Bathroom Sauna (Pros and Cons)

Here we share our bathroom sauna guide including the pros and cons, how to make a sauna, cost, space needed, design tips, and the best sauna bathroom ideas to consider.
Spacious bathroom with sauna, tub, shower, and backlit lightsA Finnish bath is a compact room or hut-like enclosure heated to temperatures ranging from 100 to 140°F. A sauna’s function is to produce perspiration through a combined effect of heat and steam. 

Saunas are helpful for circulation, pain alleviation, detoxifying, and relaxation. Steam saunas are also thought to be beneficial to the respiratory system.

To create a peaceful spa experience at home, you can consider installing an in-home Finnish bath in your bathroom. Whether or not to install a steam room depends on how much you enjoy using it. [toc]

Pros and Cons of a Finnish Bath

Spacious bathroom with sauna, tub, shower, and backlit lightsHere we share the advantages and disadvantages of a steam room.


Bathroom with toilet, bidet, tub and tile flooringA heat therapy room can offer various advantages to you and your family. Here are a few advantages of in-home bathroom saunas:

Saunas Installed in Home Bathrooms Let You Conveniently Unwind in Luxury: The most significant advantage of an in-home heat chamber is that it enables you to enjoy a beautiful spa-like getaway in the comfort of your beloved home.

You get the seclusion of your place, offering a pleasant, stress-free environment anytime you desire it. Installing an in-home thermal chamber is another option to warm up a cold bathroom.

Bathroom Saunas Can Be Beneficial to One’s General Health: Even though saunas provide numerous healing properties, not every piece of information on the internet is supported by scientific research. To clarify, relaxation and its associated advantages are among the health benefits of saunas that have been proven.

In general, using a sauna in the comfort of your home helps improve circulation and adequately relax stiff muscles. Taking the time to relax can be a beneficial tool for stress relief, which has specific health advantages and has been linked to enhanced cardiovascular health.

Having a steam room in your house means you have a constant chance to get rid of the toxins in your body. Because we do not consistently sweat daily, toxins can build up in our bodies. Sweating provides numerous health benefits, and saunas promote intense sweating, which aids in toxin removal.

A Steam Bath Can Be a Good Retreat After a Tiresome Day: One of the key objectives for installing a heat chamber is that it feels wonderful on the body, even after accounting for the incredible mental and physical advantages of utilizing it. It provides a fantastic retreat and a great method for the body and mind to rest and reconnect after a long and stressful day.

A Steam Bath Can Help You Get Better Sleep; Ideal Household Space for Homeowners with Insomnia: Individuals who have a heat chamber in their house frequently sleep better and longer. The high temperatures will eventually fall towards the evening.

This is associated with a progressive decrease in endorphin levels in the blood, which relaxes you and allows you to fall into a blissful sleep gently.

A Steam Bath Can Raise the Value of Your Property: Saunas in the home, particularly in the bathroom, might be valuable. 

Even if you might not be constructing a custom house, intending to sell it soon, an in-home steam room can raise the total value of your house. This is useful should you intend to sell it. Meanwhile, you can appreciate having your steam bath at your convenience anytime.


Bathroom shower area, sauna, and glass doorDespite their multiple benefits, bathroom saunas also have their drawbacks. Here are their cons:

The Effects That Bathroom Saunas Provide Are Not Suitable for Everyone: You should be cautious in general and use your steam room appropriately, as remaining in a sauna for too long might induce dehydration and heat stroke if you fall asleep while savoring it.

On the other hand, individuals suffering from heart illness and pregnant women should consult their doctors before using a sauna. Depending on the seriousness of your cardiac illness, your doctor may advise you to stay cool and avoid using the sauna. They may also urge you to avoid it if you are breastfeeding.

Furthermore, you should limit your session in a sauna to no more than 20 minutes as beyond that time can pose dehydration from extreme sweating and heat stress. You must also avoid consuming alcohol while in the sauna because it can cause dehydration.

In-Home Bathroom Saunas Can Be Costly: Irrespective of your type of sauna, an in-home bathroom sauna will require significant preparation and materials.

