How to Make a Sauna Suit

Sweating purges toxins from the body through pores in the skin.
Sweating purges toxins from the body through pores in the skin. (Image: exercise image by Inger Anne Hulbækdal from

Athletes who need to lose a few pounds quickly to qualify for a weight class often wear sauna suits when they work out. Designed to trap body heat, a sauna suit increases sweat production, which leads to loss of water weight. You can make an inexpensive sauna suit from a few simple household items.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 heavy-duty plastic trash bags (30 gallon)
  • Ruler
  • Permanent marker or paint pen (silver)
  • Scissors
  • Duct tape
  • Rubber bands
  • Cotton undershirt
  • Cotton underwear
  • Cotton socks
  • Fleece sweatshirt
  • Fleece sweatpants

Cut a 6-inch round hole in the closed bottom center of one large trash bag. Cut a 4-inch round hole in each of the bottom corners about an inch above the bag's base.

Lay the other trash bag flat on the ground with the open end facing you. Lie down on the bag so that your waistline is even with the bag's open edge and your ankles are about six inches apart.

Trace two inches on either side of your hips and legs with a marker or paint pen that shows up on the plastic. Cut along the line through both layers of the bag. The extra two inches of space are needed to give the sauna suit a loose fit for exercise.

Tape the two cutout layers of plastic together along the side seams with long strips of duct tape. Leave the openings at the ankles and waste unsealed.

Put cotton undergarments on directly over bare skin before sliding the first trash bag over your shoulders. Pop your head through the hole at the end of the bag and extend your arms out through the corner holes.

Slide your legs into the plastic pants and use rubber bands and more duct tape to keep excess plastic material close to your body. Pull on a sweatshirt and a pair of sweat pants for added insulation and to keep the baggy plastic from snagging on something while you exercise.

Tips & Warnings

  • Doubling up with two trash bag sauna suits makes it difficult to run or move quickly.
  • Exercise caution when wearing sauna suits since they can cause dehydration or overheating while exercising.

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