We Found The Best Cold Plunge Tubs Of 2024 | mindbodygreen

Cold water therapy has been a popular among athletes and the biohacker community for years (we're looking at you Huberman). But as predicted in our 2023 wellness trends, the longevity practice is quickly becoming mainstream as more people become aware of the health benefits of cold water exposure—like improved stress resilience, muscle recovery, and mood.

While you could hop in a cold shower, the best cold plunge tubs and ice baths offer a more efficient way to jump on the trend; they allow water to drop below 55 degrees Fahrenheit and submerge your full body for a more effective plunge. marble stone bathtub

We Found The Best Cold Plunge Tubs Of 2024 | mindbodygreen

But we'll be the first to say it; cold plunge tubs are an investment. That's why we spent the last year researching and testing cold plunge tubs to find the best option at every price point based on.

You can thank Plunge for leading the charge in creating cold plunge tubs with a price point under $5,000. First seen on Shark Tank, the Plunge initially offered a single model, but has since expanded their lineup, including a soon-to-be launched infrared sauna.

Our favorite part of Plunge is that it comes with a wide range of add-ons and features, yet the price point never gets above $8,000. You can opt for a regular or XL size, along with an optional optional heating element or a pro cooling system (which is ideal for those who live in warm environments).

And while yes, the sleek design does resemble a bathtub in look and size—albeit a super modern one—we think the brand's attention to detail shines through, from the durable reinforced metal base to the included accessories: a phone tablet, skimmer net, and insulated topper.

Is the Plunge worth $5,000+? Find out in our full review of the Plunge Tub.

Read our full breakdown of the Plunge here.

One of our tester's favorite perks of the Plunge was the free in-home delivery. Instead of ditching a crate at your door, the delivery team puts your tub exactly where you want it. Our tester chose their backyard, as their home didn't have a good space to support the 1000-pound weight of the filled tub.

They tackled the rest of set up on their own and dubbed it a "breeze", as it only required connecting the hoses between the tub and external chiller, filling with water, and plugging into a 110v outlet.

The external chiller then cooled water to their desired temperature. Pro tip: The chiller only drops the water temperature by 1 to 2 degrees per hour. If that feels too slow, we suggest upgrading to the pro chiller, which is at least three times faster.

Although the Plunge has ozone sanitation to break down contaminants and a 20 micron filter to trap debris, it still requires about the same level of maintenance as a hot tub.

Upkeep will cost about $190 for six months (or about $32 per month), but that includes a monthly filter replacement and chemicals required to monitor pH, alkalinity, and sanitation levels.

The Plunge is made from a combination of acrylic and fiberglas with a reinforced metal base for added durability. We felt the materials were sturdy enough for regular outdoor use—even on hot sunny days or much chillier temperatures (like when our tester received the Plunge).

We suggest upgrading to the XL if you're taller than 6 foot to ensure you can fully submerge in the water.

Our 5'11" tester was comfortable, but they felt anyone taller might have consider the regular Plunge a tight squeeze when fully horizontal.

Experts recommend spending at least 20 minutes outdoors to reap the the health benefits of nature—and what better way to do it than a dip in your cold plunge tub?

Inergize's ultra portable design packs down into a duffel that's similar in size to about a 105L hiking pack. Once you get to your preferred location, it only takes 15 minutes to fully install the tub.

Despite an ultra versatile design, the Inergize cools water from 65 to 37 degrees Fahrenheit in less than 5 hours; this cooling power or HP is actually higher than the Plunge—which explains the price point.

What's more, a recent addition to the Inergize tub adds a heating component to warm water up to 105 degrees Fahrenheit.

Every Inergize tub ships free and comes with quick connect hoses, a hand debris net, a micron filter, and two covers (a fabric and inflatable one).

When deflated, the 25-pound tub fits into an oversized duffle that you can take on the trail for a quick refresh, as long as you have electricity access and a reliable water source.

Although you'll only need one person to complete the installation, expect to put in a little legwork—or should we say armwork—to inflate the tub with the included hand pump.

If you choose to keep your tub in one place, then the water can last up to six months. Just replace the micron filter every month and sanitize the water weekly. Unlike other brands, Inergize does not offer a curated kit of filter replacements and water sanitization solutions. However the brand's maintenance guide includes links to preferred products with clear instructions.

