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Infrared Sauna Buying guide

Are you looking for some activity to relieve your high mental stress and pressure? A healthy stress buster awaits you in the form of infrared saunas. A short and sweaty session in this sauna will relax your sore muscles and help you re-energize your mind and body.

Sometimes, it feels frustrating to visit a local spa for a relaxing session. Worry no more. Now you can enjoy the experience of an infrared sauna in your home. Before selecting the best product for yourself, you need to deem all the aspects of the sauna.

Need to read a buying guide before selecting an infrared sauna

All the products in the market have almost similar features, and it can be exhausting for you to compare every model. The buying guide allows you to understand all the general features of the sauna in detail by which you can quickly sort out the best product from the available options.

In this exclusive guide, we have provided details about the different characteristics of the product. Let us start our session.

What are infrared saunas?

An infrared sauna is quite different from the traditional saunas. Infrared lamps directly pass the heat in the body parts. They work with electromagnetic radiation that can run through the tissue efficiently.

Usually, a traditional sauna operates from 150° F to 180° F. Still the infrared sauna can work at lower temperatures that vary from 120° F to 140° F. With an infrared sauna, you can enjoy extreme sweat at a very low temperature as the heat can penetrate deeply in your body.

Difference between Traditional and Infrared Saunas

Commonly, two types of saunas are available, including the traditional sauna and infrared sauna. Both of these types are used for several health benefits. Also, the method used for relaxation is quite similar. But they do not work in the same way that makes them different from each other.

  1. Both the traditional sauna and infrared sauna have the same design. There is a wood-lined room where the bathers are seated. In a conventional sauna, an electric sauna heater covered with rocks is used to heat the place where an infrared technology helps heat the room for the infrared sauna.
  2. The users are allowed to control the humidity and temperature of the traditional sauna according to their comfort. It usually works between 150° and 180° Fahrenheit. On the other hand, the infrared sauna can operate at lower temperatures between 120° and 140° Fahrenheit. Also, the bathers can control the temperature only.
  3. A traditional sauna heats the air, but the infrared sauna uses infrared energy to warm up your body directly. So, it increases your core body temperature without heating the environment and allows you to sweat intensely.
  4. As soon as you turn on the infrared sauna, it will be ready for the users to start bathing. In general, the recommended length for both the saunas is 10 to 15 minutes in each session. But sometimes the bathers are likely to have longer sessions in the infrared sauna as the temperature is comparatively low.
  5. In a traditional sauna, the users can control the amount of water to fix the dryness and moisture level according to their choice. You can add water for more comfort, which is not available in an infrared sauna because it uses electromagnetic radiation for heating.

What should you opt for Near-Infrared or Far Infrared?

An infrared sauna functions just like a sun. But you should know the difference between the near-infrared sauna and far-infrared sauna to decide which one is right for you. The Ultraviolet ray of sun runs through your skin and warms it up, and near-infrared light does the same thing.

It depends on the spectrum of light, which means the spectrum of the sunlight is the infrared spectrum. The near-infrared sauna can penetrate your skin up to 5 mm and thus ensures different health benefits. This light of near-infrared sauna helps to reduce pain, increases core body temperature, and enhances your circulation.

When it comes to far-infrared lights, the wavelength differs from the near-infrared. The water present in your body can absorb far-infrared light. It penetrates up to 0.1 mm beneath your skin. However, it can alter your body's protein structures, which is vital to strengthen your immune system and boost up metabolism.

Moreover, it helps in detoxification and breaks down pathogens and carcinogens into smaller particles. So, both of them come into your use for your wellbeing.

Health benefits of Infrared Sauna

Infrared saunas come up with a lot of health benefits. They work appropriately for different types of health conditions. They provide great relaxation for the users and improve their sleeping patterns. You can get relief from muscle sore and joint pains like arthritis. Near-infrared helps to improve your body circulation effectively.

Infrared lights from far-infrared can detoxify your body and thus helps you to reduce extra body weight. Overall, you can have clearer and firmer skin. In a study, it is also found that infrared saunas can be a proper treatment for people suffering from chronic fatigue.

Infrared light therapy is also very useful in reducing blood pressure. Infrared sauna treatment is not appropriate for pregnant women or people with heart disease. Otherwise, they can work for your wellness without any severe negative effects.

Things to deem about while selecting the best Infrared Saunas

Infrared heaters

Before buying the infrared saunas, you should have a clear idea about the infrared heaters. Choosing the right type of heaters ensures more safety and comfort during the sauna session, and it will also make justice with your money and time. There are two types of heaters, such as Carbon heaters and Ceramic heaters.

  1. Carbon heaters

Carbon panels are suitable for the most comfortable and softest far-infrared heat. They can heat up quickly and evenly without any cold spots or hot spots. Standard quality carbon panels do not become too hot so that you can lean against them comfortably.

