Is the steam room and sauna good for eczema?


I’ve read a lot of mixed reviews about the goodness of the spa facilities for eczema.



I think that like many other aspects of eczema treatment, it really does depend on each individual and requires each of us to go down the long road full of trial and error to find our own eczema care routines which work for us. I also think the type of eczema may make a difference. For example, dry vs wet eczema. Wet eczema may lead to spread of infections if you sit in a steam room (haven’t tried it though its just a thought!). And it may dry out dry skin even more. All I can give you is my own personal experiences of it and hope that it will help you! I do think though the most important thing is to try it and see how it works for you as an individual! The doctors always recommend many things, but the bottom line is many have never dealt with what we deal with on a personal level and so I think their understanding can only go as far as text books and case studies of individuals yet again. We are all different so always remember that something that doesn’t work for one person may work for another!
Steam room
At my gym, after I have worked out I started to use the steam room. I shower after my workout so I’m not all sweaty and then sit in the steam room. I guess this whole idea of ridding of toxins is something I have begun to think about when it comes to my eczema so sweating it all out seems like a good idea.
I usually sit in there for about 15 minutes (that is what my gym recommends and as I have just started to use the steam room I didn’t want to over do it!). I have personally not found that the steam irritates my skin, you do get really moist but it doesn’t make me want to itch etc (like others have experiences) so I don’t mind it. Its quite nice too, to workout and then relax in the steam room.
  • one thing I take into consideration at the moment though is that my skin isn’t THAT bad. (I’ll try to upload photos later as visual images always helps!). My face has GREATLY improved. For the first time since I can remember, my skin looks mostly normal on my face and for once sine I was 16 my upper lip is eczema free!  I now unfortunately get spots instead as my creams are greasy for my dry skin but are giving me acne!! But I’d rather that than my eczema so I can’t complain. I have scars etc but the actual eczema is calmer than it has been for a long time. My neck is still rough and snake like and is the hardest part of my eczema to maintain!! Any little trigger and that is where the eczema flares. My shoulders and elbows are the next worst which seem to come out in a small rash (like mini hives!) which is red and the most itchy!
  • Also I have dry eczema right now
Anyway, I have a cold rinse straight after the steam room and then shower as normal. I’m not sure if the steam room has helped or its just the general exercise (I do both so can’t really say!) but its overall effects seems to be good. Physically and definitely mentally! I feel so good after going to the gym.
A week ago, the steam room was closed so instead I used the sauna (I was wary of the sauna as it is dry heat). It is unbelievably hot, that was the first impression I got but I sat in there (and there is a timer for 15 mins which is a great help!). Many people also have a bottle of water or juice outside in case they do feel extremely hot. I found that I was getting hot but not really sweating much and I wasn’t sure whether this would just dry my skin out as there was no moisture barrier. A lady came in shortly after me with her moisturiser and it gave me the idea that maybe I should lather myself in my moisturiser and then sit in there and see the difference. So I got out of the sauna showered off and then applied my coconut oil and went back in. I sat in there for about 10 more mins (until I couldn’t take it anymore!) and then left.
The first thing that shocked me was my face, around my eyes and my cheeks were really red. I was panicking that I had made my skin worse straight away. However, I showered as normal and found that the redness had faded completely (I was relieved!) when I was getting ready. It may have just been that the circulation was boosted and the skin was flushing as a result.
I haven’t tried the sauna since, but next time I go to the gym I will and get back to you about how it was a second time around!
I hope this info has helped. I was quite wary of using them at first, but I think trial and error is really important so I tried them out. So far I seems to be benefiting but perhaps when the winter weather comes (and my eczema is at its worse) I can really see whether they help to keep my eczema at bay as that is my ultimate goal!!
25 Responses to “Is the steam room and sauna good for eczema?”
  1. Mandy says:

    I have been living with eczema for about 2 years now, I have tried many different creams and was prescribed pills to help with the itching. Personally, the cycle of getting immune to every cream I used for more than 2 weeks was starting to become a downer, I almost believed that I had to live with it for the rest of my days. Until, I started taking short, warm showers; cut, or lessened, milk out of my diet, and became more conscious with the products I use on my body. I use my own soap and body wash, that basically consist of olive oil, no artificial scents, with minimum additives. My advice is just to listen to your body, i hope you all live an Exzema free life.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Selina says:

