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LOLEMA SparkPoints: (105,894)
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9/11/14 12:17 P

I have a friend who used to work there, they are all different based on level on experience
and commission. I don't know anyone who would settle for that!

LEC358 SparkPoints: (11,135)
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9/11/14 9:30 A

FWIW, I checked GlassDoor (site for employees to rate their employeers) and here's the salary info:
Seems like the average for a licensed MT is around $17/hour, a bit below market rate, but working for a company like that you're also not doing a lot of the leg work to build a client base.

The reviews of the company by the employees seem to be pretty positive (and I doubt that the company had 400+ employees write reviews).

9/11/14 8:58 A

I go to the massage school for mine. The therapists are getting their hours in to get their certification. They can accept tips and I'll only schedule massages when I can provide a good tip.
I've also heard some issues with massage envy, not just poorly treated workers, but a few of them have had issues with sexual assaults. It's rare, but it was enough for me to say nope.

MISSRUTH Posts: 4,231
9/11/14 8:38 A

Well.... the trade-off for going to a place like Massage Envy, where the massages cost less... is that *someone* is making less money, to provide the service. (And perhaps the amenities are more spartan.) And it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out who that *someone* is. Sort of like the difference between going to a Supercuts rather than a high-end salon. Doesn't mean the caliber of the therapists (or hairstylists) is necessarily any different. Maybe an "entry level" position type thing? Where they've got the education but not yet the experience to get a job that pays more. Work there a few years, get the experience, go somewhere else that pays better.

At worst, I can't imagine that it's much different than servers in restaurants. They are paid less than minimum wage, with tips anticipated to make up the difference (or more). If I get my hair cut at Supercuts, I tip big. No ME around here but if I went to one, I'd tip big.

KKLENNERT809 Posts: 10,742
9/9/14 9:37 P

I hope that is not true

JO88BAKO SparkPoints: (311,246)
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9/9/14 9:26 P

I get massages from my husband

JANIEWWJD SparkPoints: (554,139)
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9/8/14 11:59 P

I don't know. I get my massages from my hubby!

DAWNTURTLE SparkPoints: (1,439)
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Posts: 16
9/8/14 1:19 P

I've worked at massage envy for a year. we are paid an hourly wage + tips. you must work 30 hours or more if you want benefits. that is the only real problem. not everyone can do 6 hours of deep tissue a day. but its not a bad place. lots to learn. lots of therapists. its almost like an artist's colony but massage :P.

LADYCJM SparkPoints: (57,456)
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9/15/13 4:26 P

Archimedes, what a great idea! I can ask if she is doing this full time or working elsewhere. I believe all of the staff are licensed so if she is full time she should be being paid well.

I'm thinking about calling and asking to speak to the manager and ask her about this too. I hate the thought of ME being the equivalent of a "Chop shop" and me supporting them through ignorance. I also wonder if this was a rumor started by some one who wanted larger tips or was trying to build their own business by taking ME customers.

CANDACEMM Posts: 1,218
9/15/13 4:07 P

Wow. I want an hour massage for $35.

I had a massage yesterday at a private business that does nothing but massages. For an hour massage, I paid $70. I left a substantial tip ($30) because I know these folks work off of nothing but commission. I've worked in the service industry before and know what it's like to live off of tips ... so if someone is deserving of a good tip, I'm going to give them one.

BLUENOSE63 SparkPoints: (108,021)
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9/15/13 4:04 P

I have a number of friends who are massage therapists and they receive a "cut" of the price charged to the client. Some clinics are different than others as they have bigger or smaller cuts for the therapists.

No $5/hour isn't accurate here in Canada. Say an hour of massage is $90, then the massage therapist would get around 45%

GEVANS7 SparkPoints: (276,999)
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9/15/13 4:00 P

I'm sure they do rely on tips and possibly ME uses non-certified therapists or students, like a beauty school. Service industries do not have to pay minimum wage, but I would not think this would apply to licensed therapists. It could be a statement made to entice sympathy and a bigger tip.

I know "Cost Cutter" hairdressers are not making the same wages as salon stylists - but then again, they rent their stations and rely on their skills to bring in clients.

Only way to know the truth is to ask the owner or manager.

ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (195,779)
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9/15/13 2:16 P


There is a way to diplomatically ask what they make. You could ask your massage therapist if this is something they do full time or part time. If they do this part time, it probably means that they aren't making enough to live on and have to have a "day" job. If they do it full time, they may make enough to squeak by. The problem with massage therapists is the same problem for personal trainers. It's hard to find regular clients.

Getting a massage, like personal training requires disposable income. Considering how bad the economy has been recently, few people have the extra cash to spend on PT sessions or massages.

So, it's very possible your massage therapist may make good money per hour, but she might not get enough hours to be considered full time. I would think that at $60 an hour, a therapist would need at least a minimum of 15 clients a week to make $540. This assumes they get 60% of the $60 session. That's $36 an hour. Which is good money IF you get enough hours. But like I said, fewer people have $60 to spend every week on a massage.

I'm sure like everything else, they have good weeks and not so good weeks. Which makes me think your massage therapist is probably part time.

