Detoxing with Sauna Vs Steam Room: 3 Skin Benefits

You probably know that hot air can open up our pores and get rid of things that could clog and block them from functioning properly. It's one way to detoxify your body.

A heat bath is also a good way to detox as it opens the pores of your skin, detoxify your skin, and make you feel fresh and more rejuvenated.

However, when it comes to heat baths, you have to decide whether to go for a steam room vs. sauna for skin.

Steam coming from stones in a sauna


Typically found in Asian themed spas and wellness centers, saunas are heat baths that provide hot dry air in a wooden room. Other traits saunas include:

  • Temperatures are typically around 158° F to 212° F.
  • Sauna baths can help stimulate the muscles, relieve stress, lower your blood pressure, and even improve your cardiovascular health.
  • The dry air could be a bit too harsh for some, so most saunas come with a stack of stones in one corner where you can pour water into to create some humidity and relief.

Steam Rooms

As opposed to saunas, steam rooms offer wet hot air since it makes use of steam to generate heat. Temperatures here are a lot lower than in saunas as they only go up to about 115° F to 120° F. They just feel warmer because of the 100% humidity, which can be too much for some people. Additional details about steam rooms include:

  • The heat and sweat can make you feel tired afterwards. The feeling is almost like you just ran a 10 km race. However, you'll feel relaxed and rejuvenated afterwards. Just make sure not to stay very long in the steam room so you won't get dehydrated and dizzy from the heat.
  • Those who have lung issues may also find relief as the steam can soothe their respiratory systems.
  • With the high humidity, fungi and bacteria can also be found in many steam rooms. So, to keep yourself clean, make sure to use clean towels and flipflops inside to prevent yourself from directly touching the surfaces.

Skin Benefits of Heat Baths

While they offer two different ways of creating hot air, both steam rooms and saunas have three great benefits for your skin:

  • Heat baths can open up your pores. This then allows you to easily sweat out all of the dirt, as well as other toxins that are just waiting to get out of your body. This detoxifies your skin, leaving you feeling fresh and clean afterwards.
  • Steam baths can actually help moisturize the skin as the humidity helps in hydrating and making it feel more supple. Saunas, on the other hand, can make your skin feel more taut and tighter, so doing both can be very beneficial as well.
  • Heat baths are also said to be helpful in battling acne. As it opens up your pores and lets you sweat out, it also flushes out the impurities on your face and other areas that usually get breakouts, turning your face into a new clean slate.

Steam Rooms vs. Sauna

If you're thinking about which one could be the better option for you, experts believe that it's all a matter of personal preference. Both are great ways to sweat it out and get relaxed after. You can even do both in one trip to the gym or spa so you don't really have to choose. How? Follow this sequence:

  • Shower lightly.
  • Steam.
  • Sauna.
  • Take a thorough bath to get rid of all the toxins and impurities you've sweated out.

If you're wondering which one is best to naturally detoxify your skin, I would have to say it depends on your preference. Both are effective in helping you flush out impurities through sweating, but you need to be able to take the kind of heat they offer in order to get the most out of your heat bath long enough fro the process to be completed.

If public saunas and steam baths are not your thing, there are now lots of ways that you can get the same treatments at home. With the help of a home facial steamer, portable sauna, and infrared sauna, you can now detoxify your skin without having to leave your house.

Share your own sauna and steam bath experiences below! I'd love to hear what you think about heat baths and how they've helped you improve your overall wellness.

  • Updated September 21, 2016
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