An introduction to
Infant Massage

How to Massage Your Baby


The room should be warm, about 25°C, and quiet. Soothing background music can help, but make sure the TV is off. Lay your baby naked on a soft towel, and make the room warmer if she starts to feel cold.


Infant massage can be done at any time of the day, but is best done after your baby's bath, and especially in the evening before he settles down for the night.


Baby massage should not involve a lot of pressure. To get an idea of the correct amount of pressure to use, close your eyes and massage your eyeballs.


When massaging small areas, use only your fingertips. Larger areas are best massaged with the palm of your hand.


Grapeseed is the best oil to use. Avoid nut-based oils, as these can cause an allergic reaction. Regular baby oil is not recommended, but many manufacturers now make specially designed baby massage oils. Some aromatherapy oils can be particularly beneficial (such as lavender to soothe and calm), but it is important that they are correctly diluted according to the manufacturer's instructions.


  • Starting at your baby's face, use your fingertips to gently stroke upwards over her cheeks, forehead and chin, gently circling her eyes, ears, nose and mouth.

  • Next, massage your baby's arms. Start by circling them at the shoulder, before moving down his arms to his wrists. Gently use your fingertips on his palms.

  • Moving on to your baby's legs, use your whole hand to massage in an upward direction, gently bringing your child's knees up to her tummy (this can help to relieve colic and gas pains). Use your fingertips to massage circles on your baby's feet.

  • At your baby's tummy, use gentle circles in a clockwise direction starting at his belly button, and gradually increase the size of the circles.

  • Finally, use your palms to sweep slowly and gently along your baby's back up to her shoulders. Do not massage her spine.

  • Once you have finished your infant massage session, dress your baby and make sure he is comfortable. If your baby seems distressed at any time, or does not appear to be enjoying his massage, stop and comfort him, and try infant massage again another time.

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