best massage chair

How to Find the Best Massage Chair

Latest posts by Maddy Chiffey (see all)

If you want to find the best massage chair, then the internet can be a confusing place. At Home Care Hub, we do all the research to make the purchasing of home-care technology and equipment more straightforward. This post will focus on top the massage chairs models around, including our honest, unbiased findings of the chairs featured.

How do you know you can trust us? Well, nobody but us chooses the massage chairs for us to review. In this guide, I have only selected the massage chairs that I believe to be as good as their adverts claim. I have looked across the web, price points, and at all materials and designs to ensure that every reader can find a product to suit their needs.

If you want to move on to the products straight away, the ones I have reviewed are just below.

At a Glance: 7 Best Massage Chairs

What is a Massage Chair?

In the late 1980s, the first massage chair was introduced to the consumer market. Its intentions were to emulate the techniques and motions of a real masseuse, with the goal being to have a way to relieve tension and stress and alleviate neck and back pain within your own home.

What is a Massage Chair

Benefits of Owning a Massage Chair 

Nearly half of all massage consumers paid for their massage for health or wellness reasons, and 30% have done so on their Doctor’s advice. A massage can do wonders for relieving tension and pain, but it isn’t always convenient or available. An electronic substitute, i.e., the massage chair, is always there, ready to perform its magic whenever you desire.

Some people may presume that a massage chair is an extravagant expense, and while it isn’t an essential item for day-to-day living, the many benefits of owning one can outweigh the price. There have been numerous clinical studies performed that show a significant improvement in managing hypertension, muscle recovery, immunity response, and blood circulation through massage.

The health advantages of owning a massage chair can be associated with pain management, enhanced mobility, and muscle recovery. In addition, they’re also highly effective at treating neck and back problems. A more surprising benefit for those receiving a regular massage is their increased ability to focus and solve problems.

Massage chairs are great for lowering stress and anxiety levels, and as a consequence, are regularly recommended in hospitals, corporate settings, and residential care homes. Massages can considerably help people overcome depression and anxiety and contribute to alleviating sleep disorders like insomnia.

General health and wellness come from a serene mind and relaxed body, which the ownership of a massage chair can undoubtedly achieve. Here are the top 10 known benefits of massages:

  • Reduces Stress and Anxiety
  • Helps to Induce Better Sleep
  • Treatment for Lower Back Pain
  • Flushes the Lymphatic System
  • Decreases the Severity and Regularity of Headaches
  • Helps with Blood Circulation
  • Boosts the Body’s Immune System
  • Effective Treatment for Neck and Shoulder Pain
  • Can Help to Rekindle a Sex Drive
  • Improves General Physical and Mental Wellbeing

Guidelines for Choosing the Right Massage Chair 

how to choose massage chairs

Buying a massage chair can be a substantial investment, not only in monetary terms but also regarding the space within your home, which is why making the right purchasing decision is essential.

A massage chair should provide extra comfort, pain relief, relaxation, and a newfound enjoyment within your home. It shouldn’t bring anything negative, and if you use this guide to help you, you should find the ownership of your new massage chair purely positive.

Is there ever a perfect time to make a large purchase? Honestly, there are always other things we can convince ourselves of that are more important to fund than our own sense of peace or comfort. But, if you believe that you would benefit from owning a massage chair, then here are some things to consider.

Price 

No definitive data is stating which massage chair is the best one out there, nor is there a standard price level for this product.

The price bracket for massage chairs tends to run from $200 to $6,000. Generally, a higher price will indicate a higher level of quality, but this isn’t necessarily the case with massage chairs. Recently, lines of similar but improved models emerged at much lower prices than their ancestors.

Massage Strength 

The intensity of the massage must be appropriate for you. For those who need a less vigorous massage, a more point-specific massage with small rollers, softer movements, and slower speed settings may be better. For a more intense massage, look for chairs with highly protruded components and strong movements.

Adjustability 

Depending on how many people the chair will be used by, and for what reasons, will determine how important the presets and adjustability of it are. Some chairs offer great variability, which could be a good idea when purchasing a single chair for multiple users. For others, it may seem like too many buttons and features, and a basic, one-to-two mode chair will be sufficient.

