One of the biggest benefits of using a massage cream as the primary lubricant in your massage therapy or bodywork practice is the fact that massage cream can be very versatile. With the right combination of friction and glide, the optimal massage cream can take you from deep and specific work to long and smooth strokes, all within the same session and without having to switch lubricants.

The ability to provide the right amount of “stick” for those deeper movements and modalities, along with the right amount of “slick” for those gliding strokes and techniques, is one of the key reasons so many professional massage therapists and bodyworkers seem to seek out a massage cream as the primary lubricant for their day-to-day practices.

However, it is important to realize that not all massage creams are created equal—and this is a good thing. The fact that there is diversity within this already versatile category of massage lubricants means that you should be able to find one or more massage creams that suits your hands-on techniques and modalities in the best-possible ways.

If you can, try to get a few samples of all kinds of massage creams, so you can feel firsthand exactly how different massage creams may differ from one another. What you are likely to find is that certain massage creams seem to have a bit more friction than glide, and vice versa.

The spectrum for massage creams is wide, and you will most likely find that the ratio of “stick” to “slick” varies from one massage cream to the other. In some massage creams, the difference may be barely noticeable, whereas you might be able to tell the minute you feel another massage cream that it offers way more friction or glide than others.

These differences among massage creams, both subtle and obvious, are the key reason most professional massage therapists and bodyworkers could benefit from trying out a variety of massage creams, preferably through free samples or another low- or no-cost method.

Another way to get to know the textures and benefits or drawbacks of certain massage creams is to ask around among your peers and colleagues in the massage therapy and bodywork field. Your fellow practitioners should be happy to share what they liked—or did not like—about specific massage creams.

This kind of information gathering can also be done via the Internet, by searching for reviews of the various massage creams and reading what other professional massage therapists and bodyworkers had to say about these products.

Equipped with a bit of knowledge about the texture and characteristics of the massage creams available, you should be able to make a wise and informed choice about which massage cream you want to bring on board as the primary lubricant for your practice.

Fortunately, even if you are not able to find a massage cream with the exact amount of friction and glide you were looking for, the simple act of using more or less of the massage cream should allow you to adjust this versatile lubricant as needed.