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Although there are a ton of ways to combat stress—getaways, a glass of wine, a great therapy sesh—nothing beats a good massage. “Massage therapy is crucial for a number of reasons,” says Liz Aigner, a licensed massage therapist. “Its anatomical benefits include releasing tension and tightness in the muscles, lowering high blood pressure, increasing range of motion, and more.” Its most desirable benefits, however, deal more with our mental and emotional state. “It can decrease everyday or chronic stress, lower anxiety, help with symptoms of depression, and increase all feelings of well-being and happiness,” adds Aigner.
In short, massage is good for the body and the soul. Utilizing massage in your everyday routine is simple. Aigner recommends practicing self-massage—a technique you can do right after you shower. Start at your scalp, then move all the way down to your feet with long, sweeping strokes. Her preferred massage product? An oil. “Massage oil gives a lot of diversity when performing bodywork. Oil allows you to adjust your pressure, pace, and flow,” says Aigner.
Below, find the best massage oils that you can use on others, and most importantly, yourself.
Best Overall: Aesop Breathless Botanical Massage Oil
Lose yourself in this luxurious formula infused with sweet almond oil, jojoba seed oil, and macadamia oil. Apply to thirsty areas to quench dry skin or slather all over for a truly transporting massage experience.
Best Splurge: ELEMIS De-Stress Massage Oil
Give your body the break it needs. Infused with essential oils like rosewood, rosemary, and geranium, all you need to do is take a whiff of this rich oil to feel instantly relaxed. Reviewers rave that it’s easy to spread and smells absolutely divine.
Best for Sore Muscles: MAJESTIC PURE Arnica Sore Muscle Massage Oil
Whether you’re a weightlifter or commuter, this comforting massage oil helps to release tension and soothe tired muscles. Nourish the skin with hydrating sweet almond oil and target problem areas with pain-reducing arnica. One reviewer loves rubbing this product into the soles of their feet after a long day.
Best Warming: Weleda Muscle Massage Oil
To make the most of this arnica-infused oil, pump a few drops into your palms and rub your hands together to warm the product. Immediately apply and massage into the skin and muscles for next-level therapy.
Best Multipurpose: Biossance 100% Sugarcane Squalane Oil
This all-in-one oil can be used pretty much anywhere—from your hair to your face to your elbows to your feet. I like using it on the backs of my hands when they’re feeling especially dry. Not only is this oil super nourishing, it’s actually quite weightless and doesn’t feel slick on the skin.
Best Rollerball: Lord Jones High CBD Formula Body Oil
This plant-based body oil feels light on the skin but is deeply penetrating. Thanks to the rollerball applicator, you can pop into your bag and swipe it on whenever you need a quick fix. Apply right to pressure points, like your temples or jawline, and massage for a few seconds for some needed relaxation.
Best Anti-Aging: M3 Naturals Anti Cellulite Massage Oil Infused
Tone your skin while you massage your body. With notable ingredients like grapefruit oil and lemon oil, this formula reduces the appearance of cellulite and promotes elasticity. It also features apple stem cells which can help to protect your skin’s stem cells. Reviewers reported a noticeable difference after continued use.
Best Budget: Now Foods Now Solutions Comforting Massage Oil
All you need are a few drops of this non-greasy oil for an effective massage. Natural oils like lavender, chamomile, and patchouli work together for a total sensorial rubdown. Plus, we like that this formula doesn’t leave you with a tacky, sticky, or slippery aftermath.
Best Organic: Greenerways Organic Muscle Relax Body Oil
Rest easy knowing this body oil is 100% USDA certified organic. It features ingredients eucalyptus, an anti-inflammatory, and peppermint, which soothes and reduces pain. While these two target overworked muscles, sunflower, and coconut moisturize for supple, plump skin.
Best CBD: Color Up Ease
“This oil is ideal for full-body application when performing massage or bodywork,” says Aigner. It features a high-quality, holistic ingredient list, which includes organic hemp CBD which relieves discomfort in sore muscles and achy joints. Bonus: It also fights dryness and itchiness.
Best Cooling: Nature’s Formulary Ayurveda Cooling Massage & Body Oil
Cooling peppermint is the star of this body oil. In addition to a massage, you can also gently rub into the soles of the feet before bed for a calmer sleep or add a few drops into the bath for a peaceful soak.