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Types of Saunas: A Guide to Choosing the Perfect Sauna for Your Needs

Types of Saunas: A Guide to Choosing the Perfect Sauna for Your Needs

If you're looking to add a sauna to your home, you may be wondering what types of saunas are available. Saunas have been used for centuries for their relaxing and therapeutic benefits, and there are several types of saunas to choose from. 

At Finnish Sauna Builders, we specialize in providing high-quality saunas that are built to last. Our selection includes panel-built saunas, standard-cut saunas, custom-cut saunas, and barrel saunas. Panel-built saunas are the easiest to install and can be taken apart and moved if needed. Standard-cut saunas are built to fit into a specific space and are made with pre-cut materials. Custom-cut saunas are designed to fit the unique space requirements of your home. Barrel saunas are a unique option that provides a rustic look and feel.

History of Saunas

Saunas have been a part of Finnish culture for centuries. They were originally used as a way to cleanse the mind and body, and were often used for spiritual and religious purposes. The first saunas were dug into the ground and covered with animal skins or bark. Later, they were built above ground with wooden logs and heated with stones.

Over time, saunas evolved and became an important part of Finnish life. They were used for socializing, relaxation, and health benefits. Finnish Sauna Builders has been a leader in the sauna industry for years, providing high-quality saunas that are built to last.

Saunas have also become popular in other parts of the world, and there are now many different types of saunas available. Finnish Sauna Builders offers a variety of saunas, including electric saunas, wood-burning saunas, and iced saunas.

Electric saunas are the most common type in Finland. They are easy to use and require low maintenance. Wood-burning saunas are traditional and offer a unique experience. Iced saunas, also known as snow saunas, are a more recent addition to the sauna world and provide a refreshing and invigorating experience.

Types of Traditional Saunas

When it comes to traditional saunas, there are a few different types to consider. Each type has its unique charm and benefits. In this section, we will explore the three main types of traditional saunas: Finnish Sauna, Smoke Sauna, and Steam Sauna.

Finnish Sauna

The Finnish sauna is perhaps the most well-known type of traditional sauna. It is a wood-burning sauna that is typically made of cedar, Douglas Fir, hemlock, or spruce. Finnish Sauna Builders offers a wide range of Finnish saunas made from high-quality materials that are durable and aesthetically pleasing.

One of the most significant benefits of the Finnish sauna is its ability to provide a deep, cleansing sweat. The heat from the sauna causes the body to sweat, which helps to remove toxins from the body. It is also an excellent way to relax and unwind after a long day.

Smoke Sauna

The Smoke Sauna, also known as the "savusauna," is a traditional Finnish sauna that uses smoke to heat the sauna. It is typically made of logs and has a chimney that allows the smoke to escape. 

One of the significant benefits of the Smoke Sauna is its ability to provide a unique aroma that is both relaxing and invigorating. The smoke from the sauna also helps to provide a deep, cleansing sweat that is excellent for the body.

Steam Sauna

The Steam Sauna, also known as the "Turkish bath," is a type of sauna that uses steam to heat the room. It is typically made of tiles or marble and has a steam generator that produces steam. 

One of the significant benefits of the Steam Sauna is its ability to provide a more gentle heat that is perfect for those who are new to saunas. The steam from the sauna also helps to open up the pores and provide a deep, cleansing sweat that is excellent for the body.

Modern Sauna Variations

When it comes to modern saunas, there are three main types to choose from: infrared, electric, and wood-burning. Each type has its own unique benefits and drawbacks.

Infrared Sauna

Infrared saunas use infrared heaters to emit infrared light, which is absorbed by the body to produce heat. This type of sauna is known for its ability to penetrate deep into the skin, providing a more intense sweat. In addition, infrared saunas are often more energy-efficient and easier to install than other types of saunas.

Electric Sauna

Electric saunas use electric heaters to heat the sauna room. This type of sauna is often more affordable and easier to install than wood-burning saunas. Electric saunas are also more customizable, allowing you to adjust the temperature and humidity levels to your liking.

Wood-Burning Sauna

Wood-burning saunas use a wood stove to heat the sauna room. This type of sauna is known for its authentic and traditional feel. Wood-burning saunas are also more energy-efficient than electric saunas, as they do not require electricity to operate.

Sauna Materials

When it comes to building a sauna, the materials you choose can greatly impact the overall look, feel, and function of the space. Two of the most common materials used in saunas are wood and stone/tile.

Wood Types

Wood is an essential component of any sauna. It provides a warm, natural look that is both inviting and relaxing. Finnish Sauna Builders offers a variety of softwoods, including Western Red Cedar, Hemlock, and Aspen. Each wood type has its own unique characteristics, such as color, texture, and aroma. Western Red Cedar is a popular choice due to its natural resistance to decay and insects, while Hemlock is known for its durability and light color. Aspen, on the other hand, is a more affordable option that is easy to work with and has a pleasant aroma.

