How Naked Should I Get for a Massage? And Other Questions That Make Me Nervous

Navigating the world of massages can be daunting, especially if it’s your first time or if you’re unsure about certain protocols. It’s normal to have questions – and even some nerves – before heading in for your session. So, let’s get to the nitty-gritty of some of these common concerns.

1. The Big Question: How Naked Should I Be During a Massage?

The answer to this question largely depends on your comfort level. In many traditional spa settings, clients are typically expected to undress to their level of comfort. Here’s a breakdown:

Fully Clothed: Some massages, like Thai massages, are often done fully clothed. Always make sure to wear loose, comfortable clothing.

Undergarments On: Many clients choose to keep their underwear on during the massage. This ensures modesty while still allowing the therapist access to major muscle groups.

Fully Nude: Some types of massages, like Swedish or deep tissue, might be more effective if the client is nude, allowing the therapist to work without the hindrance of clothing. However, you’ll always be draped with a sheet or towel, ensuring only the part being worked on is exposed.

Remember: Always go with what makes *you* feel most comfortable.

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

You’re not alone. Many people feel a bit vulnerable about being undressed for a massage. But here’s the thing: Massage therapists are professionals. They’ve seen all body types, shapes, and sizes. Their primary goal is your health and relaxation, not judging your appearance.

3. Will the Massage Hurt?

The level of discomfort during a massage varies depending on the type of massage. For instance, a deep tissue massage may involve deeper pressure and can sometimes lead to brief discomfort. However, it should never be unbearable. It’s essential to communicate with your therapist about your pain threshold.

4. What If I Fall Asleep?

Consider it a compliment to your therapist! Falling asleep means you’re relaxed, which is the primary goal of the session. Massage therapists are used to it and take it as a sign they’re doing their job well.

5. Do I Need to Talk During the Massage?

Only if you want to. Some people find chatting relaxing, while others prefer silence. Your therapist will usually follow your lead. If you don’t feel like talking, it’s perfectly fine to close your eyes and relax.

6. What About Tipping?

In many places, tipping your massage therapist is customary, typically around 15-20% of the total cost. However, it’s always best to check the spa or therapist’s policies. Some may include gratuity in the price, or it might be discretionary based on the service.


Navigating the world of massages should be about relaxation and healing, not anxiety. Remember, every question you have is valid, and your therapist is there to make your experience as comfortable as possible. Embrace the relaxation, and let the worries melt away!

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Written By:

Staff Writer

Staff Writer

Our Staff Writers are communications experts who dive headfirst into researching wellness topics, ensuring they know their beat inside and out.

Reviewed By:

AJ Centore, Ph.D.

AJ Centore, Ph.D.

AJ (Anthony) Centore Ph.D. is Founder at Sageworks® Massage Therapy, Founder and Chair at Thriveworks (a mental health practice with 250+ locations).

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