The benefits of aromatherapy massage include both the benefits of massage therapy and of using essential oils, inhaling and absorbing them through your skin. (See how aromatherapy works.)
Anyone can add essential oils to a massage oil and call the experience an aromatherapy massage. But you will get the best results, and avoid unwanted side effects, from a massage therapist who has aromatherapy training that taught both the benefits and risks of essential oils.
While adverse reactions, such as itchiness, redness, rash, swelling, and hives, are not common, they do happen. The therapist should ask about your health conditions, medications, sensitivities, and allergies, as certain essential oils may be inappropriate for you.
To get the most benefit from a massage using essential oils, you want a therapist who knows how to make a personalized blend of oils based both on your preferences and the desired effects—whether that's to relieve minor ailments, release stress and tension, or pamper you with an aromatic beauty treatment.
To gauge a massage therapist's knowledge, AromaWeb suggests asking the therapist to define aromatherapy and explain to you what essential oils and cold-pressed vegetable oils are. You can also ask about the therapist's training and the specific products used.
Aromatherapy massage or Swedish massage? Swedish massage techniques are commonly used to do an aromatherapy massage, although massage therapists may use other techniques. Ask if you want to know!
Both aromatherapy and massage can have the following benefits:
You can use many different essentials oils for massage.
Generally, you want to use a one to two percent dilution for a full-body aromatherapy massage, though you might use three percent for specific painful or injured areas.
Blending a massage oil starts with knowing which benefits of aromatherapy massage you want to achieve. Relaxing or stimulating? Relieve muscle pain or support the immune system? The possible ways to combine oils are almost endless.
You can blend essential oils for massage therapy with any high-quality, unscented massage oil. Almond oil is a popular choice, but you can also use other carrier oils.
General directions: For small amounts of massage oil you will use immediately, blend the essential oils and carrier oil in any small glass container. If you make a large quantity of oil, use a tightly capped bottle, and shake well before each use.
You can double, triple, or more any of the following aromatherapy blends for massage.
To reduce feelings of stress:
To relieve anxious feelings:
To relieve fatigue:
Immune-supporting massage blend:
For an invigorating massage:
To uplift mood:
For general muscle aches:
For sore joints:
For aching, sore legs:
For sore or cramped muscles:
Before-Exercise Massage Oil
After-Exercise Massage Oil
Also see essential oil blends for muscles.
Sources for Aromatherapy Massage Oil Blends
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