A sauna blanket might not be everyone's idea of fun – especially with the summer months upon us. When I got the chance to test one out, initially I wasn't keen. I find saunas claustrophobic, so the idea a sauna in the form of a blanket wasn't super appealing. How wrong I was.
After using the Higher Dose sauna blanket out, my sleeping was unreal (I am normally an insomniac), the blanket totally de-stressed me, I lost weight (apparently you can lose around 600 calories in one Dose) and I had a natural high afterwards that actually replaced the normal glass of wine I had taken to in lockdown! Read on for my full experience.
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What's the idea behind sauna blankets?
The answer to the is question may get you hot under the collar. It seems the higher the temperature, the more you sweat. And the more you sweat, the bigger the benefits. Put it this way, it may sound gross, but sitting in your sweat for up to an hour is what you are encouraged to do.
There is no sauna without sweat. It’s the entire point. As your body releases toxins, it also helps open skin pores so you are left with glowing skin afterwards. And then there are all the other amazing benefits; the heat helps increase circulation, bring down inflammation, and alleviate any niggling aches and pains. It also suggests you will sleep better. And the fact it essentially tricks your body into thinking you’re working out by making you sweat (hence, the 600 calorie loss claim!) – all while lying down – is the ultimate high point for me!
How does the Higher Dose blanket work?
It is super easy to set up. You roll the blanket out and then lay it on a heatproof surface. The instructions suggest a yoga mat but I used it on my bed as liked the idea of propping my head (the only part you don’t insert inside the blanket) on my pillows.
Once you have connected the blanket to the plug, it takes around 10 minutes to heat up before you are advised to slide inside. Unlike the normal sauna experience, this blanket requires you to be fully clothed (socks and all) – this is to help mop up the moisture and also ensure you don’t burn your skin as it does get quite hot.
I found getting myself into the blanket a bit of a faff at first, only because it is quite weighted down and requires you to Velcro yourself in. The heat did not bother me at all – beginners to the blanket are suggested to turn the heat dial to 4 or 5 to begin with but as someone who loves hot baths and can tolerate intense warmth, I chose the top dial of 8 which I remained on for the duration of 45 minutes.
With a towel also suggested to use as a barrier between myself and the blanket, there was very little movement to do much, other than just relax. And that is super easy to do as the heat is evenly distributed across the blanket which warms your body with infrared light – which warms up your body from inside, as opposed to heating up the air around you.
It took around 15 minutes for the blanket to really heat up, and then another 15 until I properly started sweating. For someone who does not like the claustrophobic setting of a sauna, this was far more pleasurable and I felt very at ease knowing I was in control of when I wanted to release myself from the blanket.
Having spent a busy few days at work, using the blanket was pure bliss. I felt as though I was in a very warm hug and the soothing infrared rays, amethyst, tourmaline, and magnetic therapy inside the blanket must have really worked as I felt at total peace. My thigh muscles, unusually sore from an intensive workout the previous day, seemed to instantly loosen up.
Although I am not one to meditate, I felt as though it was the perfect mindful experience, a bit like hot yoga I suppose, with the happy chemicals really making my body almost tingle all over.
Higher Dose: the verdict
These blankets don’t come cheaply but I honestly think the Higher Dose is worth – at £399 – investing in. We may be coming out of the pandemic now but for the days when you are working from home they are a real treat, particularly if, like me, your posture is bad from a year working from home, as the blanket really eases the muscles. After each time I used it, I felt a sense of euphoria, hence its name… Now that’s a wrap!
For more details, visit Higher Dose.