What Is a Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna and What Makes It Unique

What Is a Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna?


In 1996, the first flip phone was released by Motorola.

Gone were the days when people had to walk around with a brick-sized phone to communicate with their loved ones.

As you can imagine, the compact nature of the phone and the convenient phone memory that let you save a number and call and text it at any time, made the flip phone extremely popular.

What an exciting time to be alive! Back then, they couldn't have imagined it getting any better or so they thought.

Fast forward a couple of decades and now people have access to a small yet powerful hand-held computer—the smartphone.

It unlocked a treasure chest of possibilities that were once unimaginable, such as accessing the internet, communicating with people on the other side of the world, taking quality pictures, and so much more.

Much like the classic flip phone, traditional saunas have been around for ages, offering relaxation and detoxification benefits by heating the air around you.

However, full spectrum saunas are like the modern smartphone of saunas, equipped with unique features developed by experts to help you unlock a new universe of infrared sauna benefits.

They harness the combined powers of near, mid, and infrared wavelengths to bring you the best of all worlds and directly heat your body from the inside out.

Today, we’re going to delve into each of these wavelengths in further detail, describing the amazing heat therapy benefits they can afford you. We’ll also discuss:

  • The intriguing nature of infrared wavelengths and their sister frequencies on the electromagnetic spectrum
  • How infrared technology gives you radiant and glowing skin by increasing the production of a vital protein in your body
  • The remarkable health impacts of near, mid, and far infrared waves on your body and the magic that happens when they’re combined

First things first, let’s discuss the fundamentals of infrared radiation to help you grasp why full spectrum infrared saunas are so special.

1 - The Inner Workings of a Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna’s Radiation

Golden Designs Reserve 3 Person Near Zero EMF Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna, GDI-8030-02

To truly appreciate what makes a full spectrum sauna so special, it’s crucial that you understand the fundamental science behind this groundbreaking wellness innovation.

An electromagnetic spectrum is a range of electromagnetic waves characterized by different wavelengths and frequencies, each with unique use cases.

Think of this spectrum as a huge rainbow with colors of varying strengths and sizes.

Some hues are strong and vivid, while others are calm and mellow.

At one end of this rainbow, where colors are intense, we have X-rays and gamma rays that are used for peering inside our bodies and exploring the depths of space.

On the opposite end, where tranquility reigns, we find radio waves, akin to friendly whispers conveying the melodious voice of your favorite singer through the radio.

Nestled in the heart of this rainbow, between the powerful X-rays and the gentler radio waves, lies the perfectly balanced infrared radiation. It’s neither too strong nor too weak. In the famous words of the stunning Goldilocks, “It's just right.”

However, you’re no stranger to infrared radiation; in fact, you experience it on a daily basis.

You see, the sun emits two types of light: visible light that’s responsible for the night and day cycle, and infrared light which wraps us in its warm and cozy embrace on clear days.

Full spectrum infrared saunas harness this warmth to help our bodies relax and reap an extensive list of wellness benefits.

In contrast, traditional saunas heat the air directly using methods, such as splashing water on hot rocks, with the hot air then warming your body through conduction and convection.

It’s harder to control the intensity of heat produced by traditional saunas especially when compared to full spectrum infrared saunas which allow you the flexibility to set the temperature to your preference.

2 - Classifications of Full Spectrum Infrared Saunas

In the same way that infrared radiation is part of a family of electromagnetic wavelengths and frequencies, it’s also a parent to three types of infrared light: near, mid, and far.

Infrared saunas that utilize these three wavelengths are referred to as full spectrum infrared saunas. Each infrared spectrum variation has specific characteristics that cater to a myriad of infrared advantages.

Let’s delve into each wavelength in more detail.

Near Infrared

After a long day at work, the only thing you want to do is go home, take a long and relaxing shower, then snuggle on your couch as you watch your favorite show.

This is perfectly understandable because your home is your very own personal sanctuary.

Now, imagine adding to this experience by carving out a little slice of heaven inside your home for a near-infrared sauna that’ll make coming back home ten times better.

A near infrared sauna session will feel like a balm that cleanses away all the negative energy that comes from the day-to-day chaos of our lives.

