The rich and famous are installing luxury cryotherapy chambers and infrared saunas into their homes after the pandemic gave them a “wake-up call” to start taking better care of their health.
Celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Jennifer Aniston have sworn by the “detoxifying” and “relaxing” benefits of using infrared saunas for years – but it seems the spotlight put on health throughout Covid has helped the public catch on too.
From private mansions in Chelsea and Notting Hill to converted potting sheds in back gardens, installing cryochambers at home has become the ultimate new health marker in the trend-obsessed fitness and wellness industry.
“I think it’s largely driven by the fact that there’s been a wake-up call for a lot of people and they’ve started to focus on their own personal wellbeing,” Ian Saunders, the CEO of CryoAction, told The Telegraph.
“People are more zeroed in on that because they’re realising that as good as the NHS is, the facilities can be rocked by something like the pandemic.
“People now see it as an investment in themselves rather than necessarily an investment into bricks and mortar… they are asking ‘what can I do to stay healthy’ rather than necessarily relying upon the medical services,” he said.
Mr Saunders added that the residential market for CryoAction, a specialist provider of whole body cryotherapy equipment, rose from one to two per cent of all enquiries pre-pandemic to 25 per cent.
He told The Telegraph that its cryochamber installations vary from “very elaborate projects in private houses and basements right the way through to literally people converting offices or outbuildings into their personal gym and recovery space”.
With reported benefits ranging from improved circulation to weight loss, tighter skin and joint and muscle pain relief, sales of both infrared saunas and cryotherapy chambers have “boomed” since the onset of the pandemic.
Gert Droogmans from Health Mate, a manufacturer of infrared saunas, said: “During the pandemic we saw turnover sales go three to four times higher.
“But people really started looking into having these things at home and their focus is on how it benefits them, such as boosting the immune system, relaxation, muscles and joint pain relief and for people with arthritis.”
John Wallace, the commercial manager of Nordic, which offers bespoke luxury commercial or domestic spa design, said the firm had seen a “big uptick”, roughly 50 to 75 per cent, in the interest of installing infrared saunas in homes.
He said the closure of gyms throughout the pandemic enabled people to start thinking about “having their own piece of wellness at home” and added that it also meant “some people in more affluent sectors had large amounts of money that they could devote to home renovations and conversions”.
An infrared sauna from Nordic could cost in excess of £20,000 or £30,000, he added, with most customers in the “high-end” market opting to replace a bedroom with a new sauna or building an extension in their gardens.
“People just started to feel that wellness and health were more important parts of their lives,” Mr Wallace said.