A common question asked by first time floaters is whether they should float in a swimsuit, or completely naked. While we have a strong opinion regarding this, we'd like to preface our answer saying that each user should do what is comfortable for them. With that being said, our answer is that you should absolutely float nude.
Why You Should Float Naked
The first thing to be aware of is that float center rooms are private. They have locks on the door and nobody will be entering your room while you're floating. This alone should alleviate most people's concerns about floating naked. Don't worry, if you're still a bit hesitant about floating in the buff and would rather float with a swimsuit, we have suggestions for you:
- Guys: avoid loose and baggy board short style trunks. These have a tendency to float and flap around in the water. They can brush against your skin and cause a distraction. The drawstrings up front can also have this same effect. Instead, look for a tighter fitting style of trunk, or even better, look for swimming briefs.
- Ladies: you have things a bit easier in this category because ladies swimsuits are generally tighter fitting. Be cautious of swimsuits with drawstrings that may float around and brush against your skin during a float.
As mentioned above, any fabric floating in the water can cause a distraction to the floater. This is the main reason why floating with a swimsuit is discouraged. Most isolation tank users choose to float naked for this reason.
Let's Not Ruin Anything
Salt is corrosive and can easily ruin fabric and metals with extended exposure. This is of no concern if you're floating naked, as you should shower after you exit the float tank. But if you're floating with a swimsuit on, you should be aware that the high salinity of the tank can cause damage to the fabric of your swimsuit, as well as any metal clasps, buckles, or zippers. This can be alleviated by rinsing your swimsuit in water immediately after your float session. You should also let the swimsuit soak in water for 30 minutes to an hour after your float, just to ensure all residual salts have been removed from the fabric. You can then wash it like normal.
A less commonly discussed issue of floating in a swimsuit is the issue of laundry detergent residue entering the tank water and filter. Modern isolation tanks have powerful filters that can handle a small bit of detergent passing through, but the less exposure the better. Detergent in tank water causes premature wear of the filter membranes and may require early filter replacement.
Hopefully you've been able to make an informed decision about what to wear (or not wear) during your float session. Again, we strongly advise against wearing swimsuits in the tank and recommend that all people float nude.