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What to Wear & What Not to Wear in an Infrared Sauna?

what to wear in an infrared sauna
Written by Elizabeth Fincher
Last Update: August 10, 2023

The classic sauna uses heat to warm up your body, whereas an infrared sauna uses light to generate heat. The benefits of using an infrared sauna include the relaxation aspect, but it also reduces stiffness, soreness, and inflammation and increases recovery of the muscles.

But what do you wear in an infrared sauna? The key is to wear as less as possible while still protecting your body from the heat.

Let’s explore the options for the best-infrared sauna attire.

What to Wear in an Infrared Sauna?

What to Wear in an Infrared Sauna

  • Go naked

If you don’t have to worry about other people or have a home sauna, enjoy the sauna naked. Some people find this the most comfortable way to sweat through a session of intense heat.

  • Cotton clothing

Comfortability is key. Try wearing loose-fitting cotton clothes like an oversized shirt, wrap or shorts is ideal for lounging in a sauna. The cotton allows breathability and takes in any extra heat.

  • Towel

You should always have a towel with you while enjoying the infrared sauna, regardless of if you are using it as a coverup. Placing the towel on the sauna bench will keep you safe from excess heat and keep you clean and from bacteria.

  • Shower shoes

It’s not recommended to wear regular shoes in any sauna. They can track dirt in, and they don’t allow your feet to breathe properly. If you need to wear footwear, shower shoes are suggested. Your feet will be able to breathe and be kept clean from bacteria while wearing them.

  • Sauna suits and belts

Some people like to use the sauna for weight loss and detoxification. Sauna suits and belts help with this process since they can make you sweat more, increase blood circulation, and burn calories.

  • Swimsuits

Wearing a swimsuit is practical, but you must wear the suitable material to ensure ultimate safety. If your swimsuit is made from PVC, it will not be able to breathe properly and make you feel uncomfortable. It could also cause toxic fumes and chemicals to permeate the air during high temperatures.

Some bathing suits have metal parts that will heat up and burn the skin. It is best to avoid this. The best bathing suit would be a loose-fitting one made from natural fibers. This will allow for improved ventilation.

  • Loofah

You can’t wear a loofah, but you can use it to exfoliate dead skin while in the sauna. It would be best to use this in your personal sauna versus a public one. It might be off-putting to other people if you scrub your body with a loofah in a communal sauna.

How to Choose Sauna Clothing?

How to Choose Sauna Clothing

  • Breathability

The clothing worn in the sauna needs to be breathable. This allows the body to sweat properly when hot air reaches the skin.

  • Lightness

Wearing light attire is vital because it will be touching the skin. The lightness of the fabric will allow sweat to pass through it and not block skin pores.

  • Looseness

You don’t want tight fabric against your skin when you are in an infrared sauna. You want clothing that will barely touch you. Restrictive clothing will block skin pores and make the session less effective.

  • Ease of removal

Sometimes temperatures can become too hot in a sauna and will result in you sweating profusely. In this case, you must choose clothes that can be easily removed and will not stick to the skin.

What Not to Wear in an Infrared Sauna?

  • Workout attire

This type of gear can be made of PVC. You should avoid this material in a sauna because it can melt when exposed to hot temperatures.

  • Lotion and makeup

Applying lotion will moisturize your skin, but you will want to avoid this if you are using the sauna. The cream and makeup will block your pores and make a huge mess as you sweat.

  • Jewelry

Avoid wearing body or facial piercings and other jewelry in a sauna. The metal will burn you when heated up.

  • Dirty clothing

Clean clothing is optimal. Dirty or dusty clothing can cause unwanted particles to linger in the air and make your skin break out.


1. Does an infrared sauna penetrate clothing?

Ans. Wearing the least amount of clothing is ideal for use in a sauna. If you are wearing a lot of clothing, it will lessen the efficiency of your sauna experience. Always choose light, breathable, loose, and easy to remove clothes.

2. Can I wear physio tape in a sauna?

Ans. Technically, you can wear the physio tape, but you will lose it very quickly as you sweat.

3. Can I wear contact lenses in a sauna?

Ans. You can wear them, but why would you want to? It would help if you thought about some things first. What are your contact lenses made from? Are they hard or soft? For the best answer, you should consult your doctor or optician. They would know best about the stamina of your lenses and how they might affect your eyes in a sauna.

4. How long should I stay in an infrared sauna?

Ans. An infrared sauna session usually lasts about 30 minutes. You need to remember to allow time before and after the session (dress and undress). Many people use the sauna 3 to 4 times a week, although it is safe to use every day. It’s up to you and whether you can find the time to do so.

5. Should I hydrate before a sauna session?

Ans. It would help if you were hydrated, before a session, during, and after the sauna experience. This is an excellent idea to practice this because you will be losing water as you sweat. Drinking water is vital to keep replenished. Stay away from sugary drinks, pop, and caffeine. Water is always the best option for your hydration.

6. Can I eat before my sauna time?

Ans. Yes, a light snack will keep your energy levels at their peak during your time in the sauna. You don’t want to become exhausted during your experience. At the same time, avoid anything too heavy before the sauna.

About the author

Elizabeth Fincher

Elizabeth started her career as an interior design artist at a multinational interior design farm. She completed her masters degree from the University of North Texas back in 2010. She was also a Spelling Bee runner-up when she was 14. She took interest in bathroom interior designing after joining her first job. Later she started her own firm as an independent artist. She’s been one of the founding members of Toiletsguide. She examines the design and ergonomics of the units we review and directs the interior decoration team of our in-house research facility. Elizabeth plays piano masterfully and always finds time to entertain us in between our busy schedules.

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