Wellness » The 10 Best Back Massagers in 2022

The 10 Best Back Massagers in 2022

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The pandemic drove many of us out of our offices and into whatever corner we could find in our homes work. Unfortunately, though, ergonomics took a pretty big hit in haste to get things up and running. If you’re one of the many still working from your bed, commandeering a corner on the couch, or using your dinner table as a desk, back pain and muscle strain are probably making a regular appearance — maybe more often than you’d like. 

Or perhaps overdoing it at the gym, smashing yourself into a tiny plane seat, or simply waking up on the wrong side of the bed has caused you some back pain. Although a trip to the spa might be just what the chiropractor ordered, finding the time to indulge in a body or facial massage is a whole different story. 

In that case, a DIY approach is your best bet to alleviate your pain and discomfort and get your muscles back to happy. The best back massagers efficiently work out the kinks, they’re easy to use, and of course, they hit your wallet just right. Find our top picks for the best back massagers below.

Best back massagers overview:

How we chose the best back massagers

To compile this list, we researched manufacturer specifications, including speed settings, specific massage types, heat functions, and more, to create a short list of the best back massagers. Then, we combed through detailed product descriptions, ratings, and reviews to find the best back massagers for each category.

Our picks for the best back massagers

Best overall
Zyllion Shiatsu Back and Neck Massager Pillow with Heat and Wired Connection

What we love

  • Heated
  • Fairly affordable
  • Apt for back, neck, legs, feet, and more

What we don’t love

  • Corded
  • Removable sleeve is the only way to adjust the intensity

Zyllion’s Shiatsu Back and Neck Massager Pillow features deep-tissue massagers that rotate clockwise and counterclockwise every minute to closely mimic the pro hands of a skilled masseuse. While you can only use the Zyllion massager on one spot at a time, the unit contours your body so you can easily target smaller areas. 

This massager delivers strong yet soothing heat, and the unit shuts off automatically after 20 minutes to prevent overheating or injury. 

Made from quality synthetic leather, the Zyllion massager is double-netted, so it’ll wear well over time, and the cover is removable for easy cleaning. 

Considering all that this massager offers (and at an affordable price point) it understandably landed the top spot on our list as the best back massager overall. However, while it checks a lot of boxes, users should know that there’s no built-in functionality to dial down the intensity; the only way to do so is to use the included sleeve or place a blanket between you and the massager.

Target Areas: Whole body | Speeds: 1 | Heat: Yes

Best for lumbar area
Viktor Jurgen Shiatsu Kneading Massage Pillow with Heat

What we love

  • Compact
  • Built-in temperature controls
  • Elegant design

What we don’t love

  • Corded

This massager by Viktor Jurgen is ergonomically designed, large enough to massage your back yet small enough to expertly target sore muscles in your neck, shoulders, or feet. 

It features four deep-kneading massage nodes that automatically change direction every minute, so it rivals the hands of an expert masseur. Plus, it has a heat function to soothe tired aching muscles, and there’s built-in overheating protection. 

This Viktor Jurgen massager is small, so it’s easy to use and move around for those who need a little massage relief on the go.

Target Areas: Whole body | Speeds: 1 | Heat: Yes

Best handheld
Rehpho Handheld Back Massager

What we love

  • Handheld for targeted relief
  • Cordless

What we don’t love

  • Seems bulky
  • No heat

Most deep-tissue massagers are shiatsu massagers, but Renpho’s Handheld Back Massager uses percussion technology. It comes with five interchangeable head attachments to tackle sore muscles in your back, neck, shoulder, legs, and feet. Among them is a one-point head for a focused trigger-point massage and a round head for a deep-tissue massage. 

This handheld unit has a built-in battery, so you can go further than your power outlets allow and essentially use this back massager anywhere. Even better, the battery has a generous 140-minute run time before it needs to be recharged. 

Common concerns with handheld massagers are reach and weight, but Renpho has that covered. The handle is long and ergonomically designed, so it’s comfortable to hold and easily gets to those hard-to-reach spots. And there’s no need to worry about hand fatigue, as the unit is pretty lightweight at 1.7 pounds. 

With only four buttons on the control panel, the Renpho Rechargeable massager is intuitive and easy to use. The built-in auto shut-off function (after 20 minutes of continuous use) prevents unnecessarily draining the battery.

Target Areas: Whole body | Speeds: 5 | Heat: No

Best splurge
Therabody Theragun PRO

What we love

  • Provides targeted relief
  • 300-minute run time
  • Offers quiet yet powerful deep-tissue massage

What we don’t love

  • Expensive
  • Users must hold it in place for the duration of treatment

The Theragun Pro may be a powerful commercial-grade massager with a high price point, but in your home, it operates quietly and effectively to relieve sore muscles and knots. 

