Why is Massage So Expensive?

We understand how expensive massages can be. Before calling in a masseuse or booking an appointment with your nearest massage center for a relaxing session, it is important to determine what they charge.

Why is a massage so expensive? A massage can be costly due to the type of massage commissioned, duration of the massage, addons like aromatherapy, and the massage therapist’s experience.

These reasons include:

  • Weather its full body or partial
  • Types of massage therapy equipment used

Let’s go into a little more detail on these

Cost FactorsExplanation
DurationThe longer the massage session, the more expensive it will be.
TypeA hot stone therapy will be more expensive than a simple foot massage. This also includes the time of the session and other additional materials and skills used for every treatment.
Couple vs. SingleA couple’s massage is more expensive than a single-person massage.
AddonsOils, additional services, and aromatherapy can easily increase the massage cost. For example, the addition of hand exfoliation for an extra price during your Swedish massage.
At-home serviceYou may have to pay more to hire a massage therapist that comes to visit you at home or office.

In this article, we will cover the following topics:

  • Are massages worth paying for?
  • What is a good price for a massage?

What is a Good Price for a Massage?

Before finding out the excellent price for a massage, it is best to determine the type of massage you will book. It is because different massage types have different prices.

Different Massage Types

The most common and distinct massage types are:

Swedish Massage: one of the most popular massage types focuses on relaxing your entire body. The therapist uses kneading techniques while applying slow and direct pressure to specific muscle groups.

Medical Massage: it focuses on treating a specific ailment or issue. In addition, it may include some follow-up information on treating your condition.

Deep Tissue Massage: This massage type involves kneading techniques and applying pressure to relieve muscle tension. You can get a full body massage or have a specific muscle group targeted as a customer.

Pregnancy Massage: pregnancy or prenatal massages focus on providing ease to the well-being of pregnant women. The main goal of this massage is to promote good circulation and ease existing pains.

Sports Massage: sports and deep tissue massage are for athletes recovering or preparing for physical activity. Before or after a massage, these massages can prevent injuries or help recover from one.

Cost Estimation Based on Type of Massage

Now that you know the different massage types available, let’s find out their prices. The per session or hour rates depend on the massage type you want. For example, full-body massages are more expensive than those focused on a single muscle group.

In addition, a customized massage with additional add-ons (e.g., hot stone massage, special serums, exfoliation services, aromatherapy, etc.) can increase the prices.

However, these popular massage types and treatments have the following price estimation:

Popular Types of MassageEstimated Cost
Sports massage$105 to $165 for 90 minutes
Pregnancy massage$60 to $85 for 60 minutes
Medical massage$50 to $75 for 60 minutes
Swedish massage$40 to $100+ for 60 minutes
Deep Tissue massage$90 to $110 for every session

Remember, these prices are simply an estimate of what you will be charged based on a study conducted on multiple massage services.

Cost Estimation Based on Massage Therapist’s Per Hour Rate

Typically, the cost of your massage depends on the length of the session. On average, this is how much you will pay for a 60 and 90-minute massage:

  • Average one-hour massage cost: $90
  • Average 90-minute massage cost: $120

However, on a low scale, an hourly massage can cost between $60 to $70. In contrast, the most it can charge is between $120 to $145.

Are Massages Worth Paying For?

According to the World Economy Forum, 57% of workers in the US and Canada reported having heavy stress.

The million-dollar question is, “Are massages worth paying for?” Yes. Instead of simply claiming the usefulness of a massage, let’s find out why massages are worth the cost:

Massages Ease Muscle Pain

People with frequent sore muscles should have massage therapy to alleviate muscle pain. Massage is famous for improving blood circulation throughout the body (for full body massage) or targeting a specific muscle group.

According to a study conducted in 2011 in the research “Annals of Internal Medicine,” massage therapy benefits were found to be as effective as other methods to treat chronic back pain.

It Counteracts Postural Stress

According to Aaron Tanason, a registered massage therapist, owner of Paleo life Massage Therapy in Toronto, and kinesiologist, numerous people deal with postural stress. This stress is more likely to manifest in the neck and shoulders.

Especially when you are a desk worker, different and advanced kinds of postural stress can show up. This can result in weakness or pain in the lower back caused by prolonged sitting sessions.

However, massage therapy and its countless benefits can help counter the body imbalance caused by sitting continuously. This means you can keep your body healthy even with a desk job as long as you book a regular massage.

It Promotes Relaxation and Improves the Quality of Sleep

Regular body massage promotes restful sleep. They also help relax the body to offer comfortability to restless individuals.

Lisa Marie de Miranda, a registered massage therapist and kinesiologist at Paleo life Massage Therapy, say that massage helps relax the body and improves sleep in individuals undergoing radiation or chemotherapy.

It Reduces Stress, Anxiety, and Depression

According to a published study in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, depressed and anxious patients felt much more relaxed and happy with reduced stress levels after receiving a massage.

Moreover, according to Tanason, human touch (safe, professional, and friendly) proves to be incredibly therapeutic and relaxing.

Another study in 2005, published in the International Journal of Neuroscience, revealed that women diagnosed with breast cancer who received massage therapy thrice a week were less depressed and less angry.

It Relieves Headaches

Massage is famous for relieving headaches. According to Lisa Marie de Miranda, massages help decrease the severity of tension headaches and lessen their frequency.

Another research from Granda University in Spain revealed that a single massage therapy session had immediate effects on patients’ pain caused by chronic tension headaches. So, next time you suffer from a headache, you know where to go.

It Boosts Immunity

At another place, Lisa Marie de Miranda said that massage therapy helps improve the immune function of individuals with HIV.

A 2010 study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine revealed that massage helps increase patients’ white blood cell count. White blood cells play a vital role in defending the body from diseases.

Improves Blood Circulation During Pregnancy

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), getting a massage during pregnancy helps improve blood circulation. With stiff muscles and consistent mood swings, it’s best to have regular massages to ensure your overall well-being.

Ensure that you let your massage therapist know that you are pregnant. This is to avoid complications and receive a massage sideways instead of receiving it facedown.

Relieves Constipation Problems

If you are dealing with digestive issues or constipation problems, it is best to book an abdominal massage. This is because abdominal massages help alleviate the discomfort caused by constipation.

Moreover, a 2016 study published in Gastroenterology Nursing revealed that receiving abdominal massages helped people (with post-surgery constipation) move their bowels, resulting in feeling better.

Provides Temporary Joint and Arthritis Pain Relief

Arthritis causes pain and swelling in your joints. Receiving a massage increases the blood flow to your joints, which helps provide temporary relief, according to Mayo Clinic. Let your massage therapist know about your condition so they can walk you through how the session will go.


Often, people don’t understand why they are being charged above $40 for a massage session. But now you know the factors that contribute to the estimated cost, you can make wiser decisions.

Now it is time to hear from you:

Have you ever booked a massage before?

If yes, what did you pay for it? Was the cost based on per hour or session? Was the experience worth the price you paid? Were there any extra add-ons? How well was the massage performed?

Let us know about your experiences. It will help others gain valuable knowledge.

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