For millennia, the ritual of bathing in steam has been a way to promote health by cleaning the body and mind, relieve discomfort and stress, and strengthen our immunity to ward off all sorts illnesses. The Turks and Persiana called it Hamman, the Romans Sudatorium and the Russian, Banja. I am calling it a steam room.
So we see the benefits of steam, now consider adding the extra benefit pure natural Swiss herbs. This is what Swiss company Vaporsana have come up with and patented – a Kräuterdampfbäder or Herbal Steam Bath.
I would really like to have one in my own (Project Weinberg in last post) renovation. However it more than makes your eyes water when looking into the cost of such a ‘healthy’ exercise! But not to be deterred, with my Scottish grit of “where there is a will there is a way” I set about exploring the possibilities here in Switzerland the land of fresh clean air and as it turns out lots of alpine herbs! I popped over to their factory and showroom.
I was explained the difference between a regular steam bath/room and a herbal steam room. As an interior designer I am always researching new things and I was surprised by what I found. This could be a really good option for anyone thinking about upgrading their humble shower cubicle into the nirvana of health! Not all steam rooms are created equal…..
Firstly, Herbal Steam Rooms are more gentle and slightly cooler than the regular high pressure steam rooms that you find at the local spa/gym. The benefit of this is that the gentleness of the temperature is less stressful for the body to cope with. Why? – In a regular sauna/steam the temp can be 75-90 deg this causes a rapid response from the body to sweat profusely to try to protect itself and you lose too much water too quickly causing your body to stress. When your body is under stress it does not relax and is not open to healing.
The Vaporsana Herbal system only allows your body to increase its temperature by 1-2 degrees (the room heats to 45-50 deg only) and induces an artificial “fever’ reaction and allows your body to break down disease causing microorganisms and therefore stimulate your immune system. By allowing your body to adjust gently it aids the gentle absorption of the herbal vapours. I found out that our skin is out biggest respiratory organ – with an average person having 1.5-2m2 of it! That is a lot of herbal absorption! The herbs used here are actually herbal tea bags twice the size of normal. You can also drink them. So you can get all the benefits of Chamomile and Lavender to calm your mind and help insomnia, Ginger is anti-inflammatory, Peppermint to aid digestion, Lemon to help anxiety, Hibiscus to lower blood pressure… the list is endless….
From an environmental point the herbal system is 100% natural and uses no chemicals, it uses less power and water, so for me in my quest to make Project Weinberg as eco as possible I literally heard those boxes being ticked.
Sounds really quite promising now, just how to fit it into the budget when one is doing a whole house it is more of a challenge…..
This was my idea…
In our new roof space I put the shower/steam room to the left below.
However, having consulted Vaposana, that steam room is way too big in m3 to get the right effect for my needs and would take too much energy to run (gotta keep it eco!)… so I came up with a solution to cut the room in two and have a bench run through the glass, to keep the room looking big but saving energy. I also created a small space to keep a robe, slippers ready for coming out.
Might look something like this…
So with a quick sketch idea to work from I came up with this
So looks like a possibility depending on how it can be finished on the inside. As standard Vaposana have a composite acrylic material that you can have in any colour you want. It is popular here to have graphics also put under the glaze, you can have any photo you want. Not my taste, only saying!
As you may have seen from my last blog post the concept for this project is more natural and classic so I will keep you posted on what I come up with!
Click here to visit the Vaporsana website
Thanks for reading
p.s. this post is in no way sponsored and all ideas and opinions are my own.