This professional-grade percussive massager features the brand’s patented triangle handle with an ergonomic design to help you reach the tough spots without straining your hands, wrists, and arms. Plus, it’s designed with a safe foam material and perfectly shaped to work with the contours of your body. 

The Theragun Pro features an OLED screen that displays your current speed and a responsive force meter, and the massager is Bluetooth enabled so that you can control it through the Therabody app for iOS or Android

This massager also features a brushless motor with QuietForce Technology. This means it delivers up to 60 pounds of massaging force while operating as quietly as a standard electric toothbrush. Users can choose from five built-in speeds, and you can expect an impressive five-hour (300-minute) run time and two continuously swappable external batteries.

Target Areas: Whole body | Speeds: 5 | Heat: No

Best for office chairs
Snailax Shiatsu Back Massager with Heat & Vibration

What we love

  • Offers a full-back massage with little input from the user
  • Provides spot massage
  • Folds flat for easy storage

What we don’t love

  • Not portable
  • Detachable flap is the only way to adjust the intensity

While smaller back massagers need to be endlessly moved and adjusted, the Snailax Shiatsu Back Massager with Heat and Vibration essentially just sits there working its magic. 

Use this massager while you sit in any type of chair, including a sofa, couch, recliner, office chair, or dining chair. Once secured using the integrated straps, four deep-kneading massage nodes get to work traveling up and down your back hitting pain points and loosening knots. Between three massage zones (full back, upper back, and lower back) and three massage intensity levels, relief comes at the touch of a button.  

Snailax Shiatsu Massager is designed with flexible massage nodes that work with the curves of your body. You can choose the option that rolls up and down your back, or you can opt for a spot massage that concentrates on one area.

Like many massagers on our list, this chair massager is equipped with heat therapy that relaxes tense muscles for better results. It has a detachable flap that you can leave on or remove to adjust the intensity of your massage. 

Since this massage cushion is designed for chairs and sofas, it runs on the large side. That said, it does fold flat for easy storage.

Target Areas: Back | Speeds: 3 | Heat: Yes

Best heated
HoMedics Percussion Action Plus Handheld Massager

What we love

  • Lightweight
  • 4 speeds
  • Users can remove the massage heads to bump up the heat

What we don’t love

  • Corded

By relaxing your muscles, heat can double down on a back massager’s effectiveness. So, for those on “team heat,” you might consider HoMedics Percussion Action Massager. 

Weighing less than 2.5 pounds, this back massager is lightweight and portable. The ergonomic rubber handle allows for excellent handling and grip when stretching for those hard-to-reach areas.

The dual pivoting massage heads deliver up to 3,100 pulses per minute, and four speed settings allow you to choose between gentle and firm massage options. While the heat works just fine with the massager attachments, you can remove them for a little boost in temperature.

Target Areas: Whole body | Speeds: 4 | Heat: Yes

Best tech-free
LiBa Back and Neck Massager

What we love

  • Doesn’t require electricity or batteries
  • Effectively targets trouble spots
  • Budget-friendly

What we don’t love

  • No heat
  • Requires active participation

While electric back massagers so often steal the show, the low-tech options are worthy of a closer look. They may not be loaded with heat functions and kneading shiatsu balls, but they effectively target and tackle knots on your back — and in many cases, for a fraction of the price. If you want a no-tech, more manual option, you might consider the LiBa Back And Neck Massager. 

This highly-rated massager requires your input, but you’re the expert on your pain. You know where to focus and the amount of pressure to apply, making it that much more effective. This “selfie” massager is ergonomically designed to help you get the kinks out, and you can use it from your neck down to your feet. 

It weighs less than a pound, so hand and arm fatigue will likely be minimal, and it’s long enough to grant you easy access to those hard-to-reach areas on your own.

Target Areas: Whole body | Speeds: N/A | Heat: No

Best for targeted relief
Toloco Massage Gun

What we love

  • More affordable than other similar models
  • 15 interchangeable massage heads
  • Provides targeted pain relief

What we don’t love

  • No heat

Like most handheld percussion back massagers, the Toloco Massage Gun offers targeted pain relief, but this one is more affordable than other similar models. This highly-rated massage gun offers 20 speed levels ranging from warmup to professional mode. It also has 15 replaceable massage heads that relieve muscle fatigue, pain, and discomfort anywhere on your body. 

Toloco’s Massage Gun is lightweight and features an ergonomically designed silicone handle, so user hand and arm fatigue shouldn’t be an issue. Notably, this massage gun has an elegant LCD touch screen, where users can control the unit and see an accurate display of their speed level and power. 