The tub's modular design is developed for portability, and it's about 30 inches deep.

Inergize reviews show those up to 250 pounds and 6-foot-4-inches tall can fit (though submersion may be harder).

The next-big-thing in the cold plunge world isn't actually cooling water down; it's heating H2O up for hydrotherapy. But where most brands will charge you up to $1,000 to add a heating component, Sun Home Saunas portable unit has an external chiller that also heats water up to 104 degrees Fahrenheit.

One of the most durable inflatable cold plunge tubs we've tested—the bath is made with a military grade drop stitch technology—this inflatable pick doesn't skip on features. Each tub comes with a 1HP smart-chiller, which is the same power as the Plunge's Pro Chiller and almost double the speed of tubs like Renu.

Along with a build-in circulation pump to keep water moving (and your thermal barrier down), the chiller also has a 20 micron filter for debris and a built-in ozone sanitation system. Our favorite part? The XL design is long enough to fit those up to 6'8" per the brand (or two people if you prefer company).

While the tub and chiller were packaged very well, there was no in-home delivery or setup. Our testers had to drag both boxes through the house and noted they were extremely heavy. They chose to set it up on their back porch (see photos) as it’s made with durable military-grade materials (and they didn’t want to put a 6-foot+ tub inside the house). Make sure to place, it near an outlet as the chiller needs to be plugged in to work.

Our tester and her boyfriend tackled the entire setup on our own. The tub didn’t come with installation or setup instructions, so it wasn’t the easiest thing to put together. But there weren't too many pieces, so they eventually figured it out. 

When first starting the chiller, it took about 8 hours to get the water to our desired temperature (55 degrees Fahrenheit) in Texas during the wintertime. But after set-up and using it daily, the chiller doesn’t take nearly as long to reach their desired temperature.

The filter needs to be replaced about once a month, with one to three people plunging each day. Our testers typically plunge once or twice a week in the winter, so they haven't had to change the filter just yet (although a replacement was included in the shipment).

The Sun Home Portable Ice Bath is the longest option on our list at 76.8 inches long. Per the brand, it's long enough to fit those up to 6’8” fully submerged.

Our testers are 5’7” and 5’11”, which means they both easily has enough space in the tub. In fact, they could even cold plunge together, which makes this unique tub one of the best cold plunge tubs for tall people and couples.

The Ice Barrel is the ultimate cold plunge tub for someone who wants to elevate their ice bath experience from a regular bathtub, but who doesn't want to commit to the maintenance of a glorified mini pool.

You simply fill the container with ice and water—that's all! The upright position is ideal for a quick dunk without laying horizontal, and the sturdy, non-toxic materials never feel cheap per our tester.

Plus, it comes with a tiny step stool to let you enter as gracefully as possible (well as smooth as someone entering an ice bath can really be).

What makes this ice bath stand out? Read our full Ice Barrel review here.

The barrel only weigh 55 pounds when not filled with water, so rolling your bath in place should be a an easy process, per our tester.

Simply use the base to pick you ideal spot, add your barrel, and fill with ice water. The insulated cover will help keep water cool for up to three days before you'll either need to add more ice or dump it out.

Technically the Ice Barrel can be set used both indoors and outdoors—though we think the high water level makes it best suited for outdoor use.

Our tester loved that the Ice Barrel was small enough to tuck into the corner of the garage. Pro tip: Add epsom salts for even more ice bath benefits.

The biggest downside of this (or any) ice bath? You're going to have to pay at least $10 for ice with every refill.

The brand offers a $130 maintenance kit for the Ice Barrel, which includes a few essential accessories, including an 8-ounce bottle of water stabilizer.

Best used in fresh water, the stabilizer helps keep water sanitized for up to 45 days.

A streamlined design comes with major perks; you won't need to replace the Ice Barrel anytime soon.

As long as you use the included UV and water-resistant cover, you can expect the recycled plastic to stick around for a lifetime.

If you're on the taller side, stick with the Ice Barrel 400, which has a longer design that's best for taller folks (and can hold those up to 300 pounds).

If you're shorter or rounder, check out the new design: the Ice Barrel 300. Its larger opening is better suited to heavier folks.

