Therapeutic Massage Oil: Top Picks Reviewed

therapeutic massage oil

A therapeutic massage enhanced with the right oil can provide immense relief after a stressful day. Massage oils offer benefits like relieving muscle tension, nourishing skin, and enhancing the massage experience via aromatherapy. When shopping for massage oil, consider the ingredients, aroma, viscosity, and skin suitability. High-quality oils absorb well and leave skin smooth. Follow our tips to choose the perfect therapeutic massage oil to elevate your massage.

The Many Benefits of Massage Oils

Using the right massage oil makes a difference. Benefits include:

  • Relieves muscle tension and soreness
  • Improves circulation
  • Provides skin antioxidants and nutrients
  • Deeply moisturizes skin
  • Aromatherapy enhances massage

Key Factors When Selecting a Massage Oil

Consider these factors when choosing a therapeutic massage oil:

  • Carrier oils like jojoba, coconut, almond
  • Essential oils for aroma like lavender, eucalyptus
  • Oil viscosity impacts absorption
  • Hypoallergenic oils if sensitive skin
  • Prefer plant-based natural ingredients

Ready to try therapeutic massage oils? Here are top-rated options on Amazon:

  1. Majestic Pure Sweet Almond Oil
  2. Handcraft Blends Relaxing Massage Oil
  3. Maple Holistics Jojoba Oil
  4. Natural Riches Eucalyptus Oil
  5. Naturoil Warming Muscle Relief Oil

Do-it-Yourself: Make Your Own Custom Massage Oil Blends

Make custom oils at home with:

  • Carrier oils like almond, coconut, olive
  • Essential oils for aroma like lavender, eucalyptus

Do-it-Yourself: Make Your Own Custom Massage Oil Blends

Looking to save or create personalized blends? Whip up these easy DIY massage oil recipes:

  • Basic Recipe: 1/2 cup carrier oil 5-15 drops essential oil

Mix oils in a dark bottle. Store unused portion properly. Customize by playing with scents!

  • Stress Relief Blend: 1/2 cup almond oil 5 drops lavender oil 3 drops Roman chamomile oil
  • Muscle Soothing Blend: 1/2 cup jojoba oil 5 drops eucalyptus oil 3 drops peppermint oil
  • Energizing Citrus Blend: 1/2 cup grapeseed oil 2 drops lemon oil 2 drops grapefruit oil 1 drop cinnamon oil
  • Romantic Sensual Blend: 1/2 cup coconut oil 3 drops ylang ylang oil 2 drops rose oil

Explore different oil combinations to create your own custom therapeutic blends!

Carrier Oils: The Foundation of Great Massage Oils

Carrier oils make up the base of therapeutic massage oils. They allow the hands to glide smoothly over the skin and also impart moisturizing and skin-nourishing properties. Here are some top carrier oils for massage:

  • Sweet Almond Oil: Sweet almond oil has a light texture that absorbs readily without clogging pores. It is suitable for all skin types and contains vitamin A, B and E to nourish the skin.
  • Coconut Oil: The tropical scent of coconut oil comes from fatty acids that moisturize and soften skin. It absorbs well without leaving excess oil behind. Coconut oil’s antioxidant properties also help fight free radicals.
  • Jojoba Oil: Jojoba oil closely mimics the natural oils produced by the skin. It penetrates deeply to moisturize while delivering essential vitamins and minerals to revitalize the skin.
  • Olive Oil: The antioxidant vitamins A and E in olive oil provide deep moisturization for dry, flaky skin. Olive oil forms a protective layer to seal in moisture. It also has anti-inflammatory benefits.
  • Grapeseed Oil: A light, non-greasy oil, grapeseed gets absorbed into the skin fast without leaving an oily residue behind. It contains linoleic acid to restore moisture and improve skin tone.

When shopping for carrier oils, consider your skin type. Dry skin benefits from thicker oils like olive or coconut, while oily skin loves fast-absorbing grapeseed or jojoba oil. Also check for organic, unrefined oils which retain the most nutrients.

Harnessing the Power of Essential Oils

Essential oils give massage oils their aromatic quality. When inhaled, these potent plant oils provide physical and psychological benefits. Here are tips for safely using essential oils:

  • Dilute properly in a carrier oil before use
  • Do a patch test to check for allergic reactions
  • Avoid photosensitizing oils before sun exposure
  • Combine oils with complementary therapeutic properties
  • Store essential oils properly away from light and heat
  • Use less than recommended may reduce benefits

Popular essential oils like lavender, eucalyptus, peppermint and lemongrass relax muscles, relieve pain and calm the mind. Citrus oils like grapefruit, lemon and bergamot provide an invigorating sensory experience. Explore different singular oils or create custom blends to suit your needs.