Golden Designs Reserve 3 Person Near Zero EMF Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna GDI-8035-02

A 20-minute session will leave you feeling deeply relaxed, cleansed, and invigorated. They feel like this because when near infrared waves pierce your skin they do something magical to your cells.

You see, near infrared wavelengths are the shortest within the spectrum, allowing them to penetrate only the outermost layer of your skin, known as the epidermis.

As these rays touch your skin, they dive directly into your cells, seeking out the mitochondria—tiny powerhouses inside your cells that are responsible for energy production.

Additionally, near infrared light has a superpower called photobiomodulation which empowers the mitochondria within your cells to generate more energy making your cells super-energized. This energy boost is responsible for:

  • Improved mood and well-being: According to a study conducted by PubMed, photobiomodulation significantly improves our mood and overall well-being.
    Picture yourself and your loved ones cozying up for a near infrared sauna session after a family day that involved lots of fun outdoor activities, such as swimming, hiking, and bike riding.
    Incorporating near infrared sauna sessions into your wellness routine helps all of you stay mentally and emotionally balanced, which, in turn, leads to the formation of stronger bonds and relationships.
  • Skin health and rejuvenation: Photobiomodulation leads to increased collagen production which is the protein responsible for your skin’s elasticity and suppleness.
    If looking younger and improving your skin complexion is right up your alley, regular near infrared sauna sessions will naturally increase your collagen production, resulting in reduced wrinkles, fine lines, and a more even skin tone.
  • Wound healing: According to a study conducted by Wiley Online Library, near infrared light is phenomenally effective when it comes to non-invasive and drug-free wound healing.
    Photobiomodulation therapy has shown positive results when it comes to helping the body heal itself, reducing pain, and decreasing inflammation.
    Unfortunately, accidents happen and a near infrared sauna can serve as a cost-effective way to help people with chronic wounds heal faster in the comfort of their homes.

The intensity of these effects depends on how much near infrared light you get and how long you're exposed to it.

Our Golden Designs Reserve 3 Person Near Zero EMF Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna GDI-8035-02 is equipped with 5 full spectrum near infrared red heat emitters that guarantee you and your loved ones get a healthy dose of this therapeutic heat for years to come.

Mid Infrared

Imagine going for an invigorating hike that connects you to mother nature and leaves you with a deep-rooted feeling of tranquility and peace.

The trees, the chirping birds, and the gentle caress of the sun are your silent companions as you conquer your hiking trail, breathing in the clean, crisp air.

When you reach home, your blood is coursing with endorphins and there’s a distant soreness tickling your muscles, a token of what you’ve achieved that day. You know just what you need.

A mid-infrared sauna session that’ll soothe and massage your muscles from within.

Mid-infrared waves are longer than near-infrared light but shorter than far infrared waves. They penetrate beyond the epidermis, reaching deep into your body’s soft tissue—the muscles and joints where you often experience discomfort after a workout.

As mid infrared waves infiltrate your body, they help expand your blood vessels and improve your circulation.

This process is akin to opening up floodgates of oxygen and nutrients which immediately rush to the areas of your body that are inflamed and in need of healing.

Consequently, you’ll experience a decrease in inflammation which translates to less swelling and discomfort in your muscles and joints.

This means that your hike won’t interfere with your fitness regimen as you’ll be able to help your muscles quickly recover after a rejuvenating mid infrared sauna session in the comfort of your own home.

Bonus Benefit: Mid-infrared saunas is they can help you shed some extra pounds.

In fact, an interesting study conducted by the Journal of Physical Therapy Science on obese female subjects who wore a mid infrared light belt around their abdomens while treadmill walking proves this to be true.

The study revealed that the application of mid infrared light for weight loss during exercise can yield significant benefits for individuals looking to lose weight and reduce abdominal fat.

The implications of this study are that mid infrared saunas are a valuable addition to exercise routines for people looking for a non-invasive addition to their weight loss journey.

Far Infrared

Golden Designs Reserve 1 Person Near Zero EMF Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna, GDI-8010-02

While traditional saunas heat the air around you, which then warms your body, far infrared saunas emit heat that penetrates your body’s core, triggering a range of physiological responses.

Far infrared wavelengths represent the longest variations of the infrared spectrum.

