How to prepare the skin to benefit the most from your next massage

When you are about to receive a deep tissue massage, surely you are expecting to get some relief for any pain or muscular tension you might be experiencing in that moment. Or, more simply, you are looking forward to feeling relaxed and invigorated afterwards. Have you ever wondered how you can prepare your skin, so that you will benefit the most from your next treatment?

Here at Fulham Massage & Wellness we are specialised in clinical treatments and our main goal is to help all our clients to increase their well-being; we don’t offer strictly beauty massages, however we would like to share few tips on the perfect skincare before a professional massage.

Taking a bit of time, before a massage, to prepare your skin will ensure not only that it will be more receptive to the oils and lotions applied on it, but also that the massage itself will run more smoothly, minimising any feeling of discomfort.


Here are our top three skincare tips:

1. Hydration

When the skin is dehydrated, it means that its protective uppermost layer, known as the stratum corneum, is lacking the necessary amount of water. As a result, the skin might feel tight, rough, itchy and wrinkly. This type of skin condition can be caused, apart from the lack of water, by environmental factors, lifestyle and diet habits, makeup, incorrect product use and even by the weather. The first, and easiest, step to hydrate your skin is drinking plenty of water every day. Does it sound boring? You can safely add a slice of lemon or cucumber, or some mint leaves, to flavour your water to give it an extra taste which will be very refreshing, especially in this hot weather. How much water is right for you to drink does depend on your body weight, your lifestyle and your activity levels. On average, the suggested amount is at least eight glasses of water per day which equates to approximately 2 litres.

Another way of keeping hydrated is to eat more water-rich vegetable and fruits, such as watermelon, cucumbers, bananas, strawberries, spinach, iceberg lettuce, radishes and celery. Carrots are also a key ally of the skin as they contain vitamin C and beta-carotene, which will help protecting the skin from sun rays.

Additionally, you can hydrate the skin by using skincare products that contain ingredients such as hyaluronic acid. This acid is naturally occurring in the skin and helps retain water. Also, the use of targeted serums loaded with antioxidants such as vitamin C, E and the aforementioned beta-carotene, which are all skin-replenishing ingredients, will help as well to get a plumper and smoother skin.



2. Exfoliation

Exfoliating is the process of removing dead skin cells from the surface of your skin by using a chemical or granular substance, or an exfoliation tool. Usually, the skin sheds dead skin cells to make room for new cells every 30 days or so but it gradually slows down its capacity to renew itself. When the dead cells don’t shed completely, the results are dry skin, flaky patches and clogged pores. Exfoliating can help prevent this and make the skin softer and more receptive to lotions and treatments.

A simple, and very affordable, way to exfoliate the skin is making a scrub mixing sugar, honey and almond or coconut oil: it smells delicious and it will leave your skin glowing and revitalised. Otherwise, there are plenty of scrubs that you can buy, as well as exfoliation tools such dry brushes, mitts, pumice stones, micro needling or micro derma rollers.

It is also possible to use chemical methods, such as fluids that contain hydroxyl acids and retinol, whose enzymes will renew your skin. It is important to remember that, while you can DIY with a scrub, a chemical peeling should always be supervised or practiced by a professional as it might irritate or damage the skin if done incorrectly.



3. Moisture

While a dehydrated skin lacks water, a dry, non-moisturised skin lacks oil. Once the skin is hydrated and exfoliated, it is important to moisturise it, so that it will lock in the hydration in and keep its natural lipid (oil) barrier protection strong and healthy.

Shea butter is definitely one of the best ingredients in nature to moisturise your skin. Also oils extracted from almonds, coconut, jojoba and argan serve very well for this purpose. All these ingredients should be looked for, when choosing a moisturising body lotion or butter.

It is worth remembering that one of the key factors in maintaining a healthy lipid barrier is to protect the skin from the sun: while a safe exposure to sun light is important to ensure that vitamin D is absorbed by the bones, it is necessary to prevent any risk of skin damage coming from UVA and UVB rays. A good sun protection factor should never be missing in your beauty case!

We hope you liked these skincare tips and that you will enjoy your next treatment. For any questions or massage booking our team will be happy to help. We look forward to seeing you soon in our Fulham clinic!


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