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Packing List: 10 Must-Haves for a Swedish Sauna

Few things are more intensely refreshing than a Scandinavian sauna. With wooden hot houses located right on the shores of brackish Baltic waters, the Swedish sauna experience is a bracing cycle of schvitzing and shivering. Henrik Lindahl, founder of Swedish apparel basics line Bread & Boxers, says, “There is nothing more relaxing than returning into the hot sauna after the cold.” Note: There’s no need to pack a swimsuit—they’re strictly forbidden in Swedish saunas. But there are plenty of other things you’ll want to bring with you. Here are Henrik’s ten sauna essentials.

Pripps Blå Beer

“Swedish saunas are hot and dry,” says Henrik. “Beer is the best way to stay hydrated. I like Pripps Blå.”

Gant Cotton Towels

“You need one small enough to sit on and one large towel to pat yourself dry before getting dressed. Beach towels are not welcome.”

Pine Oil

“Just put a small amount on the stones. The smell of nature will make you relax even more.”

Truefitt & Hill Wellington Razor

“Your skin gets soft and smooth from the heat, so shaving is perfect after a sauna session.”

REN Body Wash

“’REN’ means ‘clean’ in Swedish. I like this one for its wonderful fragrance of seaweed and sage.”

Recipe for Men Facial Moisturizer

facial lotion
“Your skin gets dry in the cold, so you have to moisturize.”

Bread & Boxers Underwear

You never feel as clean as after a sauna session. To put on a pair of fresh boxers is just a wonderful feeling.

Boomerang Cardigan

“The sauna is hot, but you may end up freezing afterwards. I always bring a warm knitted wool cardigan with me.”

Band Aid Salvequick Aqua Resist

band aid
“In the wintertime, you sometimes jump into a snow pile (instead of into the sea) after getting out of the heat.Snow can be sharp and even occasionally make you bleed.”

A Good Book

“I always bring a book to read while cooling down after the sauna. I prefer Swedish crime stories. I'm now reading Free Falling, as if in a Dream by Leif GW Persson.”

Photo Credits: Ake E-son Lindman, Pripps Blå, GANT, Thinkstock, REN, Truefitt & Hill, Recipe for Men, Bread & Boxers, Boomerang®, Salvequick, Pantheon

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