7 Finnish sayings that tell you all you need to know about sauna

No one knows sauna like the Finns — after all, they invented it. Sauna has been a big part of Finnish life and culture for centuries, and although Finns no longer give birth in it or bathe in it regularly, it’s just as important today as it was then: in a country of about 5 million people, there are 3 million saunas!

Naturally, sauna has found its way into language as well. Finnish has tons of proverbs and sayings that show just how important sauna is. Scroll down to see a few of our favorites.




Which is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below.

19 replies

  1. You forgot the finest:
    “On the benches in sauna there will be born thoughts and feelings that never can be born in any other places in the world” Freely translated after F E Sillanpää, the Finnish Nobel Price winner in litterature.

  2. My grandma WAS born in SAUNA in Finland , January 29th , 1909 . It WAS the cleanest please those day’s ???!

    • Jep! And considering hospital(s’) (the modern “standard” for cleanliness, right?!) bacteria these days,…. it STILL is.

  3. There’s always room behind the sauna.

    Threat that bad people meet their destiny somewhere behind the sauna and never come back.

  4. Well, you know, it does not compare as they do not have saunas in Sweden. They only have bastu, and it is not comparable inquality or numbers!

  5. These were not said by Finns, or at least they were translated incorrectly. They never call it ” the sauna”, just ” sauna. For example, a Finn would say “A woman looks her most beautiful after sauna.” no the.

  6. We have 2 sauna’s here at home. One for summer use and the other in basement of our house. We use our saunas every day and either swim or shower after. Sauna to me is addictive.

  7. Yep, there are two countries that don’t have saunas, but have invented their own word for it, so as not to give credit to where it belongs… Sweden and Russia, both dear neighbours Finland has been part of in the past. ;D

  8. Löylyä lissää

    Sauna on elämän onnea varten, sauna on lahjana jumalatarten.
    Löylyä lissää, löylyä lissää, löylyä lissää kiukaaseen! Nakatkaas löylyä lissää, täähän ei tunnu missään! Löylyä lissää, löylyä lissää, löylyä lissää kiukaaseen.

    Saunasta kuuluu se vastan hutke, siellä se lähtee seljästä kutke. Löylyä lissää…
    Saunassa tehty on kuninkaita, herroja suuria, ruhtinaita. Löylyä lissää…
    Saunassa käydään lauantaina, silloin ei arvot ja panssarit paina. Löylyä lissää…
    Saunassa siististi kylpeä pittää, tuhmuutta tehdä ei saa siellä mittään! Löylyä lissää…
    Saunassa paikat ne pannaan kuntoon, mustaa ei jää edes omatuntoon. Löylyä lissää…
    Saunassa ei pidä pittää kiirett’, saunass’ on oltava hiljaa kuin hiiret. Löylyä lissää…
    Ei sinun myös pidä nahkaasi polttaa, kiukaalle heittää viinaa ja oltta! Löylyä lissää…
    Saunasta löydät paikan sä parhaan, luuletpa tulleesi Eedenin tarhaan. Löylyä lissää…
    Siinä on riemua, rauhaa ja rattoo, lauteilla koipes kun nostat sä kattoo’. Löylyä lissää…
    Hangata muista sä naapuris selkää, jäähyllä käyntiä myös älä pelkää! Löylyä lissää…
    Sanat Reino Palmroth, joka esiintyi nimimerkeillä Palle ja Reino Hirviseppä.

  9. And the best political agreements were born in a sauna with lots of Koskenkorvaa: Remember president Kekkonen!

  10. “Kun soivat kiukaan mustat urut, unohtuvat arjen surut!” = As you hear the black sauna stove organ playing, you forget all your sorrows of everyday life… This is so true! When you throw some water on the stones of sauna stove, you hear the hissing sound of evaporating water… it is one of the most relaxing sounds there is on this earth!

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