Viscosity: Balancing Absorbency and Glide

Viscosity refers to an oil’s thickness. Oils with low viscosity absorb quickly into the skin, while higher viscosity oils sit on the surface longer. The best massage oils balance adequate glide with optimal absorption.

Low Viscosity Oils: Grapeseed, sweet almond, apricot kernel

Medium Viscosity Oils: Jojoba, avocado, olive, rosehip

High Viscosity Oils: Coconut, sesame, almond

The skin benefits differently from lighter versus heavier oils. Dry skin needs thicker oils for intense hydration, while oily skin benefits from fast absorbing thin oils. Try oils of varying viscosity to find one offering optimal glide and moisturization. You can also blend thin and thick oils.

Ready to Reap the Benefits? Top Massage Oils on Amazon

Want to buy an amazing therapeutic massage oil? Check out these top-rated options on Amazon:

1. Majestic Pure Sweet Almond Oil

This light, nutrient-rich sweet almond oil nourishes skin while relieving muscle soreness. The clean texture absorbs easily without greasiness.

2. Handcraft Blends Muscle Relief Oil

With ginger, bergamot, and almond oil, this oil eases muscle aches while leaving skin nourished and hydrated. The aroma is subtly tropical.

3. Maple Holistics Cold-Pressed Jojoba Oil

100% pure golden jojoba oil provides deep moisturization similar to the body’s natural oils. It tackles dryness, acne, and sunburn.

4. Natural Riches Eucalyptus Massage Oil

Analgesic eucalyptus oil blended with peppermint and lemongrass alleviates muscle and joint pain for a refreshing massage.

5. Naturoil Fast Pain Relief Warming Oil

Wintergreen and camphor create a warming sensation that targets sore muscles. Jojoba, grapeseed, and olive oils hydrate skin.

Experience the Healing Power of Massage Oils

High quality therapeutic massage oils eliminate friction while providing smooth glide for a soothing massage. Carrier oils nourish and moisturize the skin while essential oils provide aromatherapy benefits. With the right viscosity, absorbency and ingredients selected for your needs, massage oils enhance muscle and mind alike. Relax, rejuvenate and indulge with these natural oils.

Getting the Most Out of Your Massage Oil Experience

Therapeutic massage oils offer remarkable benefits, but you can optimize your experience with these tips:

Mind the Dilution – Only use a 2-3% concentration of essential oils in your massage oil. Excessive amounts may cause irritation. – For a 1 oz carrier oil bottle, add just 12-18 drops of essential oil for safe dilution.

Do a Patch Test – Before full body application, do a patch test of the diluted oil on your arm to check for any allergic reaction.

Use Proper Massage Technique – Effleurage strokes work well with low viscosity oils, while petrissage grasping motions maximize thicker oil’s effects.

Cleanse Skin First – Remove any dirt, oil, and impurities from skin before massage so the oil can fully absorb and nourish.

Regulate TemperatureWarm oils are great in winter. During summer, place bottle in the fridge for a cooling effect.

Stay Hydrated – Drink water before and after massage to boost circulation and optimize delivery of the oil’s nutrients.

Shower Post-Massage – This helps remove excess oil from skin and clear pores to prevent any clogged pores or acne.

Moisturize Afterward – Apply a light moisturizer post-shower to lock in the hydration benefits from the massage oil.

Listen to Your Body – Note any irritation or discomfort during massage and adjust technique or oil accordingly to maximize benefits.

By personalizing dilution amounts, massage motions, temperature, hydration, and post-massage care, you can enhance absorption, glide, and overall therapeutic effects. Follow these pro tips for massage oil success!

Targeting Tight Muscles with Massage Oils

No matter your activity level, tight muscles plague us all. Massage oils can provide targeted relief to problem areas. Follow these tips:

Lower Back:

The lower back commonly accumulates tension from poor posture, overexertion, and constant bending. Use circular kneading motions with eucalyptus or peppermint oil to loosen up this area.


The weight of carrying heavy bags combined with hunching over computers tightens shoulder muscles. Lavender, rosemary, and marjoram oils relax the shoulders.


Craning the neck to look at phones and computers strains cervical muscles. Apply cold compressed jojoba oil and gently glide up and down the neck to release tension.


Calves tighten from overuse when walking, running, or regularly wearing heels. Roll a tennis ball over calves after massaging warm olive oil into this area.


Gripping weights, tools, and handles tightens forearm muscles. Rub arnica or thyme oil on forearms using clockwise circular motions to alleviate soreness.

Targeting specific tight, overworked muscle groups with the right massage oils and techniques provides rapid relief. Listen to your body and address problem areas proactively.

