What is Sauna Etiquette and How To Apply It

What is Sauna Etiquette and How To Apply It

Going into the warm, soothing world of saunas can be both exhilarating and a little daunting, especially when it comes to understanding the unspoken rules of sauna etiquette.

Whether you're stepping into a traditional Finnish sauna, a steamy Turkish bath, or a luxurious spa retreat, knowing how to conduct yourself can enhance your experience and that of others around you.

Sauna etiquette is not just about manners; it's about respecting the culture, the space, and the communal nature of the sauna experience.

To really clean your mind and body and make it last, you should know the rules of sauna etiquette we're about to share and the proper ways to do them.

Rules of Sauna Etiquette

Rules of Sauna Etiquette

1. Step In and Out Quietly

One key principle of sauna use relates to a basic science fact we all learn: Heat flows to cold areas. This is a vital reason why you should always move quickly when entering or leaving a sauna. Leaving the door open too long lets precious, soothing warmth escape, cooling down the space that everyone is trying to enjoy.

Remember, when you step into or out of the sauna, avoid letting the door stand open. This means no pausing for chats with friends outside the sauna with the door ajar. And after making your entrance or exit, double-check that the door is properly shut.

Sometimes, it might need an extra push or pull to seal the heat inside. Saunas are spaces of tranquility and relaxation, so keeping noise to a minimum is just as crucial.

2. Respect the Dress Code

In Finland, it's totally normal to use the sauna without any clothes on. It's a big part of their culture and tradition. However, in the United States, people don't usually get naked in public saunas like the ones you might find in gyms.

Here, it's more common to wear gym shorts, swim trunks, or, at the very least, wrap a towel around your waist while you're in the sauna.

Every place might have its own rules about what you should wear, so it's important to respect those rules and do what everyone else is doing. This keeps things comfortable and respectful for everyone.

3. Use a Towel

No matter how you choose to dress in a sauna, always remember to bring a towel. It's super important for two big reasons.

First, sit or lie down on your towel. This is a clean way to enjoy the sauna and keeps it nice for everyone else. Plus, it stops your skin from getting too hot if you're sitting directly on the wood benches.

Secondly, you'll want your towel to wipe away any sweat. This keeps you comfortable and makes sure the sauna stays fresh for the next person.

4. Always Ask Before Adding Water or Oils to the Stones

When you're in the sauna, and you start feeling like you could use a bit more heat, you might think about pouring water on the heated rocks. This action creates a burst of steam that makes the heat feel even more intense and, to many, more enjoyable. But remember, not everyone may enjoy this sudden increase in heat.

It's a good rule to always ask everyone in the sauna if they're cool with it before you pour water on the stones. You need to make sure everyone is okay with this because it affects everyone's experience.

Also, if you're into aromatherapy and like adding essential oils to the sauna rocks, definitely ask first. A little goes a long way, and the scent can be strong for some people. Just because you like a particular scent doesn’t mean everyone else will.

Always ask for permission and make sure everyone's on board before you add anything to the sauna's hot stones.

5. Always Check with Others Before Adjusting the Temperature

When you're feeling a bit too hot or too cold in the sauna, your first thought might be to adjust the temperature to make yourself more comfortable. However, it's crucial to remember that you're sharing the space with others. The sauna temperature might be just right for someone else.

That's why it's polite and considerate to ask everyone in the sauna before making any changes to the temperature settings. This way, you ensure that the sauna remains an enjoyable experience for all users, respecting everyone's comfort levels.

6. Keep It Quiet - No Music

When you're in the sauna, it's not cool to listen to music on your smartphone, even with headphones. Think of the sauna as a place for peace and quiet. People come here to relax, and music can mess with that vibe. Your favorite jams might be another person's noise.

Plus, the heat can mess with your phone. Keep it silent and safe by not bringing it in. This way, everyone can enjoy the calm atmosphere and focus on relaxing.

Related: Can You Bring Your Phone in a Sauna?

7. Give Others Space

When you're in the sauna, remember that personal space is really important. It can be super awkward if someone sits too close, especially if there's plenty of room elsewhere. Always try to leave at least one seat's space between you and the next person.

This isn't just about comfort; it’s also about respect. Plus, having a bit of space lets everyone enjoy the warmth of the sauna more evenly. If the sauna gets crowded, then it's okay to sit closer, but always be mindful of others' personal space and comfort levels.

8. Avoid Working Out in the Sauna

While it might sound like a good idea to do some light exercises or stretches in the sauna to maximize your sweat, it's actually not recommended. Not only can working out in the sauna make it uncomfortable for others, but it can also be dangerous for you.

The extreme heat can lead to dehydration quicker than you might expect, which is risky when you're exercising. Plus, the sauna is a place for relaxation, not for getting your heart rate up. Stick to sitting or laying down and save the workout for the gym.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Should I Stay in the Sauna?

The ideal time to stay in the sauna is between 10 and 20 minutes. Staying longer can cause dehydration and make you feel uncomfortable. It's smart to use a hygrometer to check the humidity inside, making sure it's just right so you don't dry out too fast.

What Is Not Allowed in a Sauna?

There are a few big no-nos in the sauna. You can't climb on things, mess around, or do exercises. Also, make sure to close the door quickly when you come in or leave, wear the right clothes, and never walk in with your street shoes on.

What Do You Wear to a Sauna?

When picking what to wear to a sauna, go for something made mostly of cotton, like a big t-shirt or cotton wrap. You can also wear baggy yoga pants or comfy shorts and a tank top. Just make sure your clothes are loose so air can move well around your body.

Who Should Avoid Saunas?

People with certain heart conditions, like unstable chest pain (angina), a recent heart attack, or severe tightness in the aorta, should avoid saunas. But, if you have heart disease that's under control, like stable chest pain or an older heart attack, it's usually okay to use one.

Can I Socialize Inside the Sauna?

Saunas are more like a quiet retreat, not really a place to chat. If you do need to talk, keep it to whispers. This way, everyone can keep enjoying the peaceful vibes as much as possible.

The Takeaway: Rules of Sauna Etiquette

The Takeaway: Rules of Sauna Etiquette

Sauna etiquette is super important because it helps everyone have a great time while staying safe and comfy.

  • Bring a Towel
  • Ask Before Adding Water or Oil
  • Keep Quiet
  • Give Others Space
  • Avoid Working Out

              By following these tips, you’ll make sure the sauna stays a peaceful place where everyone can relax and enjoy the warmth.

              If you dream about having the perfect sauna experience anytime you want, why not consider getting your own? We've got an awesome collection of indoor saunas and outdoor saunas that can fit right into your home.

              Feel free to contact us for more information or to take a look at what we've got. We're here to help you find your ideal sauna escape!