We break down the best places to go for amazing massages in Singapore, from Thai and Balinese to Swedish and Shiatsu
New to the world of divine pampering? Not to worry. If you’re all knotted up and don’t know where to go, keep reading. From Thai rubdowns to Balinese therapies, we break down the different types of massages in Singapore and the best spas that offer them – for every budget!
If you’re in need of maximum relaxation… try an all-in-one therapy
For the overworked and utterly drained, a simple massage just won’t cut it. Treat yourself to a luxurious all-in-one treatment; top of our go-to treatments is My Cozy Room Boutique Spa’s Signature 4-in-1 Body Spa Indulgence. The 75-minute therapy begins with a refreshing back scrub to remove dead skin cells and impurities, then continues with a soothing lava hot stone back therapy to relax muscles and treat aching joints. A full body massage then commences, to knead deeply into tired muscles. The therapy ends with a revitalising crystal eye massage to reduce puffiness and revitalise strained, tired eyes. And the winning factor? Their signature, four-in-one treatment can’t be found anywhere else but within the confines of this lush, soothing spa.
Try: $$ My Cozy Room Boutique Spa ($99 for first-timers. U.P $168)
If you want to relax tensed muscles… try deep tissue massage
As the saying goes: ‘No pain, no gain’. This looks like your normal, everyday massage but with more pressure applied to target hard-to-reach tissues and tense muscles in the body. Warning: Brace yourself for the pain and the post-massage soreness. But trust us – your body will thank you later.
If you want to relieve body aches… try a hot stone massage
This involves laying heated stones on your pressure points while the masseuse kneads your body. The hot stones warm up the tight muscles to relieve muscle tension, as well as improving blood circulation. This will leave your body feeling rejuvenated.
If you want to drift away… try a Swedish massage
This massage combines a number of movements like gliding strokes, kneading plus tapping, bending, and light stretching. This combination means that it can be as gentle or intense as you want it to be. Add aromatherapy oils for a deeply relaxing and calming experience.
If you want to tackle stress… try a Shiatsu massage
This well-known therapy from Japan also uses the principles of ancient Chinese medicine. The aim is to deeply relax and achieve a clear flow to your chi. Gentle finger and palm pressure placed on the meridian points of the body combined with stretching melt the stress away.
If you want to restore balance to your body… try Abhyangam massage
Abhyangam is an Indian massage which relaxes the muscles of the body by using herb-infused Ayurvedic oils in seven different phases. This type of massage is highly recommended as it not only restores mental and physical balance to the body, but strengthens the nervous system as well.
If you’re feeling tender… try a Thai massage
This is a soothing treatment to calm your senses – even despite the yoga-like stretches. Traditionally, Thai massage doesn’t involve hot oils or lotions; expect rhythmic pressing, rocking and stretching, like cracking of your knuckles, pulling of fingers and toes and assisted arch back stretch.
If you want to pummel those knots… try a Javanese massage
Using all parts of their hands (from knuckles to thumbs), therapists use deep pressure with pushing and stroking movements. This can be quite intense (i.e. more kneading). The aim is to utilise all 67 major acupressure points to improve blood circulation and aid removal of toxins. This stimulation rids you of stress by reducing muscle tension.
Try: You’re in luck if you’re on a budget; Javanese massages are crazy affordable, with prices rarely above $100.
$$$ The Spa by The Ultimate ($94), $$ House of Traditional Javanese Massage ($60), $ Balinese Thai ($50).
If you want to get into those knots… try a Balinese massage
A vigorous massage with firm pressure focused on deeply relaxing the muscle tissue. Natural oils are used – especially ginger, which helps reduce water retention and cellulite. It’s incredibly stress-relieving and relaxing, so prepare to fall asleep during your treatment.
If you want to loosen up… try Tui Na
Word of advice for newbies: Tui Na is not a pampering treatment. It’s a vigorous combination of massage and acupressure to meridians, acupoints and muscles to unblock the free flow of Qi. Simply put, Tui Na invigorates the body and relieves muscle-skeletal tension i.e. loosen up those joints. As the treatment requires a ton of pressure and focuses on vital regions, it’s recommended to check with your therapist (who should be a registered TCM practitioner) on your suitability. Warning: Do not do this on a full stomach.
If you’re feeling stressed or down from an emotional situation… try an aromatherapy massage
This uses essential oils that are highly concentrated in plant oils, as well as massage oils and lotions when kneading on tense areas. Positive changes in the mind and body are also influenced by the scent absorption of the oils. Aromatherapy also works wonders with menstrual cramps and menopausal symptoms.
If you’ve got bad constipation… try abdominal massage
When it comes to removing obstructions and restoring flow in your digestive tract, an abdominal massage does a great job. This effective massage includes circular kneading, crawling motions and pressing movements on the abdomen. Expect some tension or pain due to the increasing pressure applied on your abdominal areas. Here’s a tip: breathe alongside the strokes to ease the pain.
If you’ve got aching soles… try a relaxing foot massage
Pamper your tired feet with a tension-releasing, detoxifying foot massage that reinforces stronger strokes along the pressure points of the feet, tackling your aching muscles, recover joint mobility, improve blood circulation. You’ll be back in your favourite pair of heels in no time!