Stone and Tile

Stone and tile are also popular materials used in saunas. They provide a sleek, modern look that can add a touch of luxury to any space. Finnish Sauna Builders offers a wide range of stone and tile options, including granite, marble, and slate. These materials are durable, easy to clean, and provide excellent heat retention. Stone and tile can be used to create a variety of sauna features, such as benches, walls, and flooring.

Health Benefits of Saunas

Saunas have been used for centuries for their therapeutic benefits. Regular use of saunas can help improve overall health and well-being. Here are some of the health benefits of saunas:

1. Cardiovascular Health

Sauna use can help improve cardiovascular health by increasing heart rate and improving blood circulation. According to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, regular sauna use can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.

2. Stress Reduction

Saunas can help reduce stress levels by promoting relaxation and reducing tension in the body. The heat from the sauna can also help release endorphins, which are natural pain relievers and mood enhancers.

3. Pain Relief

Saunas can help relieve pain and inflammation in the body. The heat from the sauna can help increase blood flow, which can help reduce pain and stiffness in the joints and muscles.

4. Improved Skin Health

Saunas can help improve skin health by opening up pores and increasing blood flow to the skin. This can help promote healthy skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.

5. Detoxification

Saunas can help remove toxins from the body by promoting sweating. Sweating can help flush out toxins and impurities from the body, which can help improve overall health and well-being.

Sauna Safety Guidelines

Saunas are a great way to relax and unwind, but it's important to follow safety guidelines to avoid any accidents or injuries. Here are some tips to keep in mind when using a sauna:

  • Always consult with a doctor before using a sauna, especially if you have any underlying health conditions, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, or diabetes.

  • Drink plenty of water before and after using a sauna to avoid dehydration.

  • Limit your time in the sauna to no more than 15-20 minutes at a time.

  • Avoid using a sauna alone, and never allow children to use a sauna unsupervised.

  • Do not use a sauna if you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

  • Avoid using oils, lotions, or any other products in the sauna, as they can be flammable and cause a fire.

  • Use caution when entering and exiting the sauna, as the floor may be slippery.

Cultural Significance of Saunas

Saunas are an integral part of many cultures around the world. They offer a unique experience that promotes relaxation, socialization, and physical and mental well-being. In this section, we will explore the cultural significance of saunas, focusing on their history, traditions, and benefits.

Saunas in Finland

In Finland, saunas hold a special place in the hearts of its people. Finnish saunas have been integrated into everyday life for centuries, and they are considered a sacred place for physical and mental cleansing. Sauna sessions are often followed by a dip in a nearby lake or a roll in the snow, which is believed to improve circulation and strengthen the immune system.

Saunas Around the World

Saunas are not limited to Finland. Many cultures around the world have their unique sauna traditions. For example, in Russia, banya saunas are popular, which are usually heated with wood and infused with herbs. In Japan, the traditional sauna is called a "mushi-buro," which is a steam sauna that uses hot stones to create steam.

Choosing the Right Sauna

When it comes to choosing the right sauna, there are a few things to consider. Below we will discuss two important factors to keep in mind: size and location, and quality and durability.

Size and Location

The first thing to consider when choosing a sauna is the size and location. Do you have enough space to accommodate the size of the sauna you want? Do you want an indoor or outdoor sauna? If you have limited space, a portable sauna might be a good option. Portable saunas are easy to set up and take down, making them a great option for those who don't have a lot of space.

Quality and Durability

Another important factor to consider is the quality and durability of the sauna. You want to make sure that you are investing in a sauna that will last for years to come. Look for saunas that are made from high-quality materials such as cedar or hemlock. These materials are known for their durability and will stand up to years of use.

Sauna Accessories

When it comes to enjoying a sauna experience, the accessories you choose can make all the difference. At Finnish Sauna Builders, we offer a wide selection of high-quality sauna accessories to enhance your sauna experience. Here are some of the most popular sauna accessories:

Sauna Heaters

A sauna heater is the heart of your sauna, and choosing the right one is essential for a comfortable and effective sauna experience. At Finnish Sauna Builders, we offer a variety of sauna heaters to suit any need and budget. From traditional wood-burning stoves to modern electric heaters, we have a heater that will work for you.

Sauna Buckets and Ladles

Sauna buckets and ladles are essential accessories for any sauna. A sauna bucket is used to hold water for pouring over the sauna stones, while a ladle is used to scoop the water and pour it onto the stones. At Finnish Sauna Builders, we offer a variety of sauna buckets and ladles in different sizes and materials to suit your preferences.

Sauna Benches

Sauna benches are an important part of any sauna. They provide a comfortable place to sit or lie down while enjoying the heat and steam. At Finnish Sauna Builders, we offer a variety of sauna benches in different sizes and materials to suit your needs. From traditional wooden benches to modern benches made of composite materials, we have a bench that will work for you.

At Finnish Sauna Builders, we are committed to providing our customers with the highest quality sauna accessories at the best prices. Whether you are looking to buy a sauna outright or finance your purchase, we offer a range of options to suit your needs. With our expert advice and the highest quality products, you can be sure that you are making the best choice for your sauna experience.

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