Renu's lineup of stylish cold plunge tubs is a luxury investment for those who care about aesthetics. Available in a range of minimalist base and deck colors, the sleek tub is handcrafted in California with a mission to be "always cold and clean."

Powerful enough to cool water to 36° Fahrenheit, the Cold Stoic 2.0 is fitted with a thermostat to easily control the temperature of your water.

What's more, the energy-efficient tub also has a super insulated design that can keep water temperatures below 60° Fahrenheit for up to 24 hours once the tub is turned off.

Although the brand offers free curb-side delivery, you'll need some help to get the 350 pound crate to its final location. Prepare to call a Task Rabbit (or a moving company).

Luckily, the chiller is already contained and attached, so you'll just need to plug into a standard 110V outlet to get started.

Features like the filtration system and ozone water purification system ensure the water stays fresh between uses (and keeps water maintenance relatively lowkey).

You'll need to replace the filter every month and test the water to ensure it's up to par. Thankfully, an enclosed lid and active purification means maintenance is relatively simple.

Renu upgraded its cold plunge tub design to have a larger water tank, so it could fit a wider array of body sizes. In fact, it's one of the longest tanks on our list.

If the 5-year warranty didn't tip you off, this luxury cold water tank is meant to be around for awhile.

Crafted for indoor and outdoor use, Renu tubs are constructed with quality materials, all selected for their ability to withstand harsh conditions and UV rays.

Cold plunge tubs can't go any cooler than 39° Fahrenheit because the water needs to stay in liquid form for the external chiller.

Odin's Ice Bath uses copper coils wrapped around the tub to cool the water down using a refrigerator compressor—so water can actually turn into ice without breaking the chiller.

While the brand also makes a traditional cold plunge design for $1500 cheaper—which won't require a refrigeration expert to install—we think this specialty ice bath design is worth the extra investment for those who want the water to get as cold as possible.

Just note: Only the Plunge pool comes with an optional heating element (up to 107°F), an upgrade that's currently free.

Odin's free shipping delivers the ice bath to your front door—but no further. Although the bath is small enough to fit through a standard doorway, it still weighs about 178 pounds—so make sure you have help at the ready.

We suggest calling the movers and refrigeration experts at the same time to streamline the process.

This tub has all the bells and whistles; it's not only constructed with beautiful cedar wood and stainless steel, but the bath comes with a fully automated filtration and sanitation system that requires minimal upkeep.

You can even add a UV sanitizer for $750 for even less maintenance.

Those over 6-foot can opt for the XL model for extra legroom, while couples hoping to share the tub can upgrade to a dual size.

If you're purchasing for a commercial space—like a spa or gym—we suggest investing in the pro model for another $2,000, which increases the power of the chiller to ensure it's up to the strain of consistent use throughout the day.

With proper care—including cedar wood staining every six months—you should expect your Odin to be around for the long haul.

The Morozko Forge Ice Bath comes recommended by biohacker Joe Rogan, who's spoken about this model specifically.

One huge benefit of the Morozko Ice Bath is that it can chill water as cool as 33 degrees Fahrenheit, yet it still promotes water circulation to mimic the feel of a natural body of water.

If you've learned anything to so far, this combination of high flow rate and ultra low temps is a rare technological feat for cold plunge tubs.

The brand charges a $1,600 White Glove Delivery, so you can expect to sit back and relax as they set up your new investment. The hardest part will be picking a spot with a 110V outlet; luckily it can be indoors or outside.

The Morozko Force is self-cleaning with micro-filtration and ozone disinfection to keep the water fresh.

Just expect to clean and replace your filter, depending on how heavily you use the tub.

Another investment option, the Morozko Force is meant to to last. It's constructed with a durable cedar frame with ground fault circuit interrupt (GFCI) protection for improved safety.

The Morozko Cold Plunge tub comes in three sizes available with either a 60-inch, 66-inch, or 72-inch length.

The 72-inch is similar to the Renu Therapy option, which fits those up to 6 foot 7 inches tall.

The Ice Pod Pro is a newer launch—and the affordable design fills a gap in the market for those who still want a high quality product but don't want to spend a fortune on a luxurious tub.

