Infrared vs Traditional Sauna

Infrared vs Traditional Sauna: What Are the Differences?

Life's full of tough choices, isn't it? And when it comes to picking a sauna, you might find yourself in a hot spot. You're probably scratching your head over the infrared vs traditional sauna debate. But don't sweat it! We're here to shed light on the heated topic, compare the infrared sauna with the traditional sauna, and help you find your perfect steamy escape. So, let's jump right in!

Understanding Infrared Saunas

So, what is an infrared sauna? An infrared sauna, that new kid on the block, brings a fresh approach to the sauna world by using infrared light for heat. It's akin to soaking up the warm, health-giving sun on a perfect summer's day, sans harmful ultraviolet rays.

How Infrared Saunas Work

Infrared saunas work by emitting infrared rays, invisible parts of the sun's spectrum, that penetrate your skin and directly heat your body. This radiant heat raises your core body temperature, providing a thorough, deep-down sweat at a lower temperature than traditional saunas.1

Types of Infrared Saunas

There are primarily two types - far infrared and near infrared saunas. A far infrared sauna emits far infrared waves which effectively penetrate the skin and elevate your body temperature, while a near infrared sauna uses a different wavelength that's absorbed more by the surface of your skin.

Health Benefits of Infrared Saunas

The health benefits of infrared saunas can make anyone's heart race (in a good way, of course). From relieving muscle pain and boosting skin health to lowering blood pressure, the advantages are immense.1 Moreover, infrared sauna therapy is known for its remarkable effect on boosting mood, enhancing circulation, and aiding weight loss.2

Exploring Traditional Saunas

Now, let's step into the world of traditional saunas. It's a time-tested tradition that brings you a blend of heat and steam, allowing you to experience that warm embrace of relaxation.

How Traditional Saunas Work

Unlike an infrared sauna, a traditional sauna, also known as a steam sauna or dry sauna, heats the air around you.1 Hot rocks are typically used in these traditional steam saunas, creating a sultry environment that causes you to sweat profusely.

Different Types of Traditional Saunas

Looking for a sauna that suits your style? Well, you've got a lot to choose from:

  • Portable Saunas: If you're always on the move, these saunas are for you. They're compact, easy to transport, and perfect for some solo relaxation time.
  • Wood Burning Saunas and Electric Saunas: These are your go-to if you're into high heat. Whether you want to chill out alone or with a group of friends, these saunas have got you covered.
  • Smoke Saunas: Fancy something unique? Try these saunas. They're a huge part of Finnish tradition and offer a distinctive smoky aroma - it's like a rustic retreat right at home.
  • Steam Saunas (Turkish or Russian Banya): If you love a good steam session, you'll love these saunas. They're great for your respiratory health and offer a completely different kind of relaxation.

So, whatever your style, there's a sauna that's just right for you!

Health Benefits of Traditional Saunas

The health benefits of traditional saunas are nothing to sniff at. Regular sauna use can cleanse the skin, relieve stress, and promote better sleep. Additionally, the high heat from the steam room can help boost your immune system, and the intense sweating is great for detoxification.3

Comparing Infrared and Traditional Saunas

Now that we've soaked up knowledge about both, let's dive into the nitty-gritty of the infrared vs traditional sauna showdown.

Temperature Differences

While traditional saunas sizzle at temperatures between 150°F and 195°F, infrared saunas play it cool with a more manageable 120°F to 150°F.3 This lower temperature makes infrared saunas more tolerable for folks who aren't fans of extreme heat.

Heating Mechanisms

The heat source is another key difference. Traditional saunas heat the air in the room using hot rocks, while infrared saunas use infrared heaters to send waves of infrared heat directly into your body.1

Energy Efficiency and Environmental Impact

In terms of energy efficiency, infrared saunas take the cake. They consume less power and heat up more quickly than traditional saunas, making them a green choice for the eco-conscious sauna lover. Traditional saunas, on the other hand, require more power than infrared saunas do since they have to heat up water to boiling point and can take as much as 6 kw of power to run for one session.4

Space Requirements and Installation

If you're short on space, an infrared sauna could be your match. They're compact, easy to install, and don't require a significant amount of ventilation. On the other hand, a traditional sauna might need its own dedicated room and adequate ventilation.

