Cathartic. Therapeutic. Rejuvenated.

With the world still immersed in a Covid-19 fever dream, these refreshing descriptions are something we all need. And we’re looking at infrared sauna therapies to help us out. These trendy, transformative saunas have been sweeping the wellness world in recent years, and Houstonians will be able to reap the benefits, thanks to Perspire Sauna Studio. The California-based infrared sauna spa is slated to open 20 franchise locations in the Houston market, with five locations opening in the next three years.

So how do infrared saunas work? While people have been using heated saunas for a millennium, infrared treatments use light to heat up your body and not the air, which means the temperatures aren't as high. Some studies have found that infrared saunas can help high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, headaches, and rheumatoid arthritis, according to the Mayo Clinic, but those benefits haven't yet been proven. But, there's no harm in trying these saunas for yourself, says the Mayo Clinic.

Perspire’s wellness model replaces old-fashioned properties in traditional spas with innovative technology, assisting customers in building stronger immune systems. In 2010, co-founders Lee Braun and Ken Arsenian understood how impactful yet limited infrared therapy was and wanted to make this treatment more accessible. Braun believed in this concept so much that he moved from Michigan to California for a more hands-on approach.

Eleven years later, their booming business has expanded from its original Costa Mesa, California, flagship store to 13 locations in Florida, Georgia, Nebraska, and Texas (find it in Austin). The company is looking to branch out to six more states, along with the Houston locations, in the near future, according to a Perspire release.

“I’ve always been fascinated by health and wellness, dieting and how the human body works. So, when I came across this, it was just naturally interesting to me,” says Braun. “We really fell in love with infrared saunas and how beneficial the service is. It’s really good for your skin, burns calories and detoxes your body. You just feel awesome after a session.”

Perspire offers 40-minute sweat sessions in its private rooms. To prepare for your session, Braun recommends you come hydrated and make sure you’ve eaten within the last four hours. Each room features a glass skylight roof, accent lights to enhance your mood, and Smart TVs programmed with Pandora and Netflix. Each sauna room is constructed of cedarwood, which quickly traps the infrared heat to deeply penetrate the skin. According to Perspire, this helps customers burn between 200 and 400 calories, increase blood and oxygen flow, deplete the body of harmful toxins, purify the skin, and more. After their session, customers can enjoy a cooldown with chilled eucalyptus towels.

The wellness company also offers medical grade chromotherapy technology, a method of treatment that uses colors of electromagnetic light to treat various ailments. Additional amenities include complimentary towel service and personal showers in some of the private rooms.

With Perspire approaching health in a holistically trendy way, it’s interesting that it only has a couple locations in Texas. However, Braun’s confident that this future expansion to Houston will be a successful one.

“The demand for health and wellness services and products continues to grow even after the pandemic, especially in major metropolitan areas,” Braun says. “That’s why Houston is such an interesting market to move into.”

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