I’m a huge fan of the dry, soothing heat of a sauna, especially during the long cold winters we tend to experience here in Northeastern Ohio. I believe in the healing. detoxifying and stress relief properties so much that my husband and I invested in an inexpensive infrared sauna model a few years ago.
The unique thing about infrared saunas is the type of heat they use. Radiant, or infrared heat is different from normal heat in that it penetrates the tissues more readily and effectively.
But there’s another less expected side benefit to regular sauna bathing. It can really have a positive impact on your skin health. I noticed that when I was regularly visiting the sauna (mostly in the winter time, I’ll admit), my skin seemed to take on a smoother, more radiant appearance.
Happiness and Calm Equals Vibrant Skin?
As they say, a relaxed and happy person has vibrant skin. It’s that “just back from vacation” look that no one can replicate because a lot of it has to do with the relaxation and carefree attitude that was enjoyed on vacation.
Also at play is the theory that deep, penetrating heat may help open the pores, let the skin breathe better and therefore help “detox” the skin. There is also conjecture that the deep, penetrating heat that an infrared sauna produces can stimulate the production of collagen.
Beneath the skin’s surface lay this important foundational plumping agent, and some cosmetic procedures rely on similar deep heat technology to supposedly stimulate collagen production. To enhance this effect, try putting your face up to the panels, which don’t get overly hot due to the decentralized, radiant heat technology.
It is said that radiant heat has effects not only on the detoxification of the body via perspiration but also it has therapeutic effects on the mind and nerve center. This is profound when you consider how much our mind and body is connected.
Detoxification of Skin and Deep Tissue
Perspiration, or sweating, is one of our body’s main methods of ridding itself of toxins that build up in the body (which is why some health advocates say to avoid traditional "blocking" antiperspirants and use a simple natural deodorant so you can get the sweat OUT of the body as intended). If you were to measure the compounds found in the sweat, you’d not only find the sodium that is sweated out, but also a myriad of toxins that we absorb on a daily basis.
Normal heat such as the type that comes from the heater in a home or in a non-infrared sauna does not actually penetrate the tissues. So it doesn’t have the same deep tissue relaxation and healing effects as radiant heat.
Radiant or infrared heat is the kind of heat the sun emits. You’ve probably noticed the all-encompassing warmth and the incomparable comforting sensation you’ve experienced when stepping out into the natural sunlight before – that is what infrared heat is.
It is also very healing to the body and mind. This is a big reason this type of heat is also so healing and nurturing to our skin. Take a couple nights in an infrared sauna and you should notice your skin’s appearance improve.
Whether you have younger skin afflicted with acne, or more mature skin that is prone to wrinkles and fine lines or depressions, infrared saunas can help address these issues on an ongoing basis. It helps give you that “well-rested” look that only deep relaxation can achieve.