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Best Massage Cushion Reviews for 2021

Discover the Best Massage Cushion (for Pain Relief) in 2021

If you’re shopping for a massage cushion you’ll quickly realize you have so many options!

Do you go for a chair pad that you can use at home or something smaller that you can pop in your bag to use wherever you need it?

Shiatsu Neck & Back Massager
Experience finger pressure shiatsu that mimics the hands of a masseuse.
Shiatsu Pillow Massager with Heat
Simple, yet powerful, perfect for dropping in your bag when you’re on the go.
Gel Shiatsu Neck & Back Massager
A softer but satisfying massage with gel nodes and removable intensity flap.

Our 10 Best Massage Cushion Reviews

To help you make your decision, take a look at our list of the best massage cushions for 2021:

1. Comfier Shiatsu Neck & Back Massager

It’s time to experience finger pressure shiatsu

Position this Comfier cushion on your favorite chair and experiment with a whole host of different options.

Choose the rolling setting, which was popular with those reviewing the product, or perhaps go for a relaxing air compression experience.

Opt for 2D and 3D finger pressure shiatsu and the nodes will move in and out of the massage pad to closely mimic the hands of a masseuse.

Vibration and heat functions add to the spa-like experience.

In terms of massaging any back pain, you can target your upper, lower or full back, or use the spot feature to really hit the mark.

People described how easy it was to use and the incredible relief they experienced from their long term back pain problems.

One person said they used it for 10 minutes every day and it had given them their life back!

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2. Snailax Gel Shiatsu Neck & Back Massager

Ready to experience the softness of gel nodes?

Swap uncomfortable firm nodes for a softer gel massage.

Nodes in the Snailax Gel massager have been designed to feel like the hands of a masseuse.

Traveling up and down the length of your spine, you have the option to tailor the different styles of massage for each area of your back and neck. You also get a Spot setting to really get to that niggle.

Fitted with a detachable flap, you get the flexibility to choose between a softer or firmer massage.

If you’re looking for a massager primarily for neck pain, this Snailax chair pad really delivers.

Take a look at the neck area and you’ll see four nodes that can be adjusted to suit your needs, and people of all heights.

Tall people looking for a great massage cushion loved this creation from Snailax.

Also it’s worth mentioning that though the gel makes the sensation softer, users still felt it delivered on intensity.

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3. HoMedics Shiatsu XL Massage Cushion with Soothing Heat

A simple chair pad that’s easy to control

Another great product on the market right now is this HoMedics Shiatsu XL Massage Cushion.

Unlike other chair pads that might overwhelm you with options, HoMedics let you simply choose between kneading shiatsu or a gentle rolling massage.

However you’re in no way limited when it comes to your treatment. You can still select from three zones, plus heat and vibration settings, to get to the core of your pain.

The control pad is super simple to use. Press just one button to select the area you want to treat and the style you like, then away you go!

People loved how, by using the integrated strapping system, they were able to position it on their favorite chair, or prop it up in bed without it slipping.

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4. Gideon Vibrating Seat Massager

Feel the vibrations wherever you are

Massage nodes can feel too uncomfortable for some people, particularly if you’re looking for a way to treat a sore and painful back.

This Gideon Seat Cushion instead uses vibration to deliver a satisfying treatment.

This Gideon Seat Cushion instead uses vibration to deliver a satisfying treatment.

Don’t think you’re getting shortchanged though, vibration therapy has been shown through many studies to be as powerful as massage when it comes to pain management.

Boasting eight different modes, and with a heat function for further relaxation, you really can sit back and relax.

Gideon’s vibrating massager also ships with both an AC and car DC adapter enabling you to use it on long car journeys. Perfect if you’re someone who spends a lot of time behind the wheel!

Folding flat and with an integrated control panel it’s easy to store away, a feature you don’t get with bulkier seat pads.

Desk workers appreciated the massager, describing how it helps them deal with the pain brought on by sitting for long periods of time.

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5. Zyllion Shiatsu Pillow Massager with Heat

A small massage cushion with a lot of power

We love the handy size of this Zyllion pillow massager.