      Thanks for your advice Mandy! I definitely think tuning into our bodies and listening to them is important and for me eczema always tells me when I’m getting stressed and need to manage my care more. Taking control of it as you have done means you get to know what works well and Also what doesn’t! I hope things are still going well


  2. Maisy says:

    Thanks for all the information about steam rooms for excema. I have just joined the gym and was planning on using the steam after my body pump session. Will give it a go…as some of u have said it trial and error for excema sufferers!!!

    Also I have been using Aveeno cream (I do a bulk order from USA every two years) for years and it is brilliant for calming my skin. I have suffered with excema for 30years and have found once I tackle the dry skin then I’m less likely to scratch and get sore skin.


    • Selina says:

      Thanks for your review of that. I used to live aveeno but became immune 😦 let us know how you get on with the steam room!


  3. Savannah says:

    I know this sounds crazy but taking showers everyday is the best way to get the allergens off you skin so it doesn’t infect. I’m 14 still barely suffering with this mainly on my arms. I put lots of eczema non scented body wash on while I’m in and really put lots of lotion on when I’m done. Natural lotion ofcourse, but it’s really helped and almost cured me!


  4. Ali says:

    Hi I’m a 19yr old guy and I wanted to know what you wear in the steam room I also have eczema all over my body but I’m shy to have my clothes off in front of anybody so I was hoping someone could suggest me what to wear in the steam room.


    • I’m afraid I wear my swim suit as its quite dark in the sauna I use and I use a gym where noone I know is there! Perhaps wear a t-shirt in with swim shorts!

      Have you tried the sauna yet?


    • Ali says:

      From one eczema sufferer called Ali to another Ali. A word of advice. Eczema is your problem not any body else’s. You can’t stop people looking at you, but you can stop taking notice of what they think. It may cause you pain, it may cause you suffering, but the last thing you need is to carry the burden of other peoples opinions. I was the same, but I realised my eczema will only get better if I treat it right, when it needs it. Its not totally gone but it has definitely got better with age and finding methods that work for me. Sometimes you will have to take time out and you will have to go to places where people will notice your eczema – accept this as a fact. Eczema is a physical problem and shouldn’t be treated as if you’ve done something morally wrong. You’ve got nothing to be shy about. I’m sure you’re a great guy and letting something thats part of you stop that is not right. I wish you luck, peace and love. Ali


  5. Sarah says:

    Hi All,

    I have developed atopic dermititis on my right hand since last year. I think it’s an allergic reaction to dust. I used the sauna on Saturday for less than 10 min and it got really bad. I might try the steam room after what I read here and see if I get any reaction, since I really like the idea of getting rid of toxins by sweating. Not sure it can help anyone, but I am using two products from Salcura (a British company) and they are really helping with it. For example the eczema is not developing anywhere else on my hand when I apply it as soon as I see some little bumps. Thought of sharing the experience.
    good luck


  6. Angela says:

    My exczema is very similar to yours! I have it around my eyes, on my forehead, in my inner arms and in my neck. Recently i’ve been using a moisturizing cream called Cera-ve that has greatly helped with the texture of my skin.
    I was wondering if exczema may affect vision because recently my right eye vision has gotten worse. Also, how long would you recommend staying in the sauna for?
    What would you recommend for the wrinkles and snake-like neck because of exczema? I’m only a teenager so i don’t want to use too man products


    • With the sauna, when you first start using it, don’t overdo it. When the heat gets too much take a breather, rehydrate yourself and wash with cold water then re enter if you like.

      You will notice your face goes very flushed and red if you get eczema on your face like me so you may want to try it in small doses and build it up. Shower afterwards. If you feel weak, try eating green apples afterwards. They help me after a gym session!

      Concerning the wrinkled, snakelike appearance….I’m working on it 😦 have t found a really great solution yet so fingers crossed! Currently purchased some new oils to try so wish me luck!