Best Essential Oils for Relaxation

Incorporating certain essential oils into your massage oil can promote deep relaxation through aromatherapy. Each essential oil boasts its own therapeutic effects. Here are some of the top choices for relaxation:

  • Lavender: Lavender has a sweet, floral scent that induces calmness and eases anxiety. It’s excellent for distressing.
  • Roman Chamomile: This oil has an apple-like aroma that alleviates anger, irritability, and nervous tension to promote inner peace.
  • Ylang Ylang: This oil reduces anxiety, grief, and nervousness thanks to its mildly spicy, floral scent. It boosts mood and well-being.
  • Clary Sage: With its earthy, herbal aroma, clary sage oil helps unwind the mind from stress and emotional burnout while fighting depression.
  • Sweet Marjoram: This warm, woody oil relieves anxiety, restlessness, and emotional trauma. It comforts the mind.
  • Jasmine: The rich, floral scent of jasmine inspires confidence and optimism while busting stress and frustration.

Add a combination of these oils in optimal dilution to your massage oil or diffuser to enjoy relaxation benefits. You’ll be calm and renewed in no time.

Best Essential Oils for Pain Relief

Along with promoting relaxation, selecting the right essential oils can provide natural pain and inflammation relief. The most effective choices include:

  • Lavender: This versatile oil alleviates pain from sprains, headaches, and joint/muscle pain through its soothing, anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Peppermint: Menthol gives peppermint analgesic effects that relieve sore muscles, headaches, and arthritis pain when used topically or inhaled.
  • Eucalyptus: This strongly scented oil offers muscle, joint, and nerve pain relief as well as reducing stiffness and swelling thanks to its anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Marjoram: Marjoram oil eases muscle spasms, arthritis pain, headaches, and sprains. It calms painful joints and tension.
  • Thyme: Thyme oil boosts circulation while reducing arthritis, muscle, and rheumatic pain. It also speeds up healing.
  • Rosemary: Topical use of rosemary oil provides relief from arthritis, sore muscles, headaches, and circulation problems causing pain.

When creating massage oil blends, carefully combine complementary essential oils that target the type of pain relief you want to achieve. With regular use, you’ll gain their analgesic benefits.

Essential Oils to Boost Energy and Wakefulness

Not all massage oils need to sedate and calm! Some situations call for invigoration to give you an energy boost. Try these stimulating essential oils:

  • Grapefruit: With its sharp, citrusy aroma, grapefruit oil uplifts mood, boosts alertness and reduces fatigue.
  • Lemongrass: This grassy, citrus oil battles exhaustion while energizing and refreshing the mind.
  • Bergamot: This oil’s crisp, citrus-floral scent reduces anxiety and stress while providing an energizing lift.
  • Rosemary: Rosemary’s herbaceous, woodsy fragrance stimulates the senses to enhance focus and fight mental fatigue.
  • Cardamom: With its spicy-sweet aroma, cardamom oil combats depression, mental fog, and sluggishness for improved vivacity.
  • Cinnamon: This warming oil boosts brain function and alertness while reducing mental and physical exhaustion.

Use these energizing essential oils singly or in invigorating blends. Just a few deep whiffs while getting a massage can perk you up!

Essential Oils for Romance

Creating an intimate ambiance is important for a romantic massage experience. The right essential oils can set the mood for relaxation and connection. Some excellent options include:

  • Ylang Ylang: This floral oil reduces anxiety and stress between partners. It also has aphrodisiac effects to increase intimacy.
  • Jasmine: The rich, sweet floral scent of jasmine inspires romance and passion. It is uplifting and sensual.
  • Rose: Rose oil promotes openness and vulnerability, bringing partners closer together emotionally and physically.
  • Sandalwood: With its musky, woody aroma, sandalwood oil boosts libido and desire. It has natural aphrodisiac properties.
  • Bergamot: This citrus oil uplifts mood and provides an energetic, yet romantic ambiance perfect for a couples massage.

Create a customized sensual blend and let the aromas envelop you. A massage with these oils facilitates relaxation, closeness and romance.

Safety Guide for Using Essential Oils

Essential oils offer remarkable therapeutic benefits, but need proper handling. Follow this safety guide when using them:

  • Dilute oils in a carrier oil before use. Using undiluted oil on skin can cause irritation.
  • Do a patch test on a small area of skin before full body use to check for allergic reactions.
  • Avoid excessive sun exposure when using photosensitizing citrus oils like grapefruit, lemon or bergamot.
  • Use only mild oils and minimal dilution for children and elderly individuals.
  • Never ingest essential oils unless under the guidance of an aromatherapy practitioner.
  • Use caution when diffusing oils if you have respiratory issues like asthma. Discontinue use if any breathing issues arise.
  • Keep oils out of reach from children and pets. If accidentally ingested, seek medical help.
  • When pregnant, only use oils recommended as safe for pregnancy. Avoid questionable oils.
  • Store oils properly in dark glass bottles, away from heat, light or oxygen to maintain potency.