Carbon emitters can cover a broader range that helps you to sweat profusely and makes sure you enjoy your sauna session to the fullest. Furthermore, carbon made infrared heaters can warm up faster within 10 to 15 minutes, so it saves your electricity effectively.

The surface area of a carbon infrared heater can be expanded because the carbon is malleable. Therefore, it can reduce the surface temperature from 350° F to 150°F, which means it can not keep much energy to raise your body's core temperature. Most of the premium models have carbon panels both on the sidewalls and back for better coverage.

  1. Ceramic heaters

Ceramic heaters are designed with smaller infrared emitters. It is made up of ceramic rods, ceramic blocks, and tubes covered with sand. Ceramic heaters are not appropriate for border distribution of heat.

You can have hot spots and cold spots which are not found in Carbon infrared heaters. The ceramic panels become hot faster, and therefore they can not support better penetration for far-infrared therapy. Though they increase the room temperature quickly, they are not as effective as carbon heaters for treatment.

A ceramic heater usually takes 30 to 45 minutes to warm up the sauna. Actually, ceramic materials are malleable enough, and they get heated in less time. As a result, the electrons start to run quickly, which provides maximum heat.

However, the ceramic heaters' surface temperature becomes too hot around 350°F to 400°F. Also, it raises the air temperature inside the sauna room, which is not ideal for a more extended session. This high temperature is not even safe for users. Another reason why carbon panels leave behind ceramic panels is their durability. Generally, ceramic panels are not made of premium quality ceramic material, so they do not last long like carbon panels.

Type of wood

Different kinds of woods are used in designing infrared saunas. They include –

  1. Aspen

Aspen is soft and lightweight, and also it is not resistant enough to shock and decay. Though it is not toxic, it can not prevent warping because of heat exposure.

  1. Fir, white

This is soft but a little stiff. The wood does not possess good shock-resistant properties. Some saunas can create a bad smell.

  1. Pine

Pinewood is lightweight and low in strength. It has bad decay resistance. Because of the resin, it may create out-gassing that can be irritating for your eyes and nose.

  1. Basswood

The wood type is inexpensive but has low strength. It is so soft that it can not deal with high-temperature exposure for a long time. However, it is entirely free of toxins and allergens.

  1. Hemlock

The wood is very stable and works brilliantly for people with allergies. With very little resin and negligible odor, this type is highly appreciated by the customers.

  1. Poplar

Poplar wood is porous as well as soft, so it does not have much strength. Also, it has poor resistance to shock and decay. It is rich with tannic acid and has an average heat retention capacity.

  1. Canadian Red Cedar

It is famous for its excellent properties and natural beauty. It is considered as the best thermal insulator used for saunas. Because of its maximum heat retention capacity and durability, it is appropriate for outdoor use.

  1. California redwood

This wood is renowned for its rough texture. It is soft and lightweight. But they are perfect for decay resistance and stability. Though it has an average heat retention capacity, it ensures excellent durability.

Thick wall

It is always better to choose an infrared sauna with a thick wall. The quality and stability of the sauna greatly depend on wall construction. Most of the inexpensive sauna cabins are designed with thin inside and outside walls. While searching for a sauna, you should avoid thin walls because they cannot deal with temperature swings.

They are not able to hold up cold and hot temperature swings effectively. Commonly, both the inner and outer walls of a sauna are thick up to 5 mm, which are not durable enough and can get damaged over time. Moreover, thin walls are not suitable for holding up heats inside the sauna cabin.

Therefore, you should go for thick walls. Saunas having the 7 to 9mm thick wall panel are very good for long term use. The Vertical grain tongue is expensive, but they are more durable than the horizontal grain used in budget saunas. This is how the thick walls ensure the longevity and durability of the saunas to make sure you can use them effectively for a long time.


Another essential aspect that you must consider while buying in an infrared sauna is safety features. The safety of the infrared saunas mainly depends on two factors, including wiring and certifications.


Intense heat can crack the insulation, which is dangerous for the users. With a view to that, you should look for a sauna that has the best wiring configuration. EMF shielding of wires eliminates the risk of fire hazards. It stops the wires from getting in touch with the wood directly.

You should also make sure that each electronic component is kept safely inside the metal housing. You can choose a heating panel that is engineered with a thermostat and electrical fault sensor to ensure the users' highest safety.


It is mandatory to look for the safety certification before buying an infrared sauna. Saunas with proper certification may have toxic elements and are dangerous to use. Safety certifications from different international agencies assure the guarantee of thorough testing of the product.


Nowadays, many manufacturers offer a lifetime warranty for infrared saunas. But as a matter of fact, it does not ensure the quality of the product. Therefore, you must go through the history of the company before making a purchase. You should know about the customer service policy, return policy, replacement part policy, etc.

You should ask the company representative about the time they usually take to resolve a warranty claim. Make sure they are responsive to the claims and solve them efficiently. You must go through the terms and conditions carefully.

