You’ve spent a good chunk of time in a cold or hot shower after sauna, sweaty and smelly. Now you’re ready to rinse off in the shower – but should you take a cold or hot shower?
Taking a plunge into cold water after a sauna session is an ancient Finnish tradition. The sudden drop in temperature stimulates blood circulation and enables your body to detoxify. The cooling effect also reduces inflammation by constricting blood vessels. The skin benefits include a healthier glow, less inflammatory skin conditions, and it may even help to reduce cellulite.
It is also a fun way to cool down after using the sauna – and it feels amazing! But don’t stay in the cold water for too long, otherwise it can shock your body and cause it to stress out. Instead, it’s a great idea to only dip in for 10 or 20 seconds, then immediately get out for health and comfort reasons.
Thermal Symphony: The Science Behind Choosing Cold or Hot Showers After Sauna
Showering with lukewarm water is also recommended after sauna use. A chilly shower could cause your body’s temperature to drop too quickly, which can be stressful for your system and potentially dangerous. Instead, warm water helps your body cool down more gradually and will still feel refreshing.
Although we all carry bacteria on our bodies (most of which are beneficial), it’s important to wash away any excess sweat and other debris that might become body odor later in the day. In addition to making you more hygienic, this can also help prevent the spread of Staphylococcus aureus, which is particularly dangerous for people who are immunocompromised or have chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes.