Massage therapist have been using a variety of different oils, creams and even waxes to massage people for over 1000 years. When it comes to massage there are pros and cons to each type of massage oil, cream or wax.
Massage oil is a base oil that essential oils can be added to create aroma and different holistic effects on the body. We have previous looked at different essential oils in our other blogs – have a read and see which essential oils may be of benefit to you. The base oil will be either almond, grapeseed, soy or wheatgerm but there are many other oils that can be used as a base. Essential oils are added to the base oil to create a particular type of aroma like mixing a perfume and also different healing properties.
Using a base oil like wheatgerm will create a glide to the skin while moisturising. These oils do not soak straight into the skin and are used in smaller amounts. They create enough lubricant to massage a particular body part for a reasonable amount of time without having to add more oil. If there is body hair, more oil may be used to reduce friction and allow the masseur to apply pressure without pulling hairs.
Base oils have their own aroma which will not necessary be the best scent to stimulate the senses or create a relaxing affect. Masseur will mix essential oils into the base oil for a more relaxing and stimulating massage. These oils do soak into the skin and excess oil can be removed with a dry towel or lukewarm shower with shower gel.
Moisturising cream can be used for a massage but we have found this not to be the best massage lubricant. Moisturising cream is designed to soak into the skin and once applied will be absorbed making the glide needed for massage minimum. You can get an initial amount of massage glide with the cream especially when large amount of cream is applied. This means the massage area needs to be small and the body worked in very small areas. Massage oils allow you to go back to parts of the body previously massaged without applying more oil. Creams are great for moisturising the skin. Using moisturising cream can be expensive due to the amount of cream required.
We recommend using a massage oil or wax but if you are just focusing on a particular body part like the neck, feet or shoulders, moisturising cream can be used as you can apply more as required and work in these areas quickly and with ease.
Massage wax, Massage candle wax and coconut oil
Massage wax is a great massage oil substitute. The oil is in solid form meaning it stores well and cane be taken everywhere without the hassle of it leaking. The wax melts with the heat of the masseur’s hands and the body it is being applied to. Massage wax comes with essential oils already added and can be a great way to lubricate the body for a sensual and deep tissue massage.
Massage candles are an amazing indulgent oil for that special massage. The candle is used to set the mood in the room, slowly releasing essential oil aromas, then the melted wax is applied to the body, it is warm, moisturising and feels amazing. Like any massage wax it stays in oil form with body heat and can be reworked without applying more. The silky sensation is amazing and after effect is to die for. The candle wax leaves the skin feeling silky smooth and very plump.
Coconut oil is another great oil to use. It is solid at room temperature, so it is easy to transport and easy to find. The waxy solid melts with body heat and is absorbed slowly by the body as a moisturiser. See our blog going nutty for coconut oil. The oil is natural so no added chemicals and has its own sensual aroma. Coconut oil soaks in slowly which means like the massage oils allows the masseur to re-work muscle groups without applying more oil.
Every type of oil has its benefits, advantages and effect on the massage. Our Manchester or London Adonis masseur’s use a base oil with essential oils or coconut oil. Ask next time you book what blend we have created and the affects it has on the body, mind and soul.
By Zac in Manchester