These deep-reaching waves elevate your body temperature and initiate your body's natural cooling mechanism: sweating.

Note: While it might not look or feel the best, sweating is actually a really good thing. It serves as your body's natural detoxification method, aiding in the removal of toxins, heavy metals, and other waste products through your skin.

Far infrared waves are particularly good at accelerating this process because of their ability to penetrate deeply into your body, heating you from the inside out. Now, let’s delve into other benefits of far infrared light:

  • Increased metabolism and caloric burn: When you spend more than 20 minutes in a far infrared sauna, your body experiences deep heat stress. The waves reach far into your body’s core, generating heat.
    Deep heat stress naturally increases your metabolic rate, which involves breaking down food to energy and repairing tissues.
    Increased metabolism means your body requires more energy to maintain normal functions, resulting in the burning of more calories to produce energy in response to the heat.
  • Cardiovascular health: When you sit down for a far infrared sauna session, your body responds to the heat by elevating your heart rate. Studies have compared this increased heart rate to the one experienced during a brisk walk.
    Additionally, far infrared waves lead to an uptick in the production of nitric oxide, a molecule that’s crucial for the health of your blood vessels.
    Nitric oxide relaxes your arteries, essentially improving your blood circulation, and promoting more efficient delivery of nutrients and oxygen to injured tissues.
  • Soothing and gentle heat: Traditional saunas can get extremely hot with temperatures as high as 180°F (80°C) or more.
    While some people relish this intense heat, others find it uncomfortable and can only endure short sessions.
    On the other hand, far infrared saunas operate at lower temperatures, producing heat that feels like a warm embrace making it easier to have longer and more comfortable sessions.
    An extended sauna session means you have more time to absorb the therapeutic benefits of an infrared sauna.

Our Golden Designs Reserve 1 Person Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna uses 5 Carbon PureTech Near Zero EMF Heater Emitters to produce far infrared wavelengths.

Carbon heating panels are favored by leading sauna retailers due to their capability to evenly distribute heat across the entire sauna, completely eliminating hotspots.

With the five carbon heating elements in this full spectrum infrared sauna, you’ll always unwind in a sauna session with consistent and even warmth distribution, allowing relaxation of every part of your body, mind, and spirit.

The table below showcases the diverse spectrum of infrared saunas, detailing their distinct heat sources, temperature ranges, and the unique wellness benefits they offer.

Type Heat Source Temperature Range Unique Benefits
Full Speactrum Infrared heaters 100°F - 150°F Detoxification, Pain Relief
Near Infrared Near-infrared lamps 100°F - 150°F Skin Rejuvenation, Wound Healing
Far Infrared Far-infrared panels 100°F - 150°F Relaxation, Improved Circulation

3 - Full Spectrum Infrared Saunas: The Best of All Worlds

Golden Designs Reserve 1-2 Person Near Zero EMF Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna, GDI-8020-02

One of the best aspects of living in the 21st Century is the ability of scientists to successfully combine a variety of select features to create a premium end product that’s 10 times better than traditional versions.

Case in point: full spectrum infrared saunas. They combine all the wavelengths on the infrared spectrum to deliver a powerful synergy of wellness benefits that traditional saunas can’t match.

To illustrate this, let's consider a hypothetical situation involving two athletes, Bolt and Lisa, who have been pushing their limits in the gym to prepare for an important tournament.

Their coach recommends supplementing their workouts with sauna sessions.

Bolt opts for a traditional sauna, while Lisa uses the Golden Designs Reserve 1 Person Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna.

After a grueling workout, Bolt enters the traditional sauna and is embraced by a wave of soothing dry heat that creates a tranquil oasis where his muscles unwind as the tension is melted away by the warmth.

The heat gradually seeps into his skin from the surrounding air as he sinks further into a state of serenity covered in beads of sweat. However, Bolt occasionally finds it challenging to stay in the sauna for extended periods, as the intense heat can become overwhelming.

Lisa on the other hand can’t get enough of the Golden Designs Reserve 1 Person Infrared Sauna.

After an invigorating yet exhausting workout, the full spectrum infrared sauna elevates her post-workout routine to a whole new level.

The radiation from the near infrared waves leaves her skin feeling rejuvenated and refreshed. After using the sauna for a few weeks, she keeps receiving compliments from her friends on how supple and radiant her skin looks.

