Home gym with 3 person infrared sauna

Infrared vs. Steam Sauna – Which is Better?

  1. Infrared vs. Steam Sauna – Which is Better? A Comprehensive Comparison

    The quest for relaxation and therapeutic benefits has led many individuals to consider the installation of saunas in their homes. Saunas offer a multitude of health benefits, ranging from stress reduction to improved circulation. Two popular choices for home saunas are the infrared sauna and the steam sauna. In this article, we will examine and compare these two types of saunas in terms of their health benefits, set up costs, and ease of assembly or installation. To provide a well-rounded perspective, we will draw upon professional references and external articles.

    Health Benefits

    Infrared Sauna: Infrared saunas utilize infrared heaters to emit radiant heat, which is absorbed directly by the body. This method is known to offer several health benefits, including detoxification, pain relief, and improved cardiovascular function.

    1. Detoxification: Infrared saunas are believed to aid in detoxification by promoting sweating. This process can help eliminate toxins and heavy metals from the body, potentially offering a range of health advantages.
    2. Pain Relief: Infrared heat can penetrate deep into the muscles and joints, providing relief from chronic pain conditions such as arthritis and muscle soreness.
    3. Improved Cardiovascular Function: Studies suggest that regular use of infrared saunas may improve blood circulation and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

    Steam Sauna: Steam saunas, on the other hand, use high humidity and hot steam to create a relaxing environment. While they offer certain health benefits, they differ from infrared saunas in some aspects.

    1. Respiratory Benefits: Steam saunas are known for their ability to open up airways and soothe respiratory issues, making them a preferred choice for individuals with conditions like asthma and allergies.
    2. Skin Health: Steam saunas can promote healthy skin by opening pores, promoting perspiration, and potentially reducing acne and other skin conditions. However it can be argued infrared saunas do the same.

    Set Up Costs and Ease of Assembly

    Infrared Sauna: In terms of set up costs, infrared saunas tend to be more affordable than their steam counterparts. These saunas come in various sizes and configurations, which can affect the price. Additionally, many infrared saunas are designed for easy assembly and can be installed in existing spaces, such as spare rooms or basements, without major modifications.

    Steam Sauna: Steam saunas typically require a higher initial investment due to the need for specialized equipment to generate and control steam. Additionally, the installation process can be more complex, often involving the construction of a dedicated room with proper ventilation. This can result in higher installation costs and may require professional assistance.

  2. Running Costs

    Traditional steam saunas typically cost 2 to 3 times more in electricty charges compared to infrared saunas.

  3. Professional References and External Articles

    To provide a balanced perspective on the subject, we refer to a few professional references and external articles:

    1. A study published in the journal “Complementary Therapies in Medicine” (2018) examined the effects of infrared sauna use on cardiovascular health and found positive outcomes related to blood pressure and heart rate regulation.
    2. An article from the Cleveland Clinic discusses the potential benefits of steam saunas, particularly in terms of respiratory health and skin improvement.
    3. An article from Home Advisor provides cost estimates for both infrared and steam sauna installation, offering insights into the financial aspects of each option.


    In conclusion, the choice between an infrared sauna and a steam sauna depends on individual preferences, health goals, and budget considerations. Infrared saunas offer a range of health benefits, including detoxification and pain relief, at a more affordable price point, cheaper running costs and with easier assembly. On the other hand, steam saunas excel in promoting respiratory health and possibly skin improvement but tend to require a higher initial investment and more complex installation. Ultimately, the decision should be based on personal needs and priorities, with an understanding of the distinct advantages each type of sauna offers.