At just 13 inches long it’s perfect for dropping in your bag for the office or taking on vacation.

The small size doesn’t mean less power though!

You of course won’t get the intensity and coverage you’d get with a chair pad like the Comfier Shiatsu Neck & Back Massager.

However you do still get four deep-kneading shiatsu nodes that change direction every minute in the same way a masseuse would.

Made from 100% vegan leather, it can be easily attached to any chair using the adjustable straps, so you can feel like you have a massage chair with you on the go.

Reviewers looking for a tool to treat their sensitive neck found it a bit too powerful and wished they had the option to change the speed.

If you need that flexibility, take a look at the Papillon Shiatsu Neck and Back Massage Pillow that gives you control over the speed.

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6. Renpho Shiatsu Back Massage Cushion

Enjoy the relief of eight massage nodes

Fitted with an easy to clean leather cover, Renpho’s Shiatsu Back Massage Cushion is a premium product that offers a little more than the competitors.

Compare it to many other seat pads and you’ll see that you get eight nodes, as opposed to four.

It also has an adjustable neck pillow to allow you to get the perfect position to treat your neck pain.

Your back is also well looked after! This Renpho cushion has three zones so you can choose to treat your full, upper or lower back.

Users loved the ability to adjust the neck position, as it was a frustration they’d encountered with previous massage chair pads.

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7. Snailax Cordless Shiatsu Back Massage Cushion

Perfectly portable pain relief

Another portable massage cushion with great features is this cordless back massager from Snailax.

Powered by rechargeable batteries, it can provide 70 minutes of treatment before it needs recharging.

Use it at home, in the office, in the car, even while traveling to help soothe your painful muscles.

Though it looks compact, you still get the power of four soft gel nodes, a Spot function for targeted relief and heat options. A detachable intensity control flap ensures that the massage is never too intense.

Many claimed that after using this cushion their back pain had almost disappeared, likening it to a treatment from a professional.

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8. Homedics Thera-P Shiatsu Massage Pillow

A soft massage pillow you can snuggle up with

Take a look at most massage cushions and you’ll notice they’re quite industrial in their look and construction.

Homedics Thera-P Shiatsu Massage Pillow is the opposite.

Instead of being made from leather, this pillow is covered in a soft plush fabric that you can really snuggle up with.

Hiding beneath the fabric are four rotating nodes that you can activate through the integrated control panel.

Like the Snailax Cordless Cushion it also has a comfort flap to give you more effective control over intensity.

Heat is not a feature of this product so that’s worth bearing in mind. However stroke the super soft fabric and we’re sure you’ll quickly forget!

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9. Zyllion Shiatsu Neck & Back Massager Cushion

Enjoy extra nodes for neck pain

If you want a chair pad where you’re really in control then we like the Zyllion Shiatsu Neck and Back Massager Cushion.

Choose the area of your back you want to treat, or just go for a full back massage!

Whether you want a rolling motion or are in the mood for rotating nodes to perform a shiatsu style massage, this chair pad can deliver both as well as heat and vibration.

One of the best features has to be the extra nodes you get around the neck.

You can move them up and down until they’re in the perfect position and change the direction for a deep and intense neck massage.

Seat vibration also gets to work on sore glutes and thighs, almost giving you the full body treatment you get with a massage chair.

Being able to adjust the nodes made the cushion a hit with many reviewers, who felt it really helped them target their pain points.

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10. Papillon Shiatsu Neck and Back Massage Pillow

A stylish massage cushion that doesn’t compromise on features

If you want a massage cushion that will blend seamlessly in to your home then choose the Papillon Shiatsu Neck and Back Massage Pillow.

Available in two stylish plaid prints, it’ll sit discreetly on your sofa, bed or office chair for whenever you need it.

Though you don’t need to worry about it being style over substance.

Four large and 12 smaller nodes (plus heat!) work hard in the device to relieve pain in your neck and back.

Shipping with an AC and car adapter it’s portable, with a detachable dustproof cover helping to reduce the intensity of the massage.

The shape of the pillow was well received by many looking for ways to treat their back pain as it fits neatly in to your lower back.