By dilution, testing for allergies, and using precautions, essential oils can be incorporated into massage safely. Monitor your body’s response and discontinue use if any irritation develops.

After-Massage Care for Glowing Skin

Your massage oil routine doesn’t end when the massage does. Proper aftercare optimizes the benefits for your skin. Follow these tips:

  • Rinse Off: Use a warm washcloth to gently wipe off excess oil. Avoid harsh scrubbing.
  • Hydrate: Apply a light, non-comedogenic moisturizer to retain moisture benefits.
  • Cleanse: Use a gentle cleanser before bed to prevent clogged pores without stripping skin.
  • Exfoliate:Twice a week, exfoliate to reveal radiant skin by removing dead cells and oil buildup.
  • Sunscreen: Because oils increase sun sensitivity, apply SPF 30+ sunscreen the morning after a massage.
  • Hydrate: Continue drinking water to flush out toxins, hydrate skin and enhance circulation.
  • Relax: Take time to lounge and allow your body to integrate the benefits from the massage and oils.

By caring for your skin after a massage, you’ll wake up to a healthy, dewy glow. Don’t let your efforts go to waste and pamper your skin after your massage.

Storing Massage Oils Correctly

To retain the potency of your therapeutic massage oils, proper storage is key:

  • Use dark glass bottles to limit light exposure which degrades oils.
  • Ensure bottles are airtight to prevent oxidation from air contact.
  • Store in cool, dry places away from direct sunlight and heat sources.
  • Refrigeration can help extend shelf life but is not required.
  • Ideal storage temperature is below 68°F. Freezing is not recommended.
  • Shelf life depends on the oil but averages 1-2 years for unopened oils.
  • Opened oils have shorter shelf lives around 6 months to 1 year when stored correctly.
  • Check for changes in aroma, texture or color which indicate spoilage. Discard if oil goes bad.

Proper labeling of bottles with oil names and dates is also beneficial for organization. By managing light, temperature, air exposure, and storage duration, your precious oils will retain maximum therapeutic potency.

Achieving Deeper Massage Pressure

Sometimes knots demand deeper pressure for relief. Here are techniques to increase massage pressure naturally:

  • Use fists or forearms instead of fingers or hands for larger surface area.
  • Position your body so weight transfers through your forearm onto muscles.
  • For small areas, use fingertips, knuckles or thumbs to focus pressure.
  • Try a massage tool like a Theracane to isolate pressure on tender spots.
  • Have the recipient flex the muscle being massaged to allow access to deeper tissues.
  • Use cross-fiber strokes moving perpendicular to muscle fiber direction.
  • Target specific trigger points with ischemic compression, holding constant pressure.
  • Combine stretching with kneading techniques to reach deeper muscles.

Always communicate with the recipient and adjust pressure based on their comfort level. Deeper pressure can provide relief when done safely and correctly.

Best Massage Techniques for Relaxation

Here are some of the most relaxing massage techniques to incorporate:

  • Effleurage: Light, gliding strokes to warm up muscles.
  • Petrissage: Kneading motions to relieve muscle tension.
  • Friction: Small, deep circular movements on knots and aches.
  • Tapotement: Rhythmic tapping to stimulate and energize.
  • Rocking: Gentle swaying motions that calm the nervous system.
  • Passive Stretching: Slowly stretching limbs and muscles.
  • Swedish Massage: Combines effleurage, petrissage, friction and tapotement.
  • Warm Stones: Heated smooth stones provide a deeply soothing massage.

Focus on slow, rhythmic movements using moderate pressure. Warm oils and warming stones also promote relaxation. Combine techniques to cover different muscle needs.

Prepping Skin for a Therapeutic Massage

Getting your skin ready ensures you gain the full benefits from therapeutic massage oils. Follow these pre-massage skin prep tips:

  • Cleanse skin to remove impurities so oils can fully absorb and nourish.
  • Exfoliate 2-3 times a week to remove dead skin cells and smooth texture.
  • Shave 12-24 hours prior to massage any area that needs it.
  • Use a body scrub to buff away dullness and hydrate skin.
  • Avoid heavy moisturizers or lotions that create a barrier limiting oil absorption.
  • Dry brushing boosts circulation preparing muscles for massage.
  • Stretch before massage to enhance range of motion and muscle response.
  • Stay well-hydrated to allow oils to reach deep tissues and maximize effects.

Proper skin prep optimizes glide allowing your therapist to perform massage techniques with ease while enabling your skin and muscles to reap the full benefits.

Therapeutic Massage Oils can drastically enhance your massage experience

Whether it’s relieving muscle soreness, calming the mind, easing aches and pains or improving sleep, therapeutic massage oils can address top concerns with regular use. Let the healing scents and smooth glide of natural oils transport you.

Read Next: 11 Tips for What to Do After A Massage

Jeanette Lynn