This implies that installing one in your customized home will raise your costs. If you are a homeowner with limited financial options, an in-home bathroom sauna might be an extra amenity that might drive your budget too far.

Some Types of Sauna Take Up Bathroom Space: A regular or infrared sauna occupies valuable space, thus, you will have to include it in your bathroom layout and décor.

They may take up significant space in your bathroom, contingent on the structure of your bathroom arrangement. The advantages of having a thermal chamber in your house may exceed the expense of giving up some bathroom space.

However, you have some freedom regarding the sauna dimensions – you can have a small one with sufficient space for one person or a bigger one with plenty of room to stretch out. Implementing these home thermal chamber design suggestions will also help ensure it is worth the extra space you will lose.

If the idea of sacrificing more bathroom space does not interest you but you still need an in-home steam room, you can consider installing a steam shower rather than a regular or infrared thermal chamber. Unlike the other forms, a steam shower may be fitted into your regular shower, saving you room in your bathroom. 

A Bathroom Sauna Necessitates Regular Maintenance: The fact that an in-home steam room adds another component to your house that needs regular maintenance is another potential disadvantage.

Installing an in-home steam room might be challenging for someone who is extremely busy and particularly dislikes additional household chores. Read more about sauna pros and cons on this page.

How to Make a Sauna in Your Bathroom 

Bathroom with shower, countertop, ceiling light, sauna, and tile floorsSauna Location: Your thermal chamber should be placed in a properly insulated location and shielded from water damage. If you intend to use a log burner, you must be capable of safely arranging a vent through the space to allow the emissions from the fire to depart. You must have some means to situate ventilation panels to allow the air to pass through.

When installing a thermal chamber inside a bathroom, you should keep a close eye on the hardware and fittings since plastic might distort and metal can become overheated.

The safest option is to zone an area. Make use of ceramic materials whenever possible. Remember that a small room is quicker to heat, thus if you have an option, you can pick your en-suite.

If in uncertainty, you can settle for an infrared thermal chamber setup. It maintains a minimal ambient temperature, making it appropriate for a pre-existing bathroom, and the heaters may be placed on either side of the body for productive heating.

If you want to make things more advanced, you should install intricate infrared radiator emitters with reflective surfaces and temperature settings. 

Bathroom Layout With Sauna: A glass door is commonly used to enter the steam room. It is normally divided into two sections. The Finnish bath usually has dimensions of 8 x 10 feet with a height ranging from 10 to 13 feet. Wood planks of varying widths are frequently used to cover the thermal chamber.

The design of the thermal chamber bathroom provides proper ventilation and natural sunlight. The sloped ceiling normally has three light fixtures: one in the toilet room, one above the shower, and one above the bathtub.

The thermal chamber is usually brightened by certain types of glass doors, one of which leads to the pathway in front of the bathtub. However, bathroom saunas can also have a few light fixtures recessed on the ceiling.

Sauna Material: Cedar wood is usually used to construct steam bathroom saunas because it does not expand or break significantly under heat, insulates efficiently, and is far less prone to decay. There are usually 7 grades of cedar wood.

You have additional options with an infrared thermal chamber, such as pinewood panels, which are easier to obtain and refurbished. You can also utilize old furniture or off-cuts from a contractor or a woodworker. It is crucial to make sure that the wood you purchase has not been chemically treated or coated.

Insulation: You have to be certain that a draft-proof insulating system is fitted in your steam room. Although the interior is steam-insulated, condensation water could damage your bathroom. Huge windows or a dedicated ventilation system can provide essential airflow.

Cotton-based insulation is also a terrific, eco-friendly option if you start fresh. You cannot produce it yourself as it must be treated as fire-retardant, although it is safer than fiberglass inside the home.

Suppose you plan to use a steam sauna. In that case, you can arrange the room properly by installing a vapor barrier after inserting the insulation between the baton frame and anchoring it down.

However, you can also use aluminum foil since it is less expensive and it will not dissolve or warp like plastic. You can also apply aluminum tape to the walls, handling around the corners and seams then work from the ground up.

