Personal Experience Leads to Massage Cream Preferences, MASSAGE MagazineWhen you ask a seasoned massage therapist or bodyworker how he or she came to use a certain massage cream, the answers you receive are bound to vary. With so many different massage creams on the market, professional practitioners are selecting their preferred products using many different methods.

For quite a few massage therapists and bodyworkers, the beginning of one’s preferences when it comes to massage cream can be traced back to massage or bodywork school. During these years, up-and-coming practitioners are generally exposed to a few different massage creams, during classes, inside the school’s clinic and while accumulating hours of hands-on experience.

This early exposure to massage cream usually allows practitioners to begin forming their opinions as far as what they like and dislike about certain massage creams. For example, one massage therapist may realize she seems to work better when using a massage cream that offers a bit more glide, while another may find he enjoys using massage creams that contain natural essential oils.

As these practitioners graduate and enter the world of professional massage therapy and bodywork, they bring along these opinions about massage creams. Once they begin working on a regular basis, whether as independent practitioners or employees, their thoughts on massage creams may shift once again, as they are exposed to new kinds of clients and work environments.

For instance, a massage therapist who goes to work for an employer, such as a massage franchise, resort spa or medical clinic, will likely be presented with the facility’s preferred massage cream. At this point, he or she will then be exposed to a new massage cream and get to experience how well it works for various techniques.

For the bodyworker who graduates from school and enters into independent practice—or goes to work for an employer who allows the selection of one’s own preferred massage cream—the process will look a little different. This practitioner will most likely select a massage cream based on his or her experiences during school.

Either way, however, opinions and tastes in terms of massage cream are likely to change over the years, as professional massage therapists and bodyworkers gain more experience and insight that comes with consistent practice. Another reason one’s massage cream preferences may change over time could be because the techniques used in the session room may change over time as well.

As an example, a massage therapist may feel she has the perfect massage cream for the lighter relaxation massage she tends to practice on a regular basis. After taking a couple continuing education classes on a deep-tissue massage method, this practitioner may decide to begin offering this modality as well.

In doing so, she may realize the massage cream she has been using has too much glide for the deep-tissue work she now offers to her clients. In this case, her preferences may move toward a massage cream that offers more friction or stick and a little less glide.