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Spa Etiquette: Everything You Wanted to Know (But Were Too Shy to Ask)

by | May 1, 2021 | Local News & Events

proper spa etiquette

You don’t need us to tell you about the benefits of massage therapy.

It relieves stress and anxiety. It decreases pain and inflammation. It helps you sleep better. And it’s an incredibly relaxing experience, unless…

You’re too stressed to relax.

If you don’t understand the basic rules of spa etiquette, this is a very real scenario. For example, should you keep your underwear on or take them off? Should you talk to your therapist, or should you stay silent? And what happens if you pass gas (or worse)?

Don’t worry. We’re here to answer all those awkward questions you’ve always wondered about (but were too embarrassed to ask). Keep reading!

What Should I Wear?

This is the number one question massage therapists hear. The answer will always be: Undress to your comfort level. You will not be judged for what you do or do not wear.

Rest assured that your private areas will always be covered by a sheet or towel. If you’re comfortable removing your underwear, go for it. If not, we’d rather have you keep them on (and be comfortable) than feel stressed about being naked.

Do I Need to Make Conversation?

Absolutely not. Before the session begins, you’ll want to talk to your therapist about the type of massage you want, as well as any allergies or current health problems.

After that, feel free to relax into the silence (or even fall asleep). Most therapists perform their best work in silence. Of course, if the silence makes you feel anxious, it’s perfectly fine to chat a bit.

Important note: It is NEVER appropriate to bring up topics such as religion, politics, or sex. Any jokes or innuendo about “happy endings” will earn you a quick trip out the front door.

What If I’m Uncomfortable During the Massage?

Massage therapists are quite intuitive, but we’re not mind readers. Don’t hesitate to speak up if:

  • You need stronger or softer pressure
  • You need to use the restroom
  • You feel too hot or too cold
  • You need to blow your nose or take a sip of water
  • You feel any pain or discomfort

Our goal is to make sure you always feel comfortable and relaxed, so be sure to tell us if you’re not!

This also goes for the way the sheets are draped across your body. If at any point during the session you feel that you’re too “exposed,” please let your therapist know. They can tuck the sheet tighter around the areas they’re working on or make other adjustments to ensure your comfort.

What About Embarrassing Bodily Functions?

Are you worried about falling asleep, drooling, or snoring?

Don’t worry — it happens all the time. The same goes for passing gas. These are all signs of deep relaxation, which is the entire goal of your massage session!

As a man, you might be wondering: What if I get an erection?

Again, there’s no need to feel anxious or embarrassed. Your therapist understands that some biological functions are beyond your control. Simply ignore it, and your therapist will too.

What If I’m Self-Conscious About My Body?

Rest assured that your massage therapist has seen thousands of bodies of every shape and size. There is no reason to apologize or feel embarrassed about:

  • Your weight
  • Your skin condition
  • Your feet
  • Scars or acne
  • Body hair

Ladies, it’s okay if you forgot to shave your legs. Massage therapists are non-judgmental professionals who genuinely want to help you feel your best.

If that’s not enough to boost your confidence, you can always request that they avoid working on certain areas.

Do I Need to Tip?

Although tipping is never mandatory, a 20% tip is the standard for good service. You can give the tip directly to your therapist in cash, or you can add it onto a credit card payment when you check out.

Proper Spa Etiquette: Now You Know

We sincerely hope this guide to spa etiquette has cleared up some of those things you’ve always wondered about.

If you still have lingering questions or doubts, feel free to ask your therapist or the spa receptionist during your next visit. They’ll be more than happy to put your mind at ease!

Ready to practice these tips at a massage studio near you? Click here to book your next massage in Avon or Glenwood Springs!