How Infrared Sauna Can Improve Your Skin

Infrared Saunas have become one of the most popular health and wellness tools over the last few years. Infrared saunas claim to improve skin health, reduce inflammation, improve recovery, and even lower your resting heart rate. I’ve used an infrared sauna for several years and can confirm that all of these claims were true for me. The sauna’s deep heat makes you naturally sweat, which is one of the best ways to clean out your pores. I also noticed a significant reduction in minor aches and pains.

In addition to sauna use, there are now dozens of handheld light therapy lamps to make infrared light exposure available to anyone.

This article will explain my results from using a sauna and the science behind how infrared light improves your skin.

What is Infrared Light?

Infrared light refers to a form of electromagnetic radiation that is invisible to the human eye but can be felt as heat. This type of radiation usually has longer wavelengths than visible light, including near, middle, and far-infrared.

Unlike most forms of radiation, infrared light wavelengths are safe for human exposure. Infrared lights typically penetrate the skin up to one and a half inches to warm the body and open up blood vessels through vasodilation.

An infrared sauna cleanses the skin through two separate mechanisms: heat and infrared light. Just sitting in a hot room will open up your pores and naturally clean your pores through sweating. However, a sauna that also uses infrared light can help reduce inflammation and improve collagen production.

When the skin absorbs radiant heat, the blood vessels expand, which increases blood circulation. As a result, the blood carries away metabolic wastes and delivers more nutrients and oxygen to the skin.

If you are still wondering, “is infrared sauna good for skin?” here are five ways your skin can benefit from it:  

How Infrared Saunas Improve Acne

Acne is a skin irritation that often makes the skin feel sore and sometimes unsightly. While numerous low-level light skin therapies exist to improve skin health, many people have begun using infrared saunas to help acne.

The good news is that infrared saunas offer a non-invasive method for improving acne-related problems. They usually allow users to sweat out toxins and reduce inflammation through red light therapy at the same time.

No matter your preferences, a slight increase in radiant heat softens the skin, opens up skin pores, and triggers sweating. Opening up your pores and sweating is the best natural way to remove dead skin cells and dirt.

Additionally, sauna exposure enables the sebaceous glands to restore the skin and help improve acne fully. Using an infrared sauna is also a great way to relax the muscles and reduce inflammation. 

Infrared Saunas For Wrinkles

Skin wrinkles often occur with aging, but an infrared sauna can help prevent them. When the radiant heat in the sauna penetrates deep into your skin, it increases circulation and cellular activity in your skin. This accelerates the removal of metabolic wastes and supplies your body with oxygen more efficiently. In other words, infrared saunas help to rejuvenate the skin.

Moreover, it also triggers sweating, which acts as a natural anti-aging because it helps remove toxins and dirt from the skin and improve skin tone. It mainly unclogs the pores and minimizes skin breakouts, resulting in smoother, youthful skin.

According to a 2006 research study, infrared saunas significantly help accelerate the production of elastin and collagen compounds. This increase in fibroblast material helps plump up and tighten the skin, alleviating wrinkles and pimples in stretch marks.

Infrared Saunas For Skin Detoxification

Infrared saunas often use infrared heaters to heat the body directly, meaning that they are more efficient than contemporary saunas that mainly heat the surrounding air. The skin then soaks up the radiant heat, triggering a deeper level of infrared sauna skin detoxification.

Ideally, these saunas often heighten body temperatures and cause sweating, which helps to flush out toxins, metabolic wastes, chemicals, debris, heavy metals, and radioactive particles. This kind of induced sweating helps to cleanse the skin, relieve existing skin conditions, prevent future skin problems, and increase skin vitality.

Infrared Saunas For Wound Healing

Infrared sauna wound healing works. Allow me to explain.

The skin mainly works to protect and regulate the body from harmful elements. But this function is often impaired when the skin breaks up, exposing us to bacteria and infections. A slight break of the skin is what causes cuts.

While there are many ways to care for wounded skin, infrared saunas help speed up wound healing processes. The absorbed infrared light often accelerates mitochondrial potential, which helps stimulate cell regeneration and tissue growth.

Although different infrared light spectra have unique properties, studies show that near-infrared radiations are best for healing wounds. If you do not have access to an infrared sauna, you can still buy an infrared light therapy wand to give your skin the benefits of infrared light. 