Sauna room with a bench, hot stones, a soft light, and a brick accent wallSeating: A hardwood bench would be the better seating option because metal is not recommended in a steamy area. If you are a do-it-yourself enthusiast, you can go grab an old bed frame and cut it down to accommodate your sauna space. 

Because many bed frames are abandoned as their mattresses grow lumpy, you can almost likely locate this at your local second-hand furniture store. Do not use untreated wood in spots where you are most likely to sit because it will absorb sweat over a period.

Since the emitters or lights in an infrared sauna do not heat the air around you, you must properly arrange your bench. You will have to be near, preferably between two heaters. It is also a smart option to design the heater placement first, then the wooden bed frame.

Heating & Temperature: Despite being a relatively new technology, infrared saunas are quite widely known since they offer the best in-home sauna experience.

Unlike commercial saunas, in-home bathroom saunas, usually do not heat the space around you. Thus, the needed temperatures are lower, often ranging from 100°F to 150°F. Nevertheless, most professionals suggest that steam room temperatures range between 140°F and 150°F for the best results.

You will have the same experience as you would in a commercial sauna, but at considerably lower temperatures. It is achievable since infrared waves can heat you from the inside out.

Bathroom Sauna Steamer: A portable sauna steamer can help individuals relax and unwind in the comfort and safety of their own homes. Furthermore, because of its portable form, it is suitable for use anywhere and anytime, and the warmth from the steam provides a natural healing experience.

The majority of portable sauna steamers for bathrooms use infrared technology. Despite the lower temperature, the light from an infrared sauna steamer reaches significantly deeper into the body, generating a more intense sweat.

Design & Finishes: The bathroom’s overall design amplifies the therapeutic impact. A sauna involves the use of wood. Wood grain can be blended in various ways, and it appears particularly excellent with natural stone. Light-colored tiles and smart lighting allow you to customize the brightness to your particular preferences.

In-home bathroom saunas are intended to be experienced and appreciated, but that does not imply they cannot also be attractive. Windows may be a good addition because you will get a spectacular view.

Just be sure to utilize double-paned glass to avoid jeopardizing the structure’s insulation and comfort. You also have some design flexibility with the door—you can go with hardwood, glass, or even certain types of sliding doors.

If you select the electrical option, the steam room heater’s look might also be important. The finish and design of your heater can significantly alter the mood of your sauna, thus spending some time researching options and finding one that suits your preferences are essential.

How Much Space Is Needed for a Steamroom?

Bathroom with built-in sauna, shower door, and tile wallIn terms of size, a compact sauna requires only a 4-by-4-foot open floor space, including some place for the sauna door and electrical wiring, as well as a ceiling height of at least 7 feet. However, you have to make sure that it is on level ground wherever you put it.

When deciding on the size of your sauna in your bathroom, the conventional guideline is to provide 2 feet of bench seating space per individual.

Cost of Sauna Room

Bathroom with coordinating towel and slippers, and partial view of the saunaOn average, in-home steam baths cost around $2,000 to $6,000, but some models, particularly infrared versions, might cost $9,000 or more, contingent on installation challenges.

Indoor models are more pricey than outdoor saunas since professionals must ventilate the area well and protect surrounding regions from excessive heat and wetness.

Adding Sauna To Bathroom Design Tips

Bathroom with beadboard ceiling, jacuzzi, and small side table It is essential to consider the space required for a bathroom from the start of the design phase for new projects or upgrades. One square meter per individual will ensure adequate space. The smallest models necessitate slightly more than one square meter. Plan ahead of time if applicable.

 To create a sauna setting in your bathroom, you should increase the temperature of the water and enclose the area so that steam can develop. 

 Using the vents, the sauna collects cool air and expels hot air. Ensure that the sauna has abundant breathing space. The unit must not be located too close to a wall. It is possible that the walls and ceiling will need to be insulated.

 Saunas, unlike swimming pools or jacuzzis, do not necessitate as much upkeep. All you need to do is avoid using synthetic finishes. Paint and varnish might deteriorate the wood. After your hot treatment, keep the door open to allow the air to escape.

