We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Here’s our process.

Medical News Today only shows you brands and products that we stand behind.

Our team thoroughly researches and evaluates the recommendations we make on our site. To establish that the product manufacturers addressed safety and efficacy standards, we:
  • Evaluate ingredients and composition: Do they have the potential to cause harm?
  • Fact-check all health claims: Do they align with the current body of scientific evidence?
  • Assess the brand: Does it operate with integrity and adhere to industry best practices?
We do the research so you can find trusted products for your health and wellness.
Was this helpful?

Cold water therapy reportedly has various benefits, such as boosting circulation and reducing inflammation. Cold plunge tubs allow people to practice this therapy at home.

A cold plunge tub is a product that people use for a type of cryotherapy treatment called cold water therapy, or cold water immersion.

Cold water therapy is most effective for muscle recovery when a person immerses themselves in 50–59°F (10–15°C) water for 10–15 minutes. Cold water therapy is more effective if a person does it immediately after exercise.

Cold plunge tubs offer a convenient way to practice cold water immersion therapy at home. These tubs are often around the size of a bathtub. Some products have temperature control, whereas others may require manually adding ice until it reaches the correct temperature.

Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.

Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more.

The following table compares the cold plunge tubs in this article on price, temperature, and more.

Outdoor or indoorDimensionsSetup
The Plungefrom $4,99049ºF (4°C)both67 x 43 x 24 in or 73 x 47 x 27 infill with a hose
Ice Barrelaround $1,200user determinedoutdoor42 x 31 x 25 inadd water and ice manually
The Odinfrom $6,90032ºF (0°C)both51.2 x 49.2 x 28 infill with water
G Ganenfrom around $55user determinedboth25 x 5 x 4 inadd water and ice manually
Renu Therapy$9,69936ºF (2°C)both36 x 24 x 30 infill with a hose
WEY&FLYaround $62user determinedindoor30 x 30 x 26 inadd water and ice manually
BlueCubefrom $24,999.9936ºF (2°C)both72.5 x 48.5 x 28.5 infill with a hose
Tru Grit$999.99user determinedboth60 x 30 x 24 inadd water and ice manually
Muelleraround $349user determinedboth59 x 33.4 x 17.7 ininflate and fill with water and ice
Polar Monkeys$4,59039ºF (3.8°C)both67 x 31.5 x 23.5 infill with a hose

Medical News Today chooses cold plunge tubs that fit the following criteria:

  • Price: MNT chooses tubs that fit a range of budgets.
  • Temperature: MNT chooses tubs that allow temperatures as low as freezing.
  • Portability: MNT ensures that there are portable tubs to choose from.
  • Capacity: MNT chooses tubs that are suitable to use by most people.
Was this helpful?

People may wish to consider the following when choosing a cold plunge tub:

  • Temperature: People may wish to consider how cold the water can be. Some tubs may reach temperatures as low as freezing.
  • Indoor or outdoor use: Cold plunge tubs tend to be around the same size as a bathtub. People with limited space and access to outdoors may prefer a tub that they can place on a deck.
  • Vertical or horizontal: Some cold plunge tubs are similar in shape to bathtubs, allowing people to extend their legs in front of them. Others are barrel-shaped, and people will need to climb in and sit while crossing their legs to fully submerge themselves.
  • Storing the tub away: Some tubs are inflatable, which means people can store them away after use. Those who live in smaller spaces may prefer these types of tubs to those that they cannot put away.
  • Fill type: Some tubs require people to manually add water and ice to reach their desired temperature. Others have a chiller that automatically sets the temperature.

Supporters of cold water therapy state that it can boost the immune system, improve circulation, burn calories, decrease stress, and improve libido. However, there is very little scientific evidence to support most of these claims.

A 2022 review of 104 studies found that there is some evidence that cold water therapy may increase the body’s tolerance to stress and respiratory infections, and improve cardiovascular function, mental health, and insulin sensitivity.

Cold water immersion therapy is also effective as a recovery tool after intensive exercise, according to a 2022 meta-analysis. This therapy may decrease muscle soreness and improve muscle power and perceived recovery 24 hours after exercise.

Cold water can cause a cold shock response. People who have a cold shock response may experience:

  • tachycardia
  • gasping
  • uncontrollable hyperventilation
  • vasoconstriction in the extremities
  • hypertension

Cold shock responses can cause cardiac arrhythmia in people without any health conditions. People who have a heart condition, those who are pregnant, or anyone with a health condition that may become worse if the heart does not beat regularly, should contact a healthcare professional before using these products.

Alternative to cold plunge tubs, some individuals may prefer to simply immerse their faces in icy water. Anecdotally, this may be beneficial for the skin, reducing inflammation, and promoting a refreshed feeling. However, there is no research to suggest whether these cold water facials are beneficial.

Additionally, some people may prefer to have a cold shower. A cold shower may have a variety of benefits including:

  • increased alertness
  • immune system strengthening
  • improved mood
  • quicker cooling
  • improved physical recovery
  • pain reduction

Find out more about cold showering benefits here.

A person may also wish to try an ice massage. Using an ice cube wrapped in a cloth, a person can guide this over any achy or painful areas in circular motions. This may provide more targeted relief to specific areas.

However, there is very limited research to suggest that cold submersion is beneficial.

Here we answer some common questions about cold plunge tubs.

It is possible to do a cold plunge in a bathtub. However, manufacturers typically do not design bathtubs to withstand freezing temperatures.

People can choose to purchase a bathtub-style or barrel-style cold plunge tub. It is important to ensure there is enough space for a person to submerge their body or specific body parts fully.

A cold plunge tub with in-built sanitation generators is easier to maintain than tubs that a person must drain and clean independently.

This will depend on an individuals preferences and needs. Some may need a cold plunge with a space-saving design or one that can hold both hot and cold temperatures.

According to a 2022 review, cold water exposure may have a variety of health benefits, including:

  • increase the body’s tolerance to stress and respiratory infections
  • improve cardiovascular function
  • benefit mental health
  • improve insulin sensitivity

However, the study does not specify that a cold plunge tub has these benefits. A person may experience the same benefits from a cold shower, winter swimming, or a cold water facial.

A cold plunge tub with a wider dimension measurement may be best for individuals over six feet in height. Some companies offer different size options and would advise taller people to choose the larger model.

Cold plunge tubs are a convenient way to explore the benefits of cold water therapy at home. There are many products available to buy online at different price points.

It is important to consult with a healthcare professional before using a cold plunge tub if a person has a health condition, including a heart condition, or is pregnant.