Massages are an indulgent pastime, especially when they're done with some luxurious massage oil to let the tension slip right off your body. It is the perfect end to a long day. You’ll often feel much more relaxed after massaging all your pressure points with aromatic oil to soothe sore muscles. It's time to unwind with the best massage oils.
Massaging is the art of rubbing and kneading different parts of the body, back, legs, arms, shoulders and head. It helps aid relaxation, release muscle knots and ease tension. Oils are the best for massages because they're lightweight - so it doesn’t leave a sticky residue. This helps your hands glide across your body.
The best massage oils have longer-lasting skincare benefits. They’re deliciously scented, immaculately formulated, and leave your body feeling super soft and moisturised. Booking in for a massage is something we can all do, but if you fancy a little me-time at home, you can do the job yourself with the help of some massage oil.
Transport yourself to a tranquil spa with the best massage oils. These lot will lock in moisture and also add a touch of luxury to those tough days.
Why use massage oil?
Qualified beauty therapist, holistic therapist and massage therapist, Kirsty Mawhinney, said: “Oils are best for massage as they provide slip and glide without feeling heavy and sticky.
“Your hands want to be able to caress the contours of your body in one flowing motion. The aroma of an oil can have a subtle effect on the body, helping to boost your mood or provide a deep sense of calm. Try dry body brushing the skin prior to using an oil as this will help lift off dry skin and improve circulation in preparation for the nourishing oil.”
Meanwhile, Myrachle Ciupagea - founder of Myrachle Spa Rituals - said: "The best massage oils are those that excite your senses whilst making sure your wellbeing is looked after."
She also added: “You may be feeling exhausted and stressed. But your skin may also feel in need of repair and nourishment. Thankfully there are many ways you can make sure you’re doing the right self-care. I’d recommend choosing between body balms with a higher concentration of essential oils that effectively aid nourishment, skin repair and protection.
“With their unique rich texture and aromatic scent, body balms add a luxurious touch ideal for massage.”
Keep reading for the very best massage oils for every budget, scent preference, and level of hydration.
Related: The best foot spas for relaxing
The best massage oils to buy 2022
1. Gya Labs Soothing Massage Oil for Sore Muscles - Eucalyptus and Peppermint Oil for Pain Relief,
Blended with ylang-ylang and lavender, Gya Labs massage oil is the perfect nourishing liquid therapy to soothe skin and relieve aches. It has a sweet floral scent, while the subtle rosy notes from Rosewood and Rose Geranium make it the perfect massage oil. The formula includes organic Argan and Jojoba so the massage oil is ideal for moisturising dry skin and leaving you with the ultimate silky smooth supple skin. The massage oil is natural and non greasy, while it absorbs quickly without leaving an oily residue. A reviewer said, "I love this oil. I have become so used to it and the way it feels and smells on me that I end up using it every night before bed. "I use it around my neck, back shoulder blades and as soon as I put it on it just makes me feel so relaxed."
2. Clarins Contour Body Treatment Oil
This body treatment oil from Clarins helps to eliminate toxins, stimulate the skin and firm tissues. It's the best massage oil for body contouring with essential oils as well as detoxifying and smoothing the skin. The formula is made of natural goodness including 100% pure plant extracts of Broom, Geranium and Marjoram.The massage oil will leave your skin feeling firm and energised while the hazelnut oil locks in moisture. Clarins say that the treatment oil is an 'exhilarating treat for tired legs and feet!' It protects the body against dehydration while the charming scent instills a feeling of relaxation. A reviewer said, "I started using this a few years ago and love it. Love the smell and fluidity of the oil."I use it immediately after a shower while my skin is still damp, it goes much further that way. I have to say I use all of Clarins oils."
3. ESPA skincare Soothing Body Oil
This hydrating vegan body oil is perfect for a relaxing massage.The unique Soothing Signature blend which combines Myrrh's mellow notes with Sandalwood, Rose Geranium and Frankincense, eases the mind and de-stresses the body.The massage oil helps to restore tranquillity in the body while the anti-inflammatory properties of all three essential oils give the perfect boost. ESPA's massage oil is suitable for combination, dry, normal, oily and sensitive skin types - so it is one for everyone! A reviewer said, "Absolutely gorgeous. Sinks in beautifully, wonderful perfume and makes you feel really pampered. I have recommended it to all my friends."
4. Kiehl's Creme de Corps Nourishing Dry Body Oil
This nourishing dry body oil is the perfect massage oil for those with oily skin due to it's lightweight texture. With a subtle aroma of vanilla and almond, it's deliciously indulgent while the hydration it provides, will leave the skin feeling more soft, smooth and supple. It leaves the skin residue free while it's best applied after showering using the easy spray-on tool. The formula is enriched with squalane and grapeseed oil while the fast-absorbing product is most popular due to it's lightweight ingredients. A reviewer said, "Dry brush your body, take a shower, apply this great stuff, so relaxing! Silky smooth skin, not oily and absorbs quickly. It smells like vanilla almonds too - very nice!"
5. Pixi Rose Body Oil
This ultra-nourishing oil from Pixi is ideal if body acne or acne-prone skin are a concern as it rejuvenates, restores and renews skin's luminosity. Use in the AM and PM, by massaging two to three drops of the massage oil onto cleansed skin. The botanical blend - infused with youth-preserving oils as well as sweet almond, rosehip, jojoba, pomegranate seed, and rose geranium oils - nourish the complexion. For extra hydration, add 1 or 2 drops of this oil to your moisturiser before applying. Voila! A reviewer said, "I was dubious that the rose smell might be overpowering and off-putting but it's actually quite lovely." After using it, my skin feels smooth and it smells great! Definitely would purchase again."
6. Neal's Yard Jojoba Oil
This massage oil is reportedly so good that it's commonly used in spas.Jojoba oil restores moisture to dry skin and is particularly nourishing for dry and mature skin types. When used during a massage, jojoba wax helps to gently unclog pores and cleanse your skin. The massage oil leaves you with super soft skin while it's multi-functional with most customers also using it as a conditioning treatment oil for dry hair.A reviewer said, "Jojoba oil is the universal oil for skin and hair care. It cleanses skin and scalp, it moisturises skin and scalp, it nourishes skin and scalp and promotes skin and scalp health. "Jojoba Oil is also very stable and won't go rancid quickly like a lot of other oils as it's a liquid wax. It's brilliant and Neals Yard remedies Jojoba oil is of exceptional quality!"
7. Elemis Spa at Home Destress Massage Oil
Created by the skincare geniuses at Elemis, this sweet almond massage oil is a soothing body treatment you'll want to indulge in every day. With pure essential oils of rosewood, melissa, marjoram, geranium, rosemary, lavender and chamomile, the massage oil creates the most relaxing and nourishing treat. Not only good for your skin, this Elemis destress massage oil works wonders for your mind, body and soul too. Pour a small amount into the palms of your hands and really massage it in as the touch of this blend soothes the mind and melts any tension. The massage oil is free from parabens, SLS, SLES, DEA, mineral oils, artificial colours and silicones. A reviewer said, "Really nourishing body oil, it smells amazing too. I use it before I go to sleep, to help calm the mind."
8. L'Occitane Aromachologie Neutral Massage Body Oil
This L'Occitane massage oil is specifically formulated without a heavy fragrance - so you can customise it with your own essential oils - or, choose to go scent-free. Allowing you to create your own unique blend, this massage oil encourages you to have a personalised and relaxing moment in the comfort of your own home. The formula of the massage oil is rich and thick while it contains sweet almond oil to leave skin feeling lustrous. This massage oil helps to relax the senses and ease away tension. A reviewer said, "Expensive but good quality product."