Jun 27, 2011

Korean Massage, Soreness, Cucumber in my Hair

Photo by uggboy

"A naked 300-pound woman squirted 2 bottles of baby oil onto my back and started massaging as fast as a carwash. Relaxing? I had to hold in for dear life!"

That's how my friend Lisa described a Korean sauna treatment to me, years ago. I stayed away, for ages.

Yesterday, lured by the low low massage price at my favourite Korean sauna, I bit the bullet.

Some notes:

the good

Price price price: the equivalent of $20 Canadian for a 45-minute facial, body scrub, massage.

Though the rest of the sauna runs at a relaxville snail's pace, the masseuses hum around very efficiently. Car wash, indeed. 

My masseuse grated up a fresh, ice-cold cucumber and pressed the pulp onto my face, It felt superb.

My chronically stiff shoulders feel pretty darn good.

I'm as smooth as a baby's bottom.

A friend later called me "glowing."

the bad

More than a few people looked over to gawk at my pink foreigner skin, which was pink as a shrimp platter from all the firm scrubbing.

Not gonna lie, there was a bit of pain as my masseuse lay her elbows into my vertebrae. I usually say "the deeper the better" when it comes to massage, but this was... pointy.

It was a little embarassing, just how much dead skin came off during the scrub.

the strange-ee

My treatment table was covered in vinyl Burberry plaid.

The rinsing off portion involved throwing warm buckets of water.

Some parts of my body do not like being scrubbed like a kitchen soup pot. My armpits are sore.

The massage involved a lot of punching. Not to say it didn't feel nice....

The verdict? Thumbs up. Go. Experience it. Share your story with me, please.


  1. While I've never gotten an actual massage at a jjimjilbang, I do loooooooooove those body scrubs!!

  2. Thanks for sharing your experience in this Korean massage.