The portable pod is similar to many budget options, with a plastic legs around the tub and an inflated rim. However the actual materials differ from many affordable options thanks to a focus on quality.

The inner lining is made from a BPA-free waterproof lining, the insulation layer has sub-zero cooling technology, and the durable exterior is UV resistant.

Other differentiators for the Ice Pod Pro include a water flow pump—which circulates water to prevent your body heat from warming the water or the ice from freezing solid—and a floating thermometer to monitor the temperature to reach the perfect 50 to 59 degree Fahrenheit range.

If you've ever found yourself frustrated while pitching a tent, this one might be a bit complicated. It requires you to build a skeleton to hold up the plastic bath. Otherwise setup is simple: add water and ice to get to your desired temperature.

Those who struggle to follow instructions should go with the Pro model; it comes with an insulated lid that keeps water cool between uses for fewer setups.

If you don't mind dumping and refilling the water regularly, then won't have to worry too much about maintenance.

But if water bills are expensive and you plan to plunge often, we'd recommend that you do some independent research on how to keep the water fresh (you'll find great inspo above).

As mentioned, this design is way sturdier than anything you'd find on Amazon. However it still costs less than $200—so you shouldn't expect this purchase to last forever.

Per the brand, this portable tub should fit a wide range of bodies. While it looks small in photos, it holds a whopping 79 gallons of water (despite the frame weighing less than 7 pounds).

You might think ice baths and cold plunge tubs are the same—but there are small nuances that make each different. An ice bath is exactly as it sounds; a bath of ice water. Cold plunge tubs use an external chiller to cool water down to 37.5 °F, no ice necessary.

The benefit of the latter is that you can often determine the exact temperature of the water, which should be less than 10°C," per cold therapy expert Mark Harper, M.D., Ph.D. (Note: 10°C is 50°F.)

Cold plunge tubs are designed to support cooler temperatures that put your body into a temporary state of stress. While the cooling process varies by tub, most send water to an external chiller where it's cooled and pumped back into the tub.

If you want a more affordable option, you'll likely have to settle for an ice bath, which uses still (rather than flowing) water . Many baths require you to fill with ice and water, with insulated constructions that can keep the water cool up—sometimes up to 3 days.

We recommend cold plunge tubs over ice baths. When water is pushed in and out of an external chiller—like with a cold plunge tub—it creates a natural circulation of water. When water is in motion, your body can't effectively warm it up and create a thermal barrier. This makes your plunge more efficient.

If you're skeptical about subjecting your body to freezing temperatures in the name of wellness, know there's actually some compelling evidence in its favor. "In simple terms, regular use will reduce inflammation and the body's reaction to stress. Putting your face—it doesn't even have to be the whole head—in will have an almost immediate effect," explains Harper. 

Here's why you might want to add a cold plunge tub to your routine:

On the topic of stress, intentional cold exposure (as in a plunge pool) is a form of hormetic stressor. In layman's terms, this is the good kind of stress that actually helps your body to adapt and stay fit and healthy.

When you spend a short burst of time each day with an acute stressor like cold water, your body is taken out of homeostasis and your cells are activated to promote stress resilience, repair cellular damage (through processes like autophagy), repair DNA, reduce inflammation, and more.

In fact, some experts believe that missing out on hormetic stressors can actually hold you back. "Biologically, the lack of acute stressors prevents the intermittent episodes of cellular 'housecleaning' activities that slow aging," Elissa Epel, Ph.D., director of the University of California–San Francisco Aging, Metabolism and Emotion Center wrote in a 2020 research review.

Additionally, shocking your body with a switch between hot and cold extremes can also improve your health, as longevity expert and Harvard geneticist David Sinclair, Ph.D., explains on the mbg podcast. "Sauna protects you against heart disease if you do it regularly, and cold plunges are increasingly thought to be helpful. What [they do] is activate the production of brown fat, which exists mostly in your back. Brown fat puts out signals that increase your metabolism," he explains. 

As for the mental benefits, Jono James, cold-water immersion expert and CEO of Odin Ice Baths shared that voluntarily placing yourself in uncomfortably cold temperatures can help build fortitude.