Infrared Saunas For Improving Your Immune System

As I’ve previously stated, infrared saunas have numerous benefits, but you might not know they are an effective passive immune booster. 

Infrared saunas help strengthen immune systems is by triggering hormesis, a type of stress that boosts body health. Ideally, infrared saunas often generate low-level oxidative and heat stressors that stimulate skin antioxidants.

From a biological perspective, the overall exposure to small amounts of heat stressors stimulates the production of virus-fighting heat-shock proteins. This increase essentially helps boost immunity and reduce your chances of getting sick.

Otherwise, the general use of infrared saunas often induces artificial fever. This usually mimics the natural defense system and stimulates the production of more white blood cells to help fight the infection. As a result, this enhances the immune system, significantly reducing the typical symptoms of the flu or common cold.


An infrared sauna is an excellent non-invasive method for taking care of your skin. It offers numerous health benefits and is entirely safe for all skin types. It is always best to combine sauna with post-skin care methods for the best results. However, you should note that overusing infrared therapy can cause dehydration and overheating. If you plan to use a sauna, you should prepare by drinking lots of water. So, plan to consult your epidemiologist first before using one.

Originally Published: December 17, 2021

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I’ve helped over 2,500 people clear their acne naturally. If you cannot easily find an answer to your question on the website, please reach out to me by email ([email protected]) or send me a message on Instagram or Twitter. I will reply within 24 hours.

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sam wood is GoodGlow's Chief Editor
Analyzed by Sam Wood
Hi I’m Sam Wood. I’m the chief editor, lead acne expert, and health coach behind GoodGlow. I’m also an author of one of the top selling acne books on Amazon, a husband, father of two, and a pretty good cook!

I’m so glad you found GoodGlow and hope the information I have spent the last 10 years cultivating will help you clear your skin and improve your overall health.

I began experiencing acne breakotus as a sophomore in high school, but unlike most of my friends, my acne actually got worse as I got into my 20s. I exercised regularly, ate healthy (or so I thought) and spent hundreds of dollars a month on high end skincare products and supplements to help clear my skin. Despite these measures my acne breakouts and scarring only got worse as the years wore on.

This greatly wore on my self confidence and mental health. Simple things like taking pictures or going out with a large group made me feel self conscious. So I avoided these situations whenever I could help it.

As a last ditch effort I decided to try an extremely restrictive diet recommended by a close friend with an autoimmune disease. After following this diet for about two months my skin started to clear for the first time in over 8 years. The good news is that this restrictive diet is not actually necessary for 99% of people to permanently clear their skin, and over the course of a few months I was able to add back about 90% of my “normal diet”.

After clearing my skin I spent the next 4 years self experimenting on myself with different diets, supplements, skincare products to try and find a pattern for what was triggering my acne breakouts. I even tried different meditation, ice baths, and accupuncture to try and isolate the root cause of the breakouts.

In the end I realized that an extremely restrictive diet was not necessary for clear skin. The most important thing to do is to avoid inflammatory foods in your diet. Some common examples of this are fried foods, alcohol, sugar, and dairy.

Most impoirtantly I stopped reading trendy websites for skincare advice and began reading medical journals authored by dermatologists and nutritionists. Although the information in the articles was great the information was not easily understandable to most readers (including me). I spent hours dissecting individual posts and looking up terms I did not understand. Over the next 6 months I gradually began to understand these journals and started self experiemting some of the research on myself.

After experiencing quite a bit of success personally, I started sharing my research on forums and with close friends struggling with acne. When I shared the research it was in easy to understand, plain English. Everyone I talked to loved what I had to say and kept asking more and more questions. So I decided to start a blog so I could just send someone a link when they asked a question instead of rewriting something I had sent 100 times before 😅

While the same directional principles apply to everyone, acne is very personal and should be treated on an individual basis. That’s ultimately why I created GoodGlow. To help everyone reverse engineer the root cause of their acne and clear their skin permanently.

To date I’ve helped over 2,500 people clear their skin using a natural, holistic approach. If you are unable to find an answer to your question in any of the articles my team has written please reach out and I will do my best to guide you to the proper information and resources so you can make a thoughtful, informed decision. Read more of Sam's articles.

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