Rounding out a solid list of features for this massage gun is a well-designed carrying case that simplifies storage and keeps all the pieces together.

Target Areas: Neck, back, shoulders, legs | Speeds: 20 | Heat: No

Best massage mat
Snailax Memory Foam Full Body Massage Mat With Heat

What we love

  • Full-body heat and massage
  • Heat and massage functions operate independently
  • Feels soft and plush

What we don’t love

  • Vibration may not be powerful enough for some
  • May be pricey for just a vibration massage
  • No option for targeting specific areas

If you’re looking for a back massage without the intensity of deep tissue shiatsu, you might consider Snailax’s Memory Foam Massage Mat. Designed to be a full-body mat that you can lay on, this massager skips the shiatsu roller balls and delivers a total body vibration massage instead.

It’s designed with 10 massage motors and five mode options for different areas of your body, including your neck, shoulders, back, thighs, and legs. It also comes with three vibration massage intensity options. With multiple layers of polyester, polyurethane memory foam, and high-density base support foam, this massager is plush yet flexible enough for easy transport and storage. 

If you just want a warm spot for your afternoon nap, it can do that too. The Snailax’s Memory Foam Massage Mat features six heating pads that can be turned on without the vibration massage function in play. The built-in overheat protection keeps the mat at a stable temperature, and the heating pad automatically shuts off after 30 minutes.

Target Areas: Whole body | Speeds: 3 | Heat: Yes

Best vibration
Comfier Heating Pad for Back Pain

What we love

  • Multiple uses
  • Built-in heat function
  • On the affordable side

What we don’t love

  • Wearable but corded
  • Vibration massage only

While a wearable belt is a reliable option for a lower back massage, we found that Comfier’s Heating Pad works quite well for whatever else ails you (we’re looking at you, menstrual cramps). But its list of uses doesn’t end there. This wearable pad delivers heat and vibrational massages to your neck, shoulders, abdomen, thighs, and legs. 

Equipped with four powerful massage motors, Comfier’s Heating Pad also features three massage modes, two intensities, and two heat levels. It comes with overheating protection and an auto shut-off function that turns the unit off after 30 minutes.

Target Areas: Whole body | Speeds: 2 | Heat: Yes

When you don’t have a personal masseuse 

While a massage by skilled hands can be infinitely helpful, budget and time constraints can make it out of reach. So, whenever you find yourself dealing with poor office ergonomics or go a little too hard at the gym, a back massager might be a good pinch hitter for achy muscles and knots in your back.

Before adding anything to your cart, do a little homework to find the best back massager for your needs. The best back massager for you is the one that targets your specific pain points, that’s easy to use, and comes with all the functionality you need. If you’re looking for a good thought start, you might try Zyllion’s Shiatsu Back and Neck Massager, our pick for the best back massager overall. It features deep-tissue massagers that change direction every minute, emits strong, soothing heat, and works with the contours of your body, all at a budget-friendly price. 

How to pick the right back massager for you

Style of massage

One of the first things you should consider when buying a back massager is what style of massage you prefer. Your choices include manual massagers, deep tissue shiatsu, vibration, and percussion massage guns for targeted relief — each with its pros and cons. Shiatsu and deep tissue massagers are more intense; for some people, they can be overkill. In comparison, vibration massagers may not be strong enough for others. Ultimately, it all comes down to your own comfort level and personal preference.


Back massagers are available in a wide range of price points. So, anyone shopping for them would do best to consult their budget first. 

Ease of use

From handheld units and chair pads to wearables and block designs, back massagers are available in various designs. When shopping for one, be sure to consider the ease of use of the product. For example, some massagers may require you to enlist some help to get to those hard-to-reach areas. While they may be helpful, they’ll only be as beneficial as the company you keep. 


The great thing about online shopping is that people are usually more than willing to share their experiences and satisfaction with a product (or lack thereof) with the world. Reviews can be infinitely helpful for giving potential buyers feedback on real-world performance, and you can bet they’ll discuss shortfalls in design and functionality. 


What’s the best back massager available? 

Like most things, there’s no black-and-white answer to the best anything. Ultimately, the best back massager is the one that checks your specific boxes. It’s one that massages your tight muscles without causing more pain, one that you find easy to use, and one that fits within your budget. 

Do back massagers actually work?

If your issues stem from sore muscles, knots, and stiffness, back massagers can be very helpful. Many offer deep tissue shiatsu massage to knead and roll away your pain and stiffness. 

What’s the best vibrating back massager?

From our research, it looks like Comfier’s Heating Pad for Back Pain is the best vibrating back massager. It’s a wearable belt with plenty of functionality and potential uses. It has two intensities, two heat levels, and built-in overheating protection.