ANARIE Posts: 13,179
9/15/13 1:18 P

I wonder if they get paid $5/hr base rate for being in the facility waiting, and then $10/hr in addition when they actually have a customer. So in other words, if you were on for 8 hours but no customers came in that day, you would make $40 even though you didn't actually do any massage, but if you have customers the whole 8 hours, you'd make 3 times as much.

I would still think they would have to pay minimum wage for the waiting time, but it may be a situation where the employees are considered independent contractors rather than regular employees.

EMPRESSAMQ Posts: 5,077
9/15/13 12:30 P

A good topic to research if concerned about the truth of it.

ONLINEASLLOU SparkPoints: (73,365)
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9/15/13 12:22 P

Wages probably vary greatly from town to town for massage therapists just like they do for other industries. What people get paid in New York City is probably far, far higher than people get paid in Small Town, USA for EVERY job.

I don't know the exact wages for massage therapists, but I know that many rely on tips for a significant portion of their income. I've had nurse friends and physical therapy friends consider getting certified as massage therapists and most have felt that the income was not worth the investment unless they were planning to incorporate it into their nursing or PT careers and maintain the nurse/PT salaries.

Finally, there are lots of careers where your first, "entry-level" position is a low paying position ... and then after you have experiece, you move up the ladder and earn more money. School makes you eligible for a license, but there is a need for experience before you are skilled enough to merit high pay. That may be the expected structure of the career. It may be that way with massage therapy. I don't know. But if you are concerned, that aspect might be worth investigating.

NIRERIN Posts: 14,233
9/15/13 8:22 A

servers officially get paid below minimum wage though they will get paid up to minimum wage if their tips do not cover the difference. so there are some service type jobs where tips are expected to bring the wage per hour up to and over minimum wage.
but this also sounds like an employee fishing for a larger tip. and that person told another person, who told another person...

STARMIZER2000 SparkPoints: (142,622)
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9/14/13 11:07 P

I am not sure

SLASALLE SparkPoints: (264,881)
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9/14/13 9:43 P

I don't know for certain, but I believe this to be false. I've been a member at Massage Envy for nearly three years. I've seen MANY massage therapists stick around and, in fact, I've known 3 or 4 of them that have been at this location as long as I've been going there.

I also suspect that ME would be required to pay at least minimum wage.

BEULAH45 Posts: 773
9/14/13 7:38 P

Check if there is a local massage school. I get a very good, hour-long massage for $35 and I always leave a $5 tip. The students are supervised and you will complete an evaluation on your massage.

GOALWTIN7 SparkPoints: (2,121)
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9/14/13 3:24 P

I usually get massages when out of town at a health spa and I know they get a nice percentage. I was then surprised when I met a woman at a ladies luncheon who told me she was a massage therapist who started out at ME. She didn't tell me what she made but said they pay so low that she had to quit. It's a physically demanding job so I don't blame her for leaving and starting her own business going to people's homes.

Edited by: GOALWTIN7 at: 9/14/2013 (15:25)
LADYCJM SparkPoints: (57,456)
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9/14/13 3:21 P

IF they get 60% of the fee charged that would be 30$ which isn't bad considering the masseuses have no overhead and ME manages everything. I image the laundry bill alone is huge!

I don't know if what I was told is true, I'm thinking it isn't. I can't imagine a licensed masseuse working for that amount.

I always book with the same person and always tip! I could ask her but it would be awkward.

ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (195,779)
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9/14/13 3:01 P

$10 for a massage ? That's amazing ! I've been to street fairs where 30 minute massages were offered for $25. I figure at least $50 for an hour massage.

I have a friend who used to work the desk for a local chain gym. The chain gym paid $8.50 an hour to work the desk. She left for ME because they paid $9.50 an hour to do the same thing. I'm not sure what she is paid for massages. She is certified. I know at a different gym where I work part time, massages are $65 an hour and the masseuse gets 60% of that. So, $39.

Since ME is a service industry like a hair salon or nail salon, I'm sure many of the masseurs rely on tips. When I have a massage, I leave a small tip. Could this place pay their employees $5 to $10 an hour ? It seems to me that is what a person makes working the desk not performing a massage. Working as a massage therapist does require special training and certification. Since it is a skilled position, I hope they make more than the person working the desk.

If you're concerned your favorite masseuse may not make enough, then consider leaving a small tip for the service they provide to you.

Edited by: ARCHIMEDESII at: 9/14/2013 (15:03)
LADYCJM SparkPoints: (57,456)
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9/14/13 12:49 P

I was recently told that ME only pays it's staff 5$ an hour for a massage, 10$ if a masseuse is requested by name. I'm having a hard time believing that as 5$ is below minimum wage and I don't think they could do that legally. Also 10$ to the masseuse is still very low considering the cost of the massage.
I like ME as it is clean, convenient and provides good service. However they do have a lot of staff turnover which I attributed to this being a college town. A lot of staff are either students or married to students.

Does anyone have any knowledge on this topic? Anyone work for them?

If this is true, I'm going to be very disappointed.


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