What to Wear in a Sauna: Dos and Don’ts

When it comes to the question of what to wear inside a sauna, there are a few guidelines to keep in mind to ensure a comfortable and safe experience. Whether you’re visiting a dry sauna, a public sauna, or a spa with sauna facilities, knowing what to wear can make all the difference in your sauna session.

For women wondering what they should wear in a sauna, the general rule is less is more. Opting for a swimsuit, a towel, or simply going nude are common choices. However, it’s important to consider the specific sauna environment and any cultural norms that may apply.

While some may question why no clothes are worn in a sauna, the reason is simple: high temperatures and moisture levels make clothing uncomfortable and can hinder the body’s ability to sweat and detoxify. It’s generally better to wear minimal clothing or a towel to allow your skin to breathe and release toxins effectively.

Proper Clothing Etiquette

When it comes to what to wear in a sauna, proper clothing etiquette is essential for a comfortable and respectful experience. Whether you’re heading to a public sauna, spa sauna, or sauna at the gym, here are some dos and don’ts to keep in mind:


  • Wear a clean towel or robe to sit on in the sauna for hygiene purposes.
  • Opt for loose-fitting and breathable clothing, such as a swimsuit or athletic wear.
  • Bring a change of clothes to wear after your sauna session.
  • Consider wearing flip-flops or shower shoes to protect your feet from the hot surfaces.
  • Follow any specific dress code rules set by the sauna facility.


  • Wear heavy clothing or multiple layers that can restrict sweat evaporation and heat release.
  • Wear perfumes, lotions, or oils that can be irritating to others in the sauna.
  • Wear jewelry or metal accessories that can get hot and cause discomfort.
  • Forget to shower before entering the sauna to keep it clean for yourself and others.
  • Stay in the sauna for too long or push yourself beyond your comfort level due to clothing choices.

Remember, the goal of a sauna session is to relax and detoxify, so wearing the right clothing can enhance your experience and ensure a positive sauna etiquette for all participants.

Comfort is Key

When it comes to what to wear in a sauna, comfort should be your top priority. Saunas are all about relaxation and detoxification, so you want to ensure that you are dressed appropriately to enjoy the experience to its fullest.

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What to wear in a dry sauna: In a dry sauna, it is common to wear nothing at all or a towel for modesty. The heat and steam can cause clothing to become uncomfortable, so many people prefer to go nude or wrap themselves in a towel.

What to bring to the sauna: It’s a good idea to bring a towel to sit on and another towel to use for wiping off sweat. You may also want to bring a bottle of water to stay hydrated during your sauna session.

Proper attire for a sauna: While some people choose to wear swimsuits or workout clothes in a public sauna, the key is to wear something that allows your skin to breathe and sweat freely. Loose-fitting clothing made of natural fibers like cotton is a good choice.

Remember, the goal of a sauna session is to relax, detoxify, and sweat out impurities. So, whether you choose to go nude, wear a towel, or opt for loose clothing, make sure that you are comfortable and able to fully enjoy the sauna experience.

Fabric Selection

When deciding what to wear for a sauna experience, fabric selection is key. Opt for breathable, lightweight materials like cotton or linen that will allow your skin to breathe and sweat freely. Avoid synthetic fabrics like polyester, as they tend to trap heat and moisture, making you feel uncomfortable.

It is generally recommended to wear minimal clothing in a sauna, so a simple cotton towel or a sarong can be a good option. Some people prefer to wear a robe or swimsuit, but make sure they are made of natural fibers for better ventilation.

Remember, shoes are not allowed in the sauna for hygiene reasons, so make sure to leave them outside before entering. Proper sauna attire involves minimal clothing to allow your body to sweat and detoxify effectively.

Whether you are heading to a dry sauna or a steam room, choosing the right fabric for your sauna wear is essential for a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Stick to natural, breathable materials for the best results.

Sauna Attire Do’s

When it comes to sauna fashion, there are some key do’s to keep in mind for a comfortable and enjoyable experience.

1. Choose the Right Attire:

  • Opt for a towel or a comfortable robe to wear inside the sauna.
  • Avoid wearing swimsuits with metal details, as they can get hot and uncomfortable.

2. Bring your essentials:

  • Bring a small towel to sit on and wipe off sweat.
  • Hydrate with a water bottle to stay cool and replenished.

Remember, the key to sauna attire is comfort and modesty. Dress in a way that allows you to relax and enjoy the benefits of the sauna without feeling self-conscious or uncomfortable.

Sauna Attire Don’ts

When it comes to what to wear in a sauna, there are certain items that should be avoided at all costs. Here are some sauna attire don’ts:

Avoid Wearing Clothes: In a sauna, wearing clothing can hinder your body’s ability to sweat and release toxins. It can also trap heat and moisture close to your skin, leading to discomfort and potential skin irritations.

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Avoid Synthetic Fabrics: Clothing made from synthetic fabrics like polyester can melt or warp in the high temperatures of a sauna. These materials can also trap heat and prevent your skin from breathing properly.

