Best Massage Chairs
Why Buy a Chair Massager?
We spent 120 hours evaluating 14 massage chairs in four price tiers. We’ve narrowed them down to our top 10. When you’re considering massage chairs, you have options to choose from in a huge price range, from under $300 to nearly $10,000. The price you’ll pay depends on considerations like the chair’s features and design, incorporated technologies, quality of materials and more. We evaluated massage chairs with high Amazon user ratings and then compared the features and build of each device. We also looked at chairs priced between $1,000 and $5,000, chairs under $1,000 and budget models priced below $500.
Keep scrolling to see the best massage chairs we found. If you're looking for something even cheaper but still relaxing, there are plenty of inexpensive options like foot massagers, back massagers and handheld massagers.
Most Comprehensive - Osaki OS-4000
This chair has nodes, rollers and air bags to give you the best massage. There are eight preset options, and you can adjust each program's speed and intensity manually on the chair's touch pad. The control panel is also large and easy to read so you don’t have to struggle to read small print on a remote. Full-body and zero-gravity massages are also an option and you can turn on the heat on the lower portion of the seat. Nodes and airbags massage not only your back but your neck, calves, feet and arms, making for a relaxing and comprehensive massage. The modes run on an S-track, which is built to follow the curve of your spine. You get free curbside delivery. However, even if you pay an additional cost to have the company get the chair inside your home and unpack it, you'll still have to do some assembly yourself. The design of this chair is unique, so it’s not going to look like a regular recliner in your living room. It does, however, come in four colors.
Read the full review here: Osaki OS-4000
- Pro: Heated massage.
- Con: Doesn't come in leather
Best Control Options - Luraco iRobotics 7
This massage chair comes with a touchscreen controller and has vocal control capabilities, so you don't have to stop your massage to change the chair's settings. The control panel looks a lot like an iPhone, so the learning curve is minimal. It also comes with an MP3 player and built-in speakers. The Luraco iRobotics 7 also has body scanning technology, zero-gravity massages, full-body stretching and the ability to recline. There are nine programmed massages, but you can change each setting manually to create your own personalized massage protocol. Once you find the perfect fit you can save up to five massages in the chair's memory to repeat them whenever you like without having to change all the settings again. It also has heating capability in the lower back, feet and seat. The chair has 100 airbags and 12 motors. The motors are a little noisy, but it's nothing you can't cover up with music. This chair also works for users up to 6 feet 7 inches tall at a maximum weight of 300 pounds, which is more than most chairs on the market.
Read the full review here: Luraco iRobotics 7
- Pro: Built-in memory.
- Con: Noisy.
Best Budget - Best Choice Products SKY2238
This massage chair has five massage modes and heat capability. It’s also a reasonable price. It can handle anyone up to 250 pounds and has nodes that massage your entire back, thighs and feet. Also, while many recliner massage chairs tend to be large and a little bulky, this chair is built to blend in with your living room decor. It comes in black or brown and weighs less than 100 pounds. You'll have to assemble it yourself but the pieces are easy to put together. It’s unusual to get a chair with heating capabilities at this price point, so if that’s a style of massage you enjoy you should consider it. The chair reclines and has foot massage nodes but lacks any calf or arm massagers. The downside to going with a more affordable chair is the massage nodes aren't as intense, and the warranty only lasts 60 days. Customer service is available via phone or email should you have any questions.
Read the full review here: Best Choice Products SKY2238
- Pro: Lightweight.
- Con: Only comes in two colors
Most Color Options - INADA DreamWave
This chair is available in a wide array of colors. If you have a very specific style of decor you're trying to fit a massage chair into you can pick from black, cream, dark brown, red or TruBlack, a deeper and darker shade of black. It has 18 manual massage settings, including kneading, double kneading, shiatsu and more. It mimics the feeling of a person giving you a massage, making it feel like a professional massage. The INADA DreamWave works for most heights and weights but weighs 265 pounds by itself. You'll most likely need help moving it and assembling it. There is an instructional video showing how to construct it online if you need extra assistance. During massage, the chair rocks side to side, and it has heating capability on the lower back section of the seat. It also includes arm massage but lacks any body scanning technology or zero-gravity massage.
Read the full review here: INADA DreamWave
- Pro: Comes in five colors
- Con: Lacks zero-gravity massage
Best for Medical Massage - Medical Breakthrough 8
Every Medical Breakthrough 8 is built to order to your weight, height and foot measurements, so it's sure to work for you. The company will also customize the chair to fit special needs, though it does cost extra. This is really useful if you've had long-standing back problems. The chair has 167 airbags and body scan technology to massage your body in accordance to how you sit in the chair. It also has full-body stretch capability, heat, 3D and zero-gravity massage technology. The foot rest is adjustable. The user manual explicitly states that you shouldn't fall asleep in the chair, so be careful when you're using it. The chair is designed to run for 8 hours at most, longer than many of the other chairs we reviewed. The chair itself weighs a whopping 434 pounds, so it's not very mobile once assembled. If you don't want to deal with that hassle, you can pay the company extra to assemble it for you.
Read the full review here: Medical Breakthrough 8
- Pro: Customized.
- Con: Expensive.
Massage Chairs: What to Look For
Massage chairs tend to be heavy – the ones we evaluated range from 61 pounds to 434 pounds. The last thing you want to do is scuff up your nice floor or injure your back while moving these hefty devices. To make things easier, look for a chair that has wheels on the bottom, making it more mobile. If you're using a massage chair regularly, you should expect it to get a little dirty, and since it is an electrical appliance, it is best not to get it wet. Try finding a chair that is made of soil-resistant or easy-cleaning material.
Since massage chairs can cost a lot, it’s smart to buy one with a decent warranty. The best massage chair warranties last at least three years. If you want to easily access a beverage, cell phone, MP3 player, book or other item while getting your massage, look for a chair that comes with built-in pockets and cup holders. Massage chairs tend to have weight and height limits, so before making a purchase, be sure to find a product that fits your body. They are rare, but you can find some machines that have adjustable leg extensions to fit taller and shorter users.
Many massage chairs require assembly upon delivery. If you'd prefer that a qualified professional put it together, look for a company that offers assembly services, often referred to as white glove delivery. This service typically costs extra. Keep in mind that some products require minimal assembly while others are relatively toolbox and labor heavy.
Types of Massage
Shiatsu massage traditionally relies on a therapist applying pressure with the fingers, thumbs and palms. The aim of this style of massage is to improve health by stimulating your internal energy system. A massage chair mimics this with small, round balls beneath the padded surface of the chair. Oftentimes these balls move in circular motions at varying speeds. Vibration massage is much harder to attain by hand, so if you enjoy this style it's best to own a massage chair. The entire chair vibrates depending on the settings you select, which can feel good and be very calming.
The way massage chairs mimic various types of massage is through the track behind the seat. Most massage chairs work on an S-Track system. The chair is built on a steel frame in the shape of a letter S that follows the curve of the spine. This frame has rollers mounted on to it that move. Other chairs are built with a hybrid L/S-Track, which is similar to the S-Track but curves below the seat under the back of a person's thighs. There are other kinds of track depending on the chair you buy that will address different massage needs, so make sure to try out the chair before you buy it.
Some chairs also have body scanning technology. This means the chair uses sensors to evaluate the user's size, weight and curves to deliver the best massage. These chairs usually take a moment or two to complete the evaluation, so it's important to sit still during the process.