The health and wellness industry has exploded recently, with countless ways to care for yourself emerging and more coming out each month. Surely you’ve heard of more conventional ways to boost your vitality, including massage guns, working out at home and taking daily multivitamins. Then there are less conventional methods, like oil pulling, plunging in an ice bath and meditation using adult coloring books. These methods come with a proverbial (and legal) grain of salt — the more “alternative” the method, the higher the likelihood that the evidence backing its credibility is anecdotal rather than concrete. However, it doesn’t mean a method doesn’t actually help people or isn’t worth trying in your own life.
One of our favorite recent additions to the library of new-age wellness techniques? Sweating your face off in an infrared blanket.
What Are Infrared Blankets?
Infrared blankets are essentially infrared saunas in blanket form. Instead of a room where infrared lights heat the space and your body through infrared rays, the blanket wraps around your body like a sleeping bag and hits you with heat from every angle.
There are a variety of infrared blankets available on the market, but they all offer essentially the same thing — a wide temperature range with many degrees to choose from. For most, the range sits at 60-160 degrees Fahrenheit, making them not as hot as regular saunas can get and great for beginners.
Dr. Brent A. Bauer, M.D. with the Mayo Clinic, explains, “A traditional sauna uses heat to warm the air, which warms your body. An infrared sauna heats your body directly without warming the air around you.”
He continues that, “The appeal of saunas in general is they cause reactions similar to those elicited by moderate exercise, such as vigorous sweating and increased heart rate.”
“An infrared sauna produces these results at lower temperatures than does a regular sauna, which makes it accessible to people who can’t tolerate the heat of a conventional sauna.”
What Are the Benefits of Infrared Blankets?
Since there’s very little written about infrared blankets specifically, for the purposes of this article, we’re going to list some proposed benefits of infrared saunas, which have a very similar design and goal.
Some supposed benefits of infrared saunas include detoxing your body, improving your mood, stimulating blood flow and soothing body aches. Almost none of these claims are backed up by evidence, so they can’t be touted as a guaranteed effect when purchasing one of these machines.
“Several studies have looked at using infrared saunas in the treatment of chronic health problems, such as high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, headache, type 2 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis, and found some evidence of benefit. However, larger and more-rigorous studies are needed to confirm these results,” Dr. Bauer notes.
We rounded up our favorite infrared blankets in 2022, a convenient, compact, portable way to receive similar benefits to an infrared sauna at home.
1. HigherDOSE Infrared Sauna Blanket V3
This Infrared Sauna Blanket V3 is designed to detoxify the body, boost mood, relax the mind and promote glowing skin through sweating. It’s got eight different heat levels to choose from and heats up in about 10 minutes flat. It’s made to be used every day if that works for your individual body, and the water-resistant polyurethane it’s made of is easy to clean. The blanket can easily be folded to fit under a bed, in a closet or even in a suitcase, and the time and temperature of your session can easily be augmented on the controller.
2. Sun Home Infrared Sauna Blanket
BEST TEMPERATURE CONTROL
If you want to try the purported benefits of infrared blankets but aren’t sure if you can handle the heat, Sun Home’s blanket ranges between 95 degrees and 167 degrees, making it perfect for beginners or those who want more control over their temperature. Set it for 30 to 60 minutes, depending on how much relief and relaxation you need. We also like how the blanket comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee and a one-year warranty, which may give some buyers extra peace of mind.
3. REVIIV Far Infrared Sauna Blanket
While this is one of the best at-home sauna blankets, it’s also portable thanks to the carry bag it comes in, so you can reap those infrared benefits even on the road. The blanket has five layers of infrared heating fabric to keep you warm and snug during the recommended 30-minute session. Depending on what temperature you set it to, it can reportedly burn up to 600 calories per sitting.
4. MiHigh Infrared Sauna Blanket
One of the best-infrared sauna blankets to come out is the MiHigh. Yes, it has a higher price point than other blankets on this list. But it also comes with a 30-day risk-free trial. The foldable blanket is designed to envelop your skin and distribute heat more evenly and claims to promote blood flow and circulation while alleviating aches and pains. Some MMA fighters, like Sophie Magana and Michael Chiesa, endorse this blanket, and if anyone knows about sore muscles, it’s MMA athletes.
5. VANELL Infrared Sauna Blanket
BEST ARMLESS OPTION
This more affordable infrared sauna blanket is available on Amazon and comes with 75 inches of length that can accommodate different-sized individuals. The temperature range is 86-176 degrees Fahrenheit, you can set timed sessions between 15-60 minutes, and there are two different temperature control zones you can program. The outside is made of a durable oxford material designed to be lighter, softer and anti-odor, while the inside is made of waterproof PVC.
6. Fencia Digital Heat Sauna Blanet
This sauna blanket also uses multiple layers of infrared and warming technology to heat your body and activate your sweat glands for therapeutic effects. It has a waterproof layer for keeping you safe and the blanket as clean as possible, as well as two openings for your hands so you can read or watch videos during your sauna session. It has an easy-to-use control box and a remote control for simple operation. There’s a temperature control layer for monitoring heat in case the temperature reaches dangerous levels.
7. Heat Healer Infrared Sauna Blanket
BUILT FOR MEDITATION
This infrared sauna blanket from the brand Heat Healer is made for mindful rest and rejuvenation with maximum infrared emissivity, EMF-blocking technology and all non-toxic materials. It’s designed to comfortably fit someone up to 6’6″ tall with a total of 75 inches in length and comes with a convenient travel bag for easy transport. It’s made with a combination of medical-grade PVC, faraday shielding for blocking out harmful rays and premium amide fabric that’s lightweight and durable. It’s made for 60-minute sessions and makes the benefits of a sauna accessible at home.