Though the dealers offer you a lifetime warranty, in reality, it becomes a limited period warranty.


Generally, most of the infrared saunas can fit one to five people. You should consider the size of your infrared sauna according to the free space available in your house. You can look for a corner model that can save your floor space and enhance your home's inner beauty.

But you should remember that smaller saunas are not appropriate to move comfortably. You can buy a small sauna if you have a lack of space. Big saunas provide maximum space so that you can enjoy your sauna bathing without any troubles.

Heater covers

Covers for the heaters assure the safety of the bathers. Otherwise, it may become dangerous. This cover protects your skin from burning because if your skin gets in touch with the heat source, it may burn your skin. Therefore, you should not buy any saunas that are not protected with heater covers. Though you can find heater covers, they will be expensive. So, it is better to buy a sauna that includes a heater cover as well.

Low EMF sauna

EMF stands for Electromagnetic Field, which has a close relation to the infrared saunas. Infrared lamps are used in an infrared sauna that works with electromagnetic radiation. Now, to understand EMF, you have to take help from physics. Any object like Computer, television, microwave, etc. has electric waves flowing inside them. All these devices using electricity release electromagnetic waves.

Any object or even a person can be affected by the electromagnetic waves while they are inside the EMF field. Low EMF does not have any negative impacts on the human body, but larger objects like power lines can be harmful.

On that note, you must choose an infrared sauna that emits low EMF. Infrared panels are usually made of either carbon or ceramic materials, and when they are heated, they emit infrared rays. A Carbon heater is capable of producing high EMF up to 80mG. However, the ceramic panels produce more EMF.

It is suggested to use an infrared sauna designed with a combination of ceramic and carbon heaters to reduce the EMF level to a great extent. It will be less hazardous and provide ultimate comfort to the users.

How to use an infrared sauna

Infrared sauna therapy has hundreds of health benefits, so it is hugely used in doctor's clinics, spa, and health clubs. Though it entirely depends on your choice, you may follow the below-given tips to use an infrared sauna.

  1. Drink plenty of water

You must drink a lot of water to keep yourself hydrated before your sauna session. You can drink a glass of water before beginning your sauna bathing. If you have any issues with high temperatures, you can carry water into the room.

  1. Select your temperature

For the beginners, it is wise to start with a lower temperature. Once you get accustomed to it, you may increase the temperature according to your comfort. However, 100 degrees Fahrenheit is a moderate temperature in the beginning.

  1. Time duration

If you are not experienced, you should begin with 10 to 15 minutes per session. The recommended time is 20 to 30 minutes so that you can increase the time length in each course. But do not stay more than that to avoid the risk of dehydration.

  1. Dressing

Your clothing depends on your comfort. You can either wear a swimsuit or go naked inside.

  1. What to do

You can meditate, read books, listen to your favorite music so that you do not fall asleep inside the sauna.

  1. After the session

You should give time to cool down your body right after the session is completed. You must drink plenty of water and take a shower properly.

  1. Frequency

It is suggested to take sauna therapy three to four days a week. If you are physically strong and healthy, you can use the sauna regularly.

Essential pointers to know before using an infrared sauna

If you are a beginner, you should follow these tips:

  1. You should not use the product if you are addicted to drinking.
  2. Try not to use a sauna in case you are feeling unwell or having a fever.
  3. An Infrared sauna causes intense sweating. So, you should not get up fast to avoid any type of drowsy feeling. If you feel lightheaded, sit down comfortably and drink a lot of water. Let your body cool down first after the session is finished.
  4. Sometimes, overheating causes heatstroke and dehydration. So be careful.


Can I shed weight in sauna sessions?

In sauna sessions, your heart rate increases, which burns a few calories. The weight you are shedding comprises of water content in your body. As soon as you rehydrate your body, you will again come back to your normal weight. In infrared saunas, you can expect to lose very less weight.

Is there any time-limit for the use of sauna?

The time range varies for different persons. If you are new to this experience, then you should use the sauna for around 8-10 minutes. If you are going to use the sauna after a gym session, you need to cool down for at least 10-15 minutes before using it. Even if you are familiar with the product, don't overdo your time in the sauna. At maximum, use it for 15 minutes.

Can pregnant women use a sauna?

It would be best if you did not use the sauna on your own without first consulting with your physician. The sessions can lead to dehydration and can cause a sudden drop in blood pressure. So, use the product when your doctor gives you a green pass.

What are the best wood materials for the sauna?

While selecting the sauna, you should opt for Red Cedar or Pacific Coast Hemlock. Both of the woods offer good expansion and contraction properties and are very stable. Also, with low odor and no foreign oil presence, the woods cause no allergies.

Final Verdict

Go out and get yourself a proper infrared sauna to enjoy the holiday evenings in the most relaxing way. This guide will help you select the best infrared saunas and provide you with in-depth details of all the characteristics of the product. / - © Copyright 2020