Anyone who's ever had a steam bath can tell you: they're amazing. Rest, relaxation, revitalization... all made possible through the tiny miracle of a phase change. If you're thinking you can get all those things from your regular shower - using plain old liquid water - well, you can. It's just that with steam, it's much, much better.
Until recently, steam bathing has been a rather public affair. Gyms, spas, health clubs, country clubs, and other clubs were the only places one could have access to a quality steam experience. While that does provide the opportunity for some unique and rewarding social interactions, it can easily descend into awkwardness making it difficult to get the most out of your steam experience. Now that cost isn't so prohibitive, the steam room has moved into the home, and your privacy, comfort, and dignity can remain completely intact!
Physical Benefits of Steam
Why do health spas follow in the tradition of steam baths? For centuries, steam has been recognized for its ability to purify and detoxify both the skin and body. Many people have found their overall health improve through the regular use of steam therapy. The detoxification caused by eliminating impurities through the skin's pores often results in the improvement of seemingly unrelated ailments. Used for centuries the world over, steam offers a host of benefits that just can't be matched by any other means of bathing:
- Muscles become highly relaxed, providing significant relief from soreness and exhaustion - especially beneficial after working out.
- Effective, natural, drug-free relief from arthritis and joint pain.
- The high heat of a steam bath stimulates the cardiovascular system to expand blood vessels, increase blood flow, and enhance circulation - enabling the blood stream to carry greater amounts of nutrients to the skin.
- Steam is incredibly effective at opening nasal passages, easing inflammation, and loosening mucus in bronchial tubes. This can temporarily alleviate allergy symptoms and other respiratory issues.
- Pores open up and perspiration increases, aiding in the release of toxins and impurities - this can lead to relief from common skin ailments like acne, eczema, and athlete's foot - and helping to create energy throughout the body that helps burn up fat.
- With pores opened, shaving and waxing are not only made easier, but more effective. This opening of the pores also allows for better absorption of facials and skin treatments, enhancing the effects of these products.
... all this, and your skin will look great! Throw in a comfortable shower bench and some essential oils for aromatherapy (most steam heads will disperse the oil with the steam), and you have the complete spa experience.
Other Benefits of Steam
In addition to (or perhaps in consequence of) the myriad of physical benefits steam bathing offers, many people experience significant mental or emotional benefits from steam bathing. Sitting in the steam bath provides a brief escape from our busy modern world. You can't bring in your phone, tablet, or other distractions, you must keep the door closed to maintain the proper temperature - there's nothing to do except sit and bask in the warm mist swirling around you.
Just 15-20 minutes of steam bathing, can help you refocus and revitalize your mind with true "me" time. This can be difficult for some people at first, but with practice you can learn to enjoy your quiet time alone to reflect on your day and your feelings. All while you're doing something good for your body too.
Additionally, many of the steam baths we offer accommodate optional enhancements like chromatherapy or aromatherapy. Chromatherapy (sometimes called color therapy) is the use of color and light to help balance a person's energy. Most people who have ever chosen paint colors know that colors like blue, green, and purple have calming effects, while red and orange can be stimulating. The same principle of choosing paint colors to create a certain mental effect applies to chromatherapy. You can hire a therapist trained in chromatherapy to select your steam environment for you, or take a DIY approach and pay careful attention to your thoughts and mood when using this feature.
Aromatherapy is another alternative medicine technique used to help regulate emotional state, offer stress or headache relief, and boost mood. Certain aromas, like eucalyptus, can offer physical health benefits such as relieving cold symptoms. Some people choose to use aroma therapy oils simply because they like the way it makes their steam room smell during and after a steam bathing session.
Using less than 3 gallons of water for a typical session, steam units will also help you conserve water - a big deal most everywhere nowadays, especially in drought-afflicted areas where water use is carefully monitored. Even with the customary cold shower afterward (really more of a rinse), significant water savings can be had. Remember, though: you can't get something for nothing - energy use will go up, although a steam generator still uses less energy than typical tank-style water heaters.
Bonus: Wrinkled clothing? Forget ironing - take it with you into the steam room and marvel at its smoothness when you're done.
Choosing an In-Home Steam Bath
We're proud to feature quality steam systems from Steam-Whirl and Steamist, two of the leading names in the steam market. In addition to the standard system components - a steam generator, steam head, and control panel - we also offer accessories for aromatherapy, chromatherapy, smartphone integration, and even fog-free mirrors.
Depending on existing circumstances, you may even be able to add the steam bath to your existing shower setup. However, you must get the advice of a qualified professional (a licensed contractor with plumbing and electrical experience) when planning the conversion. Most residential steam generators are compact so they won't take up much space, low maintenance, and are relatively simple for a professional installer to hook up. If all surfaces in your shower area are able to get wet without having to worry about mold, mildew, or water damage and the area is properly enclosed, you probably won't need a major remodel.
Yes, the steam life really is the high life. Picture it now: the hot, misty aether embracing body and soul; carrying stress, pains and worries up and away in its drift, only to condense and fall back down as so much waste...it can all be yours, and we're here to help make it happen!
Always use caution! Nobody should spend more than 15-20 minutes immersed in steam. Drink plenty of water before and/or during the session, and keep tabs on time. It is recommended that you do not eat less than an hour before going in, as circulatory changes can affect digestion. If you have any health problems - especially those of a cardiac or respiratory nature - be sure to check with your doctor before engaging in any steam therapy.
Start creating your new in-home spa right here...