Sauna Etiquette

The Unwritten Rules of Sauna Etiquette: Do's and Don'ts

This article is your go-to guide for sauna etiquette. It covers the essentials and the finer details of using public saunas. Keep reading to ensure every sauna visit is pleasant and considerate for everyone involved!

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Saunas are all about finding tranquility, a place to unwind and destress. However, to truly enjoy this escape, it's vital to understand the unwritten rules of sauna etiquette. These subtle guidelines highlight the importance of being considerate to others and maintaining a quiet atmosphere. This way, everyone can relax in peace. But if you're new to the sauna scene, you might not be aware of these unspoken rules, which could unknowingly disrupt the peaceful vibe for others.

This article is your go-to guide for sauna etiquette. It covers the essentials and the finer details of using public saunas. Keep reading to ensure every sauna visit is pleasant and considerate for everyone involved!


The Sauna Experience by Understanding Sauna Etiquette

A sauna is a specialized space designed to provide both dry and wet heat experiences. The temperature in these rooms usually ranges from 70°C to 100°C (158°F to 212°F). Finnish saunas are usually dry with about 10-20% humidity. In contrast, Turkish saunas are more humid.

Saunas have been around for a very long time and are still popular today for relaxing and their potential health perks. These benefits can include alleviating stress, easing bodily pain, and enhancing heart health. 


The Do's

Knowing how to act in a sauna makes the experience better for everyone. This guide covers important rules like what to wear, how to act, and ways to stay safe.

1. Properly Prepare Before Entering the Sauna

  • Showering: Taking a shower before entering the sauna removes dirt and sweat, ensuring you and others can enjoy a clean environment.
  • Hydration: Saunas dehydrate because of the heat. So, make sure to drink water before, while you're in, and after the sauna to stay safe and feel good.
  • Appropriate Clothing:  In a sauna, most people wear light swimsuits or sauna-specific clothes.

2. Respect Personal Space

Saunas can become busy, making it crucial to be mindful of personal boundaries. Keep about an arm's length away from others in the sauna to stay relaxed. If it's too crowded, it's best to wait outside or come back when it's less busy.

3. Use a Towel or Seat Cover

To uphold cleanliness and contribute to a hygienic environment, always sit on a towel or a designated seat cover. For example, Putting a towel on the bench before sitting helps soak up sweat and keeps a clean space between you and the seat, making it comfortable for both you and others later on.

4. Quiet and Mindful Behavior

The sauna is a place for peace and quiet, making it essential to keep conversations to a minimum and at a low volume. For instance, if you must communicate, try to use whispers or non-verbal cues like nodding to maintain the room's tranquil ambiance. This way, you ensure the atmosphere remains peaceful for everyone present.

5. Properly Exit the Sauna

As you leave the sauna, make sure the door is closed gently and securely behind you. For instance, if the door has a slow-closing hinge, avoid pushing or pulling it abruptly. Doing this keeps the sauna warm and makes sure the next person gets consistent heat too.


The Don'ts

For a good sauna experience for everyone, it's important to know both what to do and what not to do. By avoiding certain behaviors, you can help create a harmonious environment.  Here's what you need to know:

1. No Loud Conversations or Disruptive Behavior

Loud conversations and disruptive actions can ruin the tranquil atmosphere of a sauna. For example, don't talk or laugh loudly. If you need to chat, whisper so it stays quiet for everyone.

2. No Excessive Nudity

While some saunas permit nudity, it's important to gauge the setting and cultural norms. In places like Finnish saunas, nudity is normal. But in public or mixed-gender areas, it's better to wear a swimsuit or towel to keep everyone comfortable.

3. Avoid Overuse of Sauna Fragrances or Oils

Using fragrances or oils can add to your personal sauna experience, but they can be overpowering for others. For instance, you might like a few drops of eucalyptus oil, but it could be too much or bother someone else in the room. Always use scents sparingly and consider the preferences of others.

4. Don't Stay Too Long

Excessive time in the sauna can be unhealthy and also limits availability for others. For example, while it might feel good to bask in the heat, remaining inside for more than the recommended 15-20 minutes could lead to dehydration or other health risks. It's advisable to step out, cool down, and allow others the opportunity to enjoy the sauna as well.

5. No Electronic Devices

Don't bring phones or tablets into the sauna. The noise and light can bother others. Plus, the sauna's heat can damage your devices. It's best to leave them outside and immerse yourself in the calm.

It's important to follow sauna rules to keep it peaceful and respectful. This means talking quietly, giving others space, and sticking to time limits. Being thoughtful makes the sauna better for everyone.


Sauna Etiquette and Safety

Importance of Safety in the Sauna

Prioritizing safety is essential when in a sauna. Too much heat can make you dehydrated or even cause serious issues like heat exhaustion. If you feel dizziness, nausea, or general discomfort, leave the sauna right away.

The Role of Sauna Attendants or Staff

Sauna attendants play a key role in making the sauna experience safe and enjoyable. They check the equipment to make sure it's working, clean up regularly, and guide users on how to use the sauna correctly. It's important to follow their advice and rules to ensure everyone's safety and comfort.

Addressing Potential Health Concerns

Before using a sauna, check with a doctor, especially if you're pregnant or have heart problems. People with high blood pressure or heart issues should get advice first. If you have these concerns, stay in the sauna for only five minutes and cool down slowly after.



In learning about sauna rules, you found out how to choose the right clothes, keep the peace, and behave in public saunas. These tips help everyone enjoy a good sauna session. They clear up confusion people might have in shared sauna spaces.

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