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Make your own massage oil

Written by Jacqui on July 31st, 2013.      0 comments

Massage oils are usually a blend of a couple of carrier oils, perfumed with massage
one or more essential oils which bring healing qualities as well as fragrance.
 
Almond oil and grapeseed oil are excellent bases. Start with one or both, and add smaller amounts of oils with intense moisturising or nourishing qualities.  Almond and grapeseed are both light oils, so you can choose between cold-pressed refined or cold-pressed organic. They all spread easily, and are full of goodness.
 
Below is a simple recipe to get you going. It’s more of a description, really.
Use what you’ve got, or order a gorgeous new oil or two – and maybe an exotic fragrance…

blue-bottles1. Choose a container
What are you going to put your massage oil in?
A new bottle with an elegant black lotion pump? Or a recycled Go Native bottle with a handmade label?
Or maybe you have a beautiful empty bottle in the back of the cupboard - I seem to collect blue glass ones. Brown or blue glass helps to protect your oil from the effects of light.

2. Blend the base
To make the base for 100ml of massage oil:
  • Start with 80ml of a light, smooth, spreadable oil such as almond, grapeseed, apricot kernel or peach kernel – or a mix of any of these.  (If you don’t have other oils you want to include, increase this to just under 100ml.)
3. Add other oils
  • Add 10ml of a rich or special oil: avocado, or macadamia, melted organic virgin coconut, or your current favourite (mine is kiwi seed oil).
  • There are many other oils that bring their own special qualities, so add 7-8ml of another oil, to make 97-98ml of blend. (You want to leave a little space for some fragrance.)
    Here are some possibilities:rosehips260
  • Argan oil: Helps to protect and regenerate the skin, leaving it soft and supple.
  • Blackcurrant seed oil: Include for its anti-inflammatory qualities – it will help to ease aches and pains.
  • Coconut oil: If you haven’t already, it’s hard to resist adding some gently melted organic virgin coconut oil. It is excellent for ‘glide’, and its aroma is evocative.
  • Hazelnut oil: At around 85% monounsaturated fatty acids (omega 7 and 9), it’s great in blends as it spreads easily and provides good lubrication.
  • Jojoba is wonderful in massage blends – it’s silky and nutritious and great for ‘glide’.
  • Rosehip oil: Our organic rosehip oils are full of nutrients to leave the skin feeling alive and cared for.
  • Sesame oil is widely used in the Ayurvedic tradition.
  • Sensitive skin? Add some soothing apricot kernel or peach kernel oil, if you haven’t already used it in your base.
  • Take a stroll though our carrier oils for more possibilities, or look through what you already have - but be sure to check for freshness.
 
3. Essential oils / Fragrance
A small amount of essential oil contributes both pleasurable aroma and healing qualities. Essential oils can work on two levels: The volatile perfume can soothe our emotions, and the non-volatile healing compounds can be absorbed by our skin.
 
One way of thinking about fragrance: What effect do you want?lemon
Sensuous:  Patchouli, rose, sandalwood, vetiver, amyris
Energising:  Citrus (lemon, tangerine, grapefruit, orange, mandarin), mint (peppermint, spearmint), rosemary
Relaxing:  Lavender, ylang ylang (sensuous too!), clary sage, bergamot
 
A note on woody, earthy fragrances: Traditional Indian sandalwood essential oil has become very rare and expensive, but there are other oils with similar qualities:  
lotion-pumpWhich oil – refined, cold pressed, organic?
In general, refined oils are clearer, lighter and less sticky – but they have lost some of the wide variety of valuable nutrients that are in a cold-pressed oil.
Oils from organically grown plants are likely to be more nutritious, and free of traces of pesticide residues.
So it’s a balancing act. For lighter oils (such as the ones suggested for the base), the organic, cold-pressed versions are great for massage.
Just keep in mind the basic idea of light, spreadable base oils, and smaller amounts of richer oils. And also remember that jojoba and organic virgin coconut are great for ‘glide’.
I’ve tried many combinations of these oils, and all of them worked. I think I can safely say it’s hard to go wrong! (Of course, this assumes you are using fresh, top-quality oils.)
Have fun!
 

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