There are so many ways to apply oil to a client and I will discuss the pros and cons of many of them.

1. Bottle with narrow nozzle top (The first option is something I used when I went through massage school in the 90’s).

*Using a bottle with a top you can open works ok and you can place a bottle underneath the legs of the tables so you will always have access to the massage oil.

*The downside to this is I accidentally washed 3 sets of massage sheets with one of the bottles and it ruined the sheets.
*It can be messy. *Hard to clean the bottles because of the narrow tops.

*Have a different color bottle that contains different essential oils in each of them (ex. Green bottle – peppermint, Purple bottle – lavender...etc.)

2. Creme on your forearm or upper arm:

*The creme on your arm makes it warmer, because of the temperature of your body heat.
*You can have easier access to the creme.

*Some therapists think it’s unsanitary.
*Sometimes you will add too much or too little to your arm.
*The creme on your forearm could limit your massage techniques, because you can use your forearm for them.
*It might gross some of your massage clients out.
*You will have to throw any excess massage creme away or have access to more creme if you run out.

*Work the creme into you arm a little, so it doesn’t fall off.

3. Dixie cup for creme:

*You can take out just as much as you need.

*I’ve had some students drop the Dixie cups on the floor and it’s hard to remove it off of there.
*A pump is more sanitary.
*You will have to throw any excess massage creme away.
*Not environmentally friendly.

*Cut the Dixie cup in half so you don’t have to dig in too deep.
*Using a small medicine works well too.

4. 8 oz pump bottle with a holster:

*You will always have access to your oil.
*You only have to check one bottle if it’s full before you start your treatment.

*Some of the newer bottles lock and you have to turn it just right to have it dispense oil.

*If you have the holster facing towards your back, then you’re less likely to bump the client with your bottle.
*Not all holsters are the same, so do the research and make sure it fits an 8oz bottle without falling out.
*Make sure you measure your waist before buying a holster, because I’ve seen some that don’t fit a larger therapist.

5. Creme in a tube.

*For thicker cremes, this is the best way to dispense them.
*There are some holsters that hold a tube for creme.
*It’s sanitary because it has a closed top.

*Some therapists forget that most tubes are refillable.
*If you just have a little left and not enough to finish a treatment, you will have to have another tube available or fill that one before your next client.
*The holster hangs a little lower than a holster for massage oil.
*Can be messy when trying to refill it.
*Some people roll it like a toothpaste container and that will wreck the tube.
*The top can break off if you are not careful.

*Tap the tube with the spout facing downward in your palm to bring the creme down to the opening.

6. Holster with two compartments for pumpable bottles.

*You can have one compartment for oil and another one for lotion.

*The holster is larger, so you have a better chance of bumping the client with it. *You could mix-up what bottle you are using.

*Have someone to embroider your logo in the holster to give it your own personalization.
*Buy a dual holster, if you like using different products (creme, lotion, gel or oil).

Trick for applying the oil, creme, lotion or gel: I was taught back in the 90’s to have a cupped hand on the body, pour the oil into my cupped hand, warm the oil up with the other hand and finally apply it to the body. I didn’t like that method, because it broke the flow of the treatment so I decided to have another option: apply the oil on the back of the hand that is massaging, warm it up on the back of that hand and finally apply it to the body when it’s warm…it’s that simple and you never lose your flow!

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This blog is written by Ryan Hoyme