Accessories

As well as a, or several, massage features, some chairs can have additional functions such as heat, leg rests, reclining capabilities, or slouch modes. With extra features tends to come a higher price and a higher risk of more things going wrong. But, for some people, the more features then the greater the experience.

Appearance

Massage chairs can be discreet, modern in design, or futuristic. They come in various shapes and sizes and have many different finishes such as plastic, leather (real or faux), polished wood, or a fabric and material combination. Although appearance isn’t the primary factor, it is important to consider how the chair will look in your home to prevent buyers remorse.

Product Criteria

I considered a few factors before deciding to review any of the models I selected for this guide. And these were:

Price

Although prices for massage chair models vary, I chose chairs across the price points and felt they were priced reasonably.

Comfort

It isn’t easy to base a decision on how comfortable a chair is if you haven’t sat in that chair yourself. So, I have chosen chairs that I have found to be comfortable, as well as other reviewers and consumers.

Appearance 

I have chosen some great models of varied designs; recliners, gaming chairs, lounge chairs, and chair pads. It may be that you want your massage chair to stand out and be a focal point, or it could be that you’d prefer it to blend in more and not be such a big part of your interior design.

Reviews

As well as my own findings, I only wanted to include chairs that had been generally well-received by other consumers. For a massage chair to have made it into this guide, it has many more good ratings than bad.

7 Best Massage Chairs 

Human Touch WholeBody Massage Chair – Our #1 Top Pick

 

  • 3 Color Options
  • Swivel Base
  • 5 Auto-Massage Programs
Find it Here
RENPHO Heated, Body Massager Pad – Our #1 Budget Pick

 

  • Neck and Back Heated Massager
  • Portable Pad; Favorite Chair, Car Seat, Travel and Vacation
  • American Designed
Find it Here
Panasonic MAJ7 Massage Chair 

 

  • Heated Massage Rollers
  • Massage Strength and Intensity Adjustments
  • Ultra-Kneading Massage for Arms, Hands, and Feet
Find it Here
JC Home Drammen Massaging Leather Recliner and Ottoman

 

  • Massaging Recliner
  • Swivel Base
  • Ottoman Footrest Included
Find it Here
FANTASYLAB Racing Gaming Chair with Footrest

 

  • Fully Reclinable
  • Memory Foam Padding
  • Pull Out Footrest
Find it Here
Ogawa Active L Plus Massage Chair

 

  • Touch Screen Remote
  •  9 Massage Programs
  • FDA Listed Medical Device
Find it Here
OWAYS Massage Chair

 

  • Rocking Lounge Chair
  • Adjustable Footrest
  • Adjustable Neck Massage Pillow
Find it Here

#1 Human Touch WholeBody Massage Chair – Our #1 Top Pick 

The Human Touch 7.1 WholeBody Massage Chair is an upgrade on previous models, and what an upgrade it is!

For a very fair, though high, price, consumers can get a personalized full body massage planned through the body pro map – an excellent feature, where you click on a body part for the rollers to move to this area and begin to massage it. I found this to be extremely easy to use and very comfortable to receive.

There are independent leg and back adjustments and a comfortable cushioned pillow and backrest – which can be removed for a more intense massage. The massage given is through flex guide massage technology, meaning there’s no friction or pinching of the skin. You can also include heat with your massage to improve circulation and relieve tired, aching muscles.

The massage can penetrate deeply, and I particularly like the patented figure 8 technology for the foot and calf portions. This technology makes the product a great choice for those suffering from restless leg syndrome or poor blood circulation. There are five massage settings and three color options to choose from.

Pros 

  • Easy to Use Controls
  • Great Leg Massage
  • Heat Options
  • Comfortable Neck Pillow
  • Modern, Stylish Design
  • Fully Adjustable Reclining
  • Personalized Massage

Cons

  • Currently Out of Stock at Amazon – Available from the brand at a higher price here.
  • High Installation Price – Not too heavy for two people to lift and maneuver

#2 RENPHO Heated, Body Massager Pad – Our #1 Budget Pick 

My favorite thing about the RENPHO Heated Body Massager Pad is that you can take it absolutely anywhere with you! The long commute to work, the office, on vacation, or use on your favorite chair at home. It’s highly affordable, has some great features, and comes with the ability to add heat to your neck and back massage.

