Massage can have both physical and psychological benefits.
It can help with stress, physical discomfort, muscle tension, blood circulation, stress, headaches and more.
Beyond that, a massage can produce feelings of caring, connection, and comfort – whether with yourself (self-massage), or another person.
Facial massages, for example, can increase blood flow to the skin. And generally speaking, massages allow the body’s skin to absorb the nutrients in an oil or cream more easily, while also helping to reduce the build-up of dead skin cells.
Such exfoliation tightens pores and improves the skin’s texture.
Oil or lotion is important in many types of massage for reducing friction with your skin. Body oils are lightweight and will not leave you feeling sticky or gooey.
They allow your hands, or the other person’s hands, to glide seamlessly over your body.
Beyond that, body oils can soften the skin. Plus they usually smell lovely, for added relaxation.
It is important to note that body oils are different to essential oils, which are direct and pure extracts from plants and seeds.
A body oil normally consists of a carrier oil, with essential oils added, as well as other enriching substances.
No doubt a partner, professional, friend, or other person can provide you with a massage.
But sometimes, when you are at home and your legs hurt, or you feel like a little self-care and relaxation, and a self-massage is the way to go.
One of the best massages you can give yourself is to the neck and upper chest area. You can do this massage sitting up if you prefer, and it is great for relieving stress.
Start by using all eight finger tips and pressing down on the line of your collar bone, and repeat ten times.
Cup your hands and move them down the back sides of your neck and along your shoulders. Put your fingers in a Vulcan hand salute v-shape, and then your fingers on either sides of your ears, then move them down along the sides of your chin.
Similarly, you can give yourself a really relaxing face massage. These are especially helpful when you are struggling to sleep.
Start out by using a lot of pressure then gradually move to very light strokes. Trace the features of your face. Put the pads of your fingers in a line down the middle of your forehead and move outwards towards your hairline. Do a similar movement under your eyes. Press down around ten times on the pressure point between your eyebrows.
You can use just one body oil, or you can mix and combine, or use different oils and scents as you go along – it is totally up to you.
Lavender oil is great for feeling calm (and sleepy). We sell Dr Organic Lavender Sleep Therapy Body Oil.
This oil, beyond the soothing smell, is also moisturising. For best results, apply it sparingly to the skin before going to bed. Wait until your skin is touch dry (i.e. the oil has been absorbed) before moving around.
This body oil can be used anywhere on the body, and includes beneficial and natural ingredients such as almond oil, chamomile flower oil, and jojoba seed oil.
Almond oil is great for skin hydration. It can be used in babies (babies really love a gentle massage). It is highly recommended to consult a qualified aromatherapist or healthcare professional prior to use on babies.
Almond oil is absorbed fast, making it intensely nourishing. Try Weleda Almond Soothing Facial Oil.
It is fragrance free, and contains plum kernel oil as well. It helps to reduce skin irritation and can double as a make-up remover.
Coconut has a nice aroma and contains various fatty acids and vitamins which help the skin stay nourished.
Because coconut oil is solid at room temperature, you should place a spoonful or so in your palms and warm it up until it is a liquid and you can use it.
Try Vita Coco Coconut Oil. It is extra virgin and organic, and great for both skin and hair hydration.