"You're purposely putting yourself in quite a bit of pain because the ice bath is not a pleasant experience, but because you're choosing to do it, it gives you a sense of empowerment. Since it's a choice, it also means you're more resilient to things that are out of your control because you're choosing to put yourself in this uncomfortable position," he shares.

The are many proven benefits of an ice bath—and a few potential benefits of taking a cold plunge that still need to be explored further. Weight loss falls into the latter category.

A study published in Scientific Reports found stem cells subjected to cold temperatures formed brown fat that can increase calorie burn1 . Research on mice shows similar results of brown fat activating in cold temperatures2 . Data also suggests that ongoing cold exposure can help convert white fat into metabolically healthy beige or brown fat3 .

As functional medicine expert, Laura DeCesaris previously told mindbodygreen, "More data needs to be seen as to possible long-term metabolic impacts of cold immersion over time."

She says sporadic sessions are unlikely to improve results—and it's important to remember that an increased metabolism won't lead to weight loss if appetite and calorie consumption also increases.

Experts previously told mindbodygreen that people with high blood pressure should skip cryotherapy. Cold water causes your blood vessels to constrict, which increases heart rate, blood pressure, and respiratory rate.

Typically the body can compensate for this constriction, per longevity expert Seema Bonney, M.D., but it may be harder for those with high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease.

RELATED: The Best At-Home Cold Therapy Machines For Muscle Relief and Recovery

Of course you should be aware that cold temperatures can be jarring to the body, but on the whole if you’re listening to your body and being smart about how long you’re staying in the tub, experts say it should not pose a risk to your health. 

“It’s important to get the body used to the temperature (a minute or two) before putting your face in," suggests Harper. "And there is nothing to be gained and all to be lost by staying in so long as to become hypothermic. This is dependent on temperature: under 10°C, three minutes is sufficient. But even at 20°C, no more than 10 minutes is necessary."

Even if you're not an intense athlete, anyone could benefit from the use of a cold plunge tub. That said, they are a great means of physical recovery after working out. "The reduction in inflammation and the attenuation of the stress response are universally positive," says Harper. 

As with all new health practices, it’s recommended to check in with your doctor before adding a cold plunge to your routine, especially if you have an existing medical condition.

Adding a cold plunge to your routine has many physical and mental health benefits. Cold plunging can promote stress resilience, repair cellular damage (through processes like autophagy), repair DNA, reduce inflammation, and more. As our expert explained, you don’t have to dive right in. Start slow and as you begin to acclimate to the practice and experience the benefits, you’ll see that cold plunges are worth it.

A cold plunge tub with a built-in sanitation will be the easiest to take care of. The Plunge, Renu Therapy Cold Stoic, and Odin Ice Bath all come with built-in water filters and ozone sanitation systems. These system replace chemicals with powerful oxidizers that break down unwanted contaminants, like mold and bacteria, to keep your water fresh between plunges.

Sure, putting your body through stress may sound counterintuitive—but this is actually a good kind of stress. Whether you're investing in a cold plunge tub for your home, or you're making your own ice bath, you're not going to solve every health problem you've ever had. That said, when performed regularly and correctly, the practice has a slew of health benefits, explained in-depth below. If you're not sure if ice baths are a good idea for you, check with your doctor before adding the practice to your routine.

For metabolic, energy, and mental health benefits, regularly soaking in a cold plunge tub can be an excellent way to invigorate the system and support overall well-being. A cold plunge can help with inflammation and act as a great start to the day or help you recover from a particularly strenuous workout. If you're in the market to invest in your health, consider taking home the Plunge for a top-of-the-line pick or try the slightly more affordable Polar Monkeys Inflatable.

Want other ways to invest in your health? Explore the benefits of hot and cold therapy, and check out or picks for the best infrared saunas and infrared sauna blankets.

Enjoy some of our favorite clips from classes

Enjoy some of our favorite clips from classes

Molly Knudsen, M.S., RDN

Molly Knudsen, M.S., RDN

Addison Kim, BSN, R.N., PCCN

Molly Knudsen, M.S., RDN

Molly Knudsen, M.S., RDN

Molly Knudsen, M.S., RDN

Addison Kim, BSN, R.N., PCCN

Molly Knudsen, M.S., RDN

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We Found The Best Cold Plunge Tubs Of 2024 | mindbodygreen

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