The price is magnificent for the quality, especially for the features such as the versatility with the adjustable neck rest. There are three intensity levels, with the highest one being comfortable pressure that feels deep and like it’s really doing something. I like the timer, so you don’t overdo it, and that it is simple to store when not in use.

Pros 

  • Versatile
  • Portable
  • Heat Option
  • Adjustable
  • Timer
  • Easy to Store

Cons

  • Fairly Heavy to Carry
  • Best for Average Heights and Builds

#3 Panasonic MAJ7 Massage Chair 

The Panasonic MAJ7 Massage Chair is said to be one of the best massage chairs on the market, and it is certainly a great choice for those who want high-end luxury and a full body massaging chair, from neck to foot. You will receive intense deep tissue therapy with this chair due to the brand’s unrivaled attention to detail and RealPro deep 3-D action.

The RealPro Ultra main mechanism provides real-time pressure detection that adjusts massage intensity to a more personalized level. I found the foot rollers to be particularly special with this chair, and the engineering precision is remarkable. Focus the massage on specific parts of the body to take full advantage of the preset therapy programs – there are 158 combinations to choose from!

Pros

  • Whisper-Quiet Noise Level
  • Heated Rollers
  • 6 Pre-set Massage Therapy Programs
  • 158 Manual Massage Combinations
  • Unique 3-D Massage System
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty (US Only)

Cons

  • Fairly Complex – Could be Confusing
  • 19-Minute Massage Only – Chair will turn off after this time
  • Very Expensive

#4 JC Home Drammen Massaging Leather Recliner and Ottoman

JC Home Drammen Massage Chair

An entry-level massage chair with some excellent features that I love is the JC Home Drammen Massaging Leather Recliner and Ottoman. Firstly, it isn’t huge and fits quite comfortably into an unused corner of the lounge, office, or bedroom, without being flashy or overly showy. It’s a basic-looking chair; sleek and modern.

The chair reclines and turns 360-degrees on the swivel base. There are nine massage modes with five different intensity levels, and I found the seat (which is double padded) extremely comfortable without the need for additional cushions. The side pocket is hugely convenient for books, cells, glasses, or to neatly store the remote control. The price is great, and I am a fan!

Pros

  • Easy to Assemble
  • Space Saving Massage Chair
  • Lots of Massage and Intensity Choice
  • Great Price
  • Very Comfortable

Cons

  • Technology Fairly Basic for Some
  • Missing a Padded Neck Cushion
  • Is Relatively Loud on Higher Settings
  • Half an Hour Timer; Can be annoying if you’re using a low setting to relax the night away to

#5 FANTASYLAB Racing Gaming Chair with Footrest 

The FANTASYLAB Racing Gaming Chair with Footrest is an excellent choice for those who spend a lot of time working at a computer or gaming! It has many comfort features, such as a detachable pillow, a high-density foam seat, and well-padded armrests. In addition, it is so adjustable that people of all shapes, sizes, weights, and heights can make this chair fit them perfectly.

The massage functions are not mind-blowing, but they’re good. The massage bead vibration focuses on the lower part of the back, which can ache and become sore when sitting on office chairs for some time. I like the pull-out footstool and how far back this chair reclines. While great for the office, it may not be a serious contender for a full-body massaging chair.

Pros

  • Highly Customizable
  • Very Comfortable
  • Fully Reclines
  • 360-Degree Rotation
  • Lower Back Massage

Cons

  • Not a Full Body Massage Chair

#6 Ogawa Active L Plus Massage Chair 

With some fantastic therapeutic features and digital technology, the Ogawa Active L Plus Massage Chair is an excellent choice for many. This is an FDA-listed medical device, but sadly the brand only retails online, making it impossible for consumers to try it out before purchasing.

This chair’s size and adjustability make it great for all users, especially for bigger, taller people. The Zero-G seating is NASA-inspired and does leave you feeling weightless. I like the body scanning technology, which automatically positions the rollers to suit you best, and all of the customization options you can choose with the touch screen tablet.

