs and your lifestyle.
There are an ever-growing number of brands and products to select from, but this list has the best of the best on it, and you can be sure that all of the saunas on it are high-quality products that will serve you well. No matter which one you choose to become your new oasis, you can use this list as your guide to relaxation and rejuvenation.
What is the best home sauna?
As is often the case, there is no single right or wrong answer to this question. It depends on your preferences, available space, and budget. That said, we’re huge fans of the Sun Home Equinox.
How much do home saunas cost?
Saunas might have one of the biggest price ranges of anything we’ve ever reviewed. Sauna blankets and personal portable sauna tents can be priced as low as around $350, which is still not cheap by any means, but certainly is cheaper than the top range of prices. On the higher end, saunas with custom features and large sizes to accommodate many people can cost well over $10,000.
What is the difference between infrared and steam saunas?
The main difference between these two is fundamentally how they produce heat. Infrared saunas use light (usually red) in the infrared spectrum of different wavelengths to excite the air molecules, penetrate body tissue, and produce heat. Steam saunas, as the name suggests, produce heat in the air by adding steam to it. Either an electric heater or fire warms sauna rocks, and water is carefully ladled over them to produce steam and warm the sauna.
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- Westerterp-Plantenga, M. S., Verwegen, C. R., IJedema, M. J., Wijckmans, N. E., & Saris, W. H. (1997). Acute effects of exercise or sauna on appetite in obese and nonobese men. Physiology & behavior, 62(6), 1345-1354.
- Crinnion, W. J. (2011). Sauna as a valuable clinical tool for cardiovascular, autoimmune, toxicant-induced and other chronic health problems. Alternative Medicine Review, 16(3).