Avoid Overly Thick or Heavy Clothing: Opt for lightweight, breathable fabrics like cotton or linen instead of heavy sweaters or jackets. Thick clothing can make you feel overheated and uncomfortable in the sauna.

Avoid Jewelry: Metal jewelry can get hot in the sauna and burn your skin. It’s best to leave your jewelry at home or in a locker before entering the sauna.

Avoid Wearing Shoes: Most saunas require you to enter barefoot or in sandals. Wearing shoes can track dirt and germs into the sauna, which is not hygienic for you or others using the facility.

Avoid Wearing Wet Clothing: Wet clothing can create a steamy environment in the sauna, which can make it difficult for your body to cool down. Always enter the sauna with dry clothing.

By following these sauna attire don’ts, you can ensure a comfortable and safe sauna experience.

Hygiene is Important

Hygiene is crucial when it comes to using a sauna, as you will be sharing the space with others. Here are some dos and don’ts to ensure proper hygiene:

  • Do: Bring a clean towel to sit on in the sauna. This will help prevent the spread of germs and sweat.
  • Do: Shower before entering the sauna to remove any lotions, oils, or other substances that can be transferred to the sauna benches.
  • Do: Wear clean and dry clothes or a swimsuit while in the sauna. This will help maintain a clean environment for everyone.
  • Don’t: Wear shoes in the sauna. Bare feet are recommended to avoid bringing outdoor dirt and germs into the sauna.
  • Don’t: Use the sauna if you have any contagious skin conditions or infections.

By following these guidelines, you can help ensure a pleasant and hygienic sauna experience for yourself and others.

Be Mindful of Others

When deciding what to wear in a sauna, it’s important to consider the comfort and respect of others. Keep in mind that a sauna is a shared space where people come to relax and detoxify. Therefore, it is essential to follow proper sauna etiquette to ensure everyone’s experience is enjoyable.

One important rule to remember is to avoid wearing shoes in the sauna. Shoes can track in dirt and germs, which can disrupt the clean environment of the sauna. Additionally, wearing shoes in a sauna can be uncomfortable and can potentially damage the wooden benches and floor.

Proper sauna attire typically includes a towel or robe to sit on and wrap around yourself. Wearing a towel or robe not only provides a barrier between you and the hot bench but also helps maintain a level of modesty in the communal sauna setting.

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Another consideration is to be mindful of strong scents or perfumes that may be bothersome to others in the sauna. Opt for fragrance-free products or avoid using strong scents before entering the sauna to prevent causing discomfort to fellow sauna-goers.

In general, it’s best to wear light and breathable clothing or a towel in the sauna to allow your skin to breathe and sweat effectively. Remember, the goal of a sauna session is to relax and detoxify, so choose clothing that allows you to comfortably enjoy the experience while being considerate of others sharing the space.

Cooling Down after Sauna

After a session in the sauna, it’s important to cool down properly to help your body regulate its temperature and avoid overheating. Here are some tips on how to cool down effectively:

1. Hydrate

Drink plenty of water after your sauna session to replenish fluids lost through sweating. Hydrating is essential for your body to recover and stay healthy.

2. Take a Cool Shower

A cool shower can help lower your body temperature and refresh you after the sauna. Avoid taking an ice-cold shower right after a sauna; instead, opt for a lukewarm or cool shower.

3. Rest and Relax

Give your body some time to rest and relax after the sauna. Find a quiet place to sit or lie down, close your eyes, and focus on deep breathing to let your body cool down naturally.

4. Change into Comfortable Clothing

After cooling down, change into loose-fitting, comfortable clothes to allow your body to continue releasing heat. Avoid tight or restrictive clothing that could impede your body’s natural cooling process.

By following these cooling down tips after a sauna session, you can enhance the benefits of the experience and promote overall well-being.



Can I wear my swimsuit in a sauna?

It is not recommended to wear a swimsuit in a sauna as the fabric can retain heat and moisture, which may cause discomfort and potentially lead to skin irritation. It is best to go nude or wear a towel.

Should I wear jewelry in a sauna?

It is best to avoid wearing jewelry in a sauna as the heat can cause metal to heat up and potentially burn your skin. Additionally, jewelry can get in the way and be uncomfortable during your sauna session.

What type of footwear should I wear in a sauna?

It is recommended to go barefoot in a sauna to allow your feet to breathe and sweat freely. If you prefer to wear something on your feet for hygiene reasons, opt for clean and lightweight flip-flops or slippers.

Can I bring my phone in the sauna?

It is not recommended to bring electronic devices like phones into a sauna as the heat and steam can damage the device. Additionally, the sauna is a place for relaxation and detoxification, so it’s best to disconnect from technology during your session.

Should I wear makeup in a sauna?

Avoid wearing makeup in a sauna as it can clog pores and prevent your skin from effectively sweating out toxins. It’s best to go makeup-free and allow your skin to breathe and detoxify during your sauna session.

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