Pros

  • Free Curbside Delivery
  • NASA Inspired Zero Gravity
  • Excellent Tech Features; Sound System, Light Therapy, BlueTooth Speakers, Touch Screen Tablet
  • Good Quality Full Body Massage
  • FDA Listed Medical Device

Cons

  • It may not fit in with all interiors – large, imposing design and clearly a massage chair.
  • It will take time to learn how to use all of the tech features
  • Heated footwells would be a good improvement
  • $100 to assemble seems steep, on top of delivery charge to door
  • 3 Year Warranty for $400 – Others have this for no extra cost

#7 OWAYS Massage Chair 

The OWAYS Massage Chair is incredibly comfortable and looks great in almost any room. It offers full-body relaxation, with deep kneading massage options and vibrating motors. I particularly like the rocking of the chair and the massage pillow and feel it could be more comfortable than leather – although fabric comes with its own drawbacks of being more difficult to clean.

The frame is made of durable wood, and the fabric features a soft sponge padding. You can fully recline the chair or sit more upright and rock. The chair can support up to 330 lbs and has a conveniently placed button panel in easy reach at the side of the frame. It is easy to assemble and not too heavy to maneuver, but delivery can take some time for non-Amazon-Prime members.

Pros

  • Extremely Comfortable
  • Massage and Rocking
  • Massage Pillow
  • Easy to Assemble
  • Simple Controls

Cons

  • Low Chair – It could be difficult for some to get in and out of without support
  • Doesn’t Massage Legs or Feet
  • Long Delivery for Amazon Non-Prime Members

Frequently Asked Questions 

Question: What Massage Techniques do Massage Chairs Use?

Answer: Massage chairs tend to try to emulate either Shiatsu or Swedish massage. Shiatsu uses sweeping, rolling, pressing, and rotating movements on specific parts of the body, whereas a Swedish massage is characteristic of long, gliding strokes and kneading motions. The massage chair product description will say which type(s) of massage are replicated.

Question: Is a Massage Chair Safe for Everyone?

Answer: Before purchasing any type of massage chair, and especially if you have any pre-existing medical conditions, we would highly recommend seeking approval from your medical practitioner. A massage chair could be recommended for some, while advised to be avoided for others.

Question: Are There Any Potential Risks of Massage Therapy Chairs?

Answer: In general, massage is non-invasive and considered a helpful, therapeutic treatment for most. However, some contraindications should be followed, and these include:
• Rashes
• Unhealed Wounds
• Infectious Skin Diseases
• Inflamed or Infected Injuries
• Heavy Tissue Damage
• At Sites of Recent Bruises, Sprains, or Fractures
• Immediately Following Radiation Therapy or Chemotherapy
Osteoporosis (Use Caution).

Best Massage Chairs – My Verdict 

The best massage chair for you depends on a variety of factors. For example, some consumers may find the high level of technology in the Ogawa Active L Plus Massage Chair too confusing to follow or see it as unnecessary; for others, it could be a game-changer.

Another one to suit some and not others is the Panasonic MAJ7 Massage Chair, and with its costly price tag, you’d have to be 100% certain it was right for you. If so, you could have an excellent chair that will last a lifetime, but if not, then you could have lost a considerable amount of money.

The RENPHO Heated Body Massager Pad is an excellent choice for people who are still unsure of the benefits of massage chairs; it is low in price, is completely portable massage chair, and fits any existing chair. While its intensity levels may not rival some more expensive and complete massaging chairs, it is a great gateway into knowing if this is a product for you.

For people who spend a lot of time sitting at a desk, I thoroughly recommend the FANTASYLAB Racing Gaming Chair with Footrest. It isn’t a contender for chairs like the Panasonic or Ogawa, but it would certainly make life more comfortable for some.

The JC Home Drammen Massaging Leather Recliner and Ottoman is another option for those who simply don’t have the room for anything more significant; there are some great features with it, such as the adjustable vibration settings and comfortable padding. The OWAYS Massage Chair could fit in with most exteriors and is a rocking chair with a difference. However, this is a low-sitting chair and may not be suitable for everyone.

Our top recommendation is for the Human Touch WholeBody Massage Chair. With easy-to-use controls, personalized message settings, heat options, and the option to fully recline, this modern and stylish massage chair is an excellent choice to suit the majority.

If you are interested in other massage-related accessories that might be beneficial for you, check out our other guides:

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