 You can bring your water heater temperature up to 140°F. Remember to turn it off after you’re finished to prevent burning yourself.

Sauna Ideas

Sauna area with glass walls, towel rack and white walls A glass wall or slightly large window in your steam room would be a terrific way to liven up your peaceful environment. If you do not have a beautiful view, you can try installing a skylight to add some natural lighting to your sauna treatment.

 Wooden interiors are used in bathroom saunas since wood does not absorb as much heat as other materials such as stone and ceramic, making it more pleasant to sit on in a hot environment. Although cedar is the most usually used wood, other wood species such as pine also create excellent interiors.

 While wood is the classic sauna material, you should not be afraid to experiment with other materials to give your steam room some uniqueness. Several bathroom saunas include a concrete wall that keeps things warm.

 You can think about adding a wider-than-usual bench or a comfortable lounge chair. Have pillows or other supports available on the sides to increase your relaxation and support your neck and shoulders.

Master Bathroom With Sauna 

Bathroom with bath tub, rack for towels, pine wallsUpgrading your master bathroom layout to provide an attractive spot to unwind at the end of a tiring day is a fantastic idea. The addition of an in-home sauna takes it to the next level.

Here are some ideas for creating a master bathroom with a steam bath:

 Add a Custom Sauna: The customized thermal chamber converts the space into a relaxing space. The classic thermal chamber provides an enclosed environment for pure relaxation and encourages a healthy lifestyle by providing amazing heat-bathing benefits.

 Set up a Sauna Glass: The all-glass façade of the thermal chamber blends in perfectly with the adjacent surroundings. The window within the thermal chamber lets in natural daylight and enables sauna bathers to appreciate the views of nature from the outside.

 Install Smart Thermal Chamber Control: Homeowners may completely control their thermal chamber from almost anywhere using a smart thermal chamber controller. They can easily set the temperature, time length, brightness, and sound. The innovative glass touchscreen control is also conveniently located near the thermal chamber.

 Put the Bathtub Near the Master Steam Room: The thermal chamber is maximized by the presence of the nearby bathtub. They can have a relaxing bath in the tub after experiencing the intense heat of the thermal chamber.

Sauna Shower Combo

Bathroom with glass enclosure, showerhead, and recessed lightingIf you are unsure where to place your steam room, you might want to consider putting it near your shower vicinity so that you can rinse off conveniently after working up a sweat.

Indeed, a bathroom-thermal chamber shower combo is strategically situated and will help transform your bathroom into an incredibly relaxing home thermal chamber.

DIY Sauna 

Bathroom with DIY sauna, mirror, sinks, faucets, and countertopsDry saunas are essential for a do-it-yourself project. They can be placed almost anywhere, from the corner of a bathroom or master bedroom to outdoors.

If you cannot construct a customized thermal chamber from the ground up, DIY thermal chamber packages are wonderful solutions for beginners. DIY sauna packages will include all internal materials, but you will still be required to frame the walls and ceiling with studs.

Sauna Kit 

Bathroom with birchwood walls and slate wall tilesAlthough a customized Finnish bath is an elegant complement to any house, other wonderful prefabricated steam room kits can be easily installed in your bathroom.

Prefabricated steam kits are available in a variety of forms and sizes and are simple to construct and install, allowing you to enjoy a home steam sanctuary pleasure without the expense and time required to build a personalized sweat room.

When buying a Finnish bath kit look for one that is constructed with non-toxic materials. Other notable features are tempered glass, electrical certification, low EMF & ELF levels, and an automatic timer function.

Infrared Finnish Bath 

Bathroom with infrared saun and floor to ceiling mirrorAs long as the standard conditions for a particular steam sanctuarya are followed, an infrared heat therapy room can be installed anywhere, including bathrooms. Like a steam shower, a Finnish bath necessitates effective spacing and heat-resistant enclosures.

An infrared Finnish bath can be installed in your current bathroom since it maintains a low ambient temperature. The heaters can be placed on either side of the body to provide optimal body heating.

See more related content in our article about steam shower designs on this page.

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