12 Hot Home Sauna Picks
Why go to the spa or gym to enjoy a sauna when you can have a relaxing sweat session right at home? We rounded up a variety of home saunas—wood-fired, infrared, portable and more—coming in at price points starting at around $100 and running up to several thousand. Read on to find your perfect home sauna match.
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Picturing a traditional Finnish sauna likely conjures images of a wooden room warmed by a wood-burning stove topped with hot rocks. Sauna enthusiasts love wood-fired saunas for their traditional feel, possibility for installation anywhere without worrying about electrical access and ability to reach high temperatures. Several manufacturers offer sauna kits with a choice of either a wood-fired or electric stove, including this four-person Dundalk Outdoor Mini Pod Sauna ($6,345). Like many outdoor saunas, this one comes in a kit requiring assembly that may require two people.
Infrared saunas such as the Dynamic Venice 2-person Infrared Sauna ($1,499) are definitely having a moment. Their heat comes from infrared light, usually emitted by carbon fiber or ceramic heaters. The infrared wavelengths target your body more than the surrounding air, working up your sweat at temperatures lower than with a traditional home sauna. Sauna manufacturers and enthusiasts frequently point out that without hot rocks to sprinkle water on, an infrared sauna can’t produce steam, a necessary ingredient in a sauna, by definition. Still, infrared remains a popular option for people who want a low-cost, easy-to-install sauna-like experience at home. Now you may wonder, what’s the best infrared sauna for your home?
Electric saunas use an electrical element to heat sauna rocks, which can then be sprinkled with water to generate steam. Several manufacturers offer home sauna kits with electric heaters, and some prefabricated models like the Madison Cedar 3-Person Indoor Electric Sauna ($2,995) are available at home centers. This model uses your existing concrete, ceramic, vinyl, laminate or tile floor.
Steam showers and steam saunas often get lumped together, but they are two different experiences. Steam saunas are heated wooden rooms in which you can pour water on rock to create steam. Steam showers or steam rooms, like this Ariel Steam Shower Enclosure Kit ($4,499), are usually made of tile and heated by a steam generator. Steam showers offer higher humidity and lower heat than a steam sauna. For more ideas, take a look at 15 incredible steam shower ideas.
Some traditional saunas, like the Almost Heaven Saunas’ Morgan 4-Person Barrel Steam Sauna ($3,699) are marketed as steam saunas, but they can provide either a wet or dry sauna experience. An electric stove heats the sauna rocks, and then you can sprinkle water over the rocks to generate steam.
Portable infrared saunas like the Radiant Saunas Rejuvenator Personal Sauna ($132) are space-saving options that don’t require installation. Users sit on a folding chair inside an insulated fabric cabin. This model uses carbon fiber heating panels and a foot pad inside the unit to bring the heat.
If you like the idea of a personal sauna tent but want a steamy experience, options like Durherm Portable Personal Therapeutic Spa Home Steam Sauna ($104) may be for you. You’ll sit on a folding chair inside a fabric cabin while a steam generator produces heat up to 113 degrees F.
Sauna blankets look like sleeping bags with built-in heating elements designed to make you sweat. The Gizmo Supply 3 Zone Infrared FIR Sauna Blanket ($449) features three separately controlled heating zones targeting your upper body, waist and lower body. This model is pricier than other sauna blankets, but it also has one more zone than most others and it gets great reviews on Amazon.
Barrel saunas are popular partially for their ease of construction. They typically come with two round end units and a series of planks that you’ll fit around the ends. Then you simply nail and strap them into place. Barrel saunas usually come with electric stoves, like this Almost Heaven Audra Cedar 4 Person Electric Canopy Barrel Sauna ($4,356).
If you don’t see a prefabricated sauna that seems right for you and you’re looking for your next major construction project, you can build your own outdoor sauna or convert an existing room into an indoor sauna. You can then purchase an electric home sauna heater, such as this Finlandia FLB-60 Sauna Heater ($865). Ever wondered what is a reasonable temperature for a house in winter?
You can also equip your custom DIY outdoor sauna with a wood-burning heater like this Harvia M3 Woodburning Sauna Heater ($1,075). If you build your own outdoor wood-fired sauna, experts advise researching local building codes and paying close attention to things like sauna location, chimney and stovepipe construction and air intake vents to ensure a safe sauna experience.