Spa Protocol 101: Massage Virgin

by : Sandra Mahoney

Your First Time

It's your first time at a spa. You're nervous, shy and curious; a little embarrassed to be bare-assed. If this sounds like you, you're a spa virgin. But rest assured, your first time getting a massage will be handled by professionals who quite literally put you into their hands.

Unsure about massage-etiquette, your first step should be to arrive at the spa on-time or somewhat early. As you check-in for your massage you will most likely be issued a robe and directed to a changing area. Undress completely, or if modesty doesn't permit, leave your panties on. As you settle down on the massage table, your therapist will keep your body draped under a sheet.


The room will be dimly lit and the sheet will only be moved to expose the area being worked. The massage therapist will ask general questions to allow you to receive the most from the session. Give feedback. If something is uncomfortable or hurts, if you're too hot or too cold, if there's a specific area that needs attention speak up. But most importantly relax, close your eyes, let your mind wander and allow someone else to take care of you.

Basking in the Afterglow

All good things must come to an end. After your massage, you'll emerge from the spa relaxed, peaceful, a little less tense but perhaps somewhat light headed. It's a good idea to drink lots of water following the massage to help remove the released waste and toxins. But now what? Chances are you're thinking about when you can do this again. Take this time to book another massage appointment at the spa. Whether its next week, next month, or six months from now you're more apt to keep an appointment if you make one right away. Though up to your discretion, tipping is always appreciated. If you enjoyed your massage and therapist, the general rule of thumb is 10-15% of the cost of the session.

And finally, don't go right home. Prolong that loosey-goosey, just-had-a-massage, feeling by spending some more quality time alone. Go window shopping, stop for some tea or simply drive the real, long way home listening to your favorite CD. Not a bad ending for your first time.