Lisa also observes that her muscles recover more swiftly after each infrared sauna session, enabling her to continually push her limits without experiencing excessive soreness.

The mid infrared wavelengths instantly melt her soreness away like targeted beams of healing energy, soothing her muscles and allowing her to recover faster.

But, it doesn’t stop there. Lisa discovers that her endurance has significantly improved, allowing her to engage in longer cardio sessions, such as treadmill running, with enhanced efficiency.

Far infrared wavelengths have accustomed Lisa’s body to improved blood circulation so nutrients and oxygen are delivered to her body more efficiently.

Consequently, she experiences increased energy levels and a healthier heart, further enhancing her gym performance.

As a delightful bonus, the Golden Designs Reserve 1 Person Infrared Sauna boasts an in-built Bluetooth speaker that Lisa connects to her phone.

She listens to her favorite band or podcast playing as she immerses herself in the soothing heat.

Additionally, nestled within its beautiful reforested Canadian hemlock wooden walls are oversized chromotherapy lights that envelop her in a spectrum of tranquil colors which deepen her mind, body, and spirit connection.

"Every other day I thoroughly enjoy the comfort cabin with the fun “light show”. Go ahead and order one … enjoy." - Case Breeuwsma, Verified Buyer

Frequently Asked Questions

Are full-spectrum infrared saunas safe to use?

Yes, they are completely safe, especially when they have low EMF emissions. All the full spectrum saunas in the Golden Designs Reserve range are designed to have near zero EMF levels and are compliant with the EMF guidelines set by the Environmental Protection Agency.

How does the heat in a full-spectrum infrared sauna compare to traditional saunas?

The heat in a full-spectrum infrared sauna is often described as more comfortable and tolerable in comparison to traditional saunas.

This is because full-spectrum infrared saunas directly heat your body keeping the surrounding air cool.

In contrast, traditional saunas heat the air first, and then your body warms up through convection or conduction.

How often and for how long should I use a full spectrum infrared sauna?

The frequency and duration of sauna sessions can vary depending on individual health goals and tolerance levels.

As a general guideline, starting with 15 to 30-minute sessions a few times a week is recommended. It's important to listen to your body and gradually increase your session duration as you become more accustomed to the heat.

Illuminate Your Health by Unlocking the Full Spectrum Advantage

Full-spectrum infrared saunas offer a multitude of infrared benefits that will leave your skin radiant, enhance muscle recovery, and boost your metabolism and heart health.

These saunas harness the combined powers of near, mid, and far infrared wavelengths to deliver holistic wellness that extends beyond your sauna walls.

At Sun Valley Saunas, we make it a point to only bring you the latest in cutting-edge sauna technology from the industry’s leading sauna retailers, including Golden Designs. Our mission is to help you experience wellness like never before.

Learn about the benefits of using a sauna in the video below

As a small, family-owned business based in the lovely ski town of Sun Valley, Idaho, we pride ourselves on offering the best sauna prices on the market and exemplary customer services to ensure all your needs are met.

Did You Know: We offer a convenient payment plan with Affirm at 0% APR, meaning you won’t have to pay any interest to own your personal full spectrum infrared sanctuary.

Contact us today, and let us guide you toward a new era of wellness.

"…Sun Valley Saunas was very easy to work with. Our sauna arrived quickly and is very good quality." James S, Verified Buyer

Wes McMahon

Wes McMahon, is the founder of Sun Valley Saunas and a seasoned ski town sauna enthusiast. In early 2021, Wes transitioned from being an attorney and sauna aficionado in Sun Valley, Idaho, to founding Sun Valley Saunas. His deep appreciation for the Finnish sauna tradition has helped him understand and select high-quality, hand-built saunas for customers throughout North America. Combined with his understanding of the therapeutic and communal benefits of sauna culture, he advocates for the wellness practices that saunas can bring to your overall health. Got questions? Get in touch by calling 1-855-963-5665 or

Important: The information provided in our articles about saunas and related topics is intended for general informational and educational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always consult your healthcare practitioner before using saunas, especially if you have pre-existing health conditions or are pregnant. Individual health needs vary, and what benefits one person may not be suitable for another.


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