Few clients are likely to say, or perhaps even realize, that one of the reasons they continue to go back to the same massage therapist or bodyworker repeatedly is because he or she uses the highest quality massage cream, has the softest sheets and most comfortable table, plays the perfect music at just the right volume, or sets the candles and lights in such a way that it adds even more to the experience.

These details may seem minor, but truly they can compile to create an unforgettably satisfying massage therapy or bodywork session. When clients leave such a session, they may feel extra pampered and the effects of the touch therapist’s techniques may sink in even easier.

Of course, there is no doubt that the heart of any massage therapy or bodywork session is the practitioner, from her soothing hands and skill set to her peaceful demeanor and comforting presence. However, with the help of the right minor details, even the most advanced massage therapist or bodywork can find a way to further enhance each session.

One of these seemingly small aspects of massage therapy and bodywork is massage cream, and it actually serves quite an important role in the session. Massage cream is the one thing between the hands of the practitioner and the skin of each client. It touches both people directly, and therefore, should be a high-quality substance. Take a look at your massage cream and the ways in which you use it to make sure it measures up.

For starters, you may want to do your homework on the ingredients your massage cream contains, where these ingredients are from and how they are processed. Many massage therapists and bodyworkers, along with their clients, prefer to stick with natural ingredients whenever possible, especially when it comes to such products as massage cream, which is absorbed right into the skin of both client and practitioner.

If you are among the large group of touch therapists that strongly prefers a massage cream to be as natural as possible, then try to make sure the one you are using, or the one you are going to purchase next, does not contain any synthetic or artificial elements, including fragrances, colors and preservatives.

If respect for the environment is another important part of your value system, then you might also want to do your homework on where the ingredients in your massage cream come from and how they are processed and manufactured. If you take the time, you should be able to find a massage cream that contains nearly, if not all, natural ingredients that were raised, processed and manufactured using methods that do not harm any ecosystem.

A third and equally crucial component of selecting a massage cream that can enhance your whole practice is how well the massage cream works in the session room. The right massage cream should almost help you to perform your chosen techniques—and keep those clients coming back again and again.

–Brandi Schlossberg