Which is Better: Infrared or Traditional Sauna?

At the end of the day, the choice between an infrared sauna and a traditional sauna boils down to personal preference and lifestyle.

Evaluating Personal Preferences

Are you a purist at heart who relishes the high heat and steam of a traditional sauna, or are you drawn towards the lower temperatures and direct heat of the infrared sauna? Your personal comfort should take center stage in this decision.

Health Considerations

Your health needs also come into play. If your goal is deep muscle relaxation, stress relief, or detoxification, a traditional sauna might be more up your alley.3 But if you're after pain relief, better circulation, or skin rejuvenation, an infrared sauna could be your ticket.2

Cost and Maintenance Factors

Cost and maintenance are also critical considerations. While infrared saunas generally have lower running costs and are easier to maintain, traditional saunas may require a larger initial investment and ongoing upkeep.

Making the Right Choice for Your Home

Taking all these factors into account, the choice between an infrared sauna and a traditional sauna hinges on assessing your needs and creating a relaxing sauna experience that aligns with your lifestyle.

Assessing Your Needs and Lifestyle

Whether you're a fitness enthusiast seeking to enhance muscle recovery, a health nut seeking detoxification, or a busy bee in need of stress relief, choose a sauna type that complements your goals and fits seamlessly into your routine.

Creating a Relaxing Sauna Experience

In the end, your sauna session should be a sanctuary of relaxation. Ensure that your chosen sauna promotes tranquility, enhances your wellness routine, and leaves you feeling refreshed and revitalized.

Discover Infrared Saunas from Lifepro Today

So, are you ready to turn up the heat and step into the world of saunas? Whether you want to use an infrared sauna for anxiety, infrared sauna for weight loss, or for any other benefit of infrared light therapy, Lifepro has got you covered. Our range of top-quality saunas cater to various needs, promising a rejuvenating sauna experience that'll keep you coming back for more.

In the great infrared vs traditional sauna debate, there's no wrong choice – only the choice that makes you feel your best. So go ahead, stoke the fire of wellness, and let your sauna journey begin!


  1. Young, MD., Melissa. 2022. “Why Infrared Saunas Are ‘Cooler’ than Traditional Saunas.” Cleveland Clinic. April 14, 2022.
  2. Cristiano, L. 2019. “Use of Infrared-Based Devices in Aesthetic Medicine and for Beauty and Wellness Treatments.” Infrared Physics & Technology 102 (November): 102991.
  3. Hussain J, Cohen M. Clinical Effects of Regular Dry Sauna Bathing: A Systematic Review. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2018 Apr 24;2018:1857413. doi: 10.1155/2018/1857413. PMID: 29849692; PMCID: PMC5941775.
  4. Thatcher, Kaitlin. 2019. “Infrared Sauna vs. a Traditional Sauna: Which Is Best for You?” Thatcher Pools and Spas. September 20, 2019.


Joel Gottehrer

Joel Gottehrer is the Co-Founder of Lifepro Fitness and has dedicated his life to helping people transform theirs. With over 12 years of experience in the fitness industry as a personal trainer and owner of two personal training studios, Joel has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to helping transform lives. After suffering from physical injuries, Joel and his business partner, Abraham Brach, came together with a common goal to alleviate the pain caused by their injuries.

They continued to find themselves disappointed with the results stemming from various products promising to relieve their pain, and with that – Lifepro Fitness was born. Joel's mission is to have a positive impact on millions of lives with the Lifepro brand. Whether it's finding new and innovative ways to help people recover from injuries or developing products to improve overall wellness, Joel is always looking for ways to push the boundaries. Thanks to his commitment to help people live their lives free of pain, Lifepro has been able to do this for thousands of people since its founding in 2017.

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