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Types of massage cushions

There are two main types of massage cushion:

Massage Chair Pad

A massage chair pad is a massage device that is strapped on to a chair to deliver a full back massage. Massage chair pads often use either rollers, nodes or air chambers, or a combination of all of them.

Massage Pillow / Cushion

A massage pillow or a massage cushion is a device available in various shapes and sizes that includes massage nodes or vibration points. It can be placed at the site of the pain to provide relief.

Features of massage cushions

Design and Dimensions


Chair pads tend to come in a standard shape to fit any chair however the shape of massage cushions varies widely so it’s worth considering how you’ll use it to find the right shape for you.


You also need to consider the size, will it give your neck good coverage? Is it too large to be portable? All should be considerations to make the right choice.


If you want a massage cushion you can travel with day to day then consider the weight of the device when making your selection.


Some massage cushions are specifically designed to blend in with a home or office environment, perhaps by being disguised as furniture or a chair pad being so slim it fits seamlessly in to an office chair.

Style of Massage

Air Bags / Pockets

Some chair massaging pads come with air bags or air pockets which are essentially air bags that inflate / deflate to gently squeeze the body, mimicking the hands of a masseuse.


The number of massage nodes that the device offers may be important to you if you’re looking for a deep and intense massage.


Percussion is a style of massage and users have described this technique as “thundering on your back”, so perfect if you want a deep tissue massage perhaps not ideal if you’re looking for something a little less intense.


Look for this feature, a Japanese massage technique, if you want to replicate the hands of a masseuse as closely as possible! Some massagers include an optional direction mode so the nodes can change direction for a more satisfying massage.


If you have knots and want a massage that is really going to work them out then you might want to look out for the kneading function.

Intensity Settings

If you have good days and bad days and want a massage that can flex with you then you want to look for a massager with a selection of intensity settings. Some devices only come with one setting so make sure you choose what is right for you.

Speed Settings

As well as intensity settings you need to look at what speed settings are offered if you want something fast and rigorous or if you’re looking for something slow and gentle.

Extra Features


Some products offer an additional vibration function which might be something you want to consider for that added extra relief.


Heat can offer comforting relief from pain as it heats the skin which stimulates the sensors and blocks the pain signals being sent to the brain[1], many different massagers include this option so it’s worth looking out for. Infrared heat is also a feature offered by some devices.


A timer can be handy if it takes you a while to get to the source of your pain, so you can set a period of time and then just sit back and enjoy the relief.

Auto Shut Down

Auto Shut Down can be great as it protects you and the unit from overheating, however if it takes you a while to get to the source of your pain, a short auto shut down could be frustrating.


Some massagers are rechargeable making them handy to be used in the office or on the go, look closely at the length of time advertised when the product is fully charged.

Speed of Charge

You may also want to consider the speed at which the product goes from flat to fully charged, as that may be something that’s important to you.


If you’re wanting to take the massager on holiday or use it at work then a portable option might be the one you’re looking for, that is an appropriate size and lightweight.

You can also choose a massager for in the car, however this can only be used when stationary or as a passenger.

Memory / Recall

If your pain is hard to reach and you get the intensity just right it can be frustrating to have to go through the various settings each time. Memory / recall functions remember the intensity, speed and style of massage you enjoy which can be helpful day to day.

Added Extras

Car Charger

Using your device in your car, between meetings for example, might be important to you, so look for a massage cushion that comes complete with an in car charger.

Instructional Video

Another extra that may be offered with your massage cushion is an instructional video. It may sound like just a nice-to-have but if you want to get the most from your product then it can be a handy extra.

Benefits of massage cushions

Neck Pain

Massage cushions mimic the hands of a masseuse stimulating the muscles and nerve endings. Research has shown that massage therapy is an effective treatment for chronic neck pain, and a neck massager is essentially simulating this technique.

Shoulder Pain

Massage cushions can also work well for shoulder pain. Shoulder pain is one of the most common pain complaints reported in the US[2], and by stimulating the muscles with a massager it is believed that this provides relief.

