The 21st Century Herbalist

DIY: Rose Massage Oils & 5 Must-Have Massage Tips

It’s week 2 of Rose Petal Month!  This week, I’m featuring two DIY massage oil recipes and 5 massage tips that bring you the only G-rated conversation on the internet about skin warmth and lubrication.  You can make these oils for yourself, or double the batch and make enough to give away as Valentine’s Day presents or bachelorette party favors.

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These all-natural massage oils use only pure oils that won’t clog your pores or leave you feeling greasy.  They harness the scent of rose petals, which is known for its ability to induce deep relaxation.

Romantic Rose & Sandalwood Massage Oil – Quick Method
Making massage oils directly from the herbs requires that you let herbs infuse in oil for several weeks.  As a quick alternative, you can use essential oil(s) made from the herb that you want the health and/or scent benefits from – in this case, rose petals.

You’ll Need:

  • 8 tbsp. apricot kernel oil OR grapeseed oil (you can also do a mix of 4 tbsp. each)
  • 2 vitamin E capsules
  • 3 drops sandalwood essential oil
  • 9-11 drops rose essential oil

Pour 4 tbsp. of your carrier oil (apricot or grapeseed) into a dark-colored 4 oz. bottle and add the essential oils.  Pierce the vitamin E capsules and squeeze them into the bottle.  Cap the bottle and shake well.  Add the remaining 4 tbsp. of carrier oil, recap the bottle and shake well to thoroughly combine and distribute the oils.  Store in a cool, dark location.

Deep Relaxation Rose Petal Massage Oil – Infusion Method

You’ll Need:

  • 2 cup, wide-mouth mason jar
  • 1 1/4 c. dried rose petals*
  • 1 1/4 c. grapeseed oil
  • 1 c. olive oil
  • 5 vitamin E capsules
  • wooden skewers
  • brown paper bag

Put the dried rose petals into the mason jar, then pour the grapeseed and olive oils over top.  Use a wooden skewer to poke and move the rose petals through the oil; this helps release any trapped air pockets.  Label the brown bag with the date (this is “day 1″ in the Infusion Schedule below).  Place the jar in the brown bag to block light and store in a cool location.  Follow this printable .

Massage Tips and Techniques:
There are so many different types and styles of massage that I simply can’t cover them all here, so below you’ll find 5 basic tips for giving your partner a soothing at-home massage.

1. Creating a mood and an ambiance.  Choose a warm, quiet location, either indoors or out, and make sure it’s someplace you won’t be disturbed.  Provide soft and gentle lighting by replacing lamp bulbs with pink soft-light bulbs or by lighting candles.  If you want to have music, select something with little to no singing and gentle, soothing instrumentation.

2. Breathing and centering. Have your partner lie down on a soft surface, either a sofa, bed or carpeted floor.  If you’re outside, have them lie down on a towel or blanket.  While they are lying on their back, with their arms at their sides, ask them to take 3 deep, cleansing breaths through their nose.  Have them focus on the movement of the breath from the diaphragm, up through the lungs and to the nose.  Breathe with them…in and out…in and out…in and out.

3. The sheet isn’t just for modesty.  If you’ve ever had a massage, you may know that a masseuse will cover the client with a sheet as they massage different parts of the body.  Modesty reasons aside, this also helps to keep the client warm. Warmth is an essential element to any massage because muscles need warmth to relax.  Keep this in mind as you give your partner a massage and cover them with a sheet or light blanket.

4. Speaking of warmth, you can warm the massage oil by pouring a quarter size drop into the palm of your hand.  Then rub your hands together, covering your palms and fingers to ensure good lubrication between your hands and your partner’s skin once you start massaging.  Keep the massage oil nearby so you can easily replenish as needed.

5. Under pressure: the yin and yang of it.  How much pressure do you use?  When giving a massage, your first instinct is probably to use the same amount of pressure that you would like.  This isn’t always the case.  In general, people who have a more feminine (yin) personality, prefer a gentle massage.  While individuals with a more masculine personality (yang) prefer deeper pressure in their massage.  Either way, start with gentle strokes and build the level of pressure.

What are some of your favorite massage tips? Have you ever received a really great massage…maybe a really bad massage?  Tell me about it in the comments!

Next week: Rose Petal Dryer Sachets

*Never use store bought rose petals for eating, drinking or body products unless you can verify with 100% certainty that they were grown without pesticides.  I always purchase my rose petals (and many of my other herbs) from Mountain Rose Herbs.  They offer both rose petals and rose buds that are organic, good quality and appropriate for use in herbal products.

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