What Should You Wear in a Hot Tub?

three women relaxing in a hot tub

Wearing appropriate clothing is essential when using a hot tub. Wearing the right clothes ensures you have an enjoyable, hygienic, and comfortable experience. It also avoids any potentially embarrassing situations where someone arrives at the hot tub in inappropriate attire. Choosing suitable clothing is key for comfort and practicality. This article covers everything you need to know about – What Should You Wear In a Hot Tub.

Here’s What You Should Wear in a Hot Tub

When using a hot tub, you should choose clothing that is practical, comfortable, and hygienic. You’ll also want to dress in a manner that avoids embarrassment for you and your fellow hot tub users. If you’re planning on using a hot tub and unsure of what to wear – check out our suggestions below.


woman sitting in a hot tub and watching the sun set

The most common item of clothing worn in a hot tub is a swimsuit. A swimsuit is practical, comfortable, and designed to perform well when immersed in water. You should choose a swimsuit that allows freedom of movement and doesn’t feel too tight around the body. Comfort is key. You want to be able to relax and enjoy the experience.

Swimming Shorts

While swimsuits are a great choice for women. Swimming shorts or swim trunks are a great choice for men. Choose a pair that feels comfortable, allows freedom of movement, and is not too tight. Avoid restrictive shorts that cling to the body and restrict movement. You want to be able to sit back and soak in the hot water in peace.


Many women prefer to wear a bikini or two-piece bathing suit when relaxing in a hot tub. Bikinis expose a little more skin to warm water and sunlight. And, some may prefer wearing them compared to one-piece swimsuits. However, if you’re using a public hot tub you should check with management to determine if bikinis are permitted.


If you want to cover your body while making your way to and from the hot tub you can use a robe or a swim cover-up. However, you should take this off before entering the water and just use one of the items described above. A robe or cover-up will help keep you warm when you exit the tub and also protect your modesty.


Bringing a towel to the hot tub is a great idea. You can wear it in a similar way to a robe above. Just wrap it around your body on the way to and from the tub to keep you warm and protect your modesty. It can also be used to wipe your body dry when you finish your session And, you can reach for it at any time when in the water to wipe your hands and face dry.


people wearing flip flop sandals

If you wear flip-flops, sliders, or pool shoes to access the hot tub, these should be removed before entering the water. Never wear shoes in a hot tub. It is unhygienic and disrespectful to your fellow hot tub users. Leave the sandals outside the tub and jump in barefooted.

What Should You Not Wear in a Hot Tub?

Now we know we’ve covered what should you wear in a hot tub. Let’s take a look at the items of clothing you should avoid. In the interest of practicality, comfort, and hygiene here’s what you definitely should not be wearing.

Regular Street Clothes

Don’t wear regular clothes in a hot tub. This includes jeans, t-shirts, dresses, shirts, and trousers. The material used to make regular clothes is not designed for use in water. If they are submerged in the hot water of a tub they will become heavy, uncomfortable, and can suffer damage. There’s also an issue with fibers sheering from the material and this can play havoc with the hot tub’s filtration system.


Wearing underwear in a hot tub is not hygienic. It may seem like a great idea but jumping into a tub in your underwear can introduce high levels of bacteria and sweat into the tub water. And, nobody wants that to happen. Especially the people you share the tub water with. Grab a clean pair of swimming trunks or a bathing suit instead.


man and a woman relaxing in a hot tub

Don’t wear any footwear in a hot tub. This includes trainers, shoes, or any kind of poolside footwear such as flip-flops or sandals. You should be barefoot when entering the tub. Wearing shoes will introduce contaminants into the water, reduce comfort, and potentially damage your footwear. Additionally, street shoes can mark and damage the internal surface of the tub.


Never wear jewelry in a hot tub. The hot water and chemicals used to balance the water in the tub can damage or tarnishing to jewelry. If the jewelry comes loose it can get lodged in the water tubing, jets, or filtration system and cause significant damage. Also, the hot water can cause swelling and combined with tight-fitting jewelry can lead to discomfort and pain.

Lotions, Oils & Perfumes

Do not apply any lotions, oils, or perfumes to your skin before getting into a hot tub. They are easily absorbed by the warm water and then mix with the chemical components of the tub water. Hot tub water balancing is a delicate act that involves adding chemicals in exact quantities to achieve optimum conditions for cleanliness and sanitation. And, oils, lotions, and perfumes can disturb this delicate balance.  Go without.


What About Public Hot Tubs?

If you are using a hot tub in a public facility such as a hotel, spa, or gym you should check the rules before you go. Have a quick chat with management to see what the rules are concerning appropriate clothing for using the hot tub.

The last thing you want to happen is to be called out by staff for being dressed inappropriately – an embarrassing situation for all involved. In general, public rules recommend you wear either a swimsuit or swimming shorts or trunks.

What Should You Wear in a Hot Tub FAQ

women having a glass of prosecco in a hot tub

Do I need to wear a swimsuit in a hot tub?

Yes, you should wear a swimsuit in a hot tub for both hygiene and comfort reasons. Clothes designed specifically for wearing in water work best. This includes swimsuits, bathing suits, swim shorts, and swimming trunks.

Can I wear regular clothes in a hot tub?

No, you cannot wear regular clothes in a hot tub as they can get damaged and affect water quality. They are not designed for wearing in water. Stick to clothes designed specifically for water use.

Is it okay to wear sunscreen in a hot tub?

No, it is not advisable to use sunscreen in a hot tub as it can affect the water chemistry and filtration system. However you can wear it on your head, face, neck, and shoulders as long as they do not come into contact with the hot tub water.

Can I wear a hat or cap in a hot tub?

Yes, you can wear a hat or cap in a hot tub to protect you from the sun. But, you should avoid getting the hat in the water.

Do I need to wear footwear in a hot tub?

No, you should not use footwear in a hot tub. It is unhygienic and it can damage the interior of the tub surface. You should use a hot tub only while barefoot.


About the Author


• Sauna Specialist

Meet Jake, a man with a passion for sauna therapy. Jake’s background is in science and his passion is wellness and basketball. Growing up in Orlando Florida, Jake enrolled in Florida International University where he graduated with a BS in Biological Sciences.

As a young man, he worked in the spa and wellness center at the renowned Breakers Palm Beach luxury hotel. Here he developed his skills and understanding of client-centered wellness delivery. Upon graduating from Florida International University he took up a research position focusing on the application and practical effects of steam therapy.

His research has contributed to advancing the understanding of steam sauna therapy and how it can be applied in the occupational health environment. His work in this area has been officially recognized for its impact on the field.

Jake is a devoted fan of the Orlando Magic basketball team. When not working and advancing his research he enjoys attending games at the Kia Center in downtown Orlando. He also likes to remain active in his local sports community and volunteers as a basketball coach for his local youth team.

With his background in scientific research and passion for wellness, Jake is a valuable addition to the Home Sauna Heaven writer’s team where he shares his knowledge and understanding of sauna therapy, steam sauna therapy, and how they can be used for best effect.

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