  7. Carol says:

    I have suffered with eczema all my life, I am 38. I suppose I am lucky in the sense that it is mostly on my scalp but over the past few years I have a few patches on my face. I think that I have tried every shampoo, lotion and cream on the market but like most other suffers it just keeps it under control for a short while then onto the next product! Anyway, the reason I wanted to post here is to share what has worked better than any product, the sauna! Like the story above I stumbled on this by accident, I had changed my diet and started using the sauna at the same time and thought the change was down to the healthier food, but the healthy eating didn’t last long! I continued to use the sauna so realised this is what was making the difference but I couldn’t stay in for long and got too hot and uncomfortable until I met a lady who had been using one for years. The trick is to cool your core temperature in a cold water bath, ice bath, and then you can stay in the sauna longer. I go in for 20 minutes at a time, about three times, with 5 minutes in the ice bath in between, normally once a month and my skin and scalp are so much better. As soon as the itching starts instead of looking for cream, I go to the sauna. I hope that someone reads this and it they try it and it changes their life like it has mine, no more stinking of cold tar!!


  8. brookedalby says:

    This is really helpful thanks…it seems we have exactly the same problem in exactly the same areas. My face has just recovered after a year of eczema…sometimes I was unrecognisable because of the rash and swollen eyes. I found that it started to clean up after I cleaned up what I was eating and putting into my body…mostly due to cutting out wheat products. x


  9. skin care says:

    Fantastic goods from you, man.I’ve understand your stuff previous to and you are just too excellent.


  10. Kim says:

    I tried infrared sauna treatments in the past and had some decent results although it was quite expensive at the time so I stopped going (was $45 per session but now it is $15). It is much different than a regular sauna. Infrared energy (which is not UV radiation) travels 2-3″ deep into the body and increases blood circulation and nourishes damaged tissue. I have read that after regular use of an infrared sauna the immune system improves and helps to clean toxins inside your body to control the skin inflammation associated with eczema. Infrared eliminates the itching associated with eczema and stimulates the healing process of repairing the skin. Someday soon I hope to resume the treatments and hope to report good things! Good luck to you!


  11. Ben Clapton says:

    I just want to affirm the same experience as you had with the dry sauna. Getting out, the eczema on my leg was incredibly red. By the time I got home, it wasn’t feeling so bad, and putting the creme on it feels smoother than I’ve had it for a while. I was also using the Spa, and I think that helped, letting it soak in water (only have a shower where I am). I’ll look at seeing how it goes over the next few days and look at repeated treatments.


    • Hi Ben,

      Do you find the sauna is still helping? I find that temporarily it may get worse, but in general in helps possibly because it increases circulation , promoting removal of toxins and sweating basically!


      • JAcko says:

        Also I would like to point out that Sauna should NOT be dry heat! Last week my workmate told me unbelievable joke (apparently true) that some american gym thinks throwing water to rocks in electric sauna will make everyone electricuted!!! Well, this may be the case in this gym too. Fact is that dry sauna is bad for you. When water evaporates it gives moist and part of it comes ozone which makes that relax feeling. In Finland we have over a million electric saunas been used over 50 years and not one case of electricution has happened so I recon its fairly safe…-if you doubt, get wood heated one…lol


      • What I meant personally by “dry heat” is that it’s not wet if that makes sense. The steam room is wet moisture and humid whilst sauna is a dry heat in comparison.


      • If it works it’s probably because it’s bringing histamine out of your skin, temporarily. Hot water will do the same thing, but as I said Staff loves heat, so it’s not wise.


  12. Valentina says:

    My facial eczema appeared very late (48) and I believe is entirely due to a stressful job I had earlier this year. I am sticking to my usual olive oil/shea butter combo and have added Aveeno. I use 1% hydrocortisone twice a week sparingly for the soreness.
    My experience with saunas is that they are tremendously healing for deep-seated conditions, but over time. They boost the immune system which I hope ultimately eliminates the eczema completely. I can’t accept that is is here to stay.


    • Maria says:

      Hi ! Valentina … Just for your info I got addicted to hydrocortisone 1% so please if you see the cortisone is just not helping . Please stop them as you do not wanto suffer like I did o rid of them . They are extremely dangerous if you use them on regular basis .

      Good luck

      More info


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