Stiff Neck

Whether you get a stiff neck occasionally or you suffer from chronic daily pain you’ll understand how uncomfortable it can be. It is believed that around 10% of the adult population are suffering from a stiff neck at any one time[3], with massagers being suggested as a natural way to treat the pain.

Muscle Pain / Tension

Tension in the muscles can also be relieved by a massage cushion whether in your neck, shoulders or back.

Migraine / Headache

Massage as a therapy is used both as a treatment and a preventative method. Tension headaches are the most common type of headache in the world, and often cause both neck and shoulder pain along with pain in the head[4].


Massage therapy can be an effective treatment for arthritis, however for certain forms of severe arthritis in can have a negative effective so it’s important to consult with your doctor.

Back Pain Relief

You might want to invest in a massage cushion for back pain. It stimulates circulation and relaxes stiff muscles and research proves that massage as a technique is very effective for short term relief from back pain.

Lift Mood

Massage can release endorphins which relaxes the nervous system and create feel good hormones. Back massage in general has been shown to be a successful technique for the treatment of anxiety.


Sciatica is caused by compression of the sciatic nerve, a massage cushion can help to ease this compression. Massage chairs in particular are suggested as an effective treatment for those suffering from sciatica.


Muscle knots are when the muscle tightens or contracts even when they’re not being used[5], massage helps to relax the muscle, in turn helping to loosen the knot.

Buttocks / Glutes

Tight glutes can cause back pain, so buttock massage as a therapy can be effective to help relieve those tight muscles.


A number of massage cushions can be used on other parts of the body including your feet. Regular foot massage has been shown to help improve your circulation and release tense muscles[6].

Locations to use a massage cushion

There are a number of different places you can use your massage cushion, perhaps even places you hadn’t thought of!


If your back pain gives you difficulty at work then a massage cushion or chair pad attached to your office chair could provide you with real comfort.

Armchair / Couch

If you want to get comfortable there are a number of different massage cushions that will fit comfortably on your armchair and couch, so you can enjoy a massage whilst enjoying your favorite TV series!


On really bad days when the pain means you struggle to get out of bed, you can use a massage cushion in bed. If you want one particularly for this purpose then look for a massager that is the size and shape that will mould to your body effectively.

Car / Truck

Some massage cushions come with a car adapter allowing you to use your massager while you’re stationary in your car during breaks on a long journey, or mid travel if you’re a passenger.


What is a massage cushion?

What does a massage cushion do?

How does a massage cushion work?

How long can you use a massaging cushion for?

Can you drive while using a massage cushion?

Can I use a massage cushion while pregnant?

Can I use a massage cushion with a pacemaker?

Can I sleep on a massaging cushion?

How do I choose a massage cushion?

How much does a massage cushion cost?

Where can I buy a massage cushion?

We hope our roundup and reviews of the best massage cushions is helpful and puts you on the track to finding just the right product to give you relief from your pain.


  1. Miller, J (2016). Heat Packs. Why does heat feel so good? [Online]. Available from: http://physioworks.com.au/FAQRetrieve.aspx?ID=30990 [Accessed 10 November 2017].
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2006). QuickStats: Percentage of Adults Reporting Joint Pain or Stiffness, – National Health Interview Survey, United States, 2006 [Online]. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5717a9.htm [Accessed 6 March 2018].
  3. Virtual Medical Centre (2015). Neck Pain [Online]. Available from: https://www.myvmc.com/diseases/neck-pain/ [Accessed 6 March 2018].
  4. The Migraine Trust (2018). Tension-type headache [Online]. Available from: https://www.migrainetrust.org/about-migraine/types-of-migraine/other-headache-disorders/tension-type-headache/ [Accessed 6 March 2018].
  5. Healthline (2018). How to Treat and Prevent Muscle Knots [Online]. Available from: https://www.healthline.com/health/muscle-knots [Accessed 6 March 2018].
  6. Harvard Medical School (2018). Foot massage: The pause that refreshes and is good for you! [Online]. Available from: https://www.health.harvard.edu/mind-and-mood/foot-massage-the-pause-that-refreshes-